Is Google taking over the Real Estate World as well?
Posted by jamesdearsley on July 7, 2009
There has been all manner of talk over the last few days about Google making huge strides in the Real Estate World and trying to take over from Property Portals in promoting property for sale. I, for one, have to say that I can see why Property Portals would worry.
Google are now giving anyone accessing Google Maps, the ability to search for Real Estate anywhere in the world which is an obvious and clever idea. I have to say however, they are not the first to have struck on to this idea. The first site to start this was a website called http://www.ononemap.com and its functionality was brilliant – I even found my last property investment using this site. It simply scanned all the property portals and posted the results onto a map. I remember reading an article about it being the next big property website. However, there was a slight problem with it; Google didn’t like it as it was essentially using the Googlebot’s functionality of scanning webpages for changes.
Low and behold a few years later, Google launches exactly the same product while ononemap.com is no longer……
Anyway, I do think, due to the Google Branding and also the fact that it is free causes huge problems for Property Portals as the functionality is actually not like the original ononemap.com as it is down to the Agent to upload the properties themselves – from what I can ascertain so far from the research I have found. Is this the end of the Property Portal I wonder?
The one problem at the moment is actually accessing this function as it is not yet clear on the actual Google Maps homepage (unless I am mistaken) and the only way I have gained access is directly from Weblinks give to me. However, please view the search function using this link http://maps.google.com/help/maps/realestate/ I have to admit it is very easy to use and I shall be using this for my industry. I only hope that it becomes more easily accessible in the near future.
Talking of other areas where Google is going to influence the Real Estate world; Street view. I was very impressed when I first read about this and then trialled it. I immediately saw the benefit from the Property sales perspective; especially if you are selling to buyers that are abroad or do not want to waste anytime. I was then even more impressed when within its first month it had already caused its first divorce; a wife had spotted her husbands car at her best friends address when he was allegedly away on business! Sometimes new technology is not for everyone!
Anyway, I have to say, along with most technology advances in the Real Estate World, I am all for Google doing this as it will just make the market stand up and listen to the technological advances taking place in our world.
There have been some other interesting blog articles on this subject in the last 24 hrs, here are a couple that i would recommend:
Both good and informative articles.
Best wishes everyone.