It was the event we all hoped would never actually happen. A worldwide pandemic.
Life as we know it has changed and the impossibly big question remains, will it be business as usual when the world returns to some form of normality?
We think not…
The challenge ahead for housebuilders
In these unprecedented times, selling new homes before they’re built is a challenge.
Housebuilders across the country closed their doors to the public and although there are signs of a staged re-opening of building sites and sales centres over the coming weeks and months, social distancing guidelines will remain.
Most housebuilders aren’t set up to sell remotely.
The quality of their digital sales process has been evident in the dip of new build sales and they now they find themselves scrambling to catch up with the more forward-thinking sectors.
A genuine online sales experience is not currently a comprehensive part of the sales toolkit, but it certainly will be in the future.
Housebuilders tend to be very traditional in the way they want to sell their homes, but COVID-19 has meant they have to think quickly and adapt their traditional methods.
Home-buyers are unable to travel to marketing suites or showhomes.
The pandemic will result in a permanent change of consumer behaviour, which will send shock waves down the current house buying process.
Housebuilders must reinvent themselves for this ‘new normal.’ They must offer innovative solutions for their audience to continue their house buying process.
“I’ve always believed that 360 Virtual Tours and a digital sales process are the future, but COVID-19 has brought them to the present.”
Improve your digital offering today
With the correct digital infrastructure, the house-buying process can continue at distance. There has never been a more appropriate time to review your digital offering.
One thing I’ve learnt during this period is that many activities can conveniently continue online from the seclusion of our homes.
Whilst most COVID-19 behaviour will fade away, I suspect that some consumer habits will remain.
An industry that’s learning
Many housebuilders have been creating photographic virtual tours by harnessing Matterport technology, uploading 360 images to their website using photography of pre-existing housetypes or showhomes.
Matterport’s tours are a good starting point for the housebuilding industry the amount of developers beginning to upload photographic virtual tours to their website is promising, as it shows the industry is slowly beginning to see the value of virtual content.
Consumers will soon demand the more engaging and immersive experiences.
There is another way…
At EyeSiteView, we are like Matterport’s younger, better looking brother.
Our USP is that our content is remarkable CGI.
The key benefit between CGI virtual tours and photographic tours is the earlier accessibility.
Our tours can be created long before property is built, as well as being surprisingly cost-effective when considering the time and money that goes into building and furnishing a home for a photographic tour.
This means customers can visualise how they’d look, at their own pace. Examples of swatch options include flooring, kitchen worktop colours, or bathroom tile pattern.
The future of selling new homes
During the last few months we’ve accelerated development into our Virtual Tours making them more ‘intelligent’.
Details of this will be released in the coming weeks but a small taster includes:
- Inbuilt CTA’s which link customers to information they actually want.
- Data capture forms providing metrics and information on potential leads.
- Users can select and save specification and material choices offered by the developer. From floor coverings to handle choices, any upgrades can be recorded directly within the tour & extracted into a shareable pdf.
- Easy online chat with sales advisors and organise a video call to secure the deal.
The end result is a toolbox of services that bridge the gap between marketing and sales and turbo-charge your digital offering.
Adjust yourself for a new world
Nobody knows what the ‘new normal’ will look like, however it looks like using virtual technology when buying a new home is here to stay.
“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change” – Charles Darwin
Find out more about EyeSiteView.