Technology, with its quick and constant progress, has had an immeasurable effect on the way consumers interact with service providers and sales teams. Armed with more information, more connectivity, and more autonomy than ever before, today’s customer neither needs nor wants a traditional sales experience.
In real estate, this trend has become starkly apparent in the emergence of creative alternatives to the traditional estate agent model. According to Schalk van der Merwe, franchisee for the Rawson Properties Helderberg Group, these are far from the only changes we’re likely to see. In fact, he believes real estate professionals who refuse to adapt to evolving expectations will soon find zero demand for their services.
Things are likely to get exciting for buyers and sellers as well, as future-focussed agencies raise the bar of customer service. Here are a few of the skills Van der Merwe believes are already becoming essential for real estate professionals looking to meet the needs of today’s customers under challenging market conditions.
“A lot of people are starting to realise that knowledge and information are not the same thing,” says Van der Merwe. “Information is freely available – go online and you can find advice and opinions on any property-related subject you might need. But being informed doesn’t always translate into being equipped to make sound property decisions.
“For that, you need the ability to interpret information within the context of a specific opportunity, which takes the kind of in-depth knowledge that only comes