The journey towards selling a piece of real estate has always been quite involving. Many different factors require close attention; from attracting the right buyers to preparing the property to look appealing enough to receive competitive offers. Over the years, the process of selling a home has undergone significant changes.
Indeed, traditional selling methods focused more on the salesperson and their ability to convince a customer about the quality and usefulness of a particular product. The bulk of the work rested on the shoulders of the salesperson, and most customers would rely on the seller’s interpersonal skills, knowledge of the product, and ability to influence.
Nowadays, customers are more empowered. They are more in control of how they access and process information, which puts them in a position to make decisions on their unique timelines and criteria. As a result, modern selling is more about appealing to the customer in ways that present solutions to problems they are facing. As far as selling a home, this means presenting the property as the perfect solution to their needs.
Let’s explore traditional versus modern ways of selling a home, and why a home seller should leverage the more effective modern techniques that work today.
The traditional way of selling a home
In the traditional approach to selling a home, most people took on a more salesman/saleswoman role. Prevalent from the 1960s to the late 1990s, most sellers primarily closed on deals by convincing a potential buyer that they needed or would love to have the home. They did this in the following ways:
Presenting a standardized product
Traditional home selling did not necessarily take into account the specific preferences or desires of a buyer. Instead, the person selling the home would attempt to arouse interest in a particular property or neighborhood by creating a set of needs to which the buyer could relate.
For example, if the property had a swimming pool, the seller would draw relations between the swimming pool and the local climate, as well as the potential benefits of owning a pool versus not having one at all. In this way, the seller could essentially market a standardized home to a wide variety of potential buyers who had different needs.
In-depth knowledge of the property
Traditional selling required a real estate agent to have extensive knowledge of the property so the agent could essentially convince someone to make an offer. The seller’s agent used the unique characteristics of the home to generate interest to drive home a sale.
The assumption was that the buyer would respond to an empathetic appeal about the property by taking into consideration the information the home seller has presented.
The seller’s efforts determine success
The traditional home selling method would largely depend on the efforts of the seller and how well they could appeal and convince a buyer to make an offer on their property.
The modern way of selling a home
In the modern selling approach, the home buyer has all the power. Increased access to information has made it easier for a home buyer to identify their specific needs, to research properties from the comfort of their homes, and to approach home sellers with a more in-depth understanding of the property.
As a result, the primary challenge of the home seller is how well they can meet the needs of the buyer and present a house, condo, or apartment as a solution to the buyer’s needs. This home sale strategy involves the following elements:
Each home is specific to customer needs
When a buyer seeks interest in your home, they are mainly looking at how well it will meet their specific needs. Specific criteria may include how many rooms the house has, the size of the bathroom, floor plan, countertops, the state of the basement, or even the distance to their favorite pizza place. Buyers already have their list of needs that they are checking against when they consider your home.
To make a successful sale, home sellers need to present your home as a solution to their needs by emphasizing the specific features that the house has. In other words, highlight the functional use of each area of the home.
Seller understands the needs of the home buyer
Modern selling involves understanding what your customer wants and attempting to meet the needs of the customer. If a real estate agent identifies that most buyers are looking for homes with modern appliances and open floor plans, it might benefit the home seller to update the appliances or renovate the property before it’s placed on the MLS.
Also, if a selling agent identifies that buyers are trending towards more energy efficient homes, the home seller can increase the likelihood of a home sale by sealing the walls, doors, and windows, or even installing solar panels before marketing the home. A successful deal will depend on how well the home seller and seller’s agent can meet current buyer demands and expectations.
Use of technological resources to connect with customers
Modern selling is highly reliant on technology. Indeed, multiple resources have emerged to assist the contemporary home seller to connect with buyers and to improve the visibility of their property.
Home search websites, online listings, mobile home search apps, email marketing, social media promotion, and even “for sale” signs with QR codes or dedicated website addresses can assist sellers in making their homes easily discoverable when potential buyers come looking.