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online_real_estate_search_conceptWe are aware some consumers find a home on the Internet and bring the property to the attention of an agent or broker they are already working with. And historically consumers would get interested in a property, call an agent who is associated with the listing, but then move on to a different home while working with that agent. Not every Internet search results in a double-ended sale for the listing agent.

But here is one changing dynamic. The unprecedented increase in consumers finding the actual home they buy, online, by themselves. This happened 11% of the time in 2003. Specific homes are now found by the consumer, online, almost 44% of the time, according to the NAR home buyers and sellers study released in November. A fourfold increase is a milestone, and it may be time to reassess this relatively new skill consumers have developed, (as they continue to get better at it).

Capturing the consumer at the critical moment when the home that they might actually buy has been found can be a critical action for the agents who are ready at the right place at the right time. It’s one thing if Internet inquiries are vague and the consumer is indecisive. It really gets your attention when these buyers are ready to move on a specific house when they call.

Watch this video from Rosemary Allison who reports double digit results in selling her own listings. She is normally present on her cell phone and reacts quite quickly to the leads she receives from her listings she markets through the realtor.com showcase listings solution. It might make you take another look at the double opportunity that could be lurking in those internet leads!

Frederick Herot is the VP of Marketing for realtor.com®.

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