RISMEDIA, Dec. 18, 2008-Real estate website Zillow.com announced the launch of Zillow® Advice, an online resource for consumers to find answers to specific local real estate questions. Located in the “Advice” tab on Zillow.com, Zillow Advice encourages consumers to “Ask a Question,” tag it by topic or locality, and receive advice from Zillow’s online community of local real estate experts – the 1.2 million agents, lenders and other professionals who use Zillow each month.
Zillow Advice adds to existing community features such as Zillow Discussions and Home Q&A, which allow for broader discussion topics or home-specific questions and answers. Currently, more than 40,000 contributions are made to Zillow.com by its community of users each day.
“In today’s changing and unprecedented housing market, homeowners, buyers and sellers are hungry for advice and information,” said Rich Barton, CEO and co-founder of Zillow.com. “This is apparent in the traffic and activity we are seeing on Zillow, with unique visitors up 44% over this time last year – it’s clear more people than ever are searching for answers. Zillow Advice is a place where people can ask questions, find information on a very specific and local level, and connect with the real estate professionals in their area who can help. This, in addition to Zillow’s updated home value and for-sale data on 80 million U.S. homes, creates an invaluable resource for consumers trying to navigate today’s market.”
In addition to the “Ask a Question” function, Zillow Advice includes several features to help ensure consumers get the best answers possible from the Zillow Community:
Localization – Users can tag questions by locality, at the state, city, or neighborhood level. Professionals and other Zillow users can then answer with information pertaining to that specific location. For example, if a user had a question about pricing their home in a specific Seattle neighborhood, a local Seattle real estate agent, or a recent seller from that neighborhood could answer with relevant information or advice.
“Local Expert” Badge – Users who ask questions can notate the “best answer” to their questions. Those whose answers are frequently voted “best answers” earn points towards a “Local Expert” Badge – a way for the Zillow community to know which experts are active and frequently commended for their helpful contributions.
Subscription – Professionals can subscribe to specific locations or topics in their area of expertise. When a question is tagged with a city, neighborhood or topic they have subscribed to, they are notified immediately via an e-mail or RSS feed and can quickly respond with relevant information. This feature helps consumers connect quickly and easily with the local experts who can best answer their question.
Key Word Search – Users typing in a specific word or phrase, like “refinancing” are directed to all the questions that have been asked, or discussions taking place on Zillow Advice around that word or phrase.
Profile Pages – All Zillow community contributions link to a user’s free Zillow Profile Page, where real estate professionals can choose to include contact information, photos and a narrative about their areas of service. Profile pages show all of an individual’s contributions to Zillow.com – from active listings, to questions answered or discussion participation.
For more information, visit www.zillow.com/advice-browse.