New Map Features and Listing Profile Redesign

The upgrades and redesigns never stop here at Help-U-Sell Real Estate! To help you keep track, here’s a summary of what we’ve just completed and what’s ahead.

Continuing our full-featured map upgrades, we have added links to each property’s popup bubble. Now, visitors can opt to view listing details, contact the listing agent and save the listing right from the popup.

Help-U-Sell Real Estate Map Popup Bubble
The new three links on the map popup bubble.

You may have noticed that a number of MLS listings do not appear on your map. That is because the geocodes, or map coordinates, had not been included with those MLS listings. We are in the process of collecting that information, and within two weeks’ time, we plan to have all of the MLS listings mapped. The other main project that remains for the maps is perfecting functionality where a visitor can drag his mouse across the map and see properties on the newly exposed portion of the map.

Early next week, you will definitely notice a redesign of your listing details pages. We have condensed the information currently displayed on the pages so that less scrolling is required and the page can be easily scanned. A short registration form on the left side of the page will encourage more visitors to turn into leads. We’ve also added a recommendation engine which will suggest similar houses to the one the visitor is viewing.

You can get a sneak peek at the redesign on our Test Office site. Please keep in mind that we are finalizing the design and functionality this week, so this is not the polished and complete version.

Lastly, if you chose one of the background themes for your website, you will notice that we’ve changed the images for Beach, Mountain and Desert.

Please share any feedback or suggestions with us either as a comment on this blog post or via email or a call.

Full-Featured Map Search

If you attended yesterday’s Tech Time Tuesday call, you’ve already heard about our new Full Map Search page on the Help-U-Sell-provided broker websites. We have upgraded the previous version of this map search feature to include a much larger map, a toggle button to go between map view and list view and other search options.

Help-U-Sell Real Estate full-featured map search
Help-U-Sell Estate full-featured map search

Viewers can find out about individual properties by clicking on a house icon. A popup bubble will appear with a photo of the property, as well as information, such as the address, number of bedrooms and asking price. The search can be refined directly from the map page to narrow down the results in categories like property type and foreclosures. The city can be changed right from the map screen, as well.

As of now, visitors can choose a satellite view of the map or a hybrid version. We are looking into adding a street view.

If you would like to promote the new full-featured map search on your site, you can place one of two new banners on your home page.

Map banner
Map banner

Broker Focus: Patrick Wood

Patrick Wood, Help-U-Sell Prestige Properties
Patrick Wood

Anyone who has driven through Chino Hills, Calif., probably recognizes Patrick Wood’s name. He’s known for his ubiquitous signage.

“The technique that brought me huge success in my core market was to start branding my name with the Help-U-Sell Office,” says Wood, who has owned Help-U-Sell Prestige Properties since 2003.

All of his staff members have magnets on their cars that have his name and the Help-U-Sell Real Estate name, and his main work vehicle has a wrap that stands out. “The real estate signs and open house signs [also] have resulted in huge recognition, and the community has responded amazingly well,” he adds. “I constantly hear how people see my signs everywhere.”

Of course, there is more to his success than signage. Wood, whose office has closed 54 sides so far this year, emphasizes the importance of offering full service and commission savings in attracting clients. “I found this to be necessary as other agents were trying to compete with my office by suggesting the clients would have to do all the work,” he says. “The full service leaves the client satisfied, which results in referrals, so it has been beneficial.”

For new Help-U-Sell Brokers, he recommends continuing the full-service concept through to the office setup. “[In our office] a team concept has been put in place, and it provides clients with access to licensed assistants seven days a week,” he says. “Service is big, constant contact is big, working together is huge. This is a crazy, intense field and having the support of a team makes it much easier and productive.”

Help-U-Sell Real Estate Success Summit Agenda

It’s still three months away, but we’re already finalizing the agenda for our Success Summit. The theme will be “Taking Charge of Change.”

Held at the Hotel Menage in Anaheim from November 14-16, the summit will be free for Help-U-Sell Brokers. The exact schedule (and a few surprises) has yet to be ironed out. To give you more of an idea of what to expect, here are the topics we have planned to discuss.

  • Help-U-Sell Real Estate’s strategic plan for 2012
  • The state of the industry and emerging opportunities
  • The Automated Agent: Practical uses of technology in everyday business
  • Creative financing and deal-doing in today’s market

We’ll also have two star-studded panels and we’ll unveil a new technology feature. We hope you can join us for our educational and camaraderie-filled three days. (The summit will begin at 2 p.m. on Nov. 14 and end at noon Nov. 16.)

If you can, we encourage you to attend at least one day of the REALTORS Conference & Expo beforehand. Those dates are November 10-14. We will have a booth (#519), and the continuing education courses are worth the visit. The early bird deadline is August 15, so register within the next week if you haven’t already. Also, let Lori Warnelo know when you’ve registered. Her email is lwarnelo@helpusell.com.

Top Producers for July 2011

The top producers for July 2011 closed a total of 39 sides among them.

1) Help-U-Sell Detwiler Realty is back on top with 13 closed sides, matching the May 2011 total.

2) In a tie for second place, Help-U-Sell Triad Realty also appears on the list again, moving up from third position in May. The office closed 9 sides.

2) Help-U-Sell Hometown Realty out of York, Penn., also closed 9 sides in July.

3) Help-U-Sell Galleria Realty closed 8 sides to finish in third place.

Congratulations to everyone!

[Figures are as of August 2, 2011]