If the reason you should have a real estate website is so your business can work even when you’re not, then adding chatbots to your business may be the next logical step in a digital evolution.
How many of the questions you get through your website, on social media, or in your email are the same ones that all have the same basic answer? Probably too many to count. And if you’ve ever wished you could afford to hire someone just to answer questions, you’re not alone.
Questions and the desire to connect with you as a professional are great things. They can lead to new business and more closings. But they take time. A chatbot might be exactly what you need.
Chatbots are computer programs that are built using artificial intelligence and can be programmed to complete requests and even mimic conversation. Right now, they’re most popular in messenger apps like Facebook Messenger, Kik, Whatsapp, and Slack but they have uses in plenty of other online applications.
Because people are spending more time chatting and texting one another, chatbots allow people to communicate with businesses and brands without needing to download yet another app or exit their messenger app to open a browser on the their phone. They can talk to friends and request an Uber, schedule a haircut, or order a pizza all in one place. Chatbots aren’t meant to replace people but to give consumers and businesses another way to communicate with each other.
What kind of application could a chatbot have for real estate? It all depends on what you want it to do. You could have a chatbot programmed to do simple tasks – subscribe to a newsletter, send a file, share search results, and more – or allow it to have “conversations” with potential leads, answering their questions in real time without waiting for you to reply to an email.
Chatbots could potentially do a variety of tasks and answer common real estate questions:
The possibilities are almost endless. As artificial intelligence improves and the technology that makes it work improves too, chatbots could allow visitors to your website or people who find you on social media to get the information they want, share their contact information with you, and even schedule a meeting or phone call all without your hands-on involvement. You’ll be able to help prospective buyers and sellers in real time while you’re showing homes or at a listing appointment with someone else.
Chatbots improve customer service, allow you to help more people, and give you more time to do what you love to do as a real estate professional – sell and list houses. Chatbots for real estate are still new but there are some companies to look into if you’re interested in adding them to your business. Try Structurely, Loyalty Apps, or Apartment Ocean who all have bots geared towards agents.
As chatbots become more mainstream and more agents show interest, there’s no doubt more companies will begin to offer them for the real estate industry.
Former Communications Director for a local Realtor Association and a big cheerleader for all things real estate related, Michaela is now a full-time freelance writer specializing in real estate and other business industries. When she's not writing the serious business-y stuff, she's likely to be found writing about the hilarity of being a Mom to two rowdy boys.