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The Impact Of Digital Transformation On The Real Estate Sector With changes seen in both consumer behavior and expectations as well as technology, digital transformation is crucial for real estate brokers now.

By Mohamad Rabih Itani Edited by Aby Thomas

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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The real estate industry is no exception when it comes to business sectors currently being impacted by digital disruption. In comparison to other industries such as banking, retail, and healthcare, real estate has seen a late adoption of digitalization. However, there are other instances where digital technology enhances the house-purchasing experience while boosting operational efficiency for real estate brokers, such as virtual tours, automated transactions, and tailored services.

The transition that is occurring in the real estate business as a result of the deployment of digital technology falls under the purview of the digital transformation that is today affecting industries around the world. Real estate stakeholders such as developers, brokers, agents, investors, and management should acquire the necessary skills, while also accepting the cultural change, for the implementation of digital technology to satisfy changing clients' needs.

In order to stay competitive in an increasingly competitive market, real estate businesses should explore new structure alternatives, enhance operational efficiency, and manage portfolios to maximize return on investment. According to the 2020 KPMG Proptech report, real estate brokers are rapidly using digital technology. A digital strategy is in place for 58% of respondents, up from 52% in 2019 and 2018. Transitioning from offline to online marketing will not be simple for real estate brokers, but it is nearly a requirement in today's atmosphere. Indeed, the following are two of the key reasons why digital transformation is crucial for real estate brokers:

  • Changes in consumer behavior and expectations People's attitudes around property are shifting. Rather than engaging real estate brokers, many choose to use mobile or web searches. Customers are increasingly contacting brokers over the internet. As a result, not having a strong online presence means missing out on opportunities to engage with potential buyers and sellers.

  • Changes in technology Brokers can also increase their operational efficiencies by implementing digital technologies such as automation.

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Current trends in real estate digital marketing

The real estate sector is one of the oldest in the world, and it has witnessed incredible changes throughout the years. Several new trends and technology have emerged in the real estate market, all of which have had a significant impact on how the industry and brokers operates. The internet and smart devices have transformed the way buyers and sellers do business. With just a few clicks, you can learn more about any property or broker, as well as interact with them.

Real estate is a very successful industry with a large consumer base, investors, and prospects. Buying, selling, renting, and leasing real estate properties are all part of the real estate business plan. The real estate sector is regarded as one of the world's fastest-growing industries, with Canada, China, Australia, United Kingdom, United States, and India regarded among the world's key markets in this domain. Real estate is also one of the most methodical companies, and as such, brokers must necessitate the use of cutting-edge marketing methods in order to gain a larger share of the target market and to survive in the market.

In the GCC, mainly UAE and Saudi Arabia, real estate brokerage firms are quickly adapting to the changes in the industry and digitalizing their solutions to meet their customers' expectations. The question remains, with most of the companies offering the same services, how do they differentiate themselves. After all, the way businesses are conducted throughout the world is fast changing due to digital transformation, and the real estate industry isn't far behind.

In the next several years, the real estate digital marketing industry is predicted to expand, and keeping all of this in mind, brokers must adopt digital transformation. The impact of internet marketing is so great that a buyer is 2.4 times more likely to buy a property online rather than in person. It's a two-edged sword for the real estate industry: on the one hand, it's made it simpler for buyers to buy a property, but it's also made it more difficult for sellers to sell their properties. As a result, real estate brokers need to respond to this transition, and implement new tactics in order to maintain their market position.

Related: Here's What Startups And SMEs Can Gain By Implementing A Spend Management System

Mohamad Rabih Itani

Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, United Real Estate

Mohamad Rabih Itani is currently the Chief Sales and Marketing Officer at United Real Estate, a listed real estate developer in Kuwait with presence in the MENA region. Prior to that, he was the CEO of Esrar Real Estate, a specialized sales and marketing real estate consultancy firm working in Saudi Arabia (KSA) and the region. Regarded as a seasoned real estate professional and consultant, Itani’s services extend to several countries including Malaysia, Indonesia, Maldives, Turkey, and Spain. His diverse engagements in various countries enabled him to gain in-depth knowledge of the local, regional, and global real estate industry. He has successfully planned and launched master-planned communities in different countries. He also regularly writes articles relating to the real estate market in the GCC. 
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