Suppose that you run a large real estate brokerage with thousands of agents. To attract and retain talent in the face of increased competition, you keep improving agent compensation — in spite of your overhead remaining the same. To keep clients from getting lured to discount brokerages, your agents reduce their fees, which drives your margins even lower.
When your real estate margins are under pressure, double-down on transaction services
It’s tough to run a profitable brokerage these days. The silver lining: there’s still decent money to be made in ancillary services like mortgage, title, and homeowner’s insurance…if you can get it. As long as your agents are independent contractors and RESPA is law, the best you can do is hope that your agents refer their clients to your in-house services.
Unfortunately, hope is not a strategy. So perhaps it’s time to borrow a page from the drugstore’s playbook.
Milestones hubs are your brokerage’s pharmacy
Pharmacies operate on a simple premise: people go there because they have to. The drug counter is always in the back; and to get there, shoppers pass by a carefully curated maze of high-margin convenience items. The real money is made selling toiletries, beverages, and snacks; not from dispensing generic prescription drugs. (Want proof? Read a Walgreens or CVS investor annual report.)
In similar fashion, Milestones hubs enables you to embed transaction services seamlessly into clients’ and agents’ collaborative workflow. And while you can’t force your agents to adopt the technology, you can build compliance and transaction management directly Milestones hubs — regardless of whether it’s our own solution, or integrating a third-party system that you already use.
This means that homebuyers and sellers must at least enter your store and pass by the digital end cap displays for your in-house mortgage, title, and insurance. If your offer is compelling enough (think Staples’ “Easy” button), many will buy it for convenience sake.
If that weren’t enough, every Milestones landing page and property listing details page has colorful buttons to get financing, buy before you sell, order an inspection, and so on. Under the hood, Milestones can be configured to display multiple options, or a single preferred option; alongside the standard disclaimer that consumers are welcome and encouraged to shop around for other solutions (many won’t).
True one-stop shopping is coming
Milestones is a young company that’s pioneering a truly unified customer experience for real estate. Our mission is simple: empower brokers and agents to stay at the center home purchase and sale transactions. Our platform is analogous to Shopify for real estate — an open e-commerce platform which gives retailers their own digital storefront to compete in the Age of Amazon. In our [somewhat biased] opinion, it couldn’t happen soon enough in the Age of Zillow, Redfin, et al.
Want to learn how to increase attach rate for transaction services? Let’s explore how we can build your pharmacy, together.