Why human connection is hugely relevant despite technology’s role in transforming real estate | The Financial Express

Why human connection is hugely relevant despite technology’s role in transforming real estate

With rising automation and digital technologies boosting innovation in the real estate sector, it remains important to forge strong relationships with customers and investors through personalized interactions.

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From browsing properties on the internet to VR-enabled site visits, technology has been transforming the way consumers purchase or transact with real estate. However, in an era of rapid digitalisation and increasing levels of customer engagement, the personalized attention provided by real estate agents and client executives is still valued deeply for the guidance and insights it provides.

Let us look at how human connection increases impact across functions in the real estate sector, thereby acting in concert with technological upgrades to offer a better customer experience and result in increased conversions.

Facilitating nuanced customisation requirements

While many buyers prefer to get a feel of a property by going through relevant details online, a majority still prefer to interact with a real estate professional to discuss the finer print of any forthcoming transaction. Aspects concerning site amenities, floor plans, delivery schedules and even financing options are often more impactful when discussed in person. Moreover, customers can place specific requests to ensure that the property is perfectly suited to their requirements, with the assurance of a client facing executive helping assuage concerns more effectively.

Considering that real estate purchases are on average the largest investments that an individual makes in a lifetime, the personal touch of an informed and supportive agent or executive can be the deciding factor between concluding a successful deal or making do with just another enquiry.

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Delivering tailored experiences for customer delight

In today’s world where consumers have access to a wide range of products and offerings from different firms, ensuring that all interactions are tweaked to delight the customer is of paramount importance. This entails a complete understanding of a customer’s requirement and crafting memorable experiences at every step in the buying process.

According to a Salesforce survey, 97% businesses witness a rise in business outcomes as a result of adopting a personalization-focused operational approach, with 74% of the GenZ demographic preferring tailored experiences delivered by real individuals. Thus, while real estate players continue to employ advanced digital tools and market heavily on online mediums, the need for a client-facing team with a passion for meeting customer requirements with an eye for detail is probably more relevant than ever.

Forging long-term relationships with generations of customers

In advanced economies, more than 85% of real estate buyers rely on a real estate agent or broker to finalize on their dream property, with 89% of satisfied customers recommending the services or the agent or even realtor-specific executive who supported them. Moreover, more than 75% of real estate sales are contributed by repeat buyers, amplifying the need for real estate firms to forge strong customer relations in order to benefit from their repeat purchases. Still, home buyers in India remain largely unsatisfied with the treatment meted out by developers, with a cumulative consumer satisfaction score of just 18 on a scale of 100 being recorded.

What’s worse is that only 12% buyers stated they would purchase another property with the same developer, attributing the overall experience from enquiry to post-possession issue handling to be the reason for this behaviour. Developers therefore need to work on critical feedback and facilitate lasting relationships through an empathetic and strong human connection with their customers.

(By Krish Dalwani, Assistant Manager, Internal Control, SILA)

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First published on: 17-01-2023 at 12:21 IST