How to Develop a Real Estate Application Like Zillow and Trulia?
The above graph shows clearly that the majority of the youth buy and sell properties online. As everyone knows the younger generation uses mobile phones to surf the internet for all their needs including the real estate market. Hence, the best way to attract new customers is through a real estate application. It is not enough if you have a website these days. You need an app if you want to succeed in business. So, there can be no doubt that an app is necessary for the real estate business.
What are the benefits of a real estate app?
Real estate apps are in high demand because of the numerous benefits they provide. Here are some of them:
- Direct communication with customers
You will be able to communicate and interact with the consumers directly. So, there is an increase in brand awareness and a boost of brand image.
- Increased sales
Mobile apps have a lot of sales-oriented tools that help to attract more customers and increase sales.
- Stand above other competitors
A good app will help you to stand apart and above your competitors. If your competitors are not making use of the benefits of advanced technology, you can reap the maximum benefits from your app.
- Better target of market
You can target the right customers by sending location-specific and budget-specific messages.
- Customer feedback
Honest reviews and feedback from customers are essential for the improvement of a business. You can get feedback and reviews easily through an app.
- Leverage data
You will be able to leverage data on the market and demographics with the help of the app.
How to develop a real estate application?
The process of the development of a real estate app involves several steps. A reliable mobile development company will help you to complete all the steps with ease.
Step 1: Conduct a thorough research
The first step is to conduct detailed research. You cannot proceed to develop a real estate app without knowing a few details like the competitors in the market and the target customers you are dealing with. When you research the competitors’ apps you will have an idea about the features you should include in your app. You will also come to know about the reviews given by their customers. You can decide what to include and what not to when you research their reviews.
Step 2: Wireframing
What is a wireframe? It refers to the skeletal outline of an app. It is similar to the architectural blueprint. It provides a clear idea of the flow, functionality, and design of the app. It is the start point of app development. It is two-dimensional and is easier to adapt than a detailed visual design. Wireframing helps you to get an overall view of the app. The app developers consider wireframing to be an ideal building block. So, it is this step that decides the structure of your real estate mobile app.
Step 3: Decide the features of the app
The main objective of a real estate mobile app is to make the process easier for the customers. So, you shouldn’t miss a few features that are mandatory for a good real estate app. First, you should know what they are before starting the actual mobile app development process.
Here are some of the features that must be considered:
- User sign up or log in
The onboarding of the user is the first and foremost feature of all apps and it applies to real estate applications also. The users can log in through email authorization or mobile verification with an OTP. But your app should allow logging in through social media accounts too because this is easier and quicker.
A user profile with age, address, name, and requirements is necessary. Preferably, the profiles should be different for different users including the agents, buyers, and sellers. There can be a few things common for all sets of users like the maps but there are some specific requirements for the agents that the buyers don’t need. So, you should be careful while planning the profile.
- Search feature
The user should be able to search the properties easily. So, the search option should have filters for location, price, size, and others.
- Listings and database
This is very important for your app. The database should show all details of the properties. There should be a lot of properties in the listing and it should have a database with full details.
This is one of the primary requirements of a real estate app. The maps should not only show the location but also other details like the nearby landmarks, schools, shopping centers, and others.
- Push notifications
This is necessary for all marketing apps because it can work effectively to increase sales. You can update your customers about the properties available and changes in prices of the existing properties and deals completed, etc.
- 3D viewing
The buyers expect to have this feature because it saves their valuable time. They will have an idea about the property without seeing it in person. An app with 3D viewing will give an edge over others that don’t have this feature.
- Shortlisting of favorites
The prospective buyers will like to have this feature because they can view their favorites later.
This feature is essential since it enables the buyers to communicate with the agents and the sellers. They will be satisfied if they have a direct discussion with the concerned parties. It not only includes a call button but an online chat feature, call back button, and consultation request also.
- Cost calculator
The cost calculator with details like the initial payment, tax, and rough estimates will be a good feature to add because it will attract the attention of the users.
The above are the features that you should include in your real estate mobile app. You can also add more features like mortgage calculator, interest calculator, loan management, calendar, currency converter, testimonials, and sharing with social media, etc. If budget is not a big concern for you, then you can add more interesting features.
Step 4: Find the right mobile app development company
Have you decided on the features you want? If so, you should proceed to find the right mobile app development company. Shortlist a few companies based on reviews and ratings given by customers, their experience in developing a real estate app, their price quotes, and the technical knowledge and expertise of their team. The price varies depending upon many factors like location, the complexity of the app, UI/UX design, and many more. Finally, select the best company. You should remember that the cheapest is not the best. However, you should negotiate the prices.
Step 5: Hold several meetings
After choosing a company, you should make sure you hold several meetings. Only if they understand your idea and your requirements, will they be able to develop an app to meet your expectations. Moreover, they will be able to give you a final estimate based on it. So, it is important to hold several meetings with the mobile app development company.
Step 6: Prepare a budget and get ready for spending
Real estate app development is not only a long process but also expensive. So, you should make sure you have the funds and get ready for spending. The more features, the higher the price. Similarly, the better the UX/UI design, the higher the price. But you should remember that a better design and more features will give you a clear edge over your competitors. So, getting ready for spending is an important step in the process of real estate app development.
Step 7: UI/UX design
This step is very important for the success of any app and a real estate app is no exception. It is because it is the UI/UX design that decides the user experience of the app. Elegant and simple UI/UX design enhances the user experience. It also decides the performance of the app. If the design is not good, it will lead to the slow performance of the app.
Moreover, a good UX design improves the credibility score of your app. It is a part and parcel of the app development process and should be done with lots of care by technical experts who have knowledge and experience. In this step, the concerned architects clean the UI and UX wireframes that are selected and approved.
Step 8: App development
This is where the actual technical app development process starts. The UX/UI design is finalized and you have decided the features that you want. Now is the time to go for the actual development. The app development involves three steps. They are back-end server technology, APIs, and the front-end.
- Backend development incorporates the database, the middleware, and the server-side tools needed for supporting the functions of the app. Backend development empowers the main working of the application. The backend developer should understand the goals and objectives of the app and provide the right and effective solutions. This step is important because it improves performance and security. It also ensures cost efficiency and quick development speed.
- API refers to the Application Programming Interface. It allows the app to talk with the backend server and database. It is a set of instructions and standards that enables an app to employ features to another app or platform. It is useful because it eliminates the need to develop a program from scratch. It allows you to use the existing one.
- The frontend development for a software is very significant because the frontend is the part that the consumer uses. It is also called the client-side. There are many tools and frameworks used for frontend development. In this step, the developer uses tracking tools to track progress and changes.
Step 9: Testing and launching:
Once the coding is completed, the next step is to test the app. You should make sure the testers test the app at various levels of development. This will help you to identify errors from time to time because setting right the errors in the initial stages is easier and less time-consuming. Next, you should select the right platform to launch the app.
To carry out all steps you need the right technical experts because without them your app will not be successful.
Now it is time to convert your idea into a reality. It is time to take your real estate business to the next level and transform it digitally. However, the process of developing a real estate mobile app is long and difficult. You need a large team consisting of a wide range of experts including UI/UX designers, graphic designers, developers, testers, and managers, etc. It can be a daunting task to recruit the best and focus on the development cost. So, the best option is to hire a mobile app development company. It can reduce your stress and let you focus on other administrative tasks. Make sure you get the services of one of the most mobile app development companies.
Mohit Kinger writes about blogs and e-books on enormous and in-trend technologies for 4waytechnologies from the past two years. Before hopping into technical content writing, he got a graduate degree in Bachelor’s of Technology, which helps him to approach various blogs based on cutting-edge technologies efficiently.