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Technology Trends For Builders

Tuesday, April 1, 2003 - 02:10

Word From The Street- Technology Trends For Builders

By Vince Halama, Vice President of Sales at iNest Realty
April, 2003

Often times I will be meeting with one of our builder customers and they will inquire as to what we are hearing is new on the technology front from our other builder customers.

Here's what we are hearing:

Site Upgrades
Several of the largest builders (many top national builders) have invested heavily recently in a wholesale upgrade to their site- and many other builders both midsized and smaller have been doing the same. In fact, we're seeing a lot of smaller, nimble builders that have created extremely impressive websites- attempting to capitalize on gaining buyers that are increasingly using the web as their first point of reference before shopping for their home.

Spending Less/ Getting More
In many areas of tech, from purchasing laptops to getting a site redesigned, the builder's dollar is going a lot further. In fact, due to the tech slowdown, many builders are reporting that they can squeeze more work at a lesser price by aggressively shopping vendors (particularly in the services area) because so many tech service firms have idle manpower at this time.

Building Relationships
The internet is a powerful tool for not only acquiring new customers, but for building relationships with buyers who increasingly demand a quick, timely response to their inquiries.

Performance Based
Builders want performance-based technology that will generate positive incremental sales results- rather than merely increasing overhead.

Adding Incentives Online
Builder Magazine has reported extensively that online home shoppers crave incentives before purchasing. In fact, many e-commerce studies indicate that an online customer would visit a website more often, and act upon an offer more often, if they received something in return for the time they spend searching the web. In fact, many of our Atlanta-based builder customers have developed specific marketing campaigns specifically designed to generate incentive-driven responses from the web-savvy Gen X home buying audience.

Vince Halama is Vice President of Sales at iNest Realty Inc (www.iNest.com) and he works with over 400 builder customers throughout a twenty state market. Vince can be reached at iNest at (630) 529-7500, x 551 or at vhalama@iNest.com. He’s also an Adjunct Professor at DePaul University where he teaches coursework in Sales Management for DePaul’s MBA Program.

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