PropTech: How Can You Make it Work For You?

by | Oct 2, 2019

If you follow multifamily industry trends, you might have come across a new buzzword: PropTech.

In broad terms, PropTech (a portmanteau of property and technology) refers to cross-industry technology used in the real estate sector to optimize how people research, rent, buy, sell, market and manage a property.

In terms of multifamily, PropTech could refer to everything from smart home technology, electronic rent payment capability and online resident portals to tech tools used to crunch data and analyze a company’s entire portfolio at a glance.

A 2018 report on the state of real estate technology shows that 42 percent of U.S. real estate professionals — 56 percent of which operated in the multifamily sector — still use spreadsheets and/or paper in some critical business capacity. 

Also, consider this: Ninety percent of consumers would consider taking their business elsewhere rather than working with a company that uses outdated technology, according to a Microsoft study.

So, multifamily companies that haven’t embraced PropTech when it comes to important areas such as apartment marketing, apartment reputation management, and apartment digital advertising could find themselves left behind.

Let’s take a look at how using PropTech can help an apartment community thrive in a competitive market.

Chatbots

Tech research firm Gartner projects that artificial intelligence in the form of chatbots will manage more than 85% of customer service interactions by 2020. This increase in AI-fueled chatbots and virtual assistants represents a significant shift in how humans interact with technology.

In its simplest terms, a chatbot is a computer program that uses AI to simulate a conversation with a human via a chat interface. The idea is that the bot provides information the user is seeking without having to poke around on a website.

Chatbots are on hand to make the lives of leasing agents and property managers easier. By handling repetitive, easy tasks, like scheduling tours, humans will be able to focus on tasks that require a human touch.

Data

Data can help fuel decisions when it comes to apartment reputation management, apartment advertising, apartment SEO, and more. 

In terms of reputation management, aggregated reports like Respage’s Regional Reputation Report collect data from numerous platforms like Apartment Ratings and Yelp and compile it into data summaries that can be sliced down any number of ways. Using this information, efforts can be focused on trying to improve the lowest performing apartment communities and ensuring that highly-rated ones stay that way.

Facebook Ads and Google Ads can offer insights that can help you target your apartment ads in a more precise manner. By analyzing the reporting from your ad platforms, you can put more money into approaches that have been historically successful. 

The same idea applies to apartment SEO. By viewing your organic keywords report, you can see which search terms users are typing into Google or another search engine to reach your apartment website and, more importantly, which keywords result in the most engaged or highest-quality traffic. Armed with this data, you can evaluate your apartment website’s performance and make adjustments where necessary.

Conclusion

Companies that don’t embrace PropTech will be behind the curve if they can’t see the current state of their business, track day-to-day nuances and identify areas for growth. 

While drilling down into the data of a specific apartment community can be valuable, it’s just as important to look at a management company’s entire portfolio. With standardized reporting across the entire group of apartment communities, informed decisions can be made to boost performance. 

And none of this would be possible with just a spreadsheet and a stack of papers. 

Learn more about the leading-edge and customized reporting features offered by Respage.