It seems that high-end brokerage firms are embracing new technology. For example, the firm Prudential Douglas Elliman recently decided to renovate their aging website through the addition of VOW capabilities, or Virtual Website Office.
According to Stephen Kotler, an executive vice president, Prudential Douglas Elliman have invested approximately $1 million and more than a year of developing a new website that will offer viewers information on all of the company’s properties.
Along with the listings, they will also show properties for sale in the markets where Elliman has offices such as Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, the Hamptons, and Long Island. Mr. Kotler, the gentleman chosen to direct the development of their new site, explains that this use of VOW will eventually set them apart from all other brokerage sites.
Although some look forward to the company’s acceptance of VOW, there are many skeptics who believe that VOW will actually serve as a deterrent to the stream of viewers. Frederick Peters, the president of Warburg Realty Partnership, explains “My opinion of the VOWs is they’re fine, but I think that they will ultimately be insignificant because I think the one thing we all know about the consumer from research that’s been done all over the country over a long period of time is that the consumer hates to leave a footprint.” And so if the consumer has the opportunity to go on search sites, which they can do anonymously, or they have to sign on to a VOW with an entire page of personal information required, they’re going to choose the no-footprint site.
With the new website preparing to launch in April, it seems that we will have to wait and see how appealing this new technology is to our readers searching prime real estate properties. Haute Living will be keeping track of Prudential Douglas Elliman to guarantee they offer only the hautest services.