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A Minimalist Agent/Broker Website Wireframe for Geek Build

The web is shifting toward minimalism.

Less is more.

Chris Smith — and probably many more — agree with me.

I really like the latest wireframe revision for Geek Build. But it’s more of the same. It’s bloated. It’s the norm in the real estate agent/broker website world.

How about something different and innovative? How about taking a risk? How about BETTER conversion?

One word.

Simplify.

Truthfully, if I were an agent or broker launching a new website right now, I would build a custom design on top of a wireframe such as this one (click for a bigger version):

Look at Zillow’s home page design:

The entire focus is on one thing — SEARCH. I know for a fact Zillow has spent a massive amount of money analyzing their traffic and have optimized their site to convert traffic to contacts/leads. Funny, that’s the exact same goal an agent or broker site should have. After their extensive A/B testing, focus groups, surveys, and man hours — Zillow seems to have settled on a very minimalist approach to home page conversion. Who are we to say a different approach will convert better?

Less is more.

What do you think? A or B?

Note from the Editor: Not sure what Geek Build 2012 is? It’s building a few real estate websites from scratch publicly with the help of the Geek Estate Community and overseen by an experienced steering committeeRead more about Geek Build 2012 here, or view all posts related to Geek Build 2012 here.

**Geek Build logo designed by Dominic Morrocco at M Squared Real Estate.

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About Drew Meyers

Founder of Geek Estate Blog. He is a Travel addict & co-founder of Horizon. Social entrepreneurship & microfinance advocate. Fan of Red Hot Chili Peppers and Kiva.

This entry was posted in Geek Build 2012, Websites and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.
  • http://fischer-realestate.com/ Greg Fischer

    Brilliant. Love the idea. Need a kick-ass designer to pull it off in an effective way

    • http://www.drewmeyersinsights.com/ Drew Meyers

      Yup. And good designers are hard to come by…at least affordable ones that are also good :)

  • galenward

    Remember the original Estately? We were nothing but a search box too. I like it – makes me want to go back!

    • http://www.drewmeyersinsights.com/ Drew Meyers

      Do it :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=666577287 Brandon Matson

    Personally I think you are trying to cram a lot into the footer there, having 4 modules on a standard width site of say 980px leaves you with less than 240px per module, once you take margins into account, and that is simply not enough real estate (pardon the pun) to cleanly present the content you have outlined, IMHO.  To put it in perspective 240px is 60 px narrower than the current geek estate sidebar.  If you did 3 modules you would have 320px per module with margins.  Keep in mind this is going to be a wordpress site so footer widgets will be susceptible to change and most available widgets are designed for 300px + widths. I will say I really like the emphasis on search but I wonder if having a detailed search next to a standard search is the right approach.  Anyway great ideas and I look forward to following the project.

    • http://fischer-realestate.com/ Greg Fischer

      Valid point made here, search next to search doesn’t quite make sense. However, I do see the need for both (quick and detailed) or a combination of both (auto-fill form or something like this)

  • peachtree1

    Looks like a great product,  This product is not yet available in any market.

  • http://http:/www.davewoodson.com davewoodson

    I really do not see a down side here. However, if you were to look at any of my sites. I am never sold on just one. My goal is to always offer content, and hopefully make it easy to move around the site. This looks like it would be easy to move…

  • http://www.baconrealtygroup.com/ Daniel Bacon

    I love simple and I’m on board with going this route for the Clearwater site, with a couple of changes. 1) I’d like to see the image/slider full-width, with Detailed Search being a link either under quick search or to the bottom-right of the image (same comment for the other wireframe). 2) Should we add an SEO text area between the image and the footer? 3) Brandon may be right about the width in the footer – baconrealtygroup.com has four, but the site is too wide at 1040px.

    • http://www.drewmeyersinsights.com/ Drew Meyers

      See attached

      • http://www.facebook.com/beer.dan Daniel Beer

         This is good.  Clean is by far the best.  Let the users search.  Everything else is just a distraction.

      • http://www.baconrealtygroup.com/ Daniel Bacon

        Looks great Drew.

  • Agentsteph

    When I redesigned my site, my goal was to remove the bloat above the fold. All those huge city photos are great looking, but to moe, they’re just taking up valuable space…

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=666577287 Brandon Matson

      What gives a space value is what you do with it, if the goal of the site is to provide search and lead capture going minimalist in that area and giving viewers as few options as possible is best.  The average person has a.d.d. when browsing and more options mean more that paths they can get lost on which leads to more opportunities lost.  The beauty of the search box/photo combination is it makes the search the focal point of the area and almost forces the viewer into your lead capture funnel.  Can you share the link to your site so we can see what you went with and how is it converting?

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