Zillow launched Neighborhood Advice. As a home buyer, Neighborhood Advice recommends which friends (via Facebook Connect) to ask about the particular neighborhood or city they are searching in. I would bet almost every single home buyer asks at least a few people — either online or offline — what a particular community they are looking to buy in is like to live in. Most web sites that succeed do so by enabling users to do things THEY ALREADY DO OFFLINE more efficiently online. This is certainly one of those scenarios that happens everyday offline, but isn’t easy to do online (until now). In fact, I recently wrote about the social context I thought was missing from the online search experience. This feature solves that social context problem.
My hunch is Zillow’s next move is to figure out how to weave real estate agents into the Neighborhood Advice process — likely by giving Premiere Agents branding inside that Facebook Connect experience and encouraging buyers to contact the agents in addition to their friends who live there.
Sound cool? You can try it here.
This is a brilliant strategic product decision by Zillow in my book.