Shortly after Google announces they will be removing real estate listings from their maps, Zillow and Yahoo Real Estate’s long awaited partnership goes live today. Is this strictly a coincidence?
Strategically this is a great move for Zillow, and will effect the real estate industry in several ways. From a real estate agent’s perspective, this expands marketing reach and puts everything into one user interface…saving agents time and allowing them to focus on other tasks.
On one of the MLS committees I sit on in Maui, there is a lot of opposition to large real estate sites like Zillow. While I understand why some Realtors might see these types of sites as a threat, I encourage you to think about this as an opportunity to gain more exposure for your client’s listings.
So, back to my question. Did Google dump their real estate listings because of partnerships like this between Zillow and Yahoo (and Trulia and CNN)? Well…yes and no. Google does state that one of the reasons they cancelled this service was because of, “the proliferation of excellent property-search tools on real estate websites” (and this blogger would argue that Zillow is one of the best real estate research tools around). However, Google has some of the brightest minds in the industry, and if they wanted to throw their programmers at real estate, they could blow everybody out of the water.
Personally, I think Google has bigger fish to fry. I don’t think Larry Page is taking being dethroned by Facebook as the most visited website very lightly.