the property, market trends, financing options and contact details of the property owners were rated as the top reasons for using Internet for real estate research.
The report also revealed that buyers, who contribute to over 90% of total real estate transactions in the country, have an annual household income over 5 lakhs; a majority of which were already using the Internet today.
“It is estimated that the real estate will grow to become a $140 billion industry by 2017 and the Internet audience base is expected to reach over 450 million by then,” Bawankule added.
In tier 1 cities over 57% buyers were influenced by online research and in tier 2 cities the impact was equally high with 48% buyers saying that they used Internet to research for real estate purchase decisions.
The usage of mobile phones for accessing real estate information online was also significant with over 55% buyers using it to access information. This finding was consistent with Google search, with mobile contributing to over 40% real estate queries. Moreover, mobile apps were preferred over websites by buyers with 73% respondents saying they prefer to use mobile apps.
Amongst the wishlist, respondents highlighted the need for accurate and updated information with details of locality and amenities online. Respondents also highlighted the low availability of information for commercial property information online. While they appreciated the availability of contact details of owners, respondents also highlighted the problems of brokers pretending to be owners and asked for sites to run more detailed checks on listings. Offering online chats, quick turnaround to online queries and providing counselling by experts were also listed as improvements respondents would like to see from real estate players on the Internet.
As per search trends, (Google search queries data for 2013):
The highest number of real estate queries in tier 2 cities come from:
* Pune, followed by Lucknow, Jaipur, Indore, Chandigarh, Coimbatore, Nagpur, Kanpur, Surat and Ahmedabad.
* Amongst the top metros - NCR followed by Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Chennai
Methodology for the Study:
Combination of insights from the offline survey conducted by Zinnov on behalf of Google and Google search trends for Real estate queries from 2010 till May 2014.
Offline face to face survey conducted by Zinnov across top 15 cities in India with respondents who were in the market for real estate needs (Buying/Renting). Sample size 6196: Top 8 metros: 3267,