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August 2008
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November 2008

Kijiji revisited

We wrote about Kijiji (an eBay company) a year ago, a few months after they had made their first push into the US classified ads market. We quickly added an option to RealBird to make it a very easy, copy and paste operation to manually post your RealBird property advertisement to Kijiji. A few days ago I wrote about the main referral sources to the RealBird single property websites and I thought while I am at it, I follow up by revisiting Kijiji, Oodle and Backpage to see how they compare today, in terms of traffic and demographics. I selected these three classified ads portals, because they support similar verticals (not just real estate, like Trulia and Zillow) and because they are comparable in terms of overall traffic. I left out Craigslist from the comparison because it is still a magnitude larger in terms of traffic compared to these other important destination sites.


Update: Based on the reminder by Craig (see comments), it is important to note, that Oodle provides an API for 3rd party implementations and due to their partnerships with large online outlets like MySpace, listings syndicated to Oodle may reach way more actual people, than the Compete.com chart above would suggest. The point of this post is to show the growth of Kijiji over the last year and the importance of marketing real estate listings there as well.


Kijiji's own site claims 5 million uniques (vs the 2.5M+ reported by Compete), which is quite possible as Compete.com shows less unique visitors on RealBird sites than the number reported by our Google Analytics deployment.

Digging deeper into the stats (this time using quantcast.com for sub-domain traffic) one can see which markets (DMAs) are the most popular on these sites.

Kijiji.com

Kijiji-market-traffic-breakdown


Backpage.com

Backpage-market-traffic-breakdown


Oodle.com

Oodle-market-traffic-breakdown

These charts are quite easy to read and the value of posting your RealBird listings to these classifieds sites is quite obvious, especially if your listing is in one of the top markets. (E.g. Washington, DC metropolitan area on Kijiji with over half a million people visiting a month or New York on Backpage)

Click the images above to dig deeper into the stats and see the monthly uniques in your DMA (Demographics Market Area) Also note that the demographics of these general purpose classified-ads site is different than Zillow's or Trulia's (focused on real estate only)

This post might be also a good reminder for all of our current RealBird members to take the time to manually post to Craigslist, Kijiji and Backpage (Oodle is an automatic syndication option). It takes only a few extra minutes per listing and you can potentially expose your property ads to hundreds of thousands of new prospects, out of which it only takes one actual buyer to sell the property :) Instructions and copy&paste code is provided in the RealBird member area.


-- Zoltan Szendro
RealBird.com


Updated referral statistics

The updated pie chart below shows the relative click-thru traffic from major real estate portals; i.e. consumer destination sites where RealBird listings are syndicated to (automatically or manually). It is based on the web analytics data of the last 200,000 click-throughs to RealBird single property websites:

Referral-stats-RealBird


Some notes and assumptions:


  • Craigslist is a manual distribution option for which we provide all the instructions and code. However, - due to the fact that it requires agents to manually post their listings after entering them in RealBird - the number of RealBird listings published on Craigslist is much less than the number of listings automatically syndicated to portals (Trulia, Zillow etc.). The traffic ratio of Craigslist would be way higher if all RealBird listings were published there as well by our members.

  • Trulia and Zillow consumer traffic is comparable (see Compete.com) but the click-through traffic from Trulia is almost three times as much. I suspect, that this is due to the fact, that Trulia has a big, prominent button "See more photos and details" linking to the RealBird property sites, while Zillow has a smaller, regular link on their property pages. In other words, Trulia's property page is more click-through friendly, hence more consumers actually end-up on the RealBird listing websites.

  • Since our number of syndicated listings is relatively small compared to the whole for-sale, active, US listing dataset, this chart does not implies in any ways the importance of those sites in terms of consumer traffic or the level of exposure your listing will receive. Statistically speaking, this chart can not be used as a base for making projections on traffic of the included portals. Our dataset is not a representation of such information. It only shows the distribution of traffic sources to the RealBird dataset. Use Compete.com or Quantcast.com for more accurate info on this.

    Update: Based on the conversation with Sara from Zillow (see comments below), I'd like to emphasize it again, that the chart shows the ratio of referral traffic only, which does not have direct relationship with other metrics, like lead conversion etc. For example: one may receive more leads directly on the sites we syndicate to, without the user ever clicking-thru to the RealBird listing website (hence no referral traffic is tracked).


  • It is interesting to see that the click-throu traffic from Overstock.com is higher than the traffic from Vast.com, even though OverStock.com's real estate classifieds are powered by Vast.com. It is probably due to the fact, that Overstock has way higher traffic than Vast.com (See Compete.com for details)

  • We decided to include ActiveRain traffic that is not click-through referral, but impressions of RealBird widgets embedded on ActiveRain. It may artificially improved the relative rank though. We did so, because we wanted to emphasize the importance of posting listing widgets on ActiveRain, and because we could not find an easy way to separate the two types of web analytics data

Other notable sources of traffic are: Geebo.com,Walmart Classifieds and recently, StumbleUpon

Thank you for Juliet Johnson for making us create an updated chart :)


-- Zoltan
RealBird.com


Welcome Kim Lucas, our first member from the US Virgin Islands

Say hello to Kim Lucas, our first RealBird member from the US Virgin Islands.

See Kim Lucas's property website below:

Affordable Building Lot in St. Croix Rainforest

Building Lot in St. Croix Rainforest


We would also like to thank Barbara Erskine from Virtual Business Solutions for making this happen.

-- Zoltan
RealBird.com


See your RealBird property websites traffic data on your iPhone

Clicky - our favorite web analytics service - released an iPhone version earlier today. As you may know already, the RealBird Listing Publisher single property website builder and syndication platform integrates with Clicky allowing you to have a detailed view of how your property websites perform online. With this new release, you will be able to see your property website statistics using your iPhone (and iPod Touch). Even better, you can show it to your clients and at listing interviews for new sellers. Together with the iPhone support of RealBird, you are now able to demonstrate your listings and the web analytics information as well, without ever having to open and boot your laptop again.

To get started:


  1. Create a RealBird single property website

  2. Create a Clicky account

  3. Add Clicky to your RealBird service. Instructions in the member area (Visitor tracking)

-- Zoltan
RealBird.com


RealBird communities on FriendFeed, Twitter and MyBlogLog

We are now streaming RealBird listings to 3 new platforms, MyBlogLog, Twitter and FriendFeed. All 3 have some distinct set of features and we shall see which one will be the most appealing for people to interact around topics related to RealBird and the properties advertised.



A service by Yahoo, MyBlogLog started as a smart widget to create mini communities on blogs and to add face to faceless website and blog visitors. Since then, it grew into a powerful lifestreaming, and general social networking platform. If you are a MyBlogLog user, join our MyBlogLog communities. All RealBird listings are automatically streamed here through the SearchOnMaps.com property search engine.

Pros: Lifestreaming is getting better and Google indexes the content fast and the photo "footprint" is a must-have for every real estate agent (consider it your grocery card photo banners online, for free)
Cons: The community messaging is still very basic and unintuitive, and is mostly used for messaging to blog readers, i.e. a one way communication from authors of the community to their readers.



We are now streaming your listings as they are posted to Twitter as well. Our twitter username is realbird and you can send us tweets, follow or interact with ours.

Pros: The simplest way to get in touch with us

Cons: The power of twitter is the limitation of the message length allowed. It forces people to summarize what they have to say. That might also be a disadvantage as a forum platform, but for some sort of conversation between you and us, it may be the quickest way. We shall see.



FriendFeed started as an aggregator of users' and their friend's social network feeds and enabled them to track the merged online activities all at one place. Eventually, FriendFeed became a major hub for liquid conversation, i.e. a place where people engage around a topic streamed from 3rd party sites, blog and media. One of the most intuitive implementation I've seen so far and it tends to be less noisy than Twitter. We have created a RealBird Room on FriendFeed. We stream our blogs and the RealBird listings here as well. Use this forum to add your likes and dislikes about our service, comments on existing posts and interact with other RealBird users. Once you joined the Room (free), you can send us an email with your blog feed and we will add it to the community (assuming you are a RealBird member and real estate professional)


Consider these services as new ways to start discussions about RealBird, our product features and best practices and to interact with fellow RealBird members. We are going to set up communities (or groups) on ActiveRain and Facebook too and eventually we will see which platform the most conversations will emerge on.


-- Zoltan
RealBird.com