The Rise of Virtual Brokerages and What it Means for Agents
Ten or 20 years ago, when entering the residential real estate industry, an agent’s career options were relatively limited. With their licenses in hand, agents had a handful of brick-and-mortar brokerages with whom they could choose to partner. Fast forward to today and we’ve seen a lot of disruption to real estate brokerages, including the introduction of virtual, or cloud-based, brokerages.
The virtual model is appealing because it allows greater scaling for the brokerage and more opportunities for agents, minus the expensive overhead. These cost savings allow brokers to offer higher commissions and attract the best agents. While the traditional brokerage model is being disrupted, real estate agents are the beneficiaries. We explore the rise of virtual brokerages and how they’re a win-win for agents.
They Help You Build Your Brand
When working with a traditional brick-and-mortar brokerage, agents pay a monthly franchise fee. Agents pay this to use the power of the company’s name and brand recognition; but is the ROI there? Many agents would argue it is not.
Most traditional brokerages are not in a position to help agents build a unique brand. While in the past traditional brokerages may have provided agents with some value by using their franchise branding, those days are over. Today, agents are better off creating their own brand and online presence. After all, clients aren’t hiring a brokerage; they’re hiring an agent.
Virtual brokerages like Radius Agent provide individualized branding and marketing built under your name and logo. Your name and brand are unique, and Radius Agent wants to promote you through all the right channels.
Data is Widely Available
Decades ago, brick-and-mortar brokerages had leverage. They had access to listings, pricing and other data at their fingertips that were not otherwise readily available. Today, a simple search online can lead buyers, agents and clients alike to a plethora of information. Brick-and-mortar brokerages no longer have a stronghold on data.
Providing Lead Generation
Many virtual brokerages offer referral marketplaces and vetting services to provide qualified leads and set up appointments on the agents’ behalf. This streamlines the process to make it as easy as possible.
Radius Agent offers Radius Marketplace and Radius Assist, lead generation and nurturing platforms, to help agents. With a network of more than 70,000 agents, the possibilities are limitless.
When working with a traditional brick-and-mortar broker, agents lose a good portion of their commissions after splitting it with the broker. Commission splits to the brokerage can often be as high as 40%. When you work with a virtual online brokerage, this is no longer the case.
With the savings on overhead, virtual brokerages can offer agents higher commissions. Radius Agent, for instance, offers a 100% commission split. Agents can then choose from a variety of $55-300 per month plans depending on the amount of technology and design services desired. If the agents choose, they can then add on optional services, such as 3D walkthroughs, a custom logo, or social media support.
The bottom line is agents have the freedom to choose what they want instead of paying high franchise fees for a questionable return on investment.
A Commitment to Coaching and Mentoring
When hiring a real estate agent, clients expect a high level of service. In turn, real estate agents expect ongoing professional training, coaching and learning opportunities that empower them to become experts in their local markets. Unfortunately, many traditional brokerages do not uphold their promises of coaching and mentoring.
Virtual brokerages like Radius Agent provide guidance and mentorship opportunities. Each agent is assigned an Agent Success Manager, as well as a team of marketers, designers, managing brokers, mentors, and coaches at their fingertips.
Rethinking the Need for and Cost of Physical Space
The past year, especially, has made companies and industries alike reevaluate the need for physical space. Companies large and small are adapting remote-first workplaces as they’ve seen productivity levels remain high despite having a dispersed workforce.
Agents with virtual brokerages can maintain a sense of camaraderie through Slack, Gmail and other channels. Additionally, agents can meet with clients in conference rooms at Regus and WeWork or local coffee shops.
Today, residential real estate agents have many choices. Brokerages must continue to take steps to stay relevant and embrace new technologies and approaches—and virtual brokerages are leading the way.
Radius Agent is an online brokerage focused on helping agents succeed. With Radius Agent, you keep 100% of your commissions while getting 100% support from our team.
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