Why is a mobile-first strategy so important for landlords? Well, think about today’s society and today’s consumers. We are obsessed with our phones! According to Text Request, in June of 2014, 561 billion text messages were sent worldwide. Obviously that’s a rounded figure, but it brings us to roughly 18.7 billion texts sent every day around the world. That’s the most recent number we’ve got…and that was TWO years ago? How many more iPhones and fancy Samsungs and Droids have come out since then? I can only imagine how much higher that number is TODAY!
Does this help you understand why, as a landlord, you should be thinking about texting? Because your tenants are texting! Texting, at the end of the day, is one of the number one tools to help you manage your rental homes.
WHY do landlords need to be accessible via text? Well…here are some examples.
“My dishwasher is leaking!”
“My heat won’t turn on!”
“My electricity is out!”
“Where do I pick up the mail?”
“Where is the breaker box?”
“My toilet won’t flush!”
“Surprise! I got a pet!”
As a landlord, I’m sure you have heard these complaints and questions before. Tenants (especially today’s tenants) don’t want to send an email because the response is not as immediate. Today’s tenants are ephemeral creatures meaning that they want satisfaction and responses and they want them NOW! They don’t want to call because, hey, texting is easier and a lot of the younger generation members HATE talking on the phone! So, how do they want to get in touch with you? They want to text you. And, of course, they want you to respond ASAP!
So, how can you start implementing a mobile-first strategy with your tenants? Let them know that you are available via text and to feel free to communicate with you that way. When it comes to things like rent, contracts, receiving pay stubs, getting previous landlord recommendations, etc., let potential tenants know that you are perfectly fine with communicating via mobile about those topics. When you make the whole renting process and landlord/tenant relationship easier, renters will have more of a reason to rent from you and you can retain them longer.
Today’s landlords have properties all over the place (think about just Arlington, VA – there are rental properties everywhere!) and they need to take into account research and conversion. Mobile sites are often the initial form of interaction with a website. That interaction can make or break a renter’s decision to rent from you.
That being said, you need to be able to be found on mobile! Make sure that you can be found online and make sure that the listings that ARE online are mobile-friendly. There is nothing worse than Googling, for example, “houses for rent in Arlington, Virginia” and, you think you might have found something great but when you click on the link you notice that the page is not mobile-friendly (meaning, it can only be easily read on a desktop) and then you can’t even read it! Grr!
If you look anywhere on the internet, you can find advice that says “GET ON MOBILE!” and “BE MOBILE!” That does not go just for the landlord and property industry – but for all industries! Mobile is growing more and more everyday and having a mobile strategy and being accessible VIA mobile is integral to the growth of your stretch as a landlord.
Landlords must increase their level of mobile connectivity to remain competitive in their space. How are you using mobile to engage with residents and/or future residents?