Social Commerce

Facebook Takes On Zillow With Dynamic Ads For Real Estate

With two billion active monthly users, Facebook is leveraging its massive audience against a new vertical: real estate.

According to reports, the social media giant has launched “Dynamic Ads For Real Estate,” a new advertising feature that might just challenge Zillow’s supremacy in the digital retail arena. The product functions by integrating real estate firms’ existing listing data into the Facebook advertising platform.

Facebook is using targeting technology similar to Amazon’s to display user-specific real estate listings as people utilize the social media network. Users can view said listings in Instagram or Facebook feeds in a slideshow format.

“Real estate is an area we’re betting big on as a company,” noted Keith Watts, the head of real estate and financial services at Facebook. “I think there’s a lot of ways that we can help the industry in general.”

The service, according to Facebook, is optimal for brokerages with at least 100 listings on their website.

“For the folks that can have that amount of volume, we think it’s going to work really well — and once it’s set up, it’s pretty much automatic, you don’t have to spend a lot of manpower to keep the system up and running,” Watts stated.

Inventory in the U.S. real estate market is at at a 30-year low, according to CoreLogic, with certain areas showing signs of bubbly markets with over-valued housing stock. Denver, Houston, Miami, and Washington, D.C. were the leading culprits on that list.

“While low mortgage rates are keeping the market affordable from a monthly payment perspective, affordability will likely become a much bigger challenge in the years ahead until the industry resolves the housing supply challenge,” Frank Martell, president and CEO of CoreLogic, stated.

“Dynamic Ads for Real Estate” is Facebook’s first ad product designed specifically for real estate — and it’s not alone in taking on the current digital real estate powerhouse over at Zillow. Amazon previewed a “Hire A Realtor” page on its website during Prime Day, signaling its intention to make a move on the real estate advertising sector.

But Zillow, it should be noted, remains formidable. Coming off a better than expected Q2, Zillow saw marketplace sales jump 30 percent year on year, real estate revenues up 45 percent year on year, and display and growing at 9 percent a year. All in all, the stocks price is up 10 percent in 2017.

Should be an interesting race.

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