Self-guided tours are gaining consumer confidence with more and more home shoppers eager to try a new, on-demand option that limits personal interaction amid the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s a growing trend — not just among new home builders — but across the real estate industry. In fact, Zillow recently announced that it will be extending self-touring options to all its Zillow-owned homes this summer.
In theory, the concept of self-guided tours is easy to understand, but what about the experience itself? Take a walk with us through the home shopper experience to see how UTour self-guided tours can help break down barriers, provide an enjoyable experience for home shoppers and, ultimately, bring more buyers to your door.
Note: Before the first tour is scheduled, we’ll work with you to integrate UTour-available listings on your website. Then a custom UTour landing page will be developed for when a home shopper takes the action to schedule a tour.
Step #1: The Home Shopper Browses the Builder Website
Your website is the launching point for your shopper’s new home experience. Whether the shopper first found your brand while driving by one of your communities or saw your home products on social media, they’ve arrived and are ready to get started on their dream home.
While visiting the builder’s website, the home shopper will see your available home listings. Where self-guided tours are available, they’ll see a “Schedule a Self Tour” button. They’ll select the button for the home they’d like to tour.
Step #2: The Home Shopper Schedules Their Self-Guided Tour
Once the home shopper has selected their preferred home listing and proceeds to “Schedule a Self Tour”, they will be transported to your custom UTour landing page. Here, they will be able to choose a date and time from your available offerings.
For those who’ve never participated in a UTour self-guided tour before, they’ll be prompted to register and verify their identity with a photo ID or credit card. For returning users, they’ll only have to submit their login information for access. All users will need to accept a Terms & Conditions agreement — customized for your needs — before their tour is confirmed.
Step #3: The Home Shopper is Offered the Ability to Schedule Additional Tours
After scheduling the first tour, home shoppers will be shown additional homes within the community and asked whether they’d like to schedule more tours during their visit. If the home shopper is visiting your community already, why not see all the options available? This popular feature has resulted in an increase in tours scheduled, with most visitors choosing to schedule more than one tour per community visit.
Step #4: The Home Shopper Receives Tour Confirmation
Upon successfully scheduling a self-guided tour, the home shopper will receive a confirmation via email and text with details about the tour, including the address, time and UTour entry code, along with any custom messaging you want to include.
Step #5: The Home Shopper Receives a Tour Reminder
Prior to their scheduled tour, the home shopper will receive a reminder email and text regarding their tour details. This helpful feature will encourage the shopper to take advantage of the tour they have already scheduled amid the hustle and bustle of their day.
Step #6: The Home Shopper Starts Their Tour
The home shopper arrives at the home, then enters the UTour entry code to unlock the door and start touring. From this point, they’ll have an hour to explore the ins and outs of the home at their own pace. Our data suggests that the average UTour home shopper spends roughly 20–30 minutes touring the home.
Shortly after entering the home, the home shopper will receive a text message, encouraging them to reach out to the sales team during or after their tour. Just like before, this notification can be customized to share messaging appropriate for your brand.
If the home is equipped with UTour Voice, home shoppers can use Amazon Alexa or Google Home during the tour to ask questions about the home or community, launch Smart Home features or use live video to connect with a salesperson.
Step #7: The Home Shopper Completes Their Tour
The UTour experience doesn’t just end once the home shopper leaves the home — we’ll help follow up and re-engage the prospect to see if the tour was successful. In the days following their tour, the home shopper will receive, via email and text, an invitation to complete a post-tour survey, as well as two additional emails encouraging them to reach out to the sales team to take the next steps in the homebuying process.
If for any reason, the home shopper missed their tour completely and never entered the home, they’ll receive an email and text inviting them to reschedule the tour or reach out to the sales team.
A Comprehensive Process Made Simple
All together, we’ve designed the UTour experience to give consumers the flexibility and self-determination they’ve come to expect without disconnecting the builder from the process. While the home shopper will enjoy their tour on their own terms without a requirement to contact the builder directly, the builder is always in the know regarding who is touring their homes and when. Even without a salesperson on-site, the home shopper will receive multiple touchpoints with your brand and are reminded that your representatives are just a call or text away if they have questions.
Now, do you have questions? We’re here to help. Contact us today to schedule a personal demo of UTour and learn how our self-guided home tour solution can work for you to bring more buyers to your door.