Its another one of Google’s worst kept secrets, however Google Real Estate has now officially launched in the UK. Many organisations have been already been preparing feeds and submitting these to Google in anticipation of this launching in the UK following successful trials in both the US and Australia.
Initial launch partners include Countrywide, the UK’s largest estate agency with a portfolio including Bairstow Eves, Bridgfords and Sotherby’s Inernational, and Spicer Haart. Deals have also been struck with online-only players including Zoopla, which acquired Property Finder from News International and Thinkproperty.com from Guardian Media Group last year, Trinity Mirror’s Zoomf and SmartNewHomes, Vebra, Property Pal and Ezylet and one would only suggest its a matter of time before other player such as new homes builder Barratt and Redrow enter the fray.
Google will monetise real estate by the sale of ‘real estate’ (ads) above and below the search results, and will not directly monetise the addition of properties to the system – although one has to wonder how long that will last given the sales models of similar ventures such as Rightmove.
Further to that it will be interesting to see how Rightmove react to the launch of Google Real Estate, particularly as this would appear to be a direct competitor of theirs, coupled with its tight integration into the Google framework.