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Curbed is trying to change the face of the online real estate market. Their team has come up with an interesting, unique way to present the customer with the information about possible future homes that is different than their competition. This style of listing is integrated with other articles about properties to keep the customer engaged and interested. Along with their national page, Curbed also has publications for specific cities including, Seattle, Chicago and Miami (to name a few). These publications do not have real estate listings but have a variety of other articles for customers to browse.  

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The Good

  • Styling
  • Resources

There are several ways in which Curbed stands out among their competing real estate searching sites. One of these ways is through the style in which their property listings are presented to the customer. They do offer the traditional listing where there are pictures at the top, followed by a description of the property, and then concluding is bulleted lists of other pertinent information like the price and square footage. This type of listing is not directly on the Curbed website, but instead the customer is transferred to the agent or complex's website to get this information, which helps them to get in direct contact if they want more information.

The other way in which they present listings is through their featured page and they act as a kind of blog post. The customer can quickly scroll through the headlines of various posts to get the highlights of the featured homes. If one stands out to them they can read on to find out more information. This type of listing is more focused on the pictures of the property instead of written descriptions, thus reading more like a blog post than a traditional real estate listing. This type of style is more modern and might appeal to a different type of customer than a traditional real estate search site might. The Curbed listings will definitely be more interesting to visual customers who like pictures more than words.

Another aspect of Curbed that might appeal to a different type of customer is the other posts that are mixed in with their blog post style listings. These posts come in a variety of different topics. They can cover anything from historical landmark homes to a new design technique. They are published for those readers who are interested in design, architecture and all things home. These additional articles allow customers to indulge in their passions and enjoy parts of homeownership, instead of only focusing on the stressful searching aspect.

The Bad

  • Availability

There are a lot of services that Curbed offers, real estate listings are one of those services but they are not the main part of their business. The MarketPlace where the listings are located is a small portion of what Curbed offers their customers. This is good for the customers in that they offer a lot of interesting articles and other things to help the customers. But this can also bad in that this can mean that the listings are limited. One way that the real estate listings are limited through Curbed is that they are only available from certain neighborhoods. Currently, Curbed only offers listings in New York City and the Hampton area. The listings are separated into the different cities in that area and then into the specific neighborhoods.

For example, in Manhattan the neighborhoods that are included in the search are:

  • Battery Park
  • Carnegie Hill
  • Chelsea
  • Chinatown
  • Clinton
  • East Harlem
  • East Village
  • Financial District
  • Garment District
  • Greenwich Village
  • Hamilton Heights
  • Harlem
  • Inwood
  • Little Italy
  • Lower East Side
  • Midtown
  • Morningside Heights
  • Murray Hill
  • North Sutton
  • Soho
  • Tribeca
  • Upper East Side
  • Upper West Side
  • Washington Heights
  • West Village
  • Yorkville

This organization makes it really simple for customers to find exactly the area they are looking for. But this is such a small scope that many customers will be left out. The Curbed team has plans to expand their Market Place to include the LA and San Francisco areas as well. But even with the expansion that does not cover where the majority of people searching for a new home are looking in. Something about the Curbed approach to real estate also makes their customer demographic very limited as well. They report that 61% of their customers are male, 85% are college graduates, and 54% have a household income of over $100,000 per year. There is nothing wrong with this type of customer being drawn to Curbed, it is just interesting to note that their audience is not as diverse as some of their competitors.

The Bottom Line

The Curbed team has a very different approach to the real estate market than any other of their competitors. They present the listing information in a more visual, modern way and stray away from the traditional style. Even though they have this interesting style of presenting information, they can only present it to a very small group of customers. If the customer fits into their geographical limitations, they will probably enjoy their real estate search through Curbed. But if the customer would like to live outside of New York, they will have to look elsewhere for their future home.

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