Looking to build a feature-rich website that helps capture consumers from an existing market, while staying unique to your own brand?
User-Centric Software & Branding
Integrating Real Estate Listings, Neighborhoods and a Content Hub All-in-One
What we accomplished
Listing Forms Viewed
With a couple of dozen agents and brokers, Spaces RE is a boutique real estate company focused on one single metric – service. Newly founded in 2010, the company focuses on providing full-service property needs to match what consumers are looking for. From renting to buying to investment opportunities, Spaces RE capitalizes on using information to better equip its clients for potential life transitions.
Under the same parent brand, Elevated Spaces exists as an extension in order to provide higher-end services for those looking for Chicago penthouses or high dollar properties.
Despite all the turmoil and constant change within the real estate market, there was still room to grow in Chicago when the founders of Spaces RE approached LLT to help carve out a niche in this consistently evolving market. The message was simple – there was a disconnect in the way real estate companies actually service their users through messaging technology. The founders envisioned a way to disrupt the real estate market by expanding their vision beyond simply selling homes and booking viewing appointments. They prioritized being truthful to the Chicago nuances by positioning and presenting a brand to consumers that provided authentic, unbiased information about the properties and the areas in which they were located.
They offered LLT the opportunity to create two, community-driven brands from the ashes of other companies that failed to recognize and solve consumer needs.
“The opportunity was mouth-watering and daunting at the same time. With consumer expectations of technology at such a high-level in experiences they have with digital, we knew we had to hit the mark on all facets of the project; from branding to design to development.” Tony Zipparro, COO at LLT Group, said.
It is rare for a potential project to include so many different aspects for an existing brand to build upon, but, in this case, the combination of features, brand, and content were major drivers that needed to be delicately balanced in order to achieve success in the marketplace.
Strategy, Experience, Development
Workshop, User Experience, Branding, User Interface, Web Design, Visual Media, Software, CMS
All-in with the brand
Given that the market had already been locally saturated with a myriad of brands (both big and small) that could service all real-estate markets in Chicago, the approach from LLT was to use “brand” to speak through the actual neighborhoods and what they had to offer. It began with the branding of two distinct identities: one for the budget-conscious consumer looking to spend between $3,500 and $7,000 per month on a rental and $350,000 – $550,000 on a home purchase, and one for the high-end, luxurious dweller that could afford the best the city had to offer at $10,000+ per month on renting and $850,000+ on home purchases.
Understanding this brand dichotomy helped LLT produce a strategy that could concentrate on generating property bookings through design and development, which in turn would show the impact of the attributes that each audience prioritized in their home searches. LLT leveraged the expertise of the Spaces RE team to help produce visual media and content-rich information on each of the major neighborhoods within the area to complement the archaic, somewhat standardized process of searching and viewing properties.
Detailed technology & simple user experience
LLT used this information to create a beautiful UX / UI that conveyed a sense of sophistication. Knowing that the core features for development of the site were considered “givens” (such as accuracy of properties, POIs, site speed, etc.) in today’s marketplace, LLT needed to make sure that while these features may have been new to Spaces RE, ample time should be spent making sure they met the standards of experienced, external users. LLT also had to account for properties from multiple listing services, including MLS, so they tactfully addressed the technical complexities of properties coming from different frequencies with varying data feeds and points with a heavy focus on data consistency and standardization.
This was all tied together through the idea of leaving breadcrumbs in the user’s site experience to lead and remind them to choose whether they wanted to interact with the site directly or reach out to a Spaces RE expert. The goal was to drive customer involvement, tailored to a level they both desired and needed.
LLT helped Spaces RE successfully reconfigure two brands, UIs, and software developed for two different markets that resulted in more searches and digital interactions for the company than ever before. By simplifying the UX / UI to strip down only what a consumer actually wanted to see, Spaces RE achieved a reduction in bounce rates and much-improved entry to conversion statistics.
With over 180,000+ listing forms viewed and a nearly 14% conversion rate on contact forms, conversions for property-related requests skyrocketed beyond even optimistic projections. On the recruiting side, this project helped generate nearly 7,000 applicants for the company in relation to leasing positions, 600 applicants for administrative positions, and 3,800 applications for agents.
The brands have now become a staple in the Chicago market as it relates to real estate and have solidified themselves as an energetic and helpful culture. From apparel and marketing materials to swag, you can find the brand identity of Spaces RE and Elevated Spaces peppered throughout the city.
One of the biggest wins for Spaces RE was on the website where they were given an experience that was truly focused on the user. LLT gave careful considerations to deliver an engaging and informative experience for site users, including offering resource after resource based on their buying or renting journey. This started with multiple entry paths from the homepage based on how the user wants to begin their journey: by specificity (in property or zip code), by popularity (starting from the most viewed and liked properties) or by neighborhood (clicking in the area you wanted to live).
The project was tied together on the development side by creating two custom API feeds to help bring in property data into the system to cleanse and geocode it before outputting it to the frontend of the site. LLT also provided a CMS implementation that allows for Spaces RE employees to update everything from resources, team members, landing pages, job openings, blogs, and neighborhoods.