If you haven’t heard already, Google is set to launch a new AI-powered search experience, codenamed Project Magi, this month. The overnight popularity of AI from the likes of ChatGPT and Microsoft’s AI-powered Bing put Google in panic mode. Add to this the Amazon phenomenon that has taking ad dollars away from Google search and Samsung smartphones reportedly considering replacing Google with Bing as its handset default browser. Google has to change their search experience.
The company intends to focus on serving young people globally and to move away from the traditional “10 blue links” format of presenting search results. This shift will involve incorporating more human voices into the search engine’s results, according to the Wall Street Journal.Wall Street Journal
How will this affect Real Estate websites in search?
It’s not news to say that people don’t peruse website link after link when searching anymore. Nor is it news to say that Zillow is where many go to do their home searching. This reality has been happening for years. Consumers simply prefer to spend their online time in apps that get it right. Whether that’s for social needs or house hunting.
Google has been accommodating to this for years and they are hoping to get in front of it with the new ‘Magi’ search experience. So searches will become more ‘visual, snackable, personal, and human’ with help of AI. And, so, we can expect to see even less of a list of websites meaning more erosion of click-through rates (CTRs).
What can you do to adapt to the new search experience?
We still don’t have first hand experience with the new Google Magi project…so it’s imposssible to say how this will play out. Here are some ideas though to avoid being caught flat footed.
- Put this on the radar of your website hosting company. They have likely heard about it…but ask for monthly updates.
- Individual Agents: Adapt your website to be a better online business card. The listing feed you have is a plus but it won’t beat Zillow’s app experience.
- 70% of all US digital media time comes from mobile apps. Think about getting your own simple branded real estate app. It’s easy to get and likely more affordable/effective than your website.
- Don’t panic:) You have time to adapt…unlike Google.
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