Little Real Estate – Website
- Evolution 7
Little Real Estate is Australia’s largest independently-owned real estate company that has risen the ranks by making good on its promises of authenticity, customer connection, trust, and transparency. Despite its strong market position, however, the company’s website failed to deliver customers the kind of value characteristic of the brand. Guided by extensive user research and the principles of human-centered design, we delivered an intelligently-structured, on-brand digital product that boosted traffic by removing barriers for users searching for properties and other real estate information.
Little Real Estate’s key markets (high-spending households, educated families in desirable suburbs, and career-focussed singles and couples) have vastly different requirements when it comes to buying, selling, and managing properties. Therefore, we had to give equal opportunity for users in each group to find exactly what they are traditionally looking for. We developed a sitemap that categorised content into pathways aligns with common user goals, and then tested these with user groups. Primary navigation was restructured to prominently feature ‘Rent’ and ‘Buy & Sell’ functionalities, with lesser searched pages housed under a ‘More’ tag.
From users we learned mobile devices are a key part of the decision cycle, but that traditional hamburger menus are largely ineffective. Further, users prefer seamless digital journeys, favouring sleek digital forms over clunky PDF downloads.
With clear headings and a smart use of colour, the Little Real Estate homepage surfaces appropriate actions and content on arrival. A prominent search bar allows property hunters to jump straight into the search experience, while tenants can access digital forms and other information (emergency repairs, maintenance, etc.) with ease.
Users spoke to us about several desirable features (property email alerts, wish-lists, etc.), but search remained the single most important functionality of a real estate website. We took the search experience one step further by implementing a ‘Search by Map’ function for users who haven’t yet decided where they wish to buy or rent. With this function, properties display in physical proximity to one another and to shops, public transport, and other key amenities nearby.