In the last decade, technology has been a major catalyst behind the development of all industries, as more and more companies have turned to technologically-driven solutions for their business. According to recent statistics, the total technology spending worldwide is forecast to reach $3.3 billion in markets that include telecom services, tech outsourcing, tech consulting, hardware maintenance, software, communication services, and others. Yet not all industries have taken full advantage of the benefits that technology brought to the corporate environment, and some are still learning their way around what it means to update their services for fitting technological demands.
One of those industries is commercial real estate, where things only recently started to change in accordance with new technological developments. When we think of commercial real estate, our mind usually goes to things such as online listings, therefore we already associate the industry with modern technology. The truth is that behind the scenes, commercial real estate did not embrace technological developments until recent years, when solutions such as communication software or cloud-based storage systems started to be used by the industry.
In the first half of 2018, the value of private office construction starts in the United States was $6.2 billion, with all of U.S. commercial construction put in one place amounting to $86.95 billion. These properties are drawing more and more investors looking to rent out the buildings to other companies or private individuals who are running a business of their own. Whether we are speaking of sectors such as retail, office, entertainment, industrial, or business lodging, commercial real estate plays a valuable role in the economy of the United States.
Today, commercial real estate is starting to respond to customer demand by introducing technology into its structure, as the industry is getting more and more competitive and in need of a positive change that will result in more successful outcomes. But how exactly is technology changing the commercial real estate industry for the better?
According to the National Association of Realtors, the real estate market is getting stronger, but resources are diminishing quickly, thus making the industry face a need to change its demeanors and the way in which it does business. Here is where technology can make a significant difference, if implemented properly. In current times, the demands of people looking to rent a commercial building have less to do with the space itself and more with what it can offer in terms of technology and modern developments. A business needs a lot of resources in order to perform to the best of its ability, and those resources often involve technological mixes such as modern communication services, an infrastructure tailored to fit a wide range of solutions, and comprehensive networks.
In order to provide your tenants with what they need from a commercial building, you will not only have to implement such solutions in your buildings, but also make use of them for your business. Further, we will discuss the technological solutions you can implement as a property manager so that your commercial real estate business stays up-to-date with industry demands.
Although online listings have been significantly used in recent years, realtors have not updated their strategies when it comes to listing a property online, which is why in most cases clients have to deal with old listings or with ones that are uploaded on websites which are not always user-friendly. Update your listing to include data such as satellite view, information about the local business community, tax and purchase history, and whatever else you consider necessary. Keep in mind that most people nowadays are browsing the internet from a mobile device, therefore making sure that your listing are mobile-compatible is mandatory.
Modern technology has come up with great solutions for people who might be too busy to visit a number of buildings before making up their minds on renting, and 3D virtual tours are the ones best fitted to the commercial real estate industry. With a 3D virtual tour, you can go beyond the usual photograph and offer your prospective tenants the feel as if they are walking though the building themselves. Make sure that you are using software that allows you access to data such as real-time analytics and the possibility to gather feedback from your potential tenants in order to improve future strategies.
As a property manager, one of the main aspects of concern when it comes to the overall activity of your business should be related to the way you communicate with your tenants in various situations, from regular messages to messages you might need to broadcast in the event of an emergency. Using a communication solution that is rich in features will allow you better control over how your messages are broadcasted and received, and also allow for the gathering and analyzing of feedback. Don’t forget to use templates where you can, and always update your communication strategies based on the goals and objectives of your business and on the needs of your tenants.
As technology is becoming more and more advanced and its implementation is more cost-effective and performed with increased swiftness, ample solutions are becoming available for the commercial real estate industry. Among them, online investing platforms, e-signing services, and even the use of blockchain technologies. Using technology to transform your company into a virtual business that offers a wide range of online services for your current and prospective tenants will keep you one step ahead of your competitors and help build a name in your community.
Also, drafting and implementing your strategies based on predictive analytics and business intelligence is of utmost importance when it comes to commercial real estate businesses that want to better themselves through technology and modern-day solutions.
Technology is changing the corporate real estate industry for the better, regardless of the fact that it has been introduced to it later than to other industries. Therefore, making sure that your business stays up-to-date with industry developments and with technological advances that can help you and your tenants is a wise business decision. Whether you are updating the format of your old online listings, creating a 3D virtual tour, or using platforms such as crowdfunding to attract new investors, don’t forget that all decisions involving technology need to be taken based on personalized and methodically analyzed metrics. Avoid becoming another horror story by always being informed and prepared for whatever the industry will bring your way. Also, make sure that you are always putting a high emphasis on tenant communications.
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