Screen shot of Zillow's homepage with AOL Real Estate branding seen by recent visitors to AOL Real Estate.
The switchover happened last month, but Zillow and AOL Real Estate today made an official announcement about Zillow taking over powering AOL Real Estate’s home search from realtor.com operator Move Inc.
“We’ve watched Zillow become a leader and innovator in this space,” said Susan Lyne, CEO of AOL’s Brand Group, in a statement. ”By introducing their powerful search tools across all screens we will create a better experience for our users, whether they are looking for the perfect home or just staying abreast of market trends.”
Move announced last month that it would no longer be powering search on AOL Real Estate, ending its two-year relationship with the site. Zillow began powering home and rentals searches on AOL Real Estate Dec. 18.
When visitors to AOL Real Estate search for homes, results are framed on a version of zillow.com co-branded with the “AOL Real Estate” logo at the top. AOL Real Estate users also see ads that agents have purchased from Zillow.
“Both Zillow and AOL Real Estate serve consumers with great content and information about homes, so this made perfect sense,” said Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff in a statement.
Visitors to Zillow’s home page who have previously visited AOL Real Estate now see AOL Real Estate’s branding and a separate search box striped in a banner across the top of the page. They’ll see that banner on Zillow’s home page for as long as they keep their browser open. When they start a new session in the browser (without visiting AOL Real Estate), the banner will no longer show up on Zillow’s site.
Already the leader in Web market share, the addition of AOL Real Estate’s Web traffic will further boost Zillow’s lead over its competitors Trulia and realtor.com, who maintain their own networks. Zillow’s real estate network also includes Zillow.com, the nation’s most popular real estate search site; Yahoo Homes; and HGTV’s FrontDoor.com.
Zillow’s relationship with AOL Real Estate is different than the one it established with Yahoo Homes in 2011, Zillow spokeswoman Cynthia Nowak told Inman News in December. In that deal, Zillow syndicates its for-sale and for-rent listings to Yahoo Homes, and sells ads featuring real estate agents and brokers on the site.