Industry NewsTechnology

VoIP technology sharpens agent response times

RealPING turns clicks to calls to real estate deals

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The Internet is a goldmine of information, but occasionally you hit a wall where you need a real person to answer a question. Albert Clark saw that wall about seven months ago when he was booking some complicated flights through Continental Airlines online at about 11 p.m. He'd already spent a lot of time entering information about his trips when he had a question about the airline's cancellation policy. Clark said a button popped up on the Web page he was viewing and asked if he had any questions. He clicked on "yes" and his phone rang in less than two seconds, he said. "They knew what page I was on. They knew where I was in the transaction so I didn't have to start from scratch," said Clark. And that was when he realized this option had to be made available on real estate Web sites. Clark in January launched realPING, a push-to-talk VoIP button that connects Web site visitors with a real estate agent's telephone. VoIP, which stands for voice over Internet protocol, is a technology ...