Google Maps is integrating listings submitted by agents and brokers to Google Base into "place pages," making available on a single page all the information Google has about a property listing — including property details, photos, inspection times, videos, a street-view preview and nearby public transit information.
Google Maps rolled out a dedicated landing page for listings in July, at: http://maps.google.com/realestate, and improved search capabilities that allow consumers to look for listings around specific neighborhoods. Consumers could previously use Google Maps to search for real estate listings submitted by agents and brokers to Google Base, but only if they specified "real estate" from a search options menu (see story).
Searching Google Maps using the keywords "real estate" and "San Jose," for example, returns a map displaying listings submitted to Google Base.
With the additional integration of place pages, clicking on any of the listings returned in a Google Maps search generates a single page for the listing, where consumers can see details and click through to see the source of information, such as a real estate brokerage or third-party syndicating service like Postlets.
Software engineers employed by Google in Australia announced the new place page feature in a blog post.
The National Association of Realtors just announced it would launch a national property database for members next year, and SearchEngineLand.com’s Matt McGee blogs that "Google seems to have just stolen the NAR’s thunder."
Google Base includes only homes for sale, apartments for rent, and distressed properties — including about 950,000 for-sale listings in the U.S. and Canada. The place pages are available for these various property types.
NAR says its Realtor Property Resource database will include public property records and other information on virtually every parcel in the U.S., commercial and residential — some 147 million properties — whether they are on the market or not (see story).
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