HGTV’s listings website FrontDoor will phase out its own agent marketing platform, including featured listings and agent profile pages, as Zillow takes over exclusive responsibility for "powering" all listings on the site in April.
Zillow — which last week entered the home-remodeling space with the launch of Zillow Digs — will provide for-sale and rental listings to FrontDoor. FrontDoor will drop its own 4 million for-sale listings, and hone its focus on highlighting "amazing houses and great places to call home," the company said.
Agents who currently purchase local advertising with Zillow will get enhanced exposure on FrontDoor in April. FrontDoor is owned and managed by HGTV’s parent company, Scripps Networks LLC.
"Partnering with Zillow makes sense for the HGTV brand and our digital real estate property, FrontDoor.com," said Vikki Neil, senior vice president and general manager, digital for Scripps Networks Interactive, in a statement. "This is a marriage of strengths. We create amazing original home-related content, and Zillow provides the best real estate search experience for our users."
The Zillow Real Estate Network — Zillow.com, Yahoo Homes, HotPads and RentJuice — attracted nearly 46 million unique visitors in January, a 45 percent increase from the same time a year ago, the company said in a regulatory filing.
Zillow and Yahoo renewed an agreement last April that makes Zillow the exclusive supplier of for-sale and for-rent listings on the company’s real estate portal Yahoo Homes into 2014.
Brian Boero, co-founder of real estate marketing and design firm 1000watt, sees a trend.
"I think we’re going to see more consolidation in the online listings space this year," Boero blogged about Zillow’s latest move to power listings on FrontDoor.
"Zillow’s comprehensive collection of real estate listings and data is a perfect complement to FrontDoor’s useful and entertaining content about homes," said Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff. "This partnership also brings enormous benefit to real estate agents and brokerages who send listings to Zillow, by exposing those listings to homebuyers on four leading property portals on the Web."
The move coincides with the launch of Zillow Digs, an image-centric Web and iPad platform that provides inspirations and estimates for remodeling projects for bathrooms, bedrooms, kitchens, gardens and living rooms as pictured, Pinterest-like, on the platform.
Screen shot of Zillow Digs’ home page.
Remodeling professionals like architects, contractors and designers can sign up at Zillow for a free profile that will facilitate their interaction with home shoppers and homeowners on Zillow Digs. Presumably, as the platform matures, these professionals will be able to advertise their services and gain access to tools much like agents and rental professionals do on Zillow.com and Zillow Rentals.
With the launch of Digs, Zillow has a new hook with which to sell advertising to the home remodeling industry, which saw $300 billion in consumer spending in 2012, according to Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies.
"Tens of millions of homebuyers shop for homes on Zillow each month, and home improvement is a natural next step for us in consumer empowerment and transparency of information to help people make smarter decisions," Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff said in a statement.