Technology

Tracking systems zero in on what buyers really want [Special Report]

Monitoring consumer search activity raises privacy concerns

Tracie Norman recently received a reminder from her customer relationship management system instructing her to contact a buyer client. So Norman, a real estate agent with the Speicher Group of Olney, Maryland-based Re/Max Realty Centre, did what she often does when she receives such prompts: She pulled up a detailed summary of the buyer’s search activity on her team’s property search website. And, boy, was she surprised. BoomTown's "opportunity wall" prompts agents to reach out to contacts based on their search activity. The client, who previously had insisted that she would consider properties in only a “very, very specific area” of Gaithersburg, Maryland, had initially set up a search alert for properties in Hagerstown, near the state line with Pennsylvania . The buyer acknowledged that she was now looking in Gaithersburg when Norman asked about her search activity. So Norman did the best thing she could at that point: She referred the buyer to an agent in ...