Have suggestions for products that you’d like to see reviewed by our real estate technology expert? Email Craig Rowe.

It’s been almost two years since Inman reviewed AskAvenue, a chat app that won Realogy’s FWD technology competition in 2015.

In the four years since, the lead-generation software has steadily grown in users and continues to evolve in functionality.

The new version of the app, which installs on agent websites to ignite conversation with home and listing agent shoppers, is now more laser-focused on contextual conversations.

New features of the app also include a refreshed admin dashboard with a sharp, simple menu on the left and content fields. Contrasting, color-coded function icons will help users scroll to data areas quickly, and the conversation timeline helps site managers know when and for how long AskAvenue engaged a prospect. (See our previous review to compare user interface, or UI, designs.)

The “Reports” tab gives access to what the bot asked and how the responses were given, and it also breaks down when agents were able to take over the discussion, or if they declined it.

All conversations are tracked and can be searched too.

On the outside, AskAvenue’s UI has been revamped to provide lead context with the ongoing chat in the form of the person’s name, need and location. This helps agents make more relevant talking points and better relate to the person on the other end.

The agent can then activate a slider window from within the chat to add notes, tags and gather social media insight on the lead. It’s growing very CRM-like.

AskAvenue now automatically schedules appointments, as well as offers previews into listings from within Messenger.

There is also a new multioffice functionality that can assign agents based on location and availability, according to broker lead routing rules. The new version also includes a “freemium” model.

For agents who worry about their website being able to compete with SEO-dominating portals and fast-growing brands like Compass, know that chat bots are a valuable way to keep visitors on a website, especially when the app is aware of the importance of balancing human integration with its qualification, as AskAvenue does.

Again, where AskAvenue excels is in not believing it can take over for an agent. It’s simply a smart way to save time in lead qualification and not let solid prospects escape to another home search source. Agents need to move quickly today, and the better your technology tools are at helping you do that, the more valuable they are to your business.

Have a technology product you would like to discuss? Email Craig Rowe

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