In an email to Inman, BrightDoor CEO Michael Worthington acknowledged some initial missteps in the app’s focus, despite gaining more than 2,000 user accounts over 5,000 total downloads.
“Elements of the original HomeRover app concept (having a ‘friend’ or on-demand videographer going into the home and live-streaming) was in some cases in conflict with the mission/priorities of agents,” Worthington said. “We needed to re-focus on specific agent personas.”
That refocus is reflected in the app’s newest iteration, which was driven directly by a focus group of what Worthington deemed “heavy-hitter agents.”
HomeRover version 2 includes a more business-tailored interface for agents, while the consumer-facing side has had its experience audited for user simplification, including a more efficient way to offer listing ratings and custom feedback.
The app’s new Instant Showing feature gives agents the ability to start a virtual showing from whatever listing they happen to be visiting. It can also give agents in-app access to recent buyers’ contact information and a history of properties they’ve viewed.
HomeRover’s focus group also led to a renewed focus on buyer relocation, second-homebuyers and luxury agents, according to Worthington.
“So, simplifying the scheduling flow, offering a ‘quick’ start showing-now style feature, incorporating contact management … all flowed from this,” he said.
Pending and completed showings have been reorganized for easier tracking and research and now, showing videos and photos can be downloaded for local use and additional sharing. BrightDoor is also bolstering HomeRover’s sales strategy.
“We’re structuring go-to-market strategy around partner integrations and brokerage office sales and not only direct-to-agent through the app stores,” Worthington said.
The new version of HomeRover is now live in Apple’s app store.
Craig C. Rowe started in commercial real estate at the dawn of the dot-com boom, helping an array of commercial real estate companies fortify their online presence and analyze internal software decisions. He now helps agents with technology decisions and marketing through reviewing software and tech for Inman.