The debate of high street vs online estate agency will continue for some time i’m sure, and the debate will evolve as the high street model moves away from the rigid structure of multiple branches and multiple overheads.
But there is one core aspect of high street agency that baffles me; high street agents have done a marvellous job in creating what is probably the most unwelcoming, intimidating and awkward experience for a customer on the high street. You would think that if high street agents were truly trying to win this fight, they would at least put their best foot forward.
The archaic habit of sticking properties in windows is just that, archaic, and should a customer wish to venture inside they’re struck by a repetitive layout of desks and faces all lined up and designed to look squarely at you upon entry – it’s just a horrible experience. As a customer, you’re lucky if the office has a meeting room, and are therefore usually made to provide much of your private information in a very open and public environment. General office layouts and design seem to have been untouched since the 90’s, and one thing you notice when you look into high street agency offices is that there are no customers in them!
The offices should actually be designed more for the staff than the customers, because it’s the staff that spend time there. And from that perspective they make for an uninspiring and dull environment that isn’t conducive to high performance or motivation.
If high street agents are committed to winning the online vs high street debate they should start by putting their high street offices right and creating fun and inspiring spaces for staff and customers alike.
Published by Jamie Gray | firstname.lastname@example.org