Where Real Estate Gets Its Dirt


SWIPEI got a chance to preview and now playing around with a fun app called SWIPE, created by Michele Serro’s team at DOORSTEPS. DOORSTEPS was was acquired by MOVE last year.

The premise is easy, you are presented with a single property photo and the street address. If you like the home you swipe the photo the left in you “PASS” on the home, or swipe to the right to “SAVE” a home. It also aggregates statistics about your preferences. Like I said, easy peasy.

It reminds me of the old website “Hot or Not”, and I’m told mimics a new popular app, Tinder (which for martial reasons I have chosen not to install on my phone). : )

The design is exquisite. Too me it functions basically as a triage for choosing homes.

If I had one quibble it would be that I would rather have the price, beds, and bath on the main screen. I found myself tapping on every photo for more detail. One photo and an address were not enough for me to give a decision to “Pass” on the house or “Save” it for later. Having said that I fear adding too much to the screen might make the app less fun.

I love the fact MOVE is releasing stuff like this. More please! Real estate needs to be more fun. Great job Michele!

  1. Rosemary Scardina

    So theoretically it’s the “Tinder” of real estate…..how does this app enhance real estate experience for the consumer

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  3. Hi Rosemary, thanks for reading about Doorsteps Swipe. When concepting the app we aimed to hit three main consumer goals. 1) Bring more consumers, earlier into the homebuying investigation process. 2) Create a way for potential homebuyers to easily and quickly search listings (without the expectation that they had to know all of their filters in advance) and 3) Create an easier way for consumers to graduate into the Doorsteps experience, which is a journey-based homebuyer education site.

    1) Upon investigating user behavior on real estate search websites, we were immediately struck by one glaring insight. Buyers who were not actively transactional (about to buy) were mostly just quickly skimming through photos and paying little to no attention to the rest of the details on listing details pages. This learning was the core user experience insight that led us to design Doorsteps Swipe in a way that quickly presented the content that users were mainly looking for and making judgements on…pictures. By designing a product that presents only the crucial information that these earlier stage buyers are seeking, we believe that we can open real estate listings search to a broader market, including those who aren’t actively looking to buy.

    2) Doorsteps Swipe immediately serves listings to users baed on location and gets consumers to take 3 very specific actions. Pass, Save or Tap. Passing is a popular choice for early stage buyers because it is in that stage that they are most clear on what they *don’t* want. Removing these properties quickly gives them more space to Save and then investigate further on listings that catch their eye. Because Doorsteps Swipe does some smart learning on user behavior, we automatically present user search preferences in a summary screen, as opposed to first making users determine their own filters and preferences at a time when they might not yet be sure what those filters even should be. We also wanted to make it feasible, logical and fun for extreme users (or real estate junkies) to search listings in various locations.

    3) Though we’ve had amazing user engagement on Doorsteps.com, it became clear that our messaging and value proposition can also be a little bit overwhelming to buyers. Education isn’t always the sexiest (or easiest) thing to sell, so we started to look for ways that we could create the kind of experience consumers are looking for in real estate (centered around listings and pictures) and innovate that experience to make it super easy, simple and fun. Because Doorsteps Swipe is a light way to interact with listings and targeted towards very early stage homebuyers – we are already seeing positive conversion of these users into Doorsteps.com account holders, a place where they can go to get even more detailed information about the entire homebuying journey. And even better for the industry – connect consumers with real estate agents at a time when they need the most crucial information so that they can plan and strategize their purchase with a professional, at an earlier time in the process if they choose.

  4. Rosemary Scardina

    Greg first I’d like to thank you for taking the time to outline the background while concepting this app.

    Now that I have a better understanding of what Doorstep’s vision is for this product I look forward to playing around with the app.

    And as a side note: I just want you to know how refreshing it is to have a business partner to take the time you have, I wish there were more like you. (and of course like Greg Robertson)

  5. Oh and btw, we will never put that price on that first screen mister! We are going for gut and an emotional response. The price would kill it. BUT those filters are going to get smarter. And hopefully the quality of those listings photos will too 🙂

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