Market share of online agents slips back, claims new report

The market share of online estate agents fell back to 7.2% of all exchanges in the third quarter of this year.

It was a fall of 6%, compared with the second quarter when online agents’ market share of exchanges was 7.6%, customer intelligence firm TwentyCi has reported.

It said that 20,806 properties exchanged that had been listed by online agents in the third quarter, compared with 268,515 exchanges by high street agents.

Colin Bradshaw, TwentyCi’s chief customer officer, said: “Given the significant and continuing investment in advertising by the pure play online agents, one might have expected their market share growth to have continued to climb, so this fall in the number of exchanges 
is unexpected.

“We are also seeing 
some movement to focus on traditional approaches, with Connells Group concluding their online offering with the closure of Hatched.

“A blip in the road or a bellwether sign of structural market change? Only time will tell.”

TwentyCi’s latest report on the property market said that property exchanges in the third quarter of this year were up over 11.6% on the same period in 2017.

However, while new instructions were up 2.5% year on year, it said supply was still subdued and lacklustre.

Separately, shares in Purplebricks have hit a one-year low. Yesterday they slipped 2.5% to 207p. In January, they hit 475p.

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  1. Chris Wood

    If the data used by TwentyCI is based on data from zoopla and Rightmove data it is flawed as Zoopla have admitted to the ASA they do not check the data they sell /make publicly available. Furthermore, detailed examination and cross checking of Rightmove, zoopla, call-centre agent data and HMLR has shown their are huge ‘discrepancies’ between how any single properties legal availability status is reported

    1. surrey1

      RM data all over the shop once you really get into it.

      1. Bless You

        As long as people still invite a traditional agent into their home online will never work. As soon as I tell people it’s payanyway the penny drops. The 7% are just the gullible ones who watch tv and don’t do research.

  2. Moveaside01

    The online model is simply not sustainable on a business level or service level? There is clearly a market for budget agency but that’s all it will ever be?

  3. ArthurHouse02

    This highlights what we have said all along, that there is a certain amount of people who are prepared to gamble with their money, instructing the likes of PB, Emoov, Doorknobs etc, but that certain amount is limited. This “sector” of the market will not grow to 20%, 25% or whatever…it has its place and there it will remain

    This report highlights that the public would rather instruct an estate agent, than a company with little incentive to sell their home.

    1. PeeBee

      Some interesting words on that from The Quirkster in his latest LinkedIn posting, ArthurHouse02.

      1. ArthurHouse02

        I read that earlier, quite the bizarre read i thought. He seems to be coming round to the conclusion that the Purplebricks type companies dont work, that vendors need actual estate agents to sell their home and that proper customer service is important. Whilst getting his normal thing in about “I’ve always felt estate agent fees are too high” the whole post seemed like a subtle dig at PB

        1. PeeBee

          Yes – but let’s just call it a political stance… rather than bestowing on The Quirkster the power of subtlety, that from my first seeing him has never been a quality I would have ever accused him of having a nanogram of.

        2. Room101

          A dig and a prod at PB and more surprisingly his seeming admission about their combined failed shenanigans.

          The article is just posturing by a bloke who regularly runs out of money, gets money, spends money, doesn’t make money and didn’t get traction with Countrywide.  But at least now has an article to link back to in the future so he can pretend everything was all his creative idea.  Pure fodder for his ego as the obvious will obviously happen, the inevitable will eventually happen and all regardless of what bloke thinks.



    2. WestMidsValuer97

      Absolutely agree. The constant appearance of these so called agents in the press is a joke….I agree they have their place but I think we’ll see a lot of them collapse very soon.

      PS….”doorknobs”! Quite an accurate description of the company I presume you mean!

  4. PeeBee

    “It said that 20,806 properties exchanged that had been listed by online agents in the third quarter…”

    …but what it DIDN’T say was what percentage of that figure had actually been “sold” by those online agents and the sale progressed through to exchange and completion by them.

    THAT WOULD be an ‘interesting’ number.

    1. AgentV

      Absolutely, it never seems to be stated ‘marketed, sold and completed’ by the particular online lister.
      All part of misleading marketing, to insinuate without categorically saying.

  5. Ostrich17

    Who paid for the report ?

  6. Property Poke In The Eye

    There will be many more online agents in 2019.

    This increase will come from redundancies by many companies by the end of the year.

    Let’s face it, most agents think they are better than the rest and will want to give it ago.

    The people who benefit are the portals from at least 12 months of income from the people who want to give it a go.

    Every 1 High Street Agent closes shop,  I would say at least 2 open judging from the amount of agents which have appeared in our area via Zoopla.

  7. Property Paddy

    DOM? DUCKY ? Anything?



    1. cyberduck46

      I measure “new listings” and PB’s market share up on last year.   September listings were about 20% up on September 2017.   It’s not uniform growth and it’s not what it was but it’s still there as far as I can see.      

      1. Property Paddy

        I measure new listings in my territory too.
        PB so far this year 2
        All the other onliners (call centre) 5
        High Street Agents: 700 (ish)
        so in my area the on line call centre have taken a total of 1%
        Last year they all did better, about 2.5% of market share

        1. cyberduck46

          Better if you use a National sample PP. Local data can be misleading. My data is a proxy of the National picture.


          Take a look at the West Midlands. One of the areas PB went into first.


          I don’t usually use RM for my data but occasionally I look at individual areas using them. On the 15th June I have a figure of 8.5% recorded for new listings over a 3 day period.


          I’ve just checked. There were 618 properties classed as listed in the last 3 days. 204 of these are “reduced” properties so I ignore them. Out of the 414 left I see 58 from PB which is about 14%.


          I did this pretty quickly so I might have made a mistake or two but have a look yourself. Let me know what you see.





      2. AgentQ73

        Hi Cyberduck46

        Do you measure how many of the “new” instructions subsequently go on to then reduce, SSTC then complete, SSTC then fall thru, withdraw etc ?

      3. Room101

        Are you counting the infamous PURP marketing breaks as new instructions or adjusting and reducing your figures accordingly cyberduck46?


        1. cyberduck46

          For my national proxy I discount those returning from a marketing break and those coming back onto the market after falling through.
          However for a proxy just for comparison purposes you could include them and it wouldn’t be far off if you were just measuring percentage growth.

          1. AgentQ73

            Hi Cyberduck46
            Do you measure how many of the “new” instructions subsequently go on to then reduce, SSTC then complete, SSTC then fall thru, withdraw etc ?

            1. cyberduck46

              Last post of the day so as I’m not exactly sure what you are asking. So if you want to clarify ask on another day.
              >Do you measure how many of the “new” instructions subsequently go on to then reduce, SSTC then complete, SSTC then fall thru, withdraw etc ?
              I’d say I’ve never noticed anything like this but feel free to let me know if you’ve witnessed it. I doubt you have seen anything like this though and you are just speculating based on misinformation or a misunderstanding.
              I suggest you consider people’s agendas if you believe anything you’ve heard rather than witnessed yourself. There are a few vocal people among those posting on here who have a vested interest in misleading in this regard.
              You may well think I do too but I don’t. Again there are some people who would like people to think I’m connected to PurpleBricks or am a shareholder. This isn’t the case. Again consider the agendas of these people.
              If you can’t bring yourself to trust me then look at the agendas of the various commentators and try and find one without a vested interest. I would suggest you consider that of the auditor of PB’s accounts and annual report as most likely the one without a vested interest. They aren’t a two bit auditor who would be prepared to tarnish their reputation as well as bring suspicion on the rest of their clients for the benefit of one company. They will have seen the number of instructions reported by PB and if there was any cause for them to suspect a material inconsistency between the company turnover and the reported number of instructions then they would have flagged it up.

              1. PeeBee

                There you have it, AQ73.  A full and pinpoint response to your queries.
                Just don’t ask what the chuff he means – not even my Star Trek™ Universal Translator can cut through that degree of advanced *********** (credit: Jonnie)…

              2. AgentQ73


                Sorry if I wasn’t clear. You measure new instructions, do you also measure how many PB sell, how many they reduce etc etc or do you solely look at new instructions ?

              3. Ostrich17

                “I would suggest you consider that of the auditor of PB’s accounts and annual report as most likely the one without a vested interest. They aren’t a two bit auditor who would be prepared to tarnish their reputation as well as bring suspicion on the rest of their clients for the benefit of one company.”
                Grant Thornton – also the auditors for Patisserie Valerie – I doubt whether the shareholders there agree with your views 🙂

  8. RichardHill61

    The tougher the market the more their share will fall!

    It’s getting tough out there too due to the uncertainty of BREXIT!

    Thank you Nigel, Boris, David etc

    1. MarkJ

      “The tougher the market the more their share will fall!”

      The silver lining to the BREXIT cloud….

    2. CountryLass

      I didn’t think David Cameron wanted to leave? I always thought it was a fantastic two fingers up when he resigned. “Right, I said it was a bad plan, you lot pushed for it, here you go, YOU deal with it!”

  9. Hillofwad71

    What is evident is the clear water Bricks is showing on its rivals despite all the  noise


    Emoov waxing lyrical on Twitter that they are the No 1 site visited on Google  for online estate agents with heavy traffic .Enjoy TV  advertising however they have failed to convert that traffic into instructions  with a very modest portfolio of 2,555   acc. to Zoopla  about  12% of Bricks



  10. MarkJ

    Genuine Question – no axe to grind

    Does anyone know if there is a data source of exchanges ?  Is an exchange recorded by a solicitor officially with the Land Registry at any stage?  I dont think so but I dont want to assume….

    I know the sale is registered at the LR by the buyers solicitor at a later date. But Ive downloaded a copy of the LR sold price data file previously and Ive been surprised at how long it takes some solicitors to register the purchase. i.e the time difference in the actual sale date and the date the sale was registered at LR. So some of the quarters sales may not even be regsutered yet.

    Im guessing that as ChrisWood says its being scraped from the property portals



    1. Hillofwad71

      It’s complete twaddle. Make believe  No such thing as a database of exchanges .I don’t think they are actually referring to “exchanges of contracts but the “various exchanges”ie the portals 
      Thye seem to spew out all sorts of meaningless data  so the onliners can bandy about as gspel 

  11. Russell121

    I can only see an increase of properties for sale for the purple ones in my area. I find they are the ones an agent hasn’t been called out to as we have no problem in listing if up against them.

  12. right to write

    I agree with the general sentiment, re definition of exchanges. I believe it was reported not long ago that online agents were receiving 6.8% of new instructions, if they are now exchanging at 7.2% down from 7.6% of total exchanges that would mean, that they are selling properties at a better rate than our High Street branches. Now that would be a news story!


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