Say No To Rightmove – Sargent updates members – and might back Boomin

This morning, the Say No To Rightmove Campaign has issued the following update to its members.

 

We hope this update finds you and your colleagues safe and well. It is not lost on us that we are a little over a month away from what appears, in the absence of formal representations to the contrary, Rightmove returning to full tariff.

The justification for this appears to be the acceleration in market activity as a result of pent up demand due to the Covid-19 lockdown, enormous Government aid to the UK economy and specific stamp duty incentives.

It seems Rightmove have learnt nothing tangible from their misjudgement of the pandemic back in March of this year, and furthermore are making no long term plans to assist their clients (UK estate agents) in the face of what is likely to be an inevitable correction to the British economy.

At best, there is going to be a massive churn in employment numbers and the related challenges this will bring to the property sector, with many businesses across all industries far from returning all their furloughed staff to full time employment. It is also sadly likely that significant numbers of workers will indeed be laid off completely in the wake of the damage caused to the global economy.

Now is therefore precisely the time for Rightmove to respect their customers lobbying and change their model.

In simple terms, Rightmove has flourished from the support of the industry itself, and having reached a virtual whole of market position, have then played UK estate agents against each other in a drive to continually increase their ARPA for shareholders. They have continued to ignore demands of the following type from their client agents, and it’s clear their Board are choosing not to listen to the feedback from their own sales force.

1. A genuine core rate per office, not predicated on an inflated target spend.

2. Flexibility to buy additional products at a fair tariff as, when and if required.

3. Real justification of returns on spend and more transparent conversations surrounding ROI.

4. Significant investment in technology and strategies designed to grow the overall size of the UK property market and transaction volumes.

5. Shorter, flexible contract periods allowing agents the freedom to adjust their spend in line with market conditions.

There are many more suggestions and ideas emanating from the UK estate agency industry that are being ignored by Rightmove, but the five points above touch every hard working property professional.

Our door remains open to Peter Brooks Johnson, Miles Shipside and the senior Rightmove team, as it has during the time I have lobbied on behalf of The Acorn Group over the last decade. However in the absence of change, Rightmove’s ability to maintain pole position in the portal sector must surely now be compromised.

The last six months has demonstrated that, in reality, the really big bucks being paid out in the portal sector are coming from the smaller independent agents. We hope our campaign has demonstrated what a vital life blood each individual agency office is to any portal whose revenue is primarily focused and earnt from estate agents alone.

Consequently, we believe that in the absence of a sea-change to Rightmove’s approach to its clients, the portal market is about to become more competitive. However, that process can be accelerated if a significant number of agents refuse to succumb to tariff rates that they feel are too expensive, inflexible and out of kilter with their own turnover and profit margins.

We have received representations from significant numbers of smaller independent agents who are intending to serve notice if Rightmove do not offer continued discounts and longer term changes to their tariff system.

Meanwhile the challenger portals are beginning to gain some traction as they overcome the staircasing-up of their own infrastructures to meet demand, and negotiate the hurdles of securing the feeds at fair value and delivery from the varying CRM providers. Add to the current landscape the announcement of Boomin, which we have been informed will commence their roll out in October.

We at SNTRM have had a sneak peek behind the Boomin curtain and – save for the industry’s reservations about the Bruce Brothers and their former Purple incarnation – we can report the proposition is exciting, exceedingly well-funded, and has potential to be a game changer.

We had reservations about a new Bruce Brothers business model before meeting them, but it does appear they are wedded to a concept that is focused on Boomin being the professional full service estate agent’s friend, delivering a raft of technology that will create new transactions and offer agents additional income. Thus far, we are also aware that they have had engagement with a number of the country’s leading agents and have had an overwhelmingly positive response.

It is, however, for the Bruces to fully unveil their project and convince the industry of their sincerity. From what we have seen and the people we have met, it would appear they have genuine intentions to make a positive difference. From an Acorn Group perspective we are very seriously considering committing our support. One thing for sure though is Boomin will only drive better value in the portal sector and encourage Rightmove, Zoopla and On The Market to place even greater value on retaining their clients.

Say No To Rightmove remains committed to lobbying for better value and fairer contracts for UK estate agents who continue to buy marketing space in the portal sector.

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41 Comments

  1. Property Poke In The Eye

    This Sargent chap and his campaign is a joke not sure what the hidden agenda is.

    If you really want to say no to Rightmove. I suggest the following:

    1. Turn on your computers

    2. Type a cancellation letter to Rightmove

    3. Send if via email and post.

    4. Move on

    Simple!!

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    1. Jrsteeve

      Indeed. Have faith in your own abilities, plus your own ****** campaign, quit Rightmove now!

      Report
    2. Murray Lee

      Mines ready, we have just taken advantage of the further discounts, cost them about £49m and changed the face of portal advertising

      If we dont hear anything back today I will be pressing “send” (after taking the last discount to Oct 1 #winwin)

      I really hope more will follow than have already!

      The only thing to fear is fear itself

      #togetherwearestronger #agents unite

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      1. biffabear

        Well done Murray. Leading by example.
        All mouth *and* all tousers.

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    3. Fatballs

      Meanwhile in the real world, agents are agonising over the decision because Rightmove _is_ the dominant player in the portal field at the moment.

      And while no-one really likes Rightmove, the first to leave in any given area will find their clients pounced upon by their competitors, even if their competitors were also thinking about leaving. It’s cut-throat out there.

      And the bigger your business is, the more complex the decision, and the bigger the ramifications.

      This decision will get simpler in the months ahead as it comes down to “pay staff wages or stay on Rightmove.”

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      1. surrey1

        In my experience the fear of being pounced upon by competitors was much worse than the reality. In reality clients only care if you can sell their house, which any agent worth his salt can without RM.

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        1. biffabear

          Around here, there are plently of unsold properties, with agents that are ‘ON’ rightmove. 
          Thats in London, I know its different everywhere else.
           

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    4. biffabear

      Agree.  You can’t keep talking about leaving RM.  You actually have to LEAVE RM.

      To be one of the loudest voices against RM and not leaving yourself, just makes you look a little silly really.

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      1. Murray Lee

        THATS WHY IVE LEFT…

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  2. smile please

    Out of the frying pan and into the fire.

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    1. Alexwebb

      Agree!

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  3. Seller0169

    I do enjoy the ramblings of Rob Sargent, he’s now trying to complicate his stance by talking up the new Bloomin site that’s coming. I’ll be one of the first people checking on line on the 1st October to see if he has left Rightmove (which I doubt) and if he hasn’t it will show what I’ve expected for the past few months, that he just likes to talk and talk and talk so that he feels important but in reality everyone see’s through his nonsense and that he just likes to feel like a big man sat behind his keyboard.
    Odds on Acorn leaving Rightmove 1st October
    Yes they will leave  750 – 1
    No they’ll still be on 2-1 on

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    1. Paul

      Spoken like a true keyboard warrior!  

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    2. htsnom79

      You’ve got to complete on a lot of houses to bank the half a mil allegedly paid to rightmove by acorn, and you have to sell a number more to take account of fall thru’s to net that 500k, I don’t get the hostility towards rob sergeant I really don’t, even if they stay on they’ve caused sufficient discomfort at rightmove to make them tread carefully going forward, something quite different to the mindset at the start of lockdown and their deferred two hundred quid non offer to account for a ” Christmas blip ”

       

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    3. wkirk

      Agree. but this has become a total farce!!

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    4. fluter

      Please see comment from Paul below. The reason for SNTR is not a case of stay or leave but to force RM to treat their clients fairly. I for one applaud the efforts made so far. Every sane thinking agent should get behind this campaign, as together we can all benefit. The alternative is to do nothing and carry on whinging!

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      1. KW

        If all he was concerned about was “treat their clients fairly” then why has it suddenly turned in to a PR stunt for bloomin? Sorry but he lost me there!

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        1. fluter

          Don’t disagree with that KW. Rob Sargeant should have stayed “on message” and kept his views on any other offerings to himself.

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          1. KW

            To be fair he isn’t the only one of those 4 who are part of the sntr campaign who i feel have shafted us as there is at least one other supposedly impartial originator who used his position to promote his own agenda for an mls he is involved in. VERY dissapointed and annoyed I got sucked in by that campaign and this is the last straw.

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  4. Paul

    For all those that are banging on about leaving etc, you’ve totally missed the point of the campaign.

    It’s always been about galvanising the industry and getting a fairer deal.

    Leaving is an option if the offering from RM isn’t good enough.  Some have left and some will leave and some may stay.

    But let’s not forget that this campaign has lead to agents benefiting from RM’s U Turn and I suspect the interest has made a few people, including Boomin, think that they can come up with a creditable alternative.

    But I guess like everything in the world today, it’s easier to snipe and criticise than take any action.

     

     

     

     

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    1. Taliesin84

      Then there is no point to the campaign. Rightmove never have and never will listen to their customers! The only language they will listen to is the termination letter. As for Bloomin well words fail me. Agents need to be saving money not wasting it. OTM is still the cheapest option, with overall agent ownership that isn’t out there to shaft their customers, if need t just get on Zoopla but more than one portal is wasting money. Get on one and concentrate on selling properties, making money and surviving.

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      1. Fullyfledged

        OTM is a public company so no different to RM – it is not owned by agents? Agents have shares, shares can be sold all be it for next to nothing so the owned by agents thing is not true at all just a ploy to entice.

         

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    2. biffabear

      1st rule of negotiation.   Be prepared to go through with your threats.
      Or lose the negotiation.

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  5. JordanBrooks88

    Imagine in October he might be too busy repaying his furlough money from when staff were actually made to work. Allegedly.

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  6. Alexwebb

    This might sound controversial, but if I have to choose between Rightmove and Boomin, I will choose Rightmove. At least I know that they don’t pose an existential threat to my business.
    Boomin is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Let’s not forget that only 18 months ago These people tried to destroy “full service agents” and now suddenly they are friends. These are smart but also very aggressive businessmen. They will run you over as soon as they have the first chance to do that.

    Report
    1. Fatballs

      This is a very child-like view of the world.

      Report
    2. walliskirk4@gmail.com

      Agree with you they are definitely wolves in sheep’s clothing. Someone called them out a while back about their so called charity which was deliberately set up to sweeten us up before launching their real business. Hats off whoever it was as they were bang on the money. They also called out the ars* lickers including mr wakins who banged on for years how bad PB was then suddenly became brucey disciples and sold their souls IMHO. Disgusted at the SNTR group as all they have done here is used our issues with RM to further their own agendas and have their 5 minutes of fame. The fact Sargent even entertained a meeting with boomin says it all. Where has he been for the last 5+ years? Does he forget what they tried to do to our industry? He and many of the other turncoats have no moral principles and seem to follow like sheep whoever the most popular is. I can’t believe I supported the SNTR campaign and we gave them centre stage and disgusted that this report is published with sargent’s name like he is the voice of the industry and now using the SNTR campaign to promote the latest bruce brothers commercial venture and worse still, trying to steer us toward it using that very campaign. Why didn’t he support those so called challengers more, where are they now as it all seems to have gone very quiet? That was the most exciting part of their campaign when I felt we were finally moving forward and into a new era with all the new opportunities opening up to us. Now I feel we are heading back into the snake pit and it is very disappointing. Close SNTR now as you have wasted all our time and spend your time and money on doing the PR for the bruceys.

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  7. The Outsider

    Rightmove subs are no more than you were paying for non targeted ads in print media 20 years ago.

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    1. mmmm

      substantially less in fact… and that’s before inflation.

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    2. htsnom79

      And that matters because?

      Are you suggesting that a marketing ” tax ” should always be applied to agency and that new ( frictionless non tangible ) technologies should not benefit them just suck them dry in a different way?

      Report
  8. James White

    Perhaps not a popular sentiment but here’s what I think.

    Agents hate Rightmove for a variety of reasons:

    Their unfair charging model that is bias in favour of the corporates who created it…….giving them a commercial advantage

    Their horrendous attitude to customer service over the last ten years

    Their horrendous year on year price increases

    The cowardliness of senior management who seem largely anonymous yet take so much from agents

    Their bungled approach to the pandemic and insensitive attitude to their clients and their clients clients

    Their out of date website which is slow to respond to new technologies – thus giving another advantage to the “slow to change” corporate and regional agents (who pay less)

    Their (senior management) arrogance is beyond belief (we have had some great account managers – Dave, Sarah & Richard and some horrendous ones too)

    However, they built and invested RM and it cost millions to establish and there is an element in every business that needs to repay that investment and they are entitled to that

    It makes agents’ lives easier – many would not exist if it were not for RM exposing their houses so quickly to the public who buy agents’ instructions

    It isn’t expensive compared to newspaper advertising of years ago

    It shouldn’t be the banker of agents – agents shouldn’t have to look to a supplier to save them – leave that supplier if you feel that way

    It DOES need to do better, drive new clients to agents and not charge for free vals

    It DOES need to be more flexible and more human and it does need to innovate

    It needs to stop preaching and start listening

    It needs a new CEO too….he has clearly lost the trust of his clients

     

     

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  9. Robert_May

    “Might back Boomin”  not will , might

     

    Rightmove is a good company with a good brand and strong public awareness.  The problems are that they charge inequitably,  too much for some, not much at all  to others. But the biggest problem is, as  Seller0169 has demonstrated above (again); their attitude.

     

    Price and attitude are easily fixed and now  its not  innovation that is challenging the profit  margin the frustration the CTO’s have had to endure, not being allowed to change things will evaporate and they can innovate  like they haven’t done for 13 years

     

     

    What has to be realised is that the Duopoly that allowed Rightmove to get ARPA to £1088 has been broken. Rightmove is a service supplier that will now be judged  and subscribed to as  a want rather than a need.

     

    Boomin can exist same as all the other challengers that have emerged since March because the  Duoploy   no longer has  an uncompetitive grip on the industry.  What it is and what it does is almost irrelevant it’s well funded and exists with some good people supporting it It will find it’s position within the industry liked by some, loathed by others and some won’t give it a thought.

     

    The division within this thread alone says, here we go again.

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  10. smile please

    Any agent signing up to ‘Boomin’ needs their heads testing.

     

    Some people have VERY short memories (or can be bought!)

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    1. htsnom79

      Agreed.

      I hold a grudge.

      It would be like bangin an old girlfriend who cheated on you ” for old times sake “. Ain’t happenin.

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    2. KW

      Agree, Very short memories AND can be bought. I saw a couple of their keen supporters saying they are not receiving payment which is probably true for now, but they are being deceitful to themselves as well as us as the reason they are licking backsides now is to benefit themselves in the future. One of the lickers jumped on the bruce charity bandwagon which might of been fine if he wasn’t atually one of the most outspoken voices in the industry and also very negative about bruce bros and ironically also pushing RM down our throats for many years saying how great and good value for money they were and now spouting the total opposite on both counts. We give these people pedastals and they use them to sh*t all over us. Bloomin won’t see a penny from me just like RM no longer do.

      Report
  11. GeorgeHammond78

    [Comment removed as it breached posting rules.]

    Report
    1. KW

      What did you say to breach the rules? Maybe re-say it?

      Report
  12. MarkRowe

    Respect Rob for the Rightmove campaign.

    I don’t respect the fact that he has mentioned a company that has anything to do with Purple Bricks founders.

    Just for the record, the Bruce brothers also started some sort of foundation that has the idea of supporting agents with their mental health… yes, you read that right.. with their mental health, after years of bashing traditional agents for the job, that most, conduct honourably on a daily basis.

    This is a similar attitude and approach to mental abuse (yes, I know it’s nowhere near as bad!). However, being nice one minute to gain your trust purely for selfish gain and to the detriment of the one on the receiving end, is a character trait that you should be vary wary of, in business and life.

    To anyone thinking of joining, be careful, please.

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  13. Hillofwad71

    Unsubtle .

     

    That”protest” sounded just  like a full on  sales pitch for Boomin  mentioned 4 times and the Bruces 3 times

     

     

     

     

     

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  14. HIT MAN

    Rightmove, Zoopla, OTM, Openbrix, Homesearch, onedome, Boomin, etc, where do buyers look, I think I preferred it when there was a duopoly.

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  15. GPL

     

    Busy times ….so, not much time to pop into Bar PIE

     

    …….however, OTM sh@t on me and I said Goodbye as soon as I could.

     

    Bruce Bros ……Boomin ……B@ll@ks!!! These leeches were prepared to try and flush “real” estate agency down their Purple Portal Pan …..seriously Rob? ……you are their Boomin’ Purple Puppet now?

     

    Here’s the problem that I have Rob, that you clearly don’t ……I have principles ……and No 1 is “I don’t Dance with anyone who I don’t Trust”.

     

    Sadly Rob, you seem to be a Double sided Coin with “Tales” on both sides.

     

    Rightmove? ……..The Devil in Disguise!

     

     

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