Neon sign saying 'do something great'

Why is customer experience important in real estate?

In commercial real estate, where transactions involve significant investments and long-term commitments, customer experience plays a pivotal role in shaping success. From leasing office spaces to managing retail complexes, every interaction between landlords, occupiers, and stakeholders influences the perception of the property and ultimately impacts its value and profitability.

Increasingly, occupiers want the relationship with their landlord to be one of equals, a partnership especially around key areas like sustainability and ESG. RealService’s insight surveys can help you understand your occupiers so you can tailor your offering to their needs.

First impressions matter

In the competitive landscape of commercial real estate, first impressions can make or break a deal. Prospective customers form opinions about a property from the moment they click on a website, inquire about availability or step into reception. A positive initial experience, characterised by responsive communication, professionalism, and attention to detail, can set the tone for a fruitful relationship. Conversely, an impersonal or unprofessional encounter may deter potential occupiers and lead to vacancies.

Customer retention and satisfaction

For property owners and managers, retaining existing customers is often more cost-effective than securing new ones. A positive customer experience fosters occupier satisfaction and loyalty, reducing turnover rates and vacancy risks.

Customers who feel valued and supported are more likely to renew leases, extend contracts, and recommend the property to others. Effective communication channels, prompt resolution of issues, and amenities that enhance convenience and comfort contribute to customer satisfaction and long-term retention.

RealService insight surveys will reveal what delights or frustrates your customers so you can tailor your services to maximise your retention, reputation and revenue.

Enhanced property value

A property’s value is not solely determined by its physical attributes but also by intangible factors such as reputation and perceived quality of service. A superior customer experience can differentiate a property from its competitors and enhance its appeal to investors, lenders, and potential buyers. Properties with a reputation for excellent customer service command higher rents, attract premium customers, and enjoy stronger demand in the market.

A study by UCL associate professor Danielle Sanderson showed that improving customer experience by one point on a five-point scale (say, from ‘average’ to ‘good’) will add a 1.9% per annum total return loyalty bonus.

Consequently, prioritising customer experience can contribute to the appreciation of property values and overall returns on investment.

Brand building and reputation management

By delivering exceptional customer experiences, property owners and managers can cultivate a positive brand image, build trust within the community, and mitigate reputational risks.

Adaptation to changing customer expectations

Whatever the sector – be it residential, office, industrial etc – occupier preferences and expectations evolve over time, driven by technological advancements, demographic shifts, and changing work patterns.

Landlords who fail to adapt to these shifting dynamics risk becoming obsolete or less competitive in the market. This has been particularly felt by the office sector which is coping with working from home becoming the new normal, and also in all sectors by Net Zero requirements which have been driven both by legislation and by investors seeking reputational benefits.

By actively soliciting feedback, monitoring industry trends, and implementing innovative solutions, property professionals can align their offerings with these evolving needs and preferences. Whether it’s incorporating sustainable practices, enhancing digital connectivity, or providing flexible lease terms, prioritising customer experience enables properties to stay relevant and resilient in a dynamic marketplace.

Share this article