“Smart” Bookmarks

I want to try and explain what social bookmarking is and then tell you about how we are planning on giving it a real estate twist with our new web application Dwellicious.

I recommended you take a look at this video. It does a great job of describing social bookmarking “in plain English”. But I’ll also try and explain what social bookmarking is here.

Lets imagine you are interested in motorcycles. You love motorcycles. You “ride to live and live to ride motorcycles”, as the saying goes. As part of your passion for motorcycles you scour the web for the best motorcycle websites out there. The best ones you “bookmark”, but since you are using a social bookmarking service instead of just “add to favorites” on your own browser, your bookmarks are shared with everyone using the service.

Now lets say another kindred spirit, who also loves motorcycles, visits the social bookmarking site you belong to. He types in “motorcycles”. Now all the bookmarks that other motorcycle junkies (like you) have made, appear on a list. The motorcycle websites with the most bookmarks are on the top of this list. This is very powerful. What you have in front of you is a list that other humans beings put together about the best websites about motorcycles. Think about that, OTHER HUMAN BEINGS, not a computer, not an advertiser that paid to be on top, not a fancy mathematical program, but other REAL PEOPLE who love the same things you do!

With Dwellicious we want to bring the power of this concept to real estate. But there are two big challenges when it comes to creating a social bookmarking service to real estate.

1. People are mostly interested in the listings themselves, not just the website.

2. Listing information tends to change (Price, status, adding new photos, etc.)

So we needed to create bookmarks that could index specific data about a particular listing on a website. And we needed to make sure that the bookmark knew if any of the changes were made and when. In a traditional bookmarking scenario you are just bookmarking a site because it’s cool, useful, and you want to visit again. But when you bookmark a real estate listing, that listing might not be there next week or the price might have dropped. What we needed was a “smart bookmark” and that’s what we created.

More next week…

We are about to make a final decision on our logo for Dwellicious. Take a look at the previous posts and give us your input!


3 Responses to ““Smart” Bookmarks”

  1. 1 Sam October 21, 2008 at 7:26 pm

    That was a very elegant description of social bookmarking and helped me to understand the point of the exercise and how the principles might apply to real estate.

    Here is another timley video discussing the topic:

  2. 2 Sam October 24, 2008 at 3:44 pm

    OK, you’ve had me thinking about this and in addition to the 2 challenges you’ve cited I think that there are at least 2 more:

    1) All real estate negotiations are based on deception. The more interested you are in a property the more you tell the seller it smells like cat piss.

    2) Real estate agents will have to treat this service as radioactive since they can get sued if they aren’t careful about working with more than one buyer at a time on any particular listing. Telling buyer “B” about a cool listing when you have already submitted offer for buyer “A” may = law suit.

    That being said, it could be good for the seller.

  3. 3 Greg Robertson October 27, 2008 at 10:22 am

    There are way more challenges than just the ones I stated. I just said those 2 were “big” : )

    My post this week will talk about how Realtors can use Dwellicious as an effective tool (not radioactive) to finally engage buyers who are starting their home search online. Which according to the latest studies is about 84% of them.

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