According to an article written by Paul Hagey for Inman News, Keller Williams Realty has issued a statement to its agents, strongly urging them to oppose realtor.com’s AgentMatch.
Realtor.com’s new agent rating platform uses sold data from multiple listing services and other statistics to rank agents by city, ZIP code and neighborhood.
AgentMatch was first implemented in two markets, Las Vegas, NV and Boulder, CO. Eventually, Realtor.com introduced the new tool to the real estate community at their National Association of Realtors’ annual conference in San Francisco, this November.
Since its launch, the tool has generated a controversial buzz among the agents, who have expressed a concern about the validity of statistics-based rankings and the NAR, which owns a stake in realtor.com operator Move Inc. and owns the ‘realtor.com’ domain name, has enabled realtor.com to pursue an initiative they don’t see as being in their best interests.
Realtor.com formed a real estate professionals advisory board this week to help guide the platform’s evolution. All 16 real estate professionals invited to serve on the board have accepted, including one Keller Williams-affiliated agent.
Keller Williams Realty provided Inman News with a copy of the statement it sent out to its agents:
The tool allows consumers to search an address and the site will deliver the top 16 agents who have sold property in the area. According to Move, Inc., which operates realtor.com, AgentMatch’s algorithm identifies the agents “through MLS-provided SOLD data, including recent sales, list-to-sale-price ratio, average days on market of homes listed, recommendations and other information.”
While we agree that providing online access to feedback on agent performance and service level are necessary due to consumer demand, we believe that it should be in the form of reviews that are submitted by your customers.
We feel that using the data passed through from the MLS will result in rankings that are completely arbitrary and create lopsided opportunities for some.
Hypothetically, as an example, in Austin, Texas, if you search in the subdivision of Lost Creek (approximately 1,000 homes), only 2 of the top 25 producing agents in the Austin MLS may be displayed in the top 16 agents for the area. Essentially, only individual agents who may have less production, but who have sold in a specific area, will be shown, rather than the true market leaders!
In addition, any course of action by either Move or the MLSs to make an overarching decision about how your business is marketed – without you having a chance to weigh in – is completely misguided. Your business is just that – YOURS, and neither Move nor your MLS should make decisions for you without your input.
We commend realtor.com for deciding this week to put in place an agent advisory board for this product, and we are happy that KW has representation on that board. Know that as long as realtor.com moves forward with the current formulas and rating system for AgentMatch, we are firmly against it on the basis that it does not represent the best interests of agents or consumers.
When realtor.com first launched, the MLSs made a similar decision to share all the listing information without the agents’ input. This was the primary reason we built the Keller Williams Listing System – to ensure accuracy of our listing data and to give choice to our agents about where they wanted to market their listings online. We view this situation similarly, and we’re going to do everything we can to stop it.
We strongly urge you to petition your MLS NOT to participate in AgentMatch.
We’ll also be working directly with the executives at Move Inc. to explain our position.
The above article was sourced from Inman News. Please click here for the article in its original form.