After much anticipation, OnTheMarket finally launched earlier this week. After all the brouhaha, it seems that the OTM launch has been a little underwhelming. The share market, who is clearly watching very closely has voted with its money and as a result the shares in Zoopla have soared 23% from 155p to over 190p in the last 4 days.
Zoopla is not missing out on this opportunity to take a few well aimed shots at the OTM business.
First it distributed a press release pointing out that the much feared "one other site" policy was being avoided through some clever agent tactics.
Now they have put out another release pointing out the disappointing initial traffic to the OTM site.
Here is the release ...
Following the much-hyped launch of OnTheMarket.com (OTM) on Monday, the traffic to the new property portal over its first three days has been anything but exciting, according to data from independent web monitoring firm Hitwise.
On its first day, the OTM website attracted only 23,000 visits, with many of these coming from industry participants interested in seeing the website for the first time. Since then traffic to OTM has halved daily to 12,000 visits on Tuesday and less than 6,000 visits on Wednesday. This compares to an average of 1.5 million visits per day to Zoopla Property Group’s (ZPG) websites, giving OTM an audience currently under 1% of that of ZPG.
The data also seems to suggest that those agents who are promoting OTM heavily in place of their own websites in their offices, emails and press ads are not just missing out on a huge audience for their brands from having dropped one of the major portals but are also starting to see their own website traffic hit by effectively diverting their audience to their competitors.
Lawrence Hall of Zoopla Property Group said, “Our audience and traffic has remained unchanged since the launch of OTM and whilst Mr Springett seems to be taking aim at ZPG as he sees this as the only way for OTM to get a foothold in the portal market, he will soon learn that delivering great products to consumers and excellent value to agents is the only receipe for success in this space. Given the hype and media attention surrounding the launch of OTM this week the audience figures to date are remarkably weak when you consider what he has asked his members to give up.”
Mr Hall continued, “We are a very data-driven business focused on the value that we deliver to our members. So, rather than making unsubstantiated claims and promises as others seem intent on doing, we will let the numbers speak for themselves as we have always done. And we are already seeing numerous agents who cancelled to join OTM enquiring about coming back to ZPG as they are starting to understand the costs of giving up our services.”
The gloves are clearly off and it is now up to OnTheMarket to start delivering for its advertisers and shareholders. While the old adage "time will tell" can be rolled out, it must may be that there is not as much time as the OTM thinks it has.