Support for OnTheMarket.com has officially risen beyond 7,000 estate and letting agent offices including those contracted and those covered by Letters of Intent to join Agents' Mutual and to list at OnTheMarket.com when overall support exceeds 7,500 offices, the company says.
Since launch at the end of January 2015, the number of offices listing on the portal has increased by over 1,650 to more than 6,250. Traffic has also continued to increase in April to reach a record level of 7.25 million visits (source: Google Analytics).
OnTheMarket.com CEO Ian Springett says it will take time for OnTheMarket.com to attract as much consumer traffic as the market-leading portals.
"However, our progress has been rapid: we had over 7.25 million visits in April, we are providing a growing volume of high quality enquiries to our agents and we are greatly encouraged by the feedback we receive from the overwhelming majority of our members and consumers alike – there is now a challenger agent-owned portal in the market to list and view properties on," Springett says.
Springett, who has been in the line of fire from detractors in the last few weeks over parent company Agents' Mutual's one other portal policy and questions about whether the company's approach complies with UK competition legislation took the opportunity to hit back.
“As long ago as February 2015, the chief executive of Zoopla Property Group described us as ‘a short term event’" he says.
“The number of agent offices listing at OnTheMarket.com has increased by over 1,650 since the end of January 2015.
"By contrast, according to its own trading statements (dated 12 February 2015 and 25 February 2016), the number of UK agent offices listing with Zoopla Property Group reduced from 12,902 to 12,841 between the end of January 2015 and the end of January 2016.”
“It might be disappointing for some of our detractors but OnTheMarket.com is here to stay and, in spite of fierce competition, is growing steadily both in terms of consumer visits and agent support," Springett adds.
“We look forward to welcoming to the only agent-owned, agent-controlled portal more and more agents who seek to regain strategic control of their data and costs.
"The more agents who join OnTheMarket.com and the sooner they do so, the more powerful the portal will become in continuing to disrupt the duopoly and in providing a first-class alternative search service for consumers and agents alike.”
Meanwhile the outcome of a meeting convened by consultant Iain white for over 60 disgruntled Agents' Mutual member agencies with legal representatives is expected today.