The much hyped Globrix was recently quoted as saying that pay-to-list portals have had their day, however with decreasing traffic is it Globrix that is under pressure?
In a recent article in Estate Agency Today, the CEO of Globrix, Daniel Lee, went on the attack following the release of a questionable survey suggesting that 75% of agents have signalled their intent to quit rightmove. In the article, Lee was quoted as saying "we are the fastest growing website ever". Now i am not sure on what basis this claim is made, however a simple review of the ComScore numbers shows troubling times for News International backed Globrix.
According to ComScore, in September 2008 Globrix had 200,000 unique visitors to the site. This was down from 253,000 in August 2008 and ranked them around the 14th most visited property site by UK property hunters. On a comparative basis, traffic to rightmove.co.uk, the market leader, was 2.4m unique visitors, propertyfinder.com had 1.3m and findaproperty.com had 1.2 million. Therefore even if Globix increased its traffic by a factor of 10, it would stil be smaller than rightmove.co.uk.
Amazingly enough, coming in at number 15 is the Australian site, realestate.com.au with 199,000 unqiue visitors from the UK.
The ComScore numbers also reveal that traffic to the Globrix site peaked in June and has been dropping ever since. Unique visitors to Globrix.com increased from 77k in January 2008 (when it launched) to a peak of 304k in June and then has dropped off since then.
Source: ComScore (000's)
More interestingly, if we look at the difference in traffic between December 2007 (the month before Globrix started) and September 2008, four property sites in the UK increased their traffic by more than Globrix. Propertyfinder.com has achieved the greatest increase over the last 9 months - increasing traffic by 466,000 unique visitors. A great effort in a challenging market.
Now some people will want to debate the accuracy of the ComScore numbers. While they may or may not be 100% correct, what is more interesting is the relative positioning of the sites. This would be much harder to dispute.
Given the challenges in the UK market that face globrix.com, you have to wonder if aspirations to launch in the US are overreaching a little.