Agrees to Change Advertising Claims After "Smoke and Mirrors" Pushback

July 10, 2024
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CoStar Group, the owner of residential portal, has agreed to change some of its advertising claims after being challenged by rival portal (Move Inc.). has challenged on multiple occasions regarding CoStar's claim that is the "number two" portal in the United States (behind Zillow)—and now appears to have backed down after recommendations made by an independent third party, the National Advertising Division of the Better Business Bureau (BBB).

According to a release from BBB, CoStar’s advertising claims are misleading because the monthly visitor figures it shares as part of its "we're number two" statistics are a combination of web traffic numbers to several other CoStar-owned websites, not just, which has been saying for months.

Furthermore, has gone one step further by claiming that, according to third-party traffic data, is the fourth-most visited real estate portal nationwide.

Damien Eales, CEO at, said:

"We’re pleased the National Advertising Division saw through CoStar’s smoke and mirrors and put this issue to rest with the recommendation that CoStar withdraw their false advertising claims of 156 million monthly unique users for and having double the traffic of

"The contrast with CoStar is becoming increasingly clear. CoStar has misled customers while has remained focused on growing a quality audience and quality leads for both buying agents and listing agents."

Despite the reluctant olive branch of changing its advertising claims, CoStar Group remains steadfast in its belief that it is still the number two portal operator in the States, with the Group's General Counsel, Gene Boxer, commenting:

" is the No. 2 most-visited residential real estate portal, far surpassing, and the Network has double the traffic of

"Apples to apples, is losing the portal wars, and losing big.

"Consistent with (the National Advertising Division’s) decision, CoStar will continue to advertise that fact and disclose the number of unique visitors to the Network and

" keeps trying, and keeps failing, to hide the facts. We couldn’t be happier to continue spreading the word about the success of, and in compliance with the NAD’s recommendation, the success of the Network.”

The heated, and increasingly ugly, rivalry between and recently went up a notch with suing for hiring an ex-employee and using his access to sensitive data to accelerate's growth.

July 10, 2024
Harvey is an experienced property journalist and copywriter. He has written about the property industry since 2015, starting at The Property Franchise Group in the UK, before moving to Spain to work for Spotahome. He has blogged for the private rented sector, ghostwritten for UK property experts and written case studies for franchise owners around the UK. Harvey joined Online Marketplaces as a News Editor in 2022.

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