British market-leading property portal Rightmove has released its H1 2021 report which shows record revenue and operating profit despite a slight drop in its customer numbers.
Rightmove's record 6 monthly revenue and operating profit come off the back of a turbulent 2020 for the company which saw revenues badly affected by the discounts it was forced to concede to agents during the first coronavirus lockdown.
The company has been riding the coattails of an exceptionally hot local housing market since the start of 2021 and has seen average revenue per advertiser (ARPA) rise to an all-time high of £1,163 per month as agents look to Rightmove to make the most of the property boom. The company's premium 2020 Optimiser package has seen double the uptake since December with 16% of Rightmove customers now choosing it.
As well as seeing record revenues and ARPA, Rightmove has also seen a startling jump in traffic to its portal with users now spending an average of 1.7 billion minutes per month on-site putting it in the top 20 most visited sites in the UK according to similarweb.
Commenting on his company's results, Rightmove CEO Peter Brooks-Johnson said:
"The first half of 2021 brought further lockdowns, instilling in many a desire or motivation to move home, and the nation relied on us to help them to find their new life, with a record 10.4bn minutes spent searching and researching on Rightmove. The innovation we have delivered to help home-hunters find their happy, despite the restrictions, have been well used - with 200,000 video viewings and 160,000 rental viewing appointments made on the platform.
"Our customers expect our platform to deliver the best exposure for their brand, extremely effective advertising, and to help them to grow their businesses. The strong take-up of our premium Optimiser 2020 package shows agents' continued belief in the Rightmove platform, as they invest in our digital products and innovative algorithms to help them to identify more opportunities to succeed."
The one metric that shareholders may be concerned about from today's report is the number reflecting stagnating advertiser numbers. Although the number of listing estate agents actually increased over the six month period (rising by 130 to 16,052), the number of new home developments listing on the portal decreased significantly (falling by 211 to 3,064).
Rightmove put the drop in new home developments advertised on its portal down to exceptionally high demand which has seen newly built homes snapped up without developers even needing to advertise.
With OnTheMarket regularly trumpeting new agent sign ups and Zoopla having released a statement in April claiming to have 19,500 advertisers, Rightmove will be keen to arrest the decline in advertiser numbers as soon as possible:
Rightmove has been focusing product development on rentals and new homes of late and promised shareholders a strong pipeline of product development in these areas for the second half of 2021. The company has notably been upping its efforts to improve its offering in the letting market with its new 'Let in 5' program which it announced last month.