Is there a “Sweet Spot” for the Number of Images?
Shopping for a home today is much different than it was just a few years ago. Before the explosion of online listings of homes for sale, real estate agents would drive potential buyers from house to house, sight unseen, to walk through and find their dream home.
Today however, shopping for a home is completely different. In today’s market, those home shoppers will start by looking online, through listings, viewing photos, videos and virtual tours of potential properties, narrowing down their choices and choosing the ones they want to see in person. Because of this, listings with bad photos, or worse, none at all, will probably be passed over and never get a viewing. The question is, how many photos is the sweet spot in getting someone to contact the agent for a showing?
In this study by StreetEasy, they found that the likelihood of buyers contacting agents about a listing doubled on listings with 1 to 3 photos vs listings with no photos at all. And according to the same StreetEasy study, the percentages go up as the number of photos go up – to a point.
Can You Show Too Much?
For example, they found that if a listing has between 4 and 10 photos, there is a 5x more likelihood that the buyer will contact the agent. But for the sweet spot, they found that when a listing has 11 – 14 photos, there is a 6x better chance of the buyer contacting the agent vs a listing with no photos.
However, before you starting think more is better, just remember the old saying “less is more sometimes” and “quality over quantity”, because in that same study, they found that beyond 15 photos, the likelihood of agents being contacting starts to drop back down.
So just because your MLS has dropped the old 25 photos per listing limit, doesn’t mean you should upload all 73 of those images from that 1750 sq foot house! As a real estate agent, your first priority should be to give people just enough to make them want to actually request a showing of the house, but not give them too much so they find something they don’t like before even seeing it.
So What Do You Show?
If 15 great images of a house, showing the main features (living areas, kitchen, master bedroom, master bath, outdoor amenities, etc.) is the best way to entice someone to request a showing, why upload 30 or more? In the listing description you’ve indicated it has 4 bedrooms and 3.5 baths. Is there really a reason to upload a photo of that half bath? Or of any closets?
And let’s face it, most homes have some “less than desirable” features that, if seen in photos while perusing listings, will stop a buyer from ever setting foot in the house. But, once actually in the house for viewing, a potential home buyer’s list of “must-have” items drops dramatically if that house just “feels right” to them. So choosing not to focus on the less-than-optimal features in your photos just makes sense to get more showings.
Most houses can be adequately shown in 10 – 15 high quality images, shown in the order as if you walked into the front door and through those areas. Those images should be enough to generate interest and make an impression so that the buyer wants to contact the agent for a tour, which is the ultimate goal. The last thing you want is for potential buyers to tire of pouring through your endless set of images and get bored so they click on the next listing.
Post Just Enough to Make them Want to See More!
When posting your next listing’s photos, ask yourself, “is every image I’m posting needed show the features of the house, and will they encourage buyers to ask for a showing?” If you have 25 great images, then by all means post them, but sometimes less is more, and if 15 images will show the house’s best features, and pique a buyer’s interest enough to want to walk through the house, then you might think about cutting back and posting just those.
The quality of your images matter a lot more than the quantity.
Contact us today and let us help you get the best view possible for your property!