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Text | Chen Pei
Source: Lu Jiu Finance
Real estate agents have started community group buying, and behind it is the background that “the property market is no longer hot, and community group buying is also ebbing”. Can the two embrace each other to keep warm?
What is the relationship between Lianjia and community group buying?
Recently, Lu Jiu Finance and Economics exclusively discovered that in the Beijing area, many Lianjia stores have an additional identity, and Meituan’s preferred community group purchases are self-promotion points.
Several chain store managers told Lu Jiu Finance that this is a company-level cooperation, and the specific matters are not clear. Meituan told Lu Jiu Finance that it is still unclear whether it is a strategic cooperation, because it is only carried out in Beijing.
In addition, Lu Jiu Finance found that in addition to Lianjia, many real estate agency stores such as Maitian and Zhongyuan Real Estate are successively connected to Meituan Select. It seems that real estate agency stores all over the community are expanding their business scope through community group buying, enhancing the store traffic.
Now that the property market is no longer hot, and community group buying is also ebbing, two industries that deal with communities are experiencing a “cold winter”. The two parties are trying to find new service methods to stimulate and gain potential trading opportunities in the community.
How much temperature can real estate agency + community group buying bring to these two industries?
The dual identity of the intermediary store
Although they do not buy a house, many citizens in Beijing go to Lianjia and Maitian stores every day. Because now these real estate agency stores are becoming the “vegetable basket” of the community.
Mr. Guo, who lives in Beijing, found that the fruits and vegetables he bought on Meituan were placed in the store of the nearby real estate agency Lianjia, and he had to go to Lianjia to pick up the goods after get off work every day.
This is not an exception. Lu Jiu Finance and Economics searched the West Fourth Ring Road in Beijing and found that almost all the Lianjia stores in the surrounding area have become the pick-up points for group purchases in the Meituan community. Many citizens were also surprised to find that there were so many real estate agency stores around them.
“Houses are not Chinese cabbage. Ordinary citizens may have nothing to do with these intermediary stores in their entire lives.” Mr. Chen from Haidian District told Lu Jiu Finance that it is a good thing for Lianjia to be a delivery point for community group purchases. Mr. Chen believes: “Lianjia is mainly engaged in sales and leasing, and community group purchases are mainly for young people. If there is a real demand, they will consult when picking up the goods.”
Dawei (pseudonym), the person in charge of a chain store, told Lu Jiu Finance that his store is currently connected to Meituan’s community group buying, and the daily order volume is still considerable. Dawei also revealed that the cooperation between Meituan and Lianjia is not the cooperation of a single store, but the cooperation of the two companies at the company level, and they are only responsible for implementation.
The real estate agency Maitian said that at present, some stores’ access to community group buying is an autonomous behavior, but it is a good thing for both parties to empower traffic.
An industry insider told Lu Jiu Finance that as early as when community group buying was hot, platforms such as Orange Heart Select targeted real estate agencies’ offline stores. “These stores are almost all located in the densest residential areas and have a geographical advantage.” However, the cooperation between community group buying and real estate agencies ended in haste. The reason is that these stores are not in the same format as community fresh food stores. They are equipped with professional facilities such as refrigerators and freezers. high.
Dawei also said that according to the information he obtained, in the future, Lianjia and Meituan will deepen their cooperation and may equip stores with hardware facilities such as refrigerators.
Regarding the cooperation between the two parties, Lu Jiu Finance and Economics consulted the Meituan side. The Meituan side said that the main force of the community group buying business department is to ensure the supply of people’s livelihood in Shanghai, and it is not known which level of cooperation it is for. “At present, only the Beijing area is seen, and it should not have reached the level of strategic cooperation.” However, the Meituan side said that the two sides The cooperation is more appropriate, on the one hand, it has the advantages of fresh supply chain, and on the other hand, it has the advantages of huge offline stores, which is also a win-win situation.
Warming up in a cold winter
“Real estate agents act as the ‘group leader’ of community group buying, not so much a win-win situation as a group to keep warm.” Some industry insiders are blunt.
Ms. Zhao, who previously worked in community group buying, believes that it is not new for real estate agents to be part-time “group leaders”. When the community group buying was hot, group buying platforms such as Orange Heart Preferred had the idea of Lianjia stores, but it did not form a climate. At that time, the real estate agency business, which was still hot, did not look down on this small business that made a few cents; while the group buying platform was burning money to compete for traffic, there were many people who wanted to be the head of the group, and they didn’t care about these real estate agency stores.
Today is different from the past. Today, the property market is no longer hot, and community group buying is also ebbing. The two industries that deal with community residents are both experiencing a “cold winter”.
Although the ferocious epidemic in Shanghai has temporarily activated the community group buying business, it cannot be assumed that the industry has ushered in “spring”. Industry analysts believe that Meituan and Pinduoduo’s community group purchases are tasked with ensuring people’s livelihood and social responsibility during the epidemic, rather than making profits.
“The derivative influence may be the cultivation of shopping habits, which is far higher than the loyalty brought by burning money subsidies.” The industry believes that the key factor for the success of community group buying is “time”, that is, through intensive community influence power to cultivate consumer habits.
For real estate agents, the cooling property market has also made it difficult for agents to do business. According to the latest financial report data of the listed company Shell, Shell’s adjusted net profit in 2021 is 2.29 billion yuan, down nearly 60% from 5.72 billion yuan in the same period last year. In October last year, it was reported that the shells were making staff adjustments. Insiders revealed that the optimization was mainly made by first-line real estate brokers, and the total number of optimizations exceeded 30,000 people.
Mr. Hu, a real estate person, believes that under the normalization of the epidemic, how can real estate agents survive? In his understanding, it is “innovating business models, broadening community service capabilities, and optimizing housing transaction procedures.”
Mr. Hu recalled that the previous competition among real estate agents focused on the “price war” of commissions, but with the current transparency of commissions, the negotiable range is getting smaller and smaller. After all, the costs of storefronts and labor are all there. Unable to reduce commissions, the competition of community penetration has become a means of major intermediaries – many real estate agency stores have appeared in the form of express delivery, lost and found, and second-hand goods trading, with only one purpose – to win the trust of customers through deep community services.
It can be said that community group buying and real estate agencies have a common service group, and the interoperability of this business gives them a natural alliance advantage.
Can we truly win in the future?
In fact, it is becoming a trend for real estate agents to be the “heads” of group buying in the homeopathic community.
Just during the epidemic in Shanghai, the news of #ShanghaiThousands of young intermediaries to help deliver food# rushed to the hot search. According to surging news reports, during the epidemic, many Shanghai residents who were isolated at home encountered difficulties in buying and delivering food. Due to their familiarity with the surrounding shopping malls and vegetable markets, and the fact that the store is close to the community, thousands of real estate agents became volunteers and spontaneously formed a community public welfare group to help isolated residents buy fresh vegetables and deliver them to the gate of the community.
As said in the news, the real estate agency delivered the food because they knew the situation of the community very well. According to industry statistics, there are quite a few real estate agency stores that can open in the community for three years, but if they only provide low-frequency real estate rental and sales services, it can be said to be a waste of resources.
A long time ago, Lianjia developed the concept of community service. The core essence is to transform users’ cognitive limitations of Lianjia stores. “Community business is all about people’s acquaintances socializing with each other. Stores, communities, and people are indispensable.” Mr. Hu believes that in addition to low-frequency business, real estate agencies develop new community businesses, which is a complementary business format. Some people liken the cross-border real estate agency to the Xiaomi ecological chain model, that is, “you recognize my Xiaomi mobile phone, can you also try my TV or air conditioner”.
For community group buying and real estate agencies, there are several key points that need to be resolved to achieve a win-win situation.
First, we should consider how to mobilize the enthusiasm of the head of the group. An investor who pays attention to community group buying said: “The essence of community group buying is how to provide convenience for consumers in the sinking market. This is a new supply and demand relationship.” This convenient and new supply and demand relationship depends on the head of the group. service is maintained. However, the instability of the head of the industry has become a chronic disease of the industry.
With the ebb of community group buying, capital subsidies have basically disappeared, and the business logic of community group buying has returned from the battle of traffic to the battle of the supply chain. For the part-time “head” of the real estate agency, although it is a small effort, it also needs reasonable interest support, otherwise it will not become a long-term business.
Second, how to provide hardware support for real estate agency stores. After all, as a consulting service store, most of the real estate agencies are not equipped with shelves, refrigerators and other storage materials. If there are seafood, frozen products and other products, the extensive storage method will inevitably bring about the problem of high customer complaint rate. But for the platform side, how to share this part of the cost is a problem that should be considered.
Third, how to further optimize refined management such as door-to-door services. In addition to the competition between platforms, community group buying also has a competitive relationship between community group buying and fresh food delivery. Some consumers see that the discounts and prices of fresh food at home are comparable to community group purchases. They usually abandon the community group purchases that require self-delivery, and choose the door-to-door fresh food service.
Getting through the “last meter” and completing the formulation of more refined rules should be put on the agenda by group buying platforms and real estate agencies. “For example, Meituan and Lianjia have run through this road, and other community group purchases will be copied again. Maybe the hardware invested in the early stage has made wedding dresses for other companies.” Mr. Hu said.
In general, the slowing down of the in-depth integration of community group buying and real estate agencies is beneficial to the entire industry, because both occupations require continuous accumulation of contacts, and cannot be achieved overnight. Mutual business support, these former part-time “heads” may become the first stable “professional heads”.
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