SAN FRANCISCO—In early April, we reported that RentPath, the premier vertical search company for apartment and home renters, had invested $13 million to acquire San Francisco-based Lovely, a start-up whose mission is to provide the most comprehensive and transparent rental experience for renters, property owners and managers nationwide. In an update to that article, GlobeSt.com chatted with Scott Asher, vice president of marketing and operations for RentPath and Blake Pierson, co-founder of Lovely on the changing technological landscape.
GlobeSt.com: Technological advances such as online rent payment, introduction of ratings and reviews, increased emphasis on the user experience. Tell me a bit more about that transformation.
Scott Asher: Technology has transformed the way consumers search for apartment homes and ultimately interact with their apartment communities. More and more consumers are choosing to handle interactions 100% online from finding their next apartment home to paying rent and submitting service requests. They’re also reading and relying on online ratings and reviews in greater number every day to help them make the right decisions. The online marketing solutions providers that keep up with and even stay ahead of these trends provide the most value to owners and operators.”
Blake Pierson: RentPath and Lovely are on the cutting edge by being among the first to provide mobile apps, online rent payment, mobile web sites and ratings and reviews, like Apartment Guide’s Certified Resident Ratings & Reviews. We believe this commitment to innovation helps us deliver the best possible experience for both consumers and apartment owners and operators.”
GlobeSt.com: Mobile continues to increase in importance and firms are meeting that demand with apps and mobile sites. Tell me a bit more about today’s renter and mobile device use.
Asher: Prospective renters, like most customer segments, are using their mobile devices to do even more than ever before. The experience on Smartphones is simple, convenient and just as comprehensive as on the web for sites like livelovely.com and apartmentguide.com. What’s more, prospective renters can conduct the apartment search while in the neighborhood they want to live in. And it shows in our data. Mobile leads now account for more than 40% of all of the leads Apartment Guide provides to apartment owners and operators.
Pierson: Lovely’s mobile-first approach provides a commitment to convenience, simplicity and innovation. We’ve designed our tools to include only the most powerful features that will help eliminate the pain points too commonly faced by renters.