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Online agent goes quiet despite expensive prime time TV advert campaign

fIXFLO news story

An online agent which advertised expensively on prime time TV slots as well as on the London Underground appears to have shut up shop.

This is according to an online blog, Selling Up, which specifically looks at the online agency sector.

Its blog alleges that the online agent could have spent hundreds of thousands in promotion while barely increasing its listings.

Homeseller, run by Anthony Quirk – a cousin of eMoov founder Russell Quirk – advertised in slots on The X Factor, costing it many thousands at a time.

The advert featured well known actress Sarah Parish, whose credits include Cutting It, W1A and Broadchurch.

However, the Selling Up site suggests that Homeseller’s spend may have been wasted money.

It says: “A retrospective look at the company’s property listings history reveals that at the time of the first TV ad they had around 16 properties for sale, and weeks later in November 2015 that had risen to just 25 listings. By December 2015 that had gone up to 36 and by the following April they had around 50 listings.

“Compared to the several thousand properties on the books of the big online estate agents that they were trying to emulate, the number of listings were clearly very low. The cost per acquisition of each new property for sale must have been in the many thousands of pounds during this campaign.”

Yesterday, the Homeseller site looked closed, simply featuring a logo but nothing else.

The Rightmove link suggested that the advertiser might be no more, with our search saying “We’re sorry, something has gone wrong with this page”.

While it is clear that Anthony Quirk runs a number of highly successful businesses, including a high street agency on Canvey Island, Essex, he did not respond to our emails yesterday requesting information. We will of course carry his response as soon as we get it.

Here is how we covered the ambitious launch of Homeseller: http://www.propertyindustryeye.com/watch-out-theres-another-quirk-about/

The link below shows what Selling Up thinks – plus those apparent TV adverts.

http://www.sellingup.com/online-estate-agent-homeseller-x-factor

Russell Quirk yesterday said that he knew nothing about Homeseller, but did say that the costs of launching a successful online agency now look to be astronomical.

He said that at a very recent meeting in the City, Purplebricks founder Michael Bruce said it would now cost £100m to get such a venture up and running –compared with the £50m Purplebricks had raised.

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