The Kiss of Death for a Sacramento MLS Listing

kiss of death for a sacramento MLS listing

Almost everybody makes fun of bad MLS photos, but no photos at all is the kiss of death for a Sacramento MLS listing. You know, some people experience reoccurring nightmares of appearing naked as a jay bird in public. My idea of a nightmare is having a listing go live in MLS without any photographs. It’s happened once to me for all of 3 seconds but it happens for other agents a lot more.

It makes me cringe. Do you know why it is the kiss of death for a Sacramento MLS listing? Because without photos, buyers won’t even bother to read all of your fancy schmancy marketing comments. They will just skip to the next property. Which means the listing agent just blew her sellers’ biggest chance to make a favorable impression.

We have one chance to download our information from MLS for distribution. Sure, we can make updates to MLS, and those updates will update some other websites, BUT NOT ALL WEBSITES. Once that initial information is out there, it’s pretty much final on a static website.

When I signed on to MLS yesterday morning, the first listing I saw had no photographs. It mentions being a rental, so there are probably photos in Zillow but not in MLS. It is possible the listing agent does not want a buyer’s agent to bring a buyer, too. Just because it’s listed with a cooperating broker commission does not always mean the agent wants to pay it. It could be a way to encourage buyers to call the listing agent directly. Yes, some agents are that slimy.

I go so much further than most agents with my listings. Because I do not want to encounter the kiss of death for a Sacramento MLS listing. I am constantly scrutinizing how my listings are viewed and received by the public. 

For example, one of the listing perks I give my sellers is a separate website for their property listing. That particular layout screen showcases two large photos, side-by-side, and then the rest of the photos in a smaller format below. Once a person clicks on the photos, they can view them all in large format, but it is the initial impression that I focus on. What do buyers see when they first click on that link?

The two large photos are pulled from MLS as the first and second uploaded photos. This is why I often will move them around, especially if the second photo is a close-up of the door because that’s not always visually appealing on this particular page. For example, on a recent pending listing with plenty of curb appeal, I may showcase the front of the home and the gorgeous back-yard pool.

Another trick I often employ is to make sure the first 6 photos are the most enticing photographs. Why? Because the layout in MLS after opening the listing shows a preview of photographs below the larger main photo. A quick glance at the listing needs to entice the viewer to click through all of the photographs.

Buyers today tend to find more reasons not to want to see a house than to view it. They rely on photographs for an impression, and they often make fast judgments when clicking through listings. Listing agents need to give buyers a reason to click through ALL of the photographs. You can bet I study the numbers in my virtual tours too. I get a report that shows me how many photos a viewer looks at, and which photos get the most hits. My goal is the same number of views for all 36 photographs, which is the maximum MLS can show.

Do all Sacramento Realtors analyze their listings like this? Well, you already know the answer to that one. Call Elizabeth Weintraub at 916.233.6759 when you’re ready to work with a listing agent who truly cares.

Elizabeth Weintraub

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