Apartmentguide.com: 2018 Guide for Property Management Companies

Apartmentguide.com is a popular, property listing site that help renters search for their next place. Renters can see high definition photos and get quality information about rental properties, as well as read reviews from verified residents. Owned by Rentpath, one of the biggest apartment website conglomerates, Apartment Guide can be a powerful marketing channel. This guide will show you how to build a strong profile and manage reviews on Aparmentguide.com so that your property stands out and gets more business.

Why is Apartmentguide.com important?

In February of this year, Apartmentguide.com saw 1.8 million views from desktop users alone. But what makes that number meaningful is that fact that Rentpath touts that 81% of the calls generated from their sites are from real customers. These are high-quality leads that could be renting your property.

How to Get Listed on Apartment Guide

To create a listing on Apartmentguide.com, you WILL need to purchase one of their advertising options. But on the plus side, in the Apartmentguide.com interface, you’ll have the ability to track your leads and measure the ROI (like you should with any marketing spend).

To get started, complete this contact form with info about the property and your contact info. Rentpath will reach out afterwards. Once the account is set up, managers can start to build their listings. This is where the “fun” happens.

Building the Best Profile

Your properties deserve to shine, and your Apartment Guide profile is the place to do it. A profile that is rich with detail and description will not only be helpful to prospective residents but also enhance your SEO, giving your listing profile a higher ranking in search results. Here are the different areas of your profile:

Images. The property images are what the potential customers will look to first when eyeing your profile. These should be high-quality images that show all the key parts of the property. Make sure to show off the selling points!

Details. The detail section is a place you can provide a nice overview and highlight attractive benefits.

Contact. Make sure your phone numbers and email addresses listed here are accurate.

Units/Pricing. The units that are available, as well as the pricing for each unit, are listed here.

Specials. Property managers can run special promotions for their properties, creating a coupon with start and end dates.

Features. All the niceties of the property are listed here, including balcony access, appliances, etc. as well as community features such as laundry facility, fitness center, pets allowed, etc.

Terms/Policies. This page is made for all the terms and policies about the property including standard lease information, pet policies, custom lease terms, etc. Any information regarding payment terms, etc. should be placed here for customers to view.

Hours. Updated hours for the property are critical to the sale because you want to capture all potential leads. These should be updated for weather changes, holidays, etc.

Locations and Directions. Make sure that this information is accurate and up to date. No lost leads! If the apartment complex has more than one location, it should be specified.

Leads. This page features a contact form for customers to reach out. The form should ask for just enough information to qualify a lead without scaring them off by its lengthiness.

Once you have updated each of these sections and added high-quality images to your listing, you are ready to publish!

Managing Reviews on Apartmentguide.com

The listings are not complete without shining reviews from past customers. So, ask for them! Apartment Guide encourages using reviews to boost leads. You will want a lot of high-quality reviews to gain trust from potential customers. 90% of consumers read online reviews before visiting or inquiring about a business. And 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. Online review sites were not created with just restaurants and hotels in mind. They were created for businesses in any industry, including property management.

The Apartmentguide.com interface allows you to view your positive reviews against the negative reviews to see the overall health of your listing. It can drill down by each property that is managed and show the number of reviews that are yet to be replied to.

Examples of Good Responses to Reviews

Responding to reviews requires tact and levelheadedness, but if done right, it has tremendous benefits. Responding to a positive review shows that you are listening, which builds loyalty with your current residents and can win over future ones. Here’s an example of an effective response to a positive review from Apartmentguide.com:

Review: Seeing reviews where a landlord cares about his tenants and stuff makes me want to move here. You take the time and get things done. I can honestly say better than the landlords up here!! I am searching fo a place. When it comes the time of going to move o believe me this is where I want to be. *** Reply: Thank you for the compliments and for taking the time to write. The team at [redacted] works hard to provide excellent value and service to all our residents. Enhancing people’s quality of life at our apartmnet communities is something we take great pride in. Please feel free to bring any apartment-hunting friends to [redacted]. We have newly renovated apartments for your and amazing specials to offer.
In addition to expressing gratitude, the responder also uses this as a chance to market the property: “We have newly renovated apartments waiting for you and amazing specials to offer”. Very clever.

Responding to a negative review can be more challenging. First, you’ll want to assess if replying to the review is appropriate. Here’s a decision tree that shows you how to manage a bad review.

Once you have figured out the replying is the right action to take, reply quickly and with poise. Let’s look at this example and identify their winning practices:

Review: New owners but same concerns. When it snows, expect nothing. There’s no plowing, the sidewalks are not cleared, and concrete stairs have no traction. No ice melting applied, you’re on your own. I don’t even think they have a snow shovel! Bu they have plenty of excuses. I suggested they invest in a snow blower or even a plow. Too logical, I suspect. Another property more concerned with money than resident safety. *** Reply: Thanks for writing. Despite the fact that we were short handed during the State of Emergency, our team did put icemelt all over the community to prevent accidents. Plowing would have caused a sheet of ice, making it all the more dangerous, whereas the crunchy snow helped with traction. Please do contact the office with any further concerns. Thank you.

Watch your tone. The tone should be respectful, explaining your position without being defensive. You have the right to help others understand what happened, in this case the State of Emergency. But you do not want to antagonize the reviewer.

Personalize. If possible, the response should be personalized and not scripted. Simply adding a “contact us with your concerns” and a phone number is not the way to go. The responder in this case took the time to speak to the specific complaint.

Be transparent. You do not need too much detail, but some transparency shows that you are not hiding from the problem and open to discussion.

Show gratitude. It is best to thank the reviewer for the review, regardless of the outcome. It shows professionalism and class. But also, customer feedback can be hard to come by. A reviewer is providing you insight on ways you can improve. That is something to be grateful for.

Discuss off-line. At the end, give the reviewer a chance to discuss their concerns further but do it privately so that the dispute does not turn into a he said/she said scenario.

How to reply to reviews in Apartmentguide.com

When responding to a reviewer through Apartment Guide, the interface will provide high level stats and the reviews themselves:

Click “reply”, and you’l have the option of replying online or through email to the customer.

If you think it’s best to take the conversation offline immediately, then the email messaging option may be best. Of course, keep future customers in mind when it comes to the publicly posted response. Your words matter.

Is getting listed on Apartmentguide.com worth the investment?

Apartmentguide.com can be a helpful tool for property managers to promote their properties to prospective renters. Like any marketing campaign, you will want to measure the ROI and make sure your marketing budget is spent wisely.