Last year I wrote about the changing face of London Flat Rental Advertising. In a series of 3 articles I traced the history of how to find a London Flat to rent informing both tenants and landlords where they should be looking for flat rental.
In particular I predicted the death of Gumtree, dragged down by the predominance of scamming adverts. Originally Gumtree’s success was founded on a combination of free advertisements, and community, basing itself around cities and providing newcomers with a source of information on everything that they might be looking for. Gumtree still continues, with the new Beta version being commented on, and it’s charges ever increasing to cover the costs of the site revamp. It continues to succeed because it’s only major competitor – Craig’s List, – is just as plagued with scammers, and considerably harder to navigate, but now there is an alternative that might just sink Gumtree for all it’s new investment. Facebook Marketplace.
OK – I’ll be honest, not new – just new to me. Facebook Marketplace was set up in May 2007, and in March 2009 ownership transferred to Oodle, a specialist Internet Classifieds website. It runs integrated with Facebook, and listings on Facebook Marketplace are syndicated onto Oodle’s website as well. The reason that I have chosen to highlight Facebook’s Classifieds as the website that will sink Gumtree is …… trust.
The biggest problem with trading on the internet is that of trust, and maybe Facebook have cracked the problem. A Facebook/Oodle Classified Ad comes vouched for by the Facebook ID that listed it, so the advertiser is no longer as anonymous as a Gumtree Ad. with a Hotmail eMail contact.
That strikes me as a powerful USP when you are looking to rent a London Flat.