January is the perfect time to look back and reflect on the past year. It may surprise you to learn that despite all the dire predictions about the economy of 2009, traffic of interested home buyers on MHVillage continued to grow. In fact, there were 5,239,483 visits to MHVillage in 2009 – that’s up 23% from 2008! Each year more and more people use the internet to start their search for homes, and those looking for manufactured housing start on MHVillage.
In addition to record amounts of browsers on the site, there were hundreds of upgrades and additions to MHVillage over 2009. We’ve added a number of new services, products and tools to help you sell your homes. Let’s take a look at just a few of what the year had to offer:
- A New MHVillage Look – January 2009 brought a whole new streamlined appearance to MHVillage. Some of the many improvements were slide-shows for home photos, larger floor plans, and more call to action email links on listings and communities. We also made it easier to list homes, add photos and update company information.
- Unlimited Photos on Premium Listings – Premium listings used to have a maximum of 10 photos. In 2009 we made it Unlimited! Remember – buyers love to see photos of homes!
- Bold, Italics and other Text Tools Added to Home Descriptions – No more cut and paste! We added new tools so you can write your perfect home descriptions and highlight your sales promotions right on MHV.
- Phone Numbers for Showcased Communities – In February 2009 phone numbers began to display on Showcased communities. Now these communities could start getting calls directly from MHVillage browsers who wanted to know more about their homes.
- Track “Email a Friend” Statistics – Ever wonder how many times someone emails a friend or family member about your listings? If they do it through MHVillage, we now track how many of those emails are being sent right on your statistics page.
- Free Internet Marketing Kit – We want you to succeed online, so we added great articles and information about internet marketing to your Pro account. Just download them straight from your Pro account – for free!
- MHVillage on Facebook – We started our Facebook page in May, by the end of 2009 MHVillage had 175 fans. Every week we have comments from folks interested in manufactured housing. We’ve also added a number of tools right on your listings and communities so you can add them to your own Facebook, Twitter or other social networking sites.
- Chat with MHVillage – Have a question? Need some help? Just click the new chat icon in the upper left corner of most pages on MHV. Now with just a click of that button you can quickly contact a customer service person when you need one.
- New Expanded Features on Showcased Communities – Want to really show your community off to its full advantage? We added all these to Showcased communities: Planned Social Activities, Gated, On site Staff, Waterfront, Boat/RV Storage. Fitness Center, Laundry Facilities, Library, Billiards, Golf Course, Shuffleboard, Tennis, Basketball, Volleyball, Bocce Ball, Horseshoes, Whirlpool, Sauna, or a Spa. Log in and just check the ones that describe your community.
- Communities Can Now Upload Their Brochure – As easy as adding a photo, Showcased communities can now also upload their sales brochure.
- Homes for Rent Navigation Tools Added – Easier searches added to the web site so people can find available rental homes.
- Listing Compliance – Per the request of some of our California Professionals, we’ve made the serial number more visible and added a field for a Department of Housing number. Not sure what the regulations are in your state? Be sure and check with your state manufactured housing association or regulators of sales in your state.
- “Watch This” on MHVillage – Added at the end of 2009, the new “Watch This” system allows home buyers to keep track of homes, communities, or retail locations and be automatically notified via email when they are updated. Plus, you can now send messages to your fans at any time by logging in and clicking the “Talk To Your Fans” link.
These are just a few of the updates we’ve done to MHVillage, there are plenty more to come in 2010! Have a great idea for the site? Just email us and let us know!