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Helpful Advice

Are Local Papers still Relevant in the age of the Internet?

Are Local Papers still Relevant in the age of the Internet?

By Peter Barry

The Internet has completely transformed the way we read and digest information. With laptops, tablets and mobile phones, many people now pick up property details on the go, through apps or from quick online searches when they’re travelling to or from work. Searches can be tailored to specific price ranges, postcodes and credentials, and you can even look online and see what the actual house and the street look like. When you take all this into account, it might seem fair to assume that the old-fashioned method of flicking through the property section of your local newspaper or magazine is now obsolete. In fact, this is far from the case.

Undivided attention

If a property hunter chances upon an ad in a local newspaper, they often have a little more time on their hands. Quick Internet searches can be done while people are on the phone, waiting for a friend, or watching television: in other words, they are already occupied. If someone is giving their undivided attention to a newspaper or magazine, they are more likely to absorb the information and pay more attention to individual properties.

Exploring other options

When people search for property online, they have often tailored their search options to such an extent that they’ve automatically eliminated good potential properties simply because they fall just outside of a desired postcode, or they are a little over their budget. Sometimes a different postcode might simply mean that a house is a few streets further away, and deals can often be done on properties that appear to stretch the budget. Property pages can open up the possibilities and encourage people to explore beyond their comfort zone. The immediate impact of a photograph and key information about the property can be enough for someone to register interest in a property they might not have considered or come across before.

Hard evidence

Online searches have revolutionised house hunting for both buyers and sellers but how often do people see a property they quite like, then completely forget about it, or lose the link? A newspaper can be kept for future reference, or property details torn out: it’s a tangible link to the house and it can often have more impact than a web link and provide more impetus for a potential buyer to pick up the phone and make an appointment for a viewing.