The best website designs really know how to draw you in. It could be ingenious interaction, phenomenal use of photo and video, or technology and tools that elevate your experience. Whatever it is, you’re hooked. With 90% of home buyers searching online during their home buying process, a builder’s website is one of their largest assets. There is no question that homebuilders recognize the importance of a website; but, some are going above and beyond to create a superior online experience for their clients. How you might ask? It’s all down to the latest and greatest technologies and user experience trends. In this blog we are going to outline 5 homebuilder websites that are standing out from the rest. We hope you’re just as hooked on them as we are.
Century Communities has been around since 2002, with a vision of building homes in sought-after metros from coast to coast. Like other homebuilders on this list, Century Communities is leveraging their website to attract more homebuyers through the use of advanced technology and an emphasis on their online experience.
This builder has two brands that offer a very different experience for homebuyers. Their flagship brand, Century Communities, offers their signature homes and provides the traditional homebuying experience. The process begins online where a customer can navigate through the website and book a sales appointment (either in person or virtually) to view the homes they’re interested in. Century Complete on the other hand, allows homebuyers to enjoy “more home for less money—and on a quicker timeline—through an innovative online buying experience.”
The Century Complete brand offers move-in ready homes that home buyers can purchase from anywhere with an internet connection. This platform uses virtual tours to help homebuyers visualize what each home looks like. Upon finding a house that suits their needs, the home buyer completes an online application by simply clicking “Buy Now.” Upon the submission of their application, they are connected with a Century Complete representative who walks them through verifying their home financing and signing their contract. While the online purchase of a home may not be for everyone, it does provide a unique experience for those wishing to shop remotely. By offering both Century Communities and Century Complete, they are able to appeal to buyers with all different needs and motivations.
Idaho’s largest home builder, CBH Homes was founded by Corey Barton in 1992. At first glance, you can tell that CBH homes puts a large emphasis on their website experience. They do an exemplary job of leveraging industry technology such as 3D tours, interactive furniture planners, online chatbots, and mortgage calculators to support the online shopping experience.
This website excels in providing homebuyers with all the resources they may need to feel confident in the home they are purchasing. Prior to even stepping foot in a sales center, clients are able to view a full 360 tour of the home, map out how their furniture would fit in a space, and determine their mortgage calculation. This span of technology effectively nurtures the home buyer before they are even connected with a member of your team.
If you’re looking for a place to start with website technology, this may be the right place to look to for inspiration.
Based out of Calgary, Alberta, Trico Homes was founded in 1992 by Wayne Chiu. Since their founding, Trico has built over 10,000 homes in Calgary and neighboring communities. Much like their in-person home buying process, their website supports a seamless homebuying journey and user experience.
What makes their experience so unique? Well, working behind the scenes of their website is our AI-powered marketing platform focused on providing an unparalleled user experience. Learning with every click, our artificial intelligence technology begins to understand the needs and preferences of website visitors. In real-time our system updates the search results and creates recommendations for floorplans and communities that would be most attractive to each customer. This allows Trico Homes to put their best foot—or maybe we should say floorplan—forward, for each unique website visitor.
Technology like this has been used in various different industries, take Netflix for example. As Netflix learns more and more about your viewing habits, it begins to recommend shows that you would like. At a certain point, your Netflix knows you so well, that it becomes personalized to you. By using OpenHouse.ai, Trico is able to develop a complete understanding of their customers to help them find the right home for them, faster. Technology like this streamlines the homebuying process and allows Trico to create a unique experience for every customer.
Shea Homes is a builder who adapted to and embraced the challenges that COVID-19 brought. On top of their easy-to-navigate website, they have created a way for homebuyers to feel comfortable and supported in searching for their homes virtually.
Similarly to Century Communities, Shea Homes rolled out their virtual program that walks home buyers through finding their new home, financing options, personalization, and closing escrow, all virtually. This option allows Shea Homes to offer a home buying process that appeals to both buyers that prefer in-person showings, as well as those who are more comfortable shopping from home.
Another unique feature on the Shea Homes website is their Resource Guide, which contains a plethora of helpful resources for future homeowners. The Resource Guide includes a step-by-step checklist for the path to purchasing a home. As well as a home buying glossary full of terms you’ll need to know when going through the process of purchasing a home.
What’s unique about this section of their website is that it begins to nurture the customer journey and relationship before a buyer even begins to search for their home. As the customer navigates the checklist and resources, they are asked to imagine their dream home, the features included, and a price range that fits their needs. This section is a very intelligent way of supporting the homebuying process, ultimately empowering homebuyers to find the home that best fulfills their needs.
Toll Brothers, founded in 1967, is a leading builder of luxury homes in the United States. From website to sales centre, the Toll Brothers emphasise a commitment to quality and customer service. Upon landing on their website, this commitment is evident. The design is very customer friendly, allowing homebuyers to narrow in quickly on the community and floorplan that best fits them.
Beyond easy navigation and great branding, there are a few other tech features that make their website stand out from the rest. As you navigate through their community pages, your recently viewed communities are saved without needing to sign up for an account. This feature is great for buyers who are at the top of the funnel and aren’t ready to provide any personal information yet. It makes it easy for them to return to your website and pick up where they left off in the search for their new home.
As customers continue further down the customer journey, the “My Favorites,” tab, is another unique feature for nurturing their customers. If a home buyer would like to save a specific home or floorplan, they can create an account which allows them to return to the Toll Brothers website, and continue on their journey. This is a great feature for both customers and the sales team, who is able to see which homes are of interest to their client to create a more personalized experience.
The Toll Brothers also do a great job of integrating other tech tools such as 3D walkthroughs, interactive floor plans (IFPs), and interactive site maps, which we’ve discussed throughout this article.
These 5 homebuilders all bring very unique features to their websites to create a positive online shopping experience. Through the use of different technologies, these homebuilders support the buying journey of each client, in an effort to ease some of the stress of purchasing a new home. We hope that you have enjoyed these websites as much as we have, and can pull inspiration from a few of them. With technology at our fingertips, homebuilders are ready to create a superior online experience for their buyers- and your website is just the beginning.
If you would like to find out more about our platform and how we have helped builders like Trico Homes take their web experience to the next level, fill out the form below!