Saturday, December 19, 2009

OMS Map Explorer BETA now llive!

Have a look on the dashboard on the OMS when you log on - there is a link to the Map Explorer BETA version. The Map Explorer (or GIS explorer as we previously referred to), allows you to plot all your listings on a Google Map. What's more is that you can filter on the area, property type, price or agent (and office for our national clients).
Clicking on a marker will open op a bubble window with short property details including photo. There is also a hyperlink to open up the listing. This way you can easily view the listing, or, if the market is not on the property, adjust the precise location of the property on the map through the property location function.

OMS Active properties - case sensitive filter removed

We've removed the case-sensitivity on the filter function on the active properties page. You are now able to search/filter for anything irrespective of the word case.

Monday, December 14, 2009

OMS minor updates

Virtual Tours correction
We corrected a problem where some users could not delete Virtual Tours on properties.

Property Visits
You will notice that we've temporary disabled the property visits feature on properties. A much improved version of this will be ready tomorrow.

For sale to Final sale correction
We corrected an issue where you could not change the status of a listing from for sale to finale sale if you leave certain compulsory fields out. (The system didn't warn the user when compulsory fields like occupation date, registered date etc was left out and kept the status as is).

New OMS status dashboard
We've introduced a sleeker OMS system updates section on the OMS dashboard when you log in. This displays the latest updates from this product blog, remember to subscribe if you want the latest updates in a daily mail to you.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

OMS: Sleeker property on show functionality

We've improved the on show section on property listings. It is now quicker to add, edit or remove on show dates with the on show capture box displayed inline on the page rather than a separate popup box as per the screenshot below:


We are also showing all historic on show dates loaded for the property, previously it filtered only for future dates. Note that on websites only the future on show dates are shown.

Remember there is no need to delete any historic on show dates, keep it there for your own tracking purposes and future reports which will use these dates.


Friday, December 11, 2009

OMS enhanced spellchecker on property details


We've enhanced the spellcheck on the property description, it will now spell check the property description, items included and excluded.

OMS Property module - updated description & brochures

We've corrected a small bug on the property features section. With the recent updates we've noticed some properties having html tags like BR or SPAN appearing in the brochure description.

We've corrected this - if you notice this on your current listings, simply open the description, remove the
or other tag and save the changes. You can then go to the report section on the property and print your brochure, it will display correctly.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

OMS small updates on stock report and marketing module

Stock report: We corrected a problem on the new stock reports where the Stand Size was showing incorrectly in the Building Size column.
Marketing module, news section: On the page where news items is listed, when the browser window was resized a lot smaller, the edit and view links in the news section became unreadable. We corrected this and made the columns fixed sizes.

Show the exact location of properties on MyProperty with a marker

Through the new property geocoding feature in the OMS you can capture the exact location of a property on a map, see our blog article on this. If you tick the checkbox option 'make exact location of property available on websites' you give permission to show the exact location on a map.

Today we've launched the feature on www.myproperty.co.za that will now show this location with a marker if you've selected the option in the OMS. See below for a sample. By default we show the hybrid view (map + satelite) for properties marked this way. The address is also shown if you move your mouse over the market. If the marker is left unchecked only the suburb location is shown.

view this property on MyProperty (now isn't it great for buyers to see how close to the beach this property really is?)


We are getting ready to offer this same functionality on client websites.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Improved property notes section

We have updated the property notes section. It now shows the full note details on the notes page (previously only showed the header). It is also quicker to add or edit a note now as this is done on the same page and not through a popup window that opens first.

We are looking at more upgrades on this including a reminder checkbox with date/time setting.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

New property statistics report available

A new 'website detailed views' report is now available in the OMS. Simply open a property listing, go to report and click on the 'website detailed views' link.
Two graphs are available:
  • Detailed views per TIME FRAME where time frame is per month, per week or per day. A dropdown menu allows you to select your time frame.
  • Total detailed views by website. This gives a breakdown of the detailed property views generated by website. Note it only includes Entegral powered websites (your own website if hosted through us, MyProperty, MSN Property and RealEstate.co.za)
Note that due to recent upgrades on MyProperty and National Websites, statistics for these websites will only be integrated in the next 2 weeks.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

OMS Brochures - standard 1 photo report update

We have modified the standard 1 photo brochure with feedback received from you. The update will be available 2 December.

We've moved the reference field to the top plus the study and pool fields will show either yes or no. The cost field will display the rates & taxes and levy entered depending on the following:
  • If levy field is available the amount will be displayed here
  • If rates & taxes is available and it is a for sale listing it will be displayed here (so won't display for rentals)

Monday, November 30, 2009

New property geo-coding launched

Exciting news is that Geo-coding is now available in the OMS when loading new property listings or editing existing ones.

The location fields now include a Google Map with a red marker that pinpoints the location of the property. When loading a new listing, simply enter the address, select the town and suburb and click on 'update map from address'. The system will then use the address (including street number) to pinpoint the listing.

Should the marker not be on the property, you can always drag it with your mouse and place it on the property. Click on the 'Hybrid' view to show a satellite image and the zoom controls to get a more detailed view of the street/area as per the screenshot below:


We have also added a new option 'Make exact map location & address available on web'. If you tick this you allow the system to show the exact location with address on your own website and portals like MyProperty.
Please note: Updates will be loaded this week on MyProperty to reflect this, watch our blog for the announcement.
If you would like this map view with exact property location on your own website please let us know via email (to our Support Department). Due to current workloads we will need to schedule implementation and may not be able to assist immediately. Note that upgrade costs may be applicable depending on when your website was developed.

We are also set to launch the new GIS explorer by Tuesday/Wednesday. This will provide you with a map displaying all your current listings and the ability to filter the listings on the map.








New brochure functionality including custom design offer

Printing more customized brochures through the OMS is now a breeze.
New functionality include:
  • The ability to to show or hide an address on a brochure by simply selecting a checkbox;
  • The ability to display a different agent on the brochure other than the original listing agent by selecting the name from a dropdown list;


The brochure layouts have been redesigned completely plus they are a bit smaller in size too.
As before, brochures are automatically exported in PDF format. We are currently working on a number of new brochures, including more customized versions for commercial properties.

Want your own custom brochure designed?
We are now also able to offer custom brochure designs to all clients and not just our national clients. This is ideal if you want brochures design in a specific layout and colour scheme. Please send through your proposed design in Word or other format to our support department. Our design & development team will then review and provide you with a quote. Custom brochures will have a minimum development and design fee of R450 and can use any of the fields captured on listings. We can provide A4,A5 landscape and portrait formats. It can also include multiple pages, e.g. showhouse brochure with first page the cover, followed by the property details page(s).

Please note that we are currently working on more standard brochures for the OMS.

New: updated stock reports

The stock reports received a major makeover. You can now set various parameters including:
  • Select a specific Agent or All Agents;
  • Group by a selected field and sorting by a selected field;
  • Export to PDF, Excel,Tiff image or CSV formats;

The reports have been restructured and now also includes:
  • Days on market and Days to expiry (calculated from listings/expiry dates)
  • An icon next to the listing showing listings about to expire and new listings loaded


We are currently working on various other reports, including agent and office performance reports.

Friday, November 27, 2009

OMS updates this weekend - stock reports, brochures & geocoding

We've been extremely busy the last 2 weeks with preparations in upgrading key functionality in the OMS, including some major database upgrades. We're getting ready to start loading the new functionality and changes this weekend. Here are some of the things we're planning to update:

Brochures:
New brochure functionality is being launched and new template brochures will be added over the next week. We are also now able to offer custom brochures at more attractive prices and faster implementation time. The brochures will be sleeker and offer functionality such as an option to show the property address or not.



Geocoding:
You will be able to geocode all your properties through the OMS. The exact location of the property will be displayed on a Google Map with the option to make this location available on portals and your website. You can even drag the marker location on the map!

Stock reports:
A much improved stock reports section will allow you to select a specific agent, or office as well as grouping and sorting criteria from dropdown lists. Export to PDF, Excel, CSV and a few other formats will be available.


We also have agent and office performance reports planned, tracking for instance number of new sole mandates secured, show houses done, enquiries generated etc. This will be very usefull for agency owners and national real estate groups.


Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Step-by-step instructions on how to create your own Google Custom map for your real estate website

Google Maps allows you to create your own custom maps with place markers and areas that can link through to specific pages on your website. The possible applications for this are endless, but as an example, you can create a map showing the Soccer World Cup 2010 stadiums and where you have properties available around the stadiums.

Here is what our example looks like, it only took a few minutes to create. The map can be placed on most websites (and blogs as we demonstrated here):


View Entegral Real Estate Sample Map 1 in a larger map

Step 1: Get a Google account
If you don't already have one, go here to sign up - it's free: https://www.google.com/accounts/NewAccount

Step 2: Create your Google map
http://www.maps.google.co.za and click on 'My Maps'. Click on 'create new map':
Step 3: Name your map
Enter a title and description, and mark it as 'public' - since you want everyone to see your map
Step 4: Insert a placemarker
Zoom in to your location on the map. Click on the marker icon and drag it to where you want. A popup window will appear.

Step 5: Copy link from your website
Copy the URL from your own website where you want this placemarker hyperlink to go to. So you would perhaps perform a property search for a certain area. Here we are using a sample from MyProperty to display Fish Hoek properties.


Step 6: Insert placemarker title and linkInsert the title and the description. Here we will use the description to insert a hyperlink to properties on our website. Click on 'rich text' so you can insert a hyperlink.
Now highlight your text e.g. 'view properties for sale' and click on the hyperlink icon:


Now paste the link from your website from step 5 in here:

Step 7 : Insert area links
You can also draw areas on your map and link this to your website in the same way you linked placemarkers. Simply click on the 'draw a shape' link and draw your shape on your map with mouse clicks (double click to end shape draw). Now you can give it a title and hyperlink as with the place markers we did earlier.


Step 8: Get the code for your website
Set the correct zoom level and location that you would like your visitors to see.
Now click on 'Link' and copy the 'paste html to embed in website' code as highlighted here. You can also click on 'customize and preview embedded map' to refine various settings.


Step 9: Place in your website
This code can be placed in your blog our website.
If you host your real estate website with Entegral, send us the code, and where you want the map to appear.
Note a small setup fee may be applicable to correctly fit the map into your website, or create new custom pages for this map. Entegral can also assist you if you want us to create a custom map for you.

If you've created your own real estate map, let us know, post your link in the comments section.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Suburb changes in OMS

Please note that we have moved the suburb 'Kosmosdal' from Midrand to Centurion (under South Africa/Gauteng province)

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

New - MyProperty fixes spelling errors on search

We've made the iSearch (intelligent search) feature on MyProperty even more intelligent.
It will now suggest the correct area on a search if you've made a spelling error.
For example if you search for 'dynfern' it will suggest the correct 'Dainfern' for you.

Some other samples it will suggest the correct locations for (correct names in brackets):

Click on the links to view the actual results in MyProperty. As you can see, it is a quite accurate!


Partial searches now available on MyProperty iSearch

We've added a cool new feature to MyProperty's iSearch (intelligent search). You can now enter part of the area and it will highlight all possible matches as illustrated below.



Thursday, October 22, 2009

Don't forget to list your on show properties for this weekend

Don't forget to list your on show properties for this weekend - it attracts a lot of interest from visitors.
Your on show properties are automatically displayed on the MyProperty website - on show section. Currently we have 100-200 on show properties listed every week with the figure increasing.

To list a property for on show:
- in the OMS open up the listing;
- click on 'on show';
- add a new on show date, venue and directions and press save;

That's it, within a few minutes your listing will reflect as on show on the MyProperty website.



Did you have any success marketing your listings as on show and getting walk-in's as a direct result from that? Please tell us on our Client Testimonial Form.

Duplicate suburbs (Hout Bay, Western Cape)

Today we've moved all listings appearing under Cape Town/Hout Bay and Cape Town/Llandudno to Hout Bay/Hout Bay and Hout Bay/Llandudno.

Since Hout Bay is a town on its own the incorrect suburbs under Cape Town were removed.

MyProperty paging issue corrected

Many people complained about the way the paging works on the new MyProperty website. It used AJAX technology to update only the listings displayed when clicking on the page numbers in the search results (and not the completed page).
This resulted in visitors viewing a property say from page 5, when the click the back button in their browsers it jumped to page 1 of the search results - which is frustrating.
We have the 'view property in new window' link but maybe that link wasn't too obvious.

We've therefor changed it back to 'normal' web pages in favor of usability.



On a technical note:
This is one of my biggest frustrations with Ajax technology. Most people are used to using the back button in their browsers so your browsing history is completely lost.
We are however busy figuring this one out - rest assured we will find a solution.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

New FREE agent portfolio sites

Just when you thought you've seen it all! If you haven't already noticed, we've launched a new feature called - 'Agent Portfolio Websites'. It is free - and it is yet another industry first by the Entegral team!

Your Agent portfolio website is like your own personal real estate website which is usefull if you don't already have one of Entegral's template or custom build websites.
It features your profile (photo, logo, contact details and description), a contact form, featured property listings and links to all your listings per suburb and status.

How to access it: Open one of your property listings on www.myproperty.co.za, you will notice a new 'visit my portfolio website' next to your photo. Click on it, this opens up your portfolio website. It is a unique address you can use to give to clients or include in your email signature. It is unbranded and when visitors search listings here, it only filters for your own listings!

Link your domain! For only R300/year we will register a co.za domain for you, renew it on a yearly basis and link it to your portfolio website. E.g. if you register www.markholland.co.za we will link it to your profile site, when someone enters this address it opens up your portfolio site.
Add one of our cost effective email packages and you can have your own personal site, with unique domain name and email for under R100/month! (exluding OMS subscription).
If you'd like to register and link your own custom domain name to your profile please email the Entegral Helpdesk for info.


Thursday, October 8, 2009

OMS GIS Explorer to be launched

Great news today is that we are getting ready to launch the OMS GIS Explorer!
The OMS GIS explorer allows automatic mapping of property listings on a Google Map.
It furthermore has filter functionality to narrow down to a specific area, agent or property features (status, price, type etc). For our national clients this can for instance plot properties across the entire country for specific parameters you've set.

Our aim is to integrate additional views e.g.
- 'in which areas have I listed sole mandates in the last x months' or
- 'identify areas where agents or offices need to focus on getting mandates' or
- 'show my sold listings over the last 6 months' or
- 'show listings in a specific area or specific radius' or
- 'identify areas where I need to open franchise offices'

The possibilities are endless. The GIS Explorer will be a great tool for agents and their clients to for instance identify matching listings per filter criteria and map location.

We will launch the OMS GIS Explorer within the next couple of days.

MyProperty website updates

1. We've enabled your office website address on your office portfolio. This is pulled through from the OMS or from your feed if you use the OMS GRID import interface. This is a direct link to your website which will benefit your website SEO.
If you don't have your own Entegral-build website check out www.entegral.net for details - it links with the OMS and is cost effective to run!


2. We've enabled AUCTIONS portfolio links on your profile. This will automatically compile a list of suburbs where you have auctions, with quick links for visitors.




Tip: visitors can search for auction properties in MyProperty by simply searching with the auction keyword and area, e.g. 'cape town auction'.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Firefox image upload problem resolved - plus photo uploader update

We've fixed a Firefox browser problem with uploading photos on property listings.
An improved photo uploader was also loaded, the following updates were made:
  • Faster initial download/install time for new users;
  • Overall performance improvements including faster folder browsing;
  • Improved photo rotation operations;
  • Problems with support of cameras directly connected to the computer have been fixed;
  • Handling files on network drives works faster;

About the OMS property photo uploader
The OMS allows you to load an unlimited number of photos to property listings. Best of all, you can select all your photos for a particular property listing to be uploaded at once - the system will automatically resize your photos!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Increase file upload size for documents in news manager

We've increased the maximum allowed upload size for documents in the document manager for the news component. You can now upload documents (to be displayed as downloadable hyperlinks on your website) to just under 2MB (1910kb to be exact).


About the OMS news content editor:
The OMS news editor (available through the Marketing & Content menu / external news) allows you to load your own news articles to your website (if hosted by us). The built-in document manager allows you to upload files (e.g. PDF's) you want to make available as a downloadable file on the article.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

More MyProperty South Africa tweaks: property tag cloud

Today we've made some more backend tweaks on the new MyProperty website, and also enhanced the property tag cloud feature on the home page to include province links as indicated in the image below. Clicking on a province link or map area will highlight the particular province and display the most popular towns.
We've also made a few SEO enhancements and making improvements on the database for faster property search results.

Improved export to Excel on Active Properties

We have improved the export to Microsoft Excel function on the active properties screen in the OMS. The data layout in Excel is better and will also include all properties in the active listings view rather than the first or selected page (was a issue with some users).

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Improved download library for OMS

We've made available a much improved download library for our Enterprise (National/Group) clients. A 'new download library' link is available on the existing download library. We are busy transfering the files from the old to the new component. We will enable the new library tonight so all your offices/agents will be able to access the new component tomorrow.
The improved download library makes it easier for file uploads, to create folder structures and to rename or remove files:


More about the OMS Download Library:
The download library is an integrated part of the OMS and allows sharing of files between offices and agents in a group. It is currently offered to our Enterprise/National clients.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

MyProperty spam protection - no more unwanted enquiries

With the release of the new MyProperty South Africa website, we've implemented a new spam protection feature on property enquiries. Whenever someone makes an enquiry on one of your property listings, they need to complete a CAPTCHA or 'challenge response' field. Only when they enter the alphabetic characters correctly, the enquiry form is sent to you (through email, sms and OMS entry) .


Did you know?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

MyProperty featured property rotation

The MyProperty South Africa website featured property section gives estate agents excellent exposure to newly loaded property listings. It will rotate to new properties loaded every 60 minutes and take the last +- 10 properties loaded in the OMS or imported through our external interface. Be sure to load a couple of good quality photos and property description for your property to feature - the MyProperty engine is continuously tweaked to filter only the best quality properties on the home page.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

New MyProperty website updates

We've loaded a couple of updates to the New MyProperty website today including:
  • Performance improvements, iSearch function is now faster (text search area at the top);
  • Refine search (on property search results) now works a lot smoother;
  • Sometimes not all properties reflected in the search results;
  • Photo width on properties details. On some properties the main photo overlapped into the price/description area;
  • We've inserted an OMS login link back into the header;
We're getting there - thanks for everyone's feedback so far! We're not resting till everything is 100% correct.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

FNB Quicksell interface running smoothly

After sorting out a small bug in the FNB QuickSell Interface it now exports listings to the QuickSell website smoothly as can be seen in the screenshot below.


If you are signed up to export listings to the QuickSell website, you can mark those listings in the OMS online marketing screen.
If a listing you've previously marked didn't export to the site, simply open up a property and go to the online marketing screen - click the save button and the listing should be available in +-10-30 minutes on the Quicksell website.

Monday, September 21, 2009

MyProperty searches now shows latest listings first

The default search order of Property searches on the New MyProperty website have been changed to show the latest property listings first. This was done as a first step in an aim to improve the quality on the new website. Visitors still have the option to sort the results by price ascending or descending order.
Listings loaded in the last 15 days will get an automatic 'Just Listed!' banner to further promote them in the search results, as can be seen in the following screenshot:

Further updates to improve the quality of listings on the website may include but is not limited to: number of photos on a listing and property description & other features entered.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

New spellchecker on property features

We have added a new integrated spellchecker on the property features screen. Simply press the spellchecker button and the system will check your property description. Errors are highlighted in yellow with suggestion words and the option to ignore or add to your dictionary.
Every user in the OMS has their own custom dictionary - so words you add (e.g. your estate agency name) will only be used for you and no one else for future spellchecks.

New copy, paste, undo and redo buttons are also included and the property descripion, items included and excluded have been moved to the right side of the screen.


Referrals & Operational areas updates

Extra validation was inserted into the referral module - the system will now check that at least one contact number is entered before proceeding.
The referral module is currently offered integrated into the OMS for our Enterprise clients.


We've updated the opertional areas section under setup to allow for a all suburbs selection. This is usefull if you operate in all suburbs in a specific town. Operational areas are used in various parts of the OMS and client websites although it will mostly be used for future features in the OMS.


Improved news editor

We have loaded a new news manager on the OMS. The changes are mostly with the editor control and image manager which makes it a bit easier and faster to load and format news items and attach, resize and crop images.






Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Corrected status change problem on inactive property listings

We've corrected a problem on the OMS where listing mandates changed from inactive to active (e.g. for sale or rental) didn't save correctly.

Now easier to mark properties for export to Private Property and FNB Quicksell

If you are exporting your listings to Private Property or the FNB Quicksell website, you can now simply select a checkbox on the property listing to mark it for export.
Open up the listing, click on the [online marketing] tab, select the corresponding checkbox and you're done!
(You will off course need accounts with Private Property or Quicksell to export from the OMS)



OMS inline help

A little feature we are working on between all the other important stuff is inline help features for the OMS.
We've implemented it in the new property wizard screens so far. It allows direct help to the specific page or function you are viewing - no more browsing around in a help file trying to find the right answer to your problem.


Sunday, September 13, 2009

Updated OMS Property Wizard Capture

An improved Property Wizard module has been loaded on the OMS. The wizard has been extended to 9 easy steps and the screens cleaned up for easier capturing.

Improved validation on screens including better highlighting of required/problem fields with description of the validation failure:


Show date information can now also be captured as one of the steps of the property wizard:Online marketing screen provides an overview of all the websites where your property listing is syndicated to.


We've spent some time ensuring pages load faster and that the next/back navigation buttons work smoother.
The update is one of several updates to follow over the next few weeks to improve property listing capture and editing processes.