Today’s Times reports that Next, the clothing retailer, has posted a sales increase of 3.3 percent in the three months to October 29th.

Good for them.

So why are eMoov blogging about the performance of a chain of clothes shops?

Well, because buyer habits are buyer habits regardless of the product.

What do we mean?

Next’s quarterly results hide a trend. That trend is in a decline in High Street footfall and a marked increase in online shopping. In fact store sales dropped 3.3 percent whilst online sales rocketed 16.9 percent.

See where we’re going with this now?

Exactly. If fewer people are traipsing into Town Centres but more are using the internet to shop, it demonstrates a growing online culture. And that culture will continue to manifest itself in all industries, even (perhaps especially) estate agency.

As a property seller, if your buyer is indisputably going to see your home online, why would you need to go to a High Street agent to sell your home when an online estate agent will display your property on all of the property portals that around 14 million property buyers search through each and every month?

After all, whilst their offices are gathering cobwebs around the front door at an increasing rate, they will still insist on charging you a chunk of your property’s hard won equity for doing exactly the same job.

High Street estate agents are becoming irrelevant. And we’re glad to bring you the good news.

The property industry may not want to admit as such, but the writing is on the wall and it’s a virtual wall at that.

One of Britain’s biggest retailers is proof enough.

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