A bold take on real estate
SHANE is a Toronto real estate sales company founded and run by Shane Carslake. With over 220 different neighborhoods representing different backgrounds and lifestyles, the city area is a massive market for properties. SHANE works with thousands of listings and developments, giving their clients a full-service approach.
Very early on, SHANE’s initial goal was to heavily modify a WordPress listings theme called WP Residence and completely re-style user experience. They needed WordPress masters who’d be able to customize the theme in a quick and efficient manner. The company expected a bold, modern website that’d include the hottest web design trends, but, above all, run fast and provide all the information a potential client might look for.
Many Little Tweaks
After analyzing SHANE’s needs and requirements, the MPC team implemented a number of WordPress’s newest functionalities to take user experience to the next level. The first task was to re-style the single property page according to SHANE’s brand and the newest web design trends. At this stage, we’ve also rebuilt the website’s header and added breadcrumb navigation to the menu.
Visually, the website has been changing piece by piece, as more and more tweaks were introduced. But the list of ideas to take the product even further grew bigger every day, as SHANE was always interested in improving the experience for their clients.
Soon it became evident that instead of introducing little changes here and there, a complete overhaul was necessary and it’d be easier to code it from scratch rather than try to bend WP Residence beyond its limits. Having collaborated with a handful of developers in the past, SHANE needed a team that’d bring extra value & dedication to the new product. That’s how a closer partnership with MPC came to life.
After discussing the new features and results SHANE was after, we decided to start by improving the website’s search engine. To provide a fast and intuitive tool, MPC stepped away from WordPress and designed a custom, independent solution. A personalized filtering solution was added as well.
Next, the team focused on an advanced, complex widget solution that’d boost the user experience in many ways. The first one was a social media widget that introduced an option to share a single listing on a selected platform. Simultaneously, we’ve added a bit.ly widget for branded smart links.
Each listing also features an infobox widget covering the closest public transport available, linking to Toronto Transit Commission for schedules and routes.
To coordinate the open house events organized by SHANE, MPC created a widget informing about the dates and times of these meetings. It’s also integrated with AddEvent.com, which automatically schedules an appointment in the client’s phone calendar. AddEvent supports all mobile phone brands and email apps for maximum convenience.
Taking It To The Next Level
SHANE aimed to give its clients a thorough overview of the presented property. With the location being the essential aspect of any real estate, the team wanted to offer a total image. To go beyond usual property details such as the number of floors and bathrooms. To make the client feel even closer to their future home and reduce the need for further research.
Instead of having the potential buyers check out the neighborhood on their own, they decided to go the extra mile themselves. For a single listing page, MPC developed a solution based on Google Distance Matrix API that shows parks, recreation centers, and schools (including private, catholic, public & alternative) within a certain radius from the property. It calculates the average time to get to each location on foot and provides a direct link to an external webpage for further details. To reduce the costs of using API, all data is imported to a local database.
By importing all this data to the website, SHANE has provided its clients with more information than a regular real estate broker. The buyers see a full image of the lifestyle in the neighborhood and all its benefits. These factors are often crucial when deciding to buy a home, especially for families focused on children’s education and activity.
A Unique Neighborhood Map
One of the most exceptional features on SHANE’s new website is the interactive map of the city based on GoogleMaps. While fulfilling the informational purpose, the map also serves as a menu for selecting a neighborhood to search within. MPC has provided a tailor-made backend solution to manually set up the shape of each area up to the tiniest detail.
The neighborhoods are grouped into boroughs for easier navigation. Each area features a guide on its lifestyle, background, schooling, recreation, transportation and history. This section is followed by a list of present and past listings and/or developments displayed in a carousel.
SHANE’s website got a complete makeover, both in frontend and backend. It has completely revolutionized the way the company’s clients seek real-estate opportunities. From an interactive neighborhood map and search engine combined with filtering options to features introducing local schools, public transport, parks, and recreation areas, the website serves as an ultimate guide to the Toronto lifestyle.
By introducing new solutions and features, SHANE has brought its clients closer to real-estate listings than ever. They offer a product that goes way beyond the four walls and a roof. Also, they’ve proven to be a modern, bold company that understands the complicated, ever-changing cityscape and can address different lifestyles, expectations and needs.
A fresh & bold take on real-estate sales website that elevates the idea of selling a lifestyle.
I have worked with many website creators in the past, all whom I have had to part ways with. As none of them were able to implement my designs and vision for SHANE.