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Case Study Royal LePage

Enhanced search functionality provides more relevant results

As one of the most established names in the Canadian real estate market, Royal LePage has provided high quality service to its customers since its inception in 1913. Dissatisfied with the functionality and performance of their existing website, Royal LePage sought to rebuild their web presence using cutting edge technologies and best practices. The goal was to maintain the overall look and feel, while making enhancements to ensure an intuitive and rich user experience.

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Challenge accepted

To rebuild the Royal LePage Commercial website using state of the art technology that enhances the user experience and boasts new features including geolocation, improved search functionality and a better solution for the management of content and property listings.

Solution delivered

FD Solutions developed a website solution that permitted agility and decreased maintenance costs, while concentrating on accessibility, content parity, high performance and device-agnostic and responsive design.

Technologies

  • Microsoft SQL Server
  • Windows Server
  • ASP.NET 4 MVC
  • HTML5 / CSS3
  • High Availability Load Balancers
  • Microsoft SQL Server
  • Windows Server
  • ASP.NET 4 MVC
  • HTML5 / CSS3
  • High Availability Load Balancers
  • Microsoft SQL Server
  • Windows Server
  • ASP.NET 4 MVC
  • HTML5 / CSS3
  • High Availability Load Balancers
  • Microsoft SQL Server
  • Windows Server
  • ASP.NET 4 MVC
  • HTML5 / CSS3
  • High Availability Load Balancers

Benefits of deliverable

The website solution provided agents with improved tools.

Agents have the ability to increase interaction with their clients.

Real-time listings are available to agents in the field.

Easy to manage Properties Wanted listings.

FD's solution enables an optimal experience on any mobile or tablet device and increased usability of the website.

Solution details

To improve the user experience, FD Solutions first remediated known functional issues relating to searching and performance, and the website's lack of responsiveness when accessed on a mobile device. Royal LePage was also eager to introduce features such as geolocation to display customized content based on user location, provide more detailed pricing for the property listings, improve search capabilities, and enhance Search Engine Optimization to drive traffic and page views.

FD developed a website solution that focused on high performance, accessibility, content parity (the same content and functionality on all platforms), and a device-agnostic and responsive design that allowed for a rich intuitive experience on any desktop or mobile device. These elements, together with FD's best practices for developing software solutions, allowed for easier and more cost-effective site maintenance and the ability to efficiently implement changes or new website features.

Migrating to a modern platform, FD selected ASP.NET 4 MVC and the Web API framework, as well as HTML5 to deliver the improved user experience Royal LePage needed. HTML5 Geolocation was also used as the first part of a two-tiered geolocation strategy. For browsers that did not support HTML5 Geolocation, the user's IP address was used against a geo-IP database. Using either method, the website then tailored its content based on the user's location, providing customized property, agent and office information that is relevant to the user. Geolocation and integration with Google Maps produced a personalized view of clustered property listings, agents, and offices to aid users in easily finding their desired information. FD also implemented changes to the search functionality to allow for a more intuitive search, including the ability to search for agents by partial names and nicknames.

To increase usability for Royal LePage agents, FD constructed a more robust solution for the management of the agents' "Properties Wanted" listings. This feature provided a new interface that enables them to add, edit, delete and archive property-listing information. Furthermore, FD implemented a mini-CMS to allow Royal LePage administration to easily and quickly manage website press release and testimonial content.

A flexible fluid site was architected based on the Responsive Web Design best practices adopted at FD, in order to support the full range of desktop and mobile devices. The responsive design, along with an enhanced look and feel, including improvements to pop-ups and page layouts, has significantly improved the user experience.

A few words about the project

Feedback

Working with your team has been a delight. Your creative solution to our complex technical problem addressed both our scalability and budgetary needs.

— Director, Operations at Royal LePage

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