2020 was a year no one could’ve predicted. E-shopping has been accelerated by years and a whole new segment of customers has been forced online.

Meanwhile, marketplaces have had to deal with new unpredictable moderation challenges as illustrated very poignantly by the spike on this google trends graph showing the past years’ search volumes for facemasks.

Facemask search term spike

The entire world has had to get used to a market that was very volatile and extremely sensitive to any new development in the pandemic, good as well as bad.

Now however, at the end of 2020, there’s light at the end of the tunnel. The vaccine is finally within reach and hopefully social distancing and face masks will soon be a curious terms in a bizarre chapter of our history books.

A return to “normality” will, however, not erase the incredible jump the world has done towards a fully digitized society.

What will the new world order mean for marketplaces going forward? What can eCommerce, sharing economy and online platforms in general expect from 2021?

We’ve asked 8 industry experts to give their trend prediction for the new year.

“The Coronavirus pandemic has forced marketplaces to adapt, almost instantaneously in some cases. When traffic collapsed, some companies extended listings and dropped all of their fees. Others launched new products to bring them closer to their customers or users.

After the initial shock in Q2, horizontals are setting records in listings, and growth again in traffic. Many auto sites have rebounded quickly, and are seeing a V-shaped recovery. In real estate, there’s a move toward transactions, especially in rentals. Recruitment sites have been hit hardest and face an uphill battle.

The AIM Group is seeing a lot of new digital marketplaces launch. While many are focusing on b-to-b, verticals are evolving fast as well.

Manufacturers are offering used-car marketplaces, and digital dealers like Carvana and Cazoo are threatening traditional dealerships and marketplaces. In real estate, reducing friction and supporting transactions is a must, especially in the rental field. Recruitment is using AI and better networking tools to improve. And horizontals are fast moving into all aspects of transactions: payment, escrow, delivery, and new e-commerce tools.

Marketplaces need to evolve. Quickly. Payment, finance, insurance, delivery, and other consumer-focused services are becoming critical elements of a full-service marketplace. The pandemic is accelerating digitization to a previously unimaginable extent. And those who focus on the pain points of their customers will win.”

Katja Riefler, Principal, Managing Director, AimGroup

What challenges will the marketplace industry face in 2021 and how can they solve them?

The biggest problem for marketplaces in 2021, during the pandemic and in the likely economic downturn, will be to convert people who have a longer research/browsing period than before. People might have the intent to buy, but priorities and financial pressure might postpone those purchases.

If your product can be replaced by other options, the increased research period will increase the risk of losing customers.

There are a number of things you can do to overcome this challenge. For instance: Offer delayed payment. Offer additional value, 3 for the price of 2, increase or establish referral commissions, lower the price on your main product and compensate by selling more to same customer later, create a community between buyers etc.

What technology will be a must in 2021 and why?

People have more options and less time to look at each, so things need to be fast and they need to work. There will need to be a higher focus on AI and new ways of discovering the right products. Nail the complete user-journey, not just the product sold.

What opportunities will there be in 2021 and what mindset or approach will companies need to benefit from them?

Building companies will be easier and faster for everyone, so find ways to stay agile and test out many things as you go. The world is constantly changing so your way of doing business must always be challenged and optimized before you are forced to change by your competitors. – Digitizing something analog is not enough anymore, we need to find new ways of doing business, ways that weren’t previously possible. Creating new ways of doing business between parties will win the new age of companies.

What could be a potential game changer in 2021 for the marketplace industry?

International payments have always been hard to pull off, but I believe some players are now working very hard to capture this market. – Adding guarantees and insurance when selling products and services could also add trust to a marketplace, and I foresee some players become successful doing this.

Daniel Beck, Co-founder & CEO at Coliving

What challenges will the marketplace industry face in 2021 and how can they solve them?

Let’s hope 2021 won’t be as challenging as 2020 for businesses in general. Marketplaces haven’t had as hard a time as many though – a lot of them didn’t have a ‘bricks and mortar’ element to their structure anyway, and technology is embedded, which came in handy in a year where everything went online overnight.

However, in 2021, marketplaces will now be competing with traditional businesses who were forced to finally innovate during the pandemic. There also might be a degree of a return to normality, which they will need to brace themselves for too. But the good news is, a lot of the advancements and changes in behavior we’ve seen in the last year that benefit the marketplace industry will never be undone.

What technology will be a must in 2021 and why?

Fraudsters had a bumper year in 2020 with many people inexperienced with online transactions being forced to shop, work and enjoy their leisure time online. Anti-fraud technology has always been advisable, in 2021 it will be a must.

What opportunities will there be in 2021 and what mindset or approach will companies need to benefit from them?

It’s as though everything has been thrown up in the air and we’re waiting to see where it lands. But wherever things do land, the marketplaces that will benefit – and in many cases survive – will not be the ‘fittest’ as many people say when they misquote Darwin, but the most “able best to adapt and adjust to the changing environment”. That’s the mindset that’s important: not being tied to a company, a name, a URL – but a purpose, and because of that being able to be more agile.

What could be a potential game changer in 2021 for the marketplace industry?

The same game changer for all of us – a vaccine. And that’s suddenly, at the end of 2020 looking a lot more likely. Hopefully we will be able to look back and see 2020 as a dark cloud, but one which had a silver lining. For marketplaces, that silver lining is rapid, mass adoption of digital technology. We’ve moved years in months, so from now on, it’s only going to get more interesting.

Thanks to technology and digitalization we have come seven years in seven months during the current pandemic. People are more comfortable working remotely and in virtual teams. The world of work has changed and the status quo ante which saw people crowding into city centers between 9am and 5pm every day is not coming back. Both employers and employees are demanding more flexibility and all the tools are there to make it possible. The genie is not going back into the bottle.

At the same time, physical meetings will take on even more importance and value as we exit the current COVID-19 crisis.

Companies who have managed to focus on what customers really need, while stripping away unnecessary bureaucracy, personnel and costs will be the winners as we enter the new year. 2021 will see the growth of the project economy: organizations will hire the specific skills that they need in order to carry out specific – often time limited – jobs. At the same time, automation will pose an increasing threat to those who do not have the knowledge, flexibility or abilities to navigate the new landscape.

Glen Hodgson, Secretary General, Plattformsföretagen and CEO, Free Trade Europa

COVID-19 has accelerated digitalization levels by years. As a result, there has been an influx of new marketplace users. The new users can particularly be found among an older demographic and in emerging markets.  

Within this group, there’s overall a very low level of tech comprehension which means we have seen an increase in vulnerable internet users who are exposed to potential fraud and abuse. Keeping this user group safe is a challenge that will continue far into 2021 and beyond.  

Additionally, it will take time before the COVID-19 vaccine has reached high penetration. This means that there will be a continued risk for various fraudulent offers around medical protection and treatments.  

Even with a vaccine, it will take time for the hospitality industry to recover. As such Marketplaces with a high focus on travel and holiday homes could still face large challenges and will need to think creatively to push through until the world returns to “business as usual”.  

In 2021 we’ll continue to see a convergence between B2C and B2B. Unfortunately, many marketplaces mistakenly think that B2B is risk-free and does not face trust and safety issues. This is not at all the case and to be successful platforms will need to put measures in place to safeguard their users in this space as well.  

In the past years, we’ve seen automated text automation is becoming quite widespread.

In 2021 I predict Image automation will be used by more and more Marketplaces in various verticals. We will even see an uptick in the requirement for automated video moderation as video becomes an even bigger factor when selling on marketplaces.  

2021 will continue to be challenging to many businesses, but there’s also a range of opportunities for agile companies who dare to move fast.

Young demographics are trending towards a more sustainable approach in their consumer behavior benefiting many marketplaces and sharing economy ventures. Also offering and integrating payments and delivery services is becoming a hygiene factor. Finally, including various insurances and guarantees in your service offerings is becoming more common (for used cars for instance). 

Additionally, short video is trending strongly in popularity among young consumers. This could have a huge impact on parts of the industry opening up new opportunities, but also triggering many new trust and safety concerns.

How will you ensure that videos are appropriate, accurate and of the quality you need? 

Petter Nylander, CEO at Besedo

In 2021, one of the biggest challenges the marketplace industry will continue facing is how to deal with the implications of COVID-19. On the other hand, this new world order also presents tremendous new opportunities for marketplaces. Can services earlier offered offline be brought online instead? Can innovations be made in delivery? What kind of previously neglected opportunities are there in domestic (or even virtual) travel? And so on.

Technology solving these dilemmas will be a must in 2021. This means integrations to solutions like video conferencing tools and new delivery options. However, the most significant opportunities likely lie in business model innovation.

Juho Makkonen, Founder of Sharetribe

What challenges will the marketplace industry face in 2021 and how can they solve them?

As the entire ecommerce industry is re-inventing itself for a post-COVID reality, we are likely to see both challenges and opportunities emerge. In our experience, the defining challenge shall be the industry’s approach to the development of authentic customer experiences. This will touch on both the principles of service (and how to manage communication at scale) and that of personalization (and how to build trust and value from vast datasets). The solution to these challenges is to blend the capabilities of technologies (such as the adoption of AI) with an agile business mentality which is willing to experiment and innovate.

What technology will be a must in 2021 and why?

Technology is a tool. In 2021 it will be a ‘must’ to have a resilient mindset, a set of nimble processes, and technology that will allow the business to reduce operating expenditure whilst improving customer experience across multiple touch points. Artificial Intelligence will allow marketplaces to personalize the shopping experience but also to offer unique services such as conversational shopping and support. Increasingly, AI will help marketplaces predict behavior and take better, data-led decisions on pricing, stock and customer targeting.

What opportunities will there be in 2021 and what mindset or approach will companies need to benefit from them?

The biggest opportunity in 2021 will be to use big data sets from the marketplace to continuously improve and evolve the marketplace itself. This will happen in two ways: (a) autonomously by having AI processes which re-build, re-price, re-target and re-organize stores based on real-time trends, and (b) manually, by providing new levels of data insights to management teams who can now take more informed decisions to improve their offering.

What could be a potential game changer in 2021 for the marketplace industry?

The marketplace of tomorrow will be AI led. It will offer customer-centric search results that are personalized on the fly. It will retarget potential customers interested in the products for sale and create a more efficient sales process. It will ensure that all conversational communication is personalized and is constant across multiple channels and devices. The latter will be led by Virtual Agents who will curate the shopping experience and serve the customer without human interaction in 60% of the time.

Dr. Gege Gatt, CEO at EBO

Learn how to moderate without censoring

Why moderating content without censoring users demands consistent, transparent policies.


This is Besedo

Global, full-service leader in content moderation

We provide automated and manual moderation for online marketplaces, online dating, sharing economy, gaming, communities and social media.

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Over the years of helping online marketplaces moderate their real estate sections, we’ve gathered a long list of best practices for content moderation rules and guidelines specific to this industry.

If you work with a real estate site or platform you know that you need to keep a close eye on the user-generated content published by users. If you don’t, your site quickly turns from a helpful tool for smooth interactions between renters and landlords to a scam infested spam forum.

Today we share some actionable guidelines on what to direct your content moderation efforts at. You can use them to increase the quality of listings, protect your users and hopefully increase the conversion rates of your real estate site.

Edit or reject ads with contact details

While the whole industry should slowly be moving towards sites that monetize and provide value through value-added services, most sites are not there yet.

Unless your site already has a unique and strong offering of additional value, it’s likely still relying on sellers who use it as a lead generator. If that’s the case you should remove all mention of phone nr, name, and email or physical addresses to prevent platform leakage.

Unconventional payment methods

Unless it’s your USP, all ads that mention unconventional payment methods should be removed. This is true both for swap and exchange suggestions, such as a car or cellphone in exchange for accommodation.

The rule applies to unorthodox payment methods such as Bitcoins and other electronic currencies.

We advise against allowing such reimbursement options as the value comparison can be hard to get right and there’s a risk one of the two parties will end up dissatisfied. You don’t want those negative feelings associated with your platform and you definitely do not want to get involved in disputes concerning unconventional payment methods.

Finally, there’s also the additional risk that some of the commodities, offered in exchange, has been acquired illegally and you don’t want your platform involved in what could essentially be seen as fence activities.

Whether you monetize your real estate platform by charging listing fees or not, you should remove listings with more than one item in.

If you charge a listing fee, sellers who post multiple items in one go are circumventing the fee and negatively impacting your revenue. If you don’t, listings with many different offerings are still really bad as they make it harder for users to find relevant results when searching for accommodation, decreasing the user experience.

Links or references to competitor sites

It goes without saying that it’s best practices for content moderation to remove or edit any mention of competitors immediately, particularly if they include outbound links.

It’s bad enough with bouncing visitors, it’s even worse if the content on your site is actively referring them to rivals in your space.

Pay attention to listing prices

We have an entire article focused on things to look out for to prevent scams on real estate sites, but one of the things we haven’t discussed in depth is listing prices.

Most areas will have a pretty baseline price range for similarly sized accommodations. For cities that are extra prone to be targeted by scammers, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with this range. Scammers often offer up apartments for rent at too good to be true prices. If you know the realistic range, it’s easier for you to catch them before they get to your customers.

We are currently working on building out a pricing database for some of the bigger cities in the world. If this project sounds interesting, be sure to subscribe to our blog and get informed when we have more information available.

Take a hard stance against discrimination

You’re probably already aware of the multiple lawsuits Airbnb has faced due to various instances of discrimination that’s occurred through their platform.

To avoid getting into the same legal trouble and the ensuing PR storm as well as to provide all your users the best possible experience through your site, we advise taking a hard stance against any discriminatory listings. Reject any listings that singles out people of specific race, religion, or sexual orientation etc.

Prohibit rentals that enable prostitution

For anyone who has followed the case of backpage.com and how its owners were indicted for earning over $500 million in prostitution-related revenue from the site, it should be second nature to have processes in place for finding and removing any content that facilitate prostitution.

Apart from the moral implications, allowing prostitution is illegal in many countries and could land your company (and you) in both legal and PR troubles.

If your platform isn’t offering hotel rooms or vacations homes, it’s often a good and safe practice to reject rooms-for-the-night type listings. That type of listings is often advertising accommodations used for indecent interactions.

Remove duplicate items

Users will sometimes submit the same listing multiple time. Why they submit duplicates may vary, but the most common reason is to try and bump up their ranking on your site. When users try circumventing rules, it’s never good as it usually impacts either user experience, violates legal commitments or, as in the case with duplicates, could get your site penalized in Google rankings.  

The best cause of action is to remove duplicates from your site directly before they get published, this way you ensure the quality of your site and avoid a messy search experience for other users.

Re-categorize listings placed in the wrong category

Vacation homes in the permanent residency category or for-sale houses in the for-rent section, all contribute to irrelevant search results and negative user experiences.

It’s important to remove or re-categorize misplaced listings quickly to ensure a good experience for users.

Reject listings with poor descriptions

Depending on the category, the required details on the commodity for rent or sale may differ. What’s always true though is that the description needs to be accurate and descriptive. Information like location, price, minimum rent time etc. should be a given. But sellers are often in a hurry and don’t want to spend too much time on the admin work that goes into writing a good listing that converts.

Make sure you educate your users to create proper descriptions and titles for their listings, otherwise both bounce rate and conversion rates may suffer. In a study we did on user behavior we found that irrelevant content leads to 73% of users never returning to the site again.

Following these guidelines outlined above will help you eliminate fraudulent listings and improve the quality of content as well as the overall user experience of your site.

Learn how to moderate without censoring

Why moderating content without censoring users demands consistent, transparent policies.


4 most common refusal reasons on real estate sites in 2019

Now that we have gone through the best practices for content moderation let’s also quickly disclose where we find the biggest content moderation challenges lie for real estate sites.

In 2018 these were the top 4 rejection reasons for the real estate sites we help.

  • Multiple products
  • Duplicates
  • Wrong category
  • Poor description

As you can see most of the rejected items affect either user experience, and as a result conversion rate, or they impact your revenue more directly, as is the case with multiple products, where users circumvent the listing fee.

Curious about which other listings we reject for real estate sites? Check out our presentation 9 listings to remove from your real estate site to optimize for monetization from Property Portal Watch in Bangkok 2018 where we go into more details.

Want to know more about best practices for content moderation or expert advice on how to set up and optimize the content moderation on your site? Get in touch and hear how we can help out.

This is Besedo

Global, full-service leader in content moderation

We provide automated and manual moderation for online marketplaces, online dating, sharing economy, gaming, communities and social media.

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Running an online marketplace comes with a bunch of challenges, and there are a lot of different pieces that need to fall into place for complete success. However, what many sites seem to struggle with is to actually monetize on their efforts.  

There are different ways to go about it – some of the more common solutions are to either sell more ad space, introduce premium content or look to expand your offer with consultancy services etc. – but will these activities really have the desired effect, if the content quality and offers on your site are not optimized?

Think about it, it makes sense to optimize your own site and offerings before asking someone to pay for using them.

56% of buyers would buy the product in a good listing

We know that buyers are attracted by good content, in fact; only 20% would buy the product in an ad with poor description and 73% were unlikely to return to the site. Compared to 56% and 37% for a good listing. And we also know that sellers are attracted by a big pool of potential buyers, so why not prioritize making sure to offer both buyers and sellers the best possible experience? 

Ensuring that your product provides value to your users will make convincing them to stay and pay a much easier job. 

At the Property Portal Watch Conference in Bangkok, we revealed the top 9 listings to remove from your real estate site in order to optimize for monetization. Here is the full recording of the presentation: 

If you are interested in how content moderation can help optimize your site for monetization or want to learn more about us and our services, please contact us at hi@besedo.com

Learn how to moderate without censoring

Why moderating content without censoring users demands consistent, transparent policies.


This is Besedo

Global, full-service leader in content moderation

We provide automated and manual moderation for online marketplaces, online dating, sharing economy, gaming, communities and social media.

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Real estate listings’ sites are just as susceptible to scams as other online marketplaces. Here are some tips on how to prevent fraud and what content moderation teams should look for.

When people start looking for homes to rent or buy, the internet is the first place they begin their search. And, as with other types of classified sites, scammers are also using real estate listings to extract money from potential buyers and renters.

The problem, as with many online marketplace scams, is that they’re not always that easy to detect. Here are some things real estate site owners should be aware of from a content management perspective, and a few ways to keep your users safe.

Fake Photos

It almost goes without saying, but a lack of photography on a property website is completely nuts! But harder to detect, and a lot more common are instances when scammers list pictures of properties they don’t own. In fact, often they’ll use the same pictures on different sites, listed in several different locations. A way to prevent this is to set up a filter that detects words and phrases commonly used in scams – which trigger manual review when they’re posted. Moderators can then do a quick Google search to see if the image is also posted elsewhere and to confirm the validity of the listing.

Overseas Landlords

While many genuine investors and landlords will own property in other countries, being able to flag discrepancies between where a landlord or seller says they are, and where they actually are, offers your users an additional layer of security. That’s one of the reasons we introduced geolocation filters to our Implio tool last year. Additionally, scammers operating under this guise will typically claim to be from a trustworthy organization: such as the UN, the military, or may even claim they’re working away as missionaries. Trigger terms like these should be on your moderation filter list.

Multiple Listings and duplicate images

Some landlords or vendors may list the same property more than once. This can be common when they’re particularly keen to promote a specific property using different keywords, and while this should also be handled through good moderation practices, it isn’t strictly deceptive. However, when the same piece of real estate is listed as being available in different locations, then a scammer is most definitely at work.

Requested Payments

While the topics listed above are arguably easier to screen for, less obvious, and perhaps more common, are requests for payment; like an upfront holding fee deposit or a payment demand for a showing. In instances like these, if your site has an in-app messaging service, with the right moderation service, you’ll be able to flag telltale requests for payment via PayPal, Western Union, or MoneyGram; unsolicited payments or overpayments made to the user.

It’s always important to reinforce to your users that extreme caution must be exercised when transferring any sum of money, particularly overseas. But scammers are savvy and many will encourage users to take the conversation over to personal email. In cases like these, the best thing you as the site owner can do is to raise awareness among your users.

Ultimately, the vast majority of fraudsters are trying to get users to send them money for a property that probably doesn’t exist or has nothing to do with them whatsoever. Detection is always the best form of prevention. To find out more about how Besedo can help your real estate business, please get in touch.

Or learn more about more content challenges for real estate sites.

Learn how to moderate without censoring

Why moderating content without censoring users demands consistent, transparent policies.


This is Besedo

Global, full-service leader in content moderation

We provide automated and manual moderation for online marketplaces, online dating, sharing economy, gaming, communities and social media.

Form background

The real-estate market is boiling and as property portals grow larger, sellers and agents get more creative in making their ads stand out among thousands of listings on a particular site.

The most simple tactic to bump up listings on top of the flow is to simply spam the marketplace. Every time you post the ad it will appear on top of the page, making it more likely to get seen by potential buyers or renters. Unfortunately, it will also create a pretty large number of duplicates.

From a site-owner’s point of view it can be tempting to turn a blind eye to this practice. The more ads on your site, the better. Right?

In fact, it’s not that easy. There are several problems that come with allowing duplicate listings which can, in the long run, affect the bottom line of your business. This blog post is focusing on the property market, but this is just as true in other verticals such as vehicles or jobs.

Reasons to remove duplicates from your real-estate marketplace

1. Search Engine Ranking

SEO on marketplaces and classifieds sites is complex for a number of reasons, like the design and optimization of url-structures, creating backlinks and inclusion of keywords in user generated content, to mention a few. Duplicate listings only add to the challenge. If there are two or more pieces of content with the same title, photo and description, search engines won’t know which of the two is more relevant and should rank higher. This is often due to duplicate meta tags, which Google despises. Meta tags usually consist of elements in the title and description, which means that two listings with the same content will get the same, or very similar meta data. This will directly affect your ranking.

2. The Risk of Becoming a Scammer Hotbed

A site with a lot of duplicate listings signals bad control over what type of content is being published. This is a dream situation for any scammer and your marketplace can easily become a hot target for fraudsters who want to abuse you and your users. This reputation can spread pretty fast in scammer-communities and before you know it you might be out of control for real. A well-moderated site is the best way to keep scammers away.

3. User Experience and Behavior

The attention span of your consumers is getting shorter all the time and users browsing through your listings, only to discover repeatedly duplicated ads, will without a doubt get annoyed. They are less likely to take desired actions and return to your site, and more likely to tell their friends about the negative experience. Your listings are your assets and you should treat them with great care if you want to build a reputable marketplace with a growing base of returning customers. This was very clear in a user-survey conducted earlier this year, which showed that irrelevant content was the number one issue turning customers away from classifieds sites. Read the full report here.


One of the largest challenges for marketplaces and classifieds sites is to build trust, and a well-groomed, moderated portal is the best way to make your users feel safe. Unfortunately, duplicates are a very common phenomena and something every marketplace with ambitions should take seriously. Protect your users and grow your business – remove the dupes from your site.

Learn how to moderate without censoring

Why moderating content without censoring users demands consistent, transparent policies.


This is Besedo

Global, full-service leader in content moderation

We provide automated and manual moderation for online marketplaces, online dating, sharing economy, gaming, communities and social media.

Form background

We have handled real estate listings since we started doing content moderation for classifieds sites. In that time, we have encountered almost every issue the category faces. We keep a close eye on how the challenges develop and we are ready to provide solutions when new issues surface.

Below we have collected a list of the 5 biggest issues we see within real estate listings right now. 

An open door in a dark room
Photo by Dima Pechurin on Unsplash

Current problems within real estate listing

1. Scams and frauds

People looking for a place to live can be pretty desperate and are easy targets for scammers.

One of the most common scams on real estate sites is being asked for a deposit without viewing the apartment. Often the scammer will apply urgency by explaining that others have viewed the apartment, and that the only way to secure it now will be to hand out the deposit.

Since it is often very hard to get a good apartment, especially in the bigger cities some people may fall for this and send the money. The scammer collects the fee, and the would-be tenant never hears another word from them. Most likely, the apartment never existed or didn’t belong to the scammer.

2. Circumventing paid features by posting in the wrong categories

Since real estate is a lucrative business, many websites earn a good part of their revenue from these listings. They charge for ads posted in the category or charging for buyer/seller communication.

A rule of thumb here at Besedo is that if a website charges for a feature, someone will attempt to circumvent the cost. That holds true in this case as well. We see many people posting their ads in the wrong category to avoid the fee, and we see people adding their contact details to the ad allowing readers to contact them for free outside of the site.

3. Incorrect data

Some advertisers may not be completely honest with the data they enter in their adverts. Often either the price has been presented unclear,ly or the location has been exaggerated.

Advertisers may write a weekly price rather than a monthly one in order to make the deal seem more attractive. And despite an apartment being 30 minutes outside London, it might still be listed under “London apartments” for better visibility and attract tenants.

4. Duplicate pictures or ads

In order to stay on top of the lists users may post their ads multiple times, resulting in duplicates. This is not good for the user experience and could be harmful in terms of SEO.

A duplicate picture could also be a sign that the apartment in the ad is not actually genuine. If someone has used a stock photo or stolen the picture from another listing, it is a good idea to be on high alert when reviewing the ad as it is highly suspicious that the advertiser cannot provide their own picture of the place they are selling or renting out.

5. Referral or contact detail schemes

Some advertisers will on purpose list houses, which are already listed by real brokers in order to get a referral fee. Other times you will see people posting properties that aren’t even real in order to collect contact details of potential tenants/buyers that they can then sell off either to real estate agencies as leads or to scammers that will abuse the information.

The more grey zone version of this practice is when agencies post first-class properties at a great price that always ends up being sold just before the potential tenant/buyer gets in touch. This way, the agency collects details of interested parties, and they can then present with similar properties but at a slightly higher cost.

Some issues faced by the real estate category are more severe than others, but they have one thing in common. They all impact the user experience negatively. The first step to combat these challenges is to understand which are present on your site and how they manifest themselves. The next step of course is to decide how to deal with them.

This is Besedo

Global, full-service leader in content moderation

We provide automated and manual moderation for online marketplaces, online dating, sharing economy, gaming, communities and social media.

Form background