The increasing trend towards long-term renting in Scotland has helped the country’s top lettings portal to its highest-ever monthly web traffic.
Challenging conditions in the property sales and mortgages market, as well as changing attitudes towards renting in Scotland, have been reflected in Citylets’ web traffic figures for August, which show the number of visitors has risen by almost a quarter on the previous year.
The stats reveal that there were 24% more visitors to www.citylets.co.uk in August 2011 than August 2010. The result – which is Citylets’ best on record – also placed the site at 57 in a list of the most-visited UK property websites according to Experian Hitwise, the online competitive intelligence agency.
Thomas Ashdown, founder and managing director of Citylets, said: “There is no doubt that renting is becoming an increasing feature of Scottish society, due to the ongoing challenges being seen in property sales market. Mortgages are still difficult for many would-be buyers to secure and these people are choosing to stay long-term in rental properties instead.
“The number of visitors to citylets.co.uk in August was up significantly at 24% on the levels we saw in 2010 and this strong demand for rented accommodation shows no sign of diminishing any time soon. The strong demand for properties means we have also seen a rise in the average rents being achieved in Scotland, as well as a surge in enquiries for properties – and this has allowed us to establish ourselves as the most visited residential lettings website in the UK.
“We’re now well on course to smash our target of 3 million visitors to www.citylets.co.uk before the end of the year and look forward to building on our strong performance in 2012.”
Mr Ashdown has also attributed Citylets’ growth to a recent high profile advertising campaign which saw the site featured nationally during ad breaks during ITVs flagship show The X-Factor in August.
Hitwise is the web’s leading online competitive intelligence agency analysing the internet usage of up to 8 million users daily. The agency analyses data provided by leading Internet Service Providers to provide a range of industry-standard metrics relating to the viewing of websites – including page requests, visits, average visit length, search terms and visitor behaviour.
www.citylets.co.uk was launched in late 1999 and is Scotland’s most successful lettings portal. Its quarterly report is the country’s only detailed and independent barometer of the rental market, based on over 60,000 annual lettings from more than 400 agents and is now a respected resource among investors, landlords and letting agencies. Citylets also operates in Greater Belfast and other parts of N Ireland.