Some real estate folks think of Redfin as a discounter.
This seems so 1997 to us. No one thinks of E-Trade as a discount stock brokerage; that’s Schwab. No one thinks of Amazon as a discount bookstore; that’s Half-Price Books. E-Trade is an online stock brokerage; Amazon is an online retailer.
Similarly, the primary difference between Redfin and other real estate brokerages is that Redfin is an online brokerage. We aren’t trying to offer the same service as traditional brokerages but at a lower price; we offer online service — which is not, by the way, an absence of service — at a completely different price.
A discounter wants to seem to customers just like a traditional brokerage. We don’t. A discounter still spends most of its money on sales people. We spend most of ours on our Web site. Call us crazy, but we believe that some people actually *prefer* online service, irrespective of price.