Use HomePro as a Google Helpout


If Google Founder Sergey Brin was looking to buy a home in Jacksonville, who would he trust to get his real estate questions answered?

Google’s Sergey Brin is an All Cash Buyer!

Google’s Sergey Brin is an All Cash Buyer!

Sergey Brin would begin his search exactly the same way that you do, I do and exactly the way your customer does….he’d Google it!  There are those who might say, no way…the research suggests that people start their home buying search at Zillow, Trulia, NEFAR or other real estate specific site.  Likely, they do dig deep on one or more of those sites, but how did they find those sites?…Google!

An interesting observation about Google is that Google doesn’t really provide answers, Google just points you toward websites that they believe have the answers you are searching for.  Once on the website that Google suggests to you, it is up to you to sort the information that is most relevant to you.

If your website was the website that Google thought was the best choice to answer Sergey’s questions, Google would suggest to Sergey that he visit your site. While it is a cool thought that Sergey Brin is clicking around your website, the simple truth is people do not buy homes from websites, people buy homes from people they know, people they like, people they trust!

Previously a secret program known only to Google and a few trusted category experts, Google has launched “Google Helpouts”.  Helpouts connect people who need help with trusted experts who can give help over live video.  What’s amazing is that Helpouts can be delivered to you via your desktop, tablet or mobile device.  And they can be scheduled in advance or done on demand!

Imagine you’re showing a $15 million mansion on the oceanfront to Sergey Brin.  Sergey wants to make an offer on the home, but he sees a crack in the travertine marble floor that has him freaked out.  He’s freaked out because Sergey is a California guy where cracks are caused by earthquakes.  Its’ just a crack like you’ve seen hundreds of times, and Jacksonville doesn’t have earthquakes, but this crack is holding up your $15 million deal!

So how does Sergey get his home inspection questions answered?  He breaks out his Android and Google’s “Jacksonville Home Inspector”!

Google suggests that Sergey visit the HomePro Inspections website, an excellent choice, but Sergey wants more than a website.  Sergey wants Google’s trusted home inspection expert to engage directly with him, one on one via video, to see the crack and answer questions.  That’s a Google Helpout!

Since its start in March 1996 as a research project by Stanford Ph.D. students Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Google has been about constantly improving the search experience for users.  In its quest for the perfect user search experience it often feels like the real goal of Google is to drive website owners crazy by constantly change the algorithm that determines which websites get top ranked on page one!

Some days it feels like Google is a Zoo, with updates to the algorithm named Penguin, Panda and Hummingbird! These changes seem to signal a shift from links to keywords to content to social signals.  There’s nothing more social in the digital world then a one on one video engagement. That’s a Google Helpout.

When I was first approached by Google via email in to participate in the launch of Helpouts as a home inspection expert I thought it was spam or a scam!  I deleted the first three requests Google sent to me.  That was in September.

The fourth Google email got me curious enough that I replied.  After completing the Helpout expert’s application, members of the Google staff did a series of video interviews with me using Google Hangouts. That led to my being selected as one of three home inspectors in the world to participate in the November launch of Helpouts.

It’s too soon to tell if Google Helpouts will change the world and too soon to tell if Helpouts will change my life or business.  But being an insider on a secret Google product launch has been interesting.

A few things I’ve learned from a peak behind the rainbow colored curtain at Google:

-Google search rewards those who use other Google products (YouTube, Google+, and Gmail)

-Google is targeting Facebook with Google+ and wants your help by bringing friends

-There really are humans at Google headquarters that “Don’t be evil”!

Google hangout helpout

Google Hangouts / Helpouts

Being a member of the Google Helpouts team is cool.  It has answered the burning question “If Google Founder Sergey Brin was buying a $15 million oceanfront mansion in Jacksonville, who would he trust for his home inspection”?

Sergey Brin trusts HomePro Inspections.  And he suggests HomePro to his friends. That’s VERY cool!