Buildout offers an all-inclusive platform for commercial real estate professionals that provides a wide range of features. But like most commercial real estate software, it comes with inherent tradeoffs.
There are a few commercial real estate marketing software alternatives to Buildout available currently, all with different levels of functionality and customer service.
Common Buildout Alternatives
SharpLaunch comes with several built-in features. Users can create property websites just as they would with Buildout, but they don’t have to upgrade plans to do so. SharpLaunch provides a smooth experience from multiple platforms, and it works on mobile as well as desktop devices.
SharpLaunch also offers a comprehensive lead management dashboard that reveals fairly fine-grained details about how visitors use your listing websites. Like Buildout, it includes a document portal and email marketing tools. It also incorporates a marketing analytics feature, which may make it easier to evaluate the ROI you derive from using the software.
One potentially important difference between this software and Buildout is that SharpLaunch seems to integrate better with existing tools. For instance, it includes a WordPress plugin and advertises straightforward support for existing websites.
Apto is a CRE application that focuses on CRM workflows. Users can manage their contacts, explore prospecting options, oversee deals, and conduct marketing activities. The platform also includes a market research tool that pulls figures from national tax, deed, and mortgage databases.
Apto was built by a broker and it claims to minimize common CRE pain points with an analysis-centric dashboard. This software additional includes several collaboration-oriented features and layouts that the company says can help simplify teamwork.
Apto pricing starts at $129 per user per month, which comes with a wider range of default functionalities than the base Buildout tier does. The developer also provides a data migration add-on that could potentially ease the transition process.
RealNex advertises itself as being able to handle the entire CRE lifecycle from business development to transaction management. The website also says it’s significantly more cost-effective than alternatives, but that claim might not ultimately bear out for those who already pay low subscription fees: This software’s pricing model is somewhat similar to Buildout’s, where different functionalities are grouped under various plans, so it might end up costing more for those who only need a few features here and there.
On the other hand, users who want to try this software out might be interested to know they can take advantage of a Free MarketPlace subscription or lower-cost Marketing plans. RealNex offers multiple integrations, including mobile-ready apps and virtual reality touring –ostensibly via a plug-and-play customization interface.
ListingLab advertises itself as being a custom CRE website builder that marketing coordinators and brokers can easily use. It has a few document management features, but not as many as some of the other alternatives in this list.
While users can customize their property showcase pages, they’re currently limited to a small number of templates. The company also doesn’t specify whether it integrates with existing websites.
The developer offers free signups, and it claims that you can get a listing website online in 15 minutes. You’ll only pay when you go to market, so this might be a good testbed for new ideas and outreach strategies.
With fewer features and a more limited purpose, ListingLab’s supported integrations don’t come close to some of the other options. At the same time, it’s worth noting that brokers can track documents like confidentiality agreements, complete electronic signature actions, and generate security reporting paper trails.
PropertyCapsule (now part of VTS) is a software tool for leasing management and retail marketing automation.
PropertyCapsule’s key differentiator appears to be the way it manages CRE workflows. Users place all of their information into a shared digital space on the cloud, and then the system automatically handles document publishing and propagation to stakeholders.
PropertyCapsule is accessible on most hardware platforms, including mobile devices. According to owner VTS, the main purpose of the software is to streamline the processes of creating branded marketing materials, attracting and vetting leads, and showcasing properties. It seems to lack the more exhaustive outlook found in SharpLaunch and Buildout, but you can try out its Map Maker app and interactive Tourbooks creators for free.
AppFolio Property Manager
AppFolio bills itself as being a comprehensive property management tool. It includes client-facing portals for tenants and HOA communication, investment management CRM dashboards, and commercial property analysis tools. It also claims to integrate with other property management software and support enterprises that manage large numbers of units.
AppFolio’s pricing is somewhat unique since it bills you on a per-unit basis. This tool seems like it might be more cost-effective for companies that already have properties they want to maintain rather than focusing on sales or acquisitions.
Picking the Ideal Buildout Alternative
When choosing commercial real estate software, it’s smart to consider the particulars of your existing workflow and which elements you’re willing to adjust or improve. After all, a tool that comes with a whole lot of extra features won’t be worth the price if you don’t end up using any of them.
Most CRE SaaS options advertise themselves as end-to-end solutions. No software is an ideal match right from the start, however. It’s a good idea to pick something that supports customization – or at least try a demo first.