Growth in conversions and visitors thanks to new mobile app for Immovlan

For years, Immovlan has held a position in the top three of Belgian sites for real estate listings. Their mobile app serves as a vital platform: approximately 70% of their visitors utilize the mobile website and app. When the time came to replace their old mobile app with a new one, they partnered with ACA Group. The outcome: a new app that has exceeded expectations across all key conversion parameters.

Mobile app for Immovlan developed by ACA Group

Why a new mobile app for Immovlan?

"At the end of 2019, we began developing a mobile app in Vue Native", says Geert Van Huychem, who joined Immovlan a few years prior and is now the CTO of the company. "Vue Native was heavily hyped as a cross-platform development framework for mobile applications at that time. Thanks to our experience with Vue.js, we were able to handle the development ourselves. It went fairly smoothly, and the app initially worked very well. However, we gradually encountered more and more issues. Integrating external SDKs was a problem, sometimes even impossible, as was the map search functionality. We had to resort to using WebViews for this, which was a usability nightmare."

About three years ago, the announcement came that the Vue Native framework would no longer be supported. So, it was only a matter of time before real problems would arise, risking the removal of the Immovlan app from the stores. Developing a new app became imperative.

"The ACA approach matched our needs perfectly”

Originally, the plan was to develop the new app internally. However, considering the significant time and resources it would require, Immovlan decided to outsource the project. "That's correct", says Geert. "Collaborating with an external partner also offers additional benefits. We can entrust the support and maintenance of the app to this partner. Additionally, it results in less workload for us, provides a single point of contact, and ensures long-term certainty."

Immovlan searched within its own network for a good development partner, with ACA Group ultimately emerging as the winner. "Right from the start, we felt a connection with ACA and their approach", explains Geert. "At the time of the initial discussions with potential partners, we had a specifications document, but it wasn't fully detailed. ACA was actually the only party flexible enough to deal with this. We needed an experienced partner who was willing to brainstorm about the best approach and solutions in the pre-project phase, and ACA fit perfectly into that picture."

Use cases as a guarantee for maximum user-friendliness and conversion

The development process for the new mobile app unfolded in two parts. As usability was a primary focus for Immovlan, the project started with several design workshops at the end of December 2022.

Jelle Offermans, Project Manager at ACA Group, explains: "The first workshop was essentially a large brainstorming session with key stakeholders from Immovlan and ACA, aiming to gather as many ideas as possible. Afterwards, we extracted the most important proposals to be further discussed and refined in subsequent sessions using wireframes. This ultimately led to the elaborated use cases, flows, and designs, which served as the foundation for development."

"For us, it's crucial that the app is very user-friendly and accessible", says Geert. "We want to encourage users to search for properties as quickly as possible, thereby achieving conversions swiftly. The use cases and flows were intended to provide us with this assurance."

Staying informed through efficient communication

In April 2023, ACA's developers started with the development of the new app using Flutter. Simultaneously, Immovlan worked internally on the development of the API. Regular and accurate communication was essential.

"During the weekly stand-up meetings, we were kept informed about the development process at ACA", says Geert. "In these brief, efficient meetings, we could coordinate on specific matters. Additionally, through Slack, there was constant direct communication. So, we were always perfectly informed about what we needed to know."

The result: more users, more views, more conversion

In September 2023, Immovlan's new application went live. "At Immovlan, we are thrilled with the new app," expresses Geert enthusiastically. "And our users are very positive too. This enthusiasm is reflected in the results. When comparing the statistics of January 2024 with those of the previous year, we see a 50% increase in daily visitors and a 25% increase in new users. Additionally, we observe three times as many screen views, with a doubling of views per session, and a 50% increase in both the average session duration and the number of sessions per user."

In short, the new Immovlan app attracts more new users who stay longer, view more properties, and return more frequently. And this translates into an increase in conversion rates.

"When those initial numbers came in, even our CEO questioned if they were accurate", Geert laughs. "He couldn't believe his eyes."

Flexible and proactive approach tailored to Immovlan

"When I look back on our collaboration with ACA so far, I can only be very satisfied", says Geert. "The approach at Immovlan is very hands-on, and we found that mirrored at ACA. We could deviate from our initial plans without any hassle from ACA. Right from the start, they showed great flexibility. Additionally, it was refreshing that ACA proactively challenges our ideas and improves the solution based on their experience. They are always looking for ways to make the application even better."

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