A report from Independent Retailer found that 82 businesses closed in Chicago’s West Side after Walmart moved into the neighborhood in 2006.

Staying competitive is an everchanging challenge, especially in today’s evolving real estate market.

Miguel Soria, Broker Associate, ReMax Advance Realty, said his business conducts regular competitive analyses.

“We have a system that emails a CMA to our database of buyers and sellers monthly with updated information, pictures, addresses, and recent closings and listings,” Soria said. Soria added that his company tries to use the latest technology to “be ahead of the curve and avoid competition.”

“We are always researching and testing new technologies to be sharp in our market,” Soria said. Peter Greign of Referral Realty U.S. LLC, said he would like to implement more automated online marketing tools and hire an online marketing director.

“We have seen that agents are every day into the referral business to avoid marketing themselves, avoid competition and expenses,” Soria said. “In our market, there is a huge presence of companies, such as Redin, UpNext, and Opcity, in which they spend the money in marketing, technologies, and they refer the leads to the agents and charge a 30% to 35% referral fee. Since there are records of agents and new companies in Florida, these companies are disrupting the market and incorporating more agents every day.”

Greijn said he follows current social media trends but feels that they are widely used and not sure if the results are “positive for it.”

“Social media advertising is not producing and the cost is significant,” Greijn said. “Word of mouth and my weekly foreclosure list email is working well for clients at this time.”

Soria, though, added, “The market is failing miserably at this time.”

“High prices, inexperienced agents, and new companies without a professional trajectory are affecting the local market tremendously,” he continued. “A large percentage of buyers are off the market due to high prices and agents keep listing properties at ridiculously high prices without enough basis to sustain the prices.”

To separate themselves from the competition, Soria said his company also offers services to asset managers when dealing with REO. Along with locating schools, trash removal, winterization, rekeying locks, and boarding properties, they also offer remodeling and full-repair service with licensed general contractors.

Greijn said honesty is the thing that works best for improving client experiences and remaining competitive.

“Honesty in reference to pricing. Honesty in reference to repairs needed. … Those are the items that keep getting me referrals,” he said.