OneSearch survey reveals data accuracy and speed trumps cost for conveyancing searches

Survey Results Campaign ImageOneSearch Direct, one of the largest local search data company in the UK, has today released findings from its industry-wide survey of conveyancers. The survey looks at attitudes towards search providers and perception of value added services. It also explores continuing competency behaviours and gauged sentiment towards industry hot topics, such as cybercrime, anti-money laundering and PropTech.

Key findings:

  • When asked to prioritise eight options on what respondents looked for in a search provider, surprisingly cost came in fourth place, with lawyers instead ranking data accuracy, quick turnaround times and an easy-to-use ordering platform above price. Lead generation was the lowest ranked option.
  • When considering issues facing conveyancers, cybercrime/ID theft was identified as the biggest concern with 83% of respondents stating they are either “concerned” or “very concerned”. 80% responded similarly regarding money laundering/corruption
  • 52% stated they are “very concerned” about SRA rules
  • Fewer were as concerned about the AI/PropTech ‘knowledge’ gap, with only 17.3% suggesting that they are ‘very concerned’ about this issue
  • A growing number of lawyers (28%) are now using search providers’ technology to generate client quotes
  • Environmental reports and Drainage and Water search reports both topped the list of products ordered via their search providers (confirmed by 95%). AML, ID checks and indemnity policies are ordered by more than a third (37.5%) of respondents

The survey identified enthusiasm for webinars, with three quarters of respondents finding them useful to maintain continuing competency, and 21% also likely to attend seminars or roadshows on hot topics.

Whilst responses were unanimous around fraud risk, there was division in other areas, such as preference for using a case management system. Only one in four currently use their search provider’s case management system while 29.6% were unaware of whether their provider has a case management system, showing the need for greater communications on this.

Respondents were least concerned about having an AI/PropTech knowledge gap, and 73% were either “concerned” or “very concerned” about inaccurate or missing data in search reports.

Commenting on the results, Lidia Quinlan, Head of Sales, OneSearch Direct, said:

“The results are fascinating. Although many of the answers are in line with what we were expecting, the survey sheds light on insights that may not have been otherwise obvious. For example, turnaround times for search providers came out as one of the key requirements, well over price. From our perspective, we excel here and receive positive customer feedback on our response rates and, now that we have the Express search, which returns results within 24 hours in most cases, this provides an even faster option for our customers. I’m especially glad data accuracy scored so highly, as it has been fundamental to our business growth, and so we can alleviate this particular concern for conveyancers.

“The disparity around case management is interesting and we’ll continue this conversation with our clients to get more in-depth feedback. It also appears conveyancers either aren’t too concerned with PropTech right now, or they don’t yet have all the information needed to make firmer decisions around what it means to their firm. We will watch with interest on that one.”

The survey was carried out during the month of November 2019. Results are based on a sample size of eighty conveyancers, solicitors, and conveyancing assistants. The respondents comprised of both clients and non-clients of OneSearch Direct. The report is now available via OneSearch Direct’s website,, or you can request a copy directly from

For more information on OneSearch Direct, please visit or call 0800 052 0117.


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