This post comes from Jack Markham, Vice President at Z57 and creator of the Million Dollar Pipeline. He'll be hosting a free webinar on August 8th @10 AM PT. Register today to learn the 5 elements of a top performing real estate website. (Seating is limited).
One of the biggest misconceptions I commonly hear from real estate agents is that as long as you have a website, you're good to go. In fact, many simply use their brokerage websites rather than a personalized one. While this seems good in theory, these agents are missing the mark. Why? Think of the brokerage website as a business card and a personalized site as a lead generating machine. Now which sounds more appealing?
As a real estate agent your most important tool is without a doubt your website. Don't believe me? Here are the 3 main reasons this holds true:
1. You can fish where the fish are biting
No matter the business type, being where potential consumers are is vital to success. Whether you have deli on a busy corner or a gift store on a main street, the amount of people laying their eyes on your business is in direct correlation to your success. The same holds true of your website. It's your virtual storefront and you need to make sure you have plenty of window shoppers (who will later become clients).
It's not enough to have one main traffic source, I typically advise agents to have 3 or 4. Sure, this will take a bit more time and effort but trust me, it's worth it.
2. Prevent your leads from seeking out other agents
Perhaps the largest wasted opportunity occurs when real estate agents use lead capture. Now, I say "wasted opportunity" because many spend the time and money for the technology but don't follow through and answer their leads in a timely manner. The average industry response time is 4 hours...your goal is to reply as instantaneously as you can!
The average consumer today will visit 8 to 10 websites before speaking with a real estate agent. There's no reason for them to be loyal at this point. Often they request information from several agents and go with the one who responds to them first. Keep in mind the one things buyers and sellers aren't actually search for is an agent! They are looking to further their education, find photos and listings they like and whoever provides the most relevant content often wins the leads.
Make sure your website has enough features to stop the consumers search in it's tracks. (I will get in to the 5 must-have elements on your site on August 8th).
3. Nurture the consumer timeline, don't rush it
I speak to agents all the time who are frustrated and think that their online leads are worthless. Spoiler alert: they are NOT! There are 3 phases of the consumer process in the real estate industry and to understand these means you'll be better able to interact with your leads and recognize the area of the process they are currently in.
Phase 1 - pre-purchase
Phase 2 - active research
Phase 3 - buying or selling
Consumers start the process by doing their own research online which is why so many of your leads will come to you in phase 1 or 2. While it would be fantastic if leads simply came to you when they were ready to buy or sell their home, it's not the reality of most leads.
More than 60% of leads come in during phase 1. Don't rush them! Provide them with the information they crave, stop their search and earn their trust. No one likes to feel like they are being pressured to buy or sell their home. The traditional lead qualifying process that many agents use can kill new business. Why? Keep in mind when you disqualify a lead, they disqualify you as well.
70% of consumers use the first agent that gave them the content they were looking for. 70%! Think about that for a minute. This statistic highlights the importantance of being relevant and patient.
A home buyer doesn't need you for much. In fact, they really only need you for 2 things - to get the keys to homes they would like to view and to negotiate for them once they find a home. This is why providing content to help them along the way is so vital.
This is just a sneak peek of the many topics I'll be discussing in my webinar on August 8th. You'll also learn:
- The online habits of home sellers and buyers
- How to update your website so that you can generate 50 or more leads each month
- How to keep consumers returning to your website
- How to brand yourself as a local expert
Sign up today!