How to Lose Money without even trying
By Ray Stockwell, Director of Product Marketing ZipperAgent
Last Sunday I went apple picking with my family. My wife and I started this fall tradition with our children and have now continued it with their spouses and our three grandchildren. It is more about the time spent being together outdoors than about the apple picking. Although for some I think it is more about the apple cider and apple dumplings sold at the farm stand.
Picking my own apples costs just about the same for me as buying them in the store. I pick a bushel of apples and later in the week prepare strudel, apple dumplings, apple crisp, and several pies. Some of these are frozen for use at Thanksgiving and Christmas; others will be baked later and given to friends.
Where we go, there is a set price for a bag that holds a peck and a separate amount for a container that holds a half-bushel. I fill two half-bushel bags in a few minutes. One thing that always draws my attention is the people who never fill their’s up. To me that is silly. Why waste the money buying a bag that is intended to be filled and then not do it?
I really shouldn’t be surprised though because I have observed many real estate agents that do something very similar on a daily basis. They pay for leads and then never follow-up with them.
Almost half of all real estate leads never get responded to
In 2013 The Wav Group was commissioned to study, “Agent Responsiveness.” The WAV Group evaluated agent responsiveness by becoming a homebuyer lead across hundreds of brokerages. Each inquiry they initiated was the default inquiry for that site. 50% of the queries were submitted with a phone number, 50% without. Their findings are summarized below:
- 48% of buyer inquiries were NEVER responded to.
• Average number of call back attempts after the initial contact was 1.5
• Average number of email contact attempts was 2.07
• Average response time was 917 minutes (or 15.29 hours)
Now I know that none of this applies to you. You answer every lead, call them back multiple times, send them several emails, text them, and you always respond right away to a lead. This is written for the rest of the real estate agents.
Not to beat a dead horse but let’s talk about that lost money.
- When the survey was conducted, it included Zillow, Trulia, and Realtor.com in the study. This means that even when real estate agents were paying to get leads from those services they are not always responding. That’s just like throwing money away.
- All things being equal it stands to reason that if real estate agents responded to all their leads, they could increase their gross commission income by 48%.
So many real estate agents are losing money at least two ways on every lead they do not respond to. I say at least because of the follow-up that happens to leads that are responded to. I will elaborate on that in my next blog.