If you have a real estate website that offers views of listings with a forced pop up registration, you have probably experienced this. “Ding”, goes the computer. On my machine this ding indicates a new lead and is as welcome as the original days of American Online’s “You’ve Got Mail”. Remember when receiving email was exciting?
I open the lead with excitement. I can see through my comprehensive tracking systems we built that the lead came from a search on Google. They searched “Homes for Sale in Las Vegas with a Pool”. They viewed 72 pages and were on my website for over an hour! “Hot Dog!”, I exclaim. “I’ve got a good one”.
My digital response lead conversion system rapid fires an automated text and email to the registered phone and email. System records “SMS is valid”. Alright, we are moving now! He gave us a real phone number. Email clears, no bounce. We have a valid lead.
Suddenly, my system responds with a SMS reply. We are LIVE! Time to convert!
The text we had sent was “Hi Sam, It’s Lori Ballen with Keller Williams Realty. How are you liking the listings you are finding on my website?”
“Great”, he replies “I really like the one at 123 Main street”
I text back: “When are you looking to buy?”He replies: “Right away actually. We were renting and the seller has the house for sale. We don’t care to buy this one”
I text: “So you have already determine your purchase power?”
He responds: “Yes, I have a loan and will be paying $30,000 down. Can you send me some properties with a pool? I’ve studied the zip codes and neighborhoods a bit and think we prefer the Southwest. It’s close to my work as well. We have a dog and will need a large yard. Our daughter will start school in the fall, so the school is very important. We are thinking 3-4 bedrooms and no HOA”
I text: Sure. Sounds like you’ve done your research. We actually have quite a few in the Southwest. Some have no HOA. Is that a must?
He responds: Well, if we love everything else, and the fees aren’t too high, we could live where there is a home owners association
I reply: When do you need to be in your new house?He texts back: Early May.
I respond: WOW. That’s soon. We better get you shopping. When are you interested in viewing homes.
His actual reply:
WHAT???? What just happened?
First, I made a mistake not asking who his agent was early in the conversation which I normally do. I don’t say “Do you have an agent?”, I ask “Who is your agent”. They have to answer one way or another: a name, or nobody.
Yet why did he tell me all that and ask for homes if he already has a real estate agent? I understand he didn’t say exclusive, but he is working with at least one agent.
In many of my mastermind groups I hear things like “They don’t trust their real estate agents, their agent is lazy, their agent is showing the right properties, etc.”
I don’t agree. I don’t think it has anything to do with the real estate agent.
I believe in 2017, that consumers want to touch and feel. We have the world at our fingertips, quite literally with mobile devices” and we can go anywhere with a touch of the button. We enjoy browsing, looking at pictures, and shopping from our own digital devices. Why limit ourselves to one shop when we can look at everything, anywhere?
Is my website really better? Not necessarily. Although I’d like to think so.
This home buyer might have been scrolling Facebook looking at pictures of puppies and cute babies when suddenly, they are interrupted by my listing AD. “Just Listed – 4 Bedrooms with a Pool in Las Vegas only $199,999”. The obviously active real estate shopper is curious and clicks through to my website. They are very excited to view the details of this property (which by the way is already probably on the agents list of tours for that afternoon), when they click the “View more Photos” gallery. A pop up appears saying “You must register to view more Photos”, or something of that nature and the buyer registers. They want to see pictures of the pool.
Now, they are my lead. But are they really??
I believe this is why web leads convert at such a low level as a whole. Forced registration, which I believe in by the way if lead volume is your strategy, has every Tom, Dick and Harry entering their info just to browse. Many have no intent of ever buying a house. Some are real estate agents checking out their competition. Some are hackers. Many have agents already.
If you are fortunate enough to convert even 1% of your COLD web leads (I’m not talking about your friends and family and sphere on Facebook. These are people that have never heard of you – ever), then you would need 100 leads to get to one closing. If you need 2 closings a month, that’s 200 leads a month. With great systems, maybe you double that and close 4 a month from 200 leads.
Is it worth it? Well, that is a question only you can answer. For me, my answer is still yes. Generating leads is something I do well and I can generate a lot organically (without pay per click) from the search engines. I can also get clicks as low as 25 cents in Vegas so there can be ROI if done purposefully. I’ve got amazing automation for lead follow up and most of the rejection messages are just the No’s I need to get to my Yes’s.
It’s like any other form of lead generation – all about the numbers. Know how many No’s you need to get to your Yes. If you convert 1% of your web leads, that will be 99 No’s to get to 1 yes.
So, I’ve added something new to my forced registration. And it’s working. I’m learning quicker who has an agent and using my automation system to filter them out so I don’t see them. Now I can focus on the “no agent” leads and focus my efforts there. I have no desire to chase someone away from their agent (even if they might be lying) and it’s against regulations anyway.
There is more to think about here on what offers and subscription services do people want besides IDX registration. We’ve explored many options. Nothing works quite as well as IDX registration.