Consumers now have many options for exploring real estate listings online. To compete in this market and acquire new leads, it’s critical to have an effective lead acquisition and nurturing strategy. In this article, we’ll review methods for acquiring new real estate leads to help you grow your business.
Some of these methods are simple while others will require more planning and follow-through, but they can all help you acquire more leads.
We’ll talk about best practices for nurturing your leads in a future article.
Does your website need an overhaul? An optimized website will engage buyers and sellers and convert more of your visitors to leads. Website optimizations will generally fall into two categories: aesthetics and content.
Consumers form an opinion about your website in a fraction of a second. The following key points can make a dramatic improvement in how well your site engages consumers:
- Professional, uncluttered look and feel
- Quick loading time
- Friendly user experience with simple navigation
Ask your family, friends and colleagues for their honest assessment and make adjustments if needed. Your business depends on it!
Here are some considerations for content on your website that will help make your site sticky and convert more visitors to leads.
> Unrestricted Property Search
Allow consumers to search and explore listings without prompts for registration. Or consider allowing a number of searches and property views before asking for registration.
The simpler your default property search form is the better. Consider offering a separate advanced search option so users don’t have to face lots of options they don’t need.
> Listings Pages and Galleries
Make it easy to access and browse listings organized by local communities, neighborhoods or even specialized categories such as water view, golf course, distressed, etc. These can also help your SEO (discussed in the Seach Engine section below).
> Email Alerts
Make sure you prominently feature an option to sign up for new listing email alerts. These emails provide your leads with listing links to your site for new or updated listings that match their search criteria. Consider adding an eye-catching graphic to your site that points out the benefits of Email Alerts with a link to the sign up form.
> Hyper Local Focus & Unique Content
Your website is your opportunity to present yourself as a local expert – something the large portal sites can’t provide! It’s also your opportunity to differentiate from other sites that simply have listings with no other useful information. Consider adding helpful community information, links to resources, and pictures. Search engines will index this content, bringing you more opportunities for free traffic from search engine results pages.
> Value Proposition
Put yourself in the shoes of your site visitors. Why should they consider working with you? If you don’t clearly answer this on your website, you can expect fewer registrations from your site visitors.
Include some brief bullets on your site that point out how your services, experience, and knowledge will help them with their next transaction. Featuring testimonials from satisfied clients can help build trust with new visitors and influence how many register on your website.
PPC (Pay-per-Click) Online Ad Channels
Facebook, Twitter, Google, and Bing can all deliver advertisements to consumers using demographic criteria, time of day settings, and more. Each service will let you track your ad performance and modify your campaigns accordingly.
Get Started with PPC:
Social media is an essential component of lead generation. There are several different platforms, each with their own benefits and tactics. We’ll discuss social media strategies in more detail in future articles.
- Facebook – This is the most common network and building a strong presence here can really boost your lead generation. . Start by including a lot of facts about neighborhoods and properties to show off your local knowledge. Use lots of pictures and encourage people to share them. Don’t flood the newsfeed with your listings, though. You’re on a social network to attract and engage new followers with content .
- Twitter – This is a quick and simple way to get people thinking about moving and buying homes. You can link to important resources on your website and use hashtags to get in on the active conversations.
- Pinterest – This network is all about the best looking pictures. Create your own boards and fill them with pictures of the homes and yards as well as interesting images of the neighborhood and city. Make sure you have a good description of each image that is short and to the point.
- YouTube – This is the #2 rated search engine! Maximize your exposure by creating a channel and posting virtual tours or consider even simple slideshow videos using listing images.
A lot of people think that email is no longer an effective marketing technique but studies continue to show that this is one of the best ways to get a response from potential clients. In addition to automated new listing email alerts, you can send email newsletters with tips on finding homes, local community news, market information or any other content your leads might find helpful.
When someone finds you through a search engine, it’s safe to assume that this is a lead that definitely has home buying or selling in mind. When they search for general terms like new homes in a specific area, you'll obviously want your website to appear as high as possible in the results. Establishing an SEO strategy that brings you more search engine traffic takes time and effort and is definitely a marathon rather than a sprint. You can either consult professionals to build a strategy for your site or take a look at the wealth of content available online to get familiar with best practices. The SEO Starter Guide from Google below is just one example of the many online resources available and is a great starting point.
Events & Conventions
Out-of-town real estate conventions are a great way to contact agents from other locations and let them know that you’re open to referrals. You can establish yourself as a trustworthy agent so they’ll be willing to send you clients who are looking for something in your area.
This is where you can also make contacts with other professionals such as lawyers, lenders, bankers, and insurance agents might all have relationships with potential real estate leads.
Postcards are simple and eye-catching and you can send them to people in specific locations. You can include information about listings or just focus on getting them to your website where you can invite them to contact you or sign up for new listing Email Alerts.
Happy clients are the best place to look for new leads. If your past clients had a good experience with you, they’ve probably already shared the story with friends and family. In your next email blast, consider asking them about anyone they know who is interested in buying a home.
Don’t assume that a lead who isn’t quite ready to buy or sell is a dead end. The vast majority of your new leads will probably fit in this category.
Once you have a new lead, you can send personalized mailers, set them up with new listing email alerts and send newsletters to keep them engaged and remind them of your services until they’re ready for a transaction.
What do you do to generate leads? Is there something we missed? Let us know or share your thoughts!