Best Ways to Get Real Estate Leads Online in 2016
Many real estate agents often feel skeptical about the quality of online real estate leads, and will swear by their own marketing practices, which often feel ancient and outdated in a changing real estate environment. Those that think getting real estate leads online yields poor closing rates are either doing it wrong or have not put in the necessary work to rip the benefits.
The most successful real estate agents register more than 80 percent of their new customers through the internet. The cornerstone of that success is always the same: online lead generation. What we have done is put together the best way to do it, with hope to set you on your way of equal success. But before all that:
You should have a fully functional inbound website which serves as the welcome mat for the leads right into your world, the place that hosts all the listings and their details including images and videos and more information. The intention of the website is to attract consumers and to capture as many leads that are sent to it. A few pointers
- The website should be user friendly and responsive on all user agents, not just desktop.
- All listings with great photos and content and easily accessible share buttons.
- Search engine optimized with local search keywords
- A strong and authoritative personal bio with contact information
- Squeeze pages to capture leads’ information such as email address and phone number.
- IDX enabled to display MLS listings
Now to the best ways to generate real estate leads
Real Estate Leads Through Paid Advertising
Of all lead generation technologies, search engines like Google and Bing have made pay-per-click advertising among the most effective. In its raw form, PPC obliges an advertiser to pay a pre-specified amount whenever their ad is clicked by a visitor.
The ad is displayed to the visitor depending on the query in their search, and when clicked it redirects them to the advertiser’s website, where a well-designed landing page greets them. As a real estate agent, you want to maximize lead generation by getting clicks from qualified buyers or sellers.
This can be achieved by targeting the right keywords and setting up campaigns at the best prices based on performance of those keywords. It will cost you both in time and money but the possibilities are unlimited.
Real Estate Leads Through Social Media
In offline transactions, Realtors are some of the best marketers around. What has escaped their grasp, however, is social media, which unsurprisingly has been touted as the best real estate marketing tool of the 21st century when harnessed accordingly.
If you have considered using Facebook to drive traffic to your website then you must have heard it before—Facebook real estate leads are all about creating engagement on your wall and boosting your posts. News Flash, it is not about that. To consistently generate the highest quality leads from Facebook, one ought to use their Facebook page to target and form relationships with the people that really matter; the ones within a 50-mile radius that benefit directly from the content you share.
You want to be in that position of authority where people can— through the depth of your social media content—perceive that you are knowledgeable and helpful. Post valuable content tailored specifically for your local readership. If you are running ads, they should be highly targeted with explicit calls to action to the lead pages on your website.
Apart from Facebook, LinkedIn, the famed social network for professionals, is a nice way to engage with members from your community. The trick is to make your company page as unique as possible. Set it up to showcase your blog posts, shared content, or any other relevant information from your website.
Real Estate Leads Through Craigslist
This centralized network has been a fountain for real estate leads since its inception. It has continued to do so throughout the years, but the recent changes have put the creativity of all of us to a test. These days if you want to reap Craigslist real estate leads, you have to follow their format for publishing ads or else you run the risk of being flagged as a spammer.
You are not to link ads to any outside pages, your website included. Instead of using hyperlinks to channel traffic directly to your websites, your ads will carry all the details about the property and a call to action instructing any interested parties on how they can reach you. That is it. The ad should be captivating without any form of lead capture, and re-posted regularly to increase visibility.
Online Marketing Automation Platforms
Marketing automation systems such as Zurple and BoomTown bundle all real estate marketing tools into one complete solution that does all the work for you. They build a website for you and include features such as property maps, mortgage calculator, full property details, demographics, price history, and IDX updates among others, important things that you would have left out otherwise.
They also import leads from Zillow and place Google Ads on your behalf. Lead management and automated email marketing services are included. These systems basically nurture your real estate leads until such a time when they are “ripe” for your taking. Obviously, this all comes at a cost. I highly recommend it for those agents that have superior returns of leads, and prefer leads to be nurtured first.
Customer Relationship Management System (CRM)
I have some real estate agents claiming that online lead management is too hard. It is probably the rigid technology that you are using. Have you considered adopting customer relationship management system (CRM) software in your marketing efforts?
Real estate CRM software helps you in management of clients; keeping track of leads’ information, transactions and their history on your website. It is useful when it comes to integrating the MLS and structuring automated drip email campaigns. Of course, not all CRM are equal, but thanks to the proliferation of the software, there is a lot to pick from. What you should consider ahead of everything else is the user-friendliness and the level of customization the CRM provides.
For maximum effect, approach these ways one at a time. Make sure you master that one before trying another. Within no time you will know what works for you and what doesn’t, and you should be able to generate more leads than any of your peers. Do not listen to the naysayers