(This is Part 2 of a two-part series. Read Part 1, "Sure-fire ways to boost Web leads.")
Does your Web site consistently generate leads that turn into closed business? If not, today’s column explains how you can take your Web leads and turn more of them into closed business.
You have a great Web site that is rich in content, that is highly targeted, easy to navigate, and is focused exclusively on the lifestyle of your Web visitors. The challenge for most agents is that they generate leads, but don’t convert them.
The most important reason that agents fail to convert Web leads is that they don’t respond to those leads in a timely manner. Web consumers want information and they want it now. Furthermore, the younger the client is, the more likely they are to have this expectation. To respond more quickly to your Web leads, you can use any of the following approaches.
1. 800 call capture
This is a tried and true technique that works on your signs as well as for print and Web marketing. When people dial your 1-800 number, they can listen to a pre-recorded message and leave messages for you about their wants and needs. The system captures their contact information so you are able to follow up with them by calling or texting them back.
Autoresponders handle requests from Web site visitors quickly and efficiently. Most Web site companies have autoresponders built into their agent Web sites. You can also set up your own by providing complimentary reports on how to save money, Web coupons, or other valuable information. Web visitors then click on the items they want and the system sends to them automatically. Most systems notify you as well and include the e-mail address of where the report was sent.
Click-to-talk systems allow your Web visitor to click on an icon on your site. The visitor enters their phone number and the click-to-talk system calls you and conferences you in with the consumer. RealPing.com, a privately branded version for the real estate industry, allows agents to control the images that the Web visitor sees online. The system allows you to take the consumer through listings on your site, simply by using the keypad on your cell phone. You do not need to be at a computer.
5. Call center
For high-volume agents or teams, a call center is another viable approach. Companies such as LeadQual.com will "scrub" or qualify incoming Web site leads. If the lead meets the appropriate criteria, the lead is handed off to a live agent in less than five minutes.
An in-office assistant or a virtual assistant are other alternatives. Competent in-office assistants can be difficult to find and even more difficult for a busy agent to train. In contrast, virtual assistants work with you on an independent contractor basis and are not based in your office. They have their own computer, phone and other tools required to conduct business. They can be available while you are sleeping or anytime during the day.
7. Caveat for Gen X and Gen Y agents
You’re comfortable being in constant contact with your peers. If you are working with someone who was born before 1946, sending text messages while you are with them is perceived as being rude and disrespectful. It can cost you the relationship. Baby boomers are generally OK with you sending text messages or taking a phone call, provided that you ask their permission first.
If your Web site is not providing the results you want, don’t wait to start improving your conversion rate — why not start today?
Bernice Ross, national speaker and CEO of Realestatecoach.com, is the author of "Waging War on Real Estate’s Discounters" and "Who’s the Best Person to Sell My House?" Both are available online. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit her blog at LuxuryClues.com.
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