Realtor.com has raised the cost of exclusive leads from one of the popular real estate portal’s “bread and butter” ad products for agents and brokerages, Connection for Co-Brokerage.
The ad product now also offers agents additional information about consumers contacting them via lead forms — changes realtor.com operator Move Inc. says are meant to improve connections between agents and consumers.
Screen shot of realtor.com's Connection for Co-Brokerage program home page.
Two Connection for Co-Brokerage subscribers (mentioned below) supplied Inman News with details about the product’s revamp based on discussions they had with Move salespeople. Move corroborated that the details are accurate.
Connection for Co-Brokerage allows brokerages and agents to collect leads from contact forms next to realtor.com listings. Since launching the product in 2011, realtor.com has sent a contact from one lead form to just one agent.
As of July 1, Move is offering two tiers of the product for new and renewed contracts. The firm introduced some of the changes at its investor and analyst day in May.
Now, brokerages and agents can pay 75 percent more than they did before the revamp to receive leads on an exclusive basis, or pay 10 percent less and share the lead with one other agent. In the latter case, both agents will receive the lead at exactly the same time.
All Connection for Co-Brokerage leads, regardless of tier, also now include some significant enhancements.
For example, consumers must now enter a phone number before submitting a contact form on a realtor.com listing, an action not required before. That phone number comes to the agent via a lead-contact email realtor.com sends agents. That gives agents the ability to reach out directly by phone, making for a higher-quality lead.
Lead-contact emails will also come to agents with information about consumers’ behavior on realtor.com, if available, including a display of three additional properties the consumers have looked at on the site, the pricing and home parameters that they’ve searched for on realtor.com and how long they looked at the home they contacted the agent about before clicking the lead form.
Leads also include demographic information, household income and other data to help give the agent insight into the consumer.
Agents can follow up with leads immediately by text or email using technology from FiveStreet, a startup focused on lead response and consolidation, which Move purchased in October.
Previously, realtor.com leads for the program were much more bare bones, including just a first and last name, email address and details about the property in question. Phone numbers were optional. (See an example of the previous lead info sent to Connection for Co-Brokerage subscribers here.)
All these enhancements come standard in the new Connection for Co-Brokerage offering.
“The changes are designed to increase the likelihood that the consumer receives a timely response and to help bolster contactability between the agent and the consumer, by improving the agent’s ability to connect with and quickly build a relationship with the consumer,” Tracy Mahnken, senior vice president of product management for Move, told Inman News.
Move sells Connection for Co-Brokerage leads by slices of ZIP codes, guaranteeing a certain return on investment to brokers and agents per slice. Move opens up a new slot in a ZIP code when it can guarantee a minimum number of leads in that slot, Move Chief Financial Officer Rachel Glaser said at Move’s investor and analyst day in May.
Prices for Connection for Co-Brokerage are segmented into eight price tiers that are keyed to home prices and realtor.com traffic, Move told Inman News in May.
Glaser estimated that revenue per slot could jump two to three times when the new pricing is fully rolled out, possibly within the next six months.
By providing Connection for Co-Brokerage exclusively on a one-to-one basis, Move felt it left revenue on the table that its competitors in the industry are gobbling up, Glaser said.