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What consumers want from a real estate Web site

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Ooops! Did we get it wrong again? We already know most agents don't bother with Web marketing. Now it seems many of us (myself included) are missing some important lessons in terms of marketing effectively on the Web. At Real Estate Connect, I moderated a panel on Internet marketing. Marc Davison of VREO Software was one of the panelists, so we had a chance to visit prior to the session. I was quite surprised by what he shared. In past columns, I have regularly advocated purchasing a Web site that includes a strategy for harvesting contact information from Web visitors. The most common way to do this is with a free report. When the Web visitor signs up for the report, an autoresponder sends out the requested information. The Web site also sends an e-mail to the agent with the visitor's contact information. According to Marc, there are several problems associated with using this approach. First, VREO conducted a series of focus groups to determine how real estate consumers would li...