Depending on who you talk to, Internet leads are either the best or worst things in the world. Some will say that they are all terrible, and others build their business off the back of Internet leads.

  • Tell consumers exactly what's going to happen next when they leave their contact information.
  • Evaluate the seriousness of your leads by asking them to jump through some extra hoops.
  • Find the balance that works for your business between lead quantity versus quality.

Depending on who you talk to, Internet leads are either the best or worst things in the world. Some will say that they are all terrible, and others build their business off the back of Internet leads.

For many, it comes down to how you respond to leads and nurture them. And some agents are receiving the same leads. However, you can take steps to improve the quality of your online leads.

The key is putting steps in place for a person to become a lead for your business. This will decrease the total number of leads, but it will increase the quality. You need to decide which is more important to you.

Some bad leads will still get through. But by using a few or all of the methods listed below, you will see an increase in the quality of the leads you are generating. You can implement the following tips one at a time to measure each by its impact or try them all at once.

1. Change the language of the ad

To start, consider the ad you are running. One of the most popular ads is the free home evaluation. These especially can generate a lot of bad leads — people who are just curious what their home is worth but who have no intention of selling.

So one of the first steps you can take is changing the language of the ad. Instead of saying, “Free Home Evaluation. Find out what your home is worth,” try a call-to-action line such as: “Selling your home? Get started by clicking below to find out what it’s worth!”

This simple change in phrasing will help cut down the number of bad leads.

2. Cut to the chase with your landing page

Your landing page needs to clear about what it’s offering. If you’re giving an automated value of the home, then say that. If you’re providing a custom CMA, then make it clear that’s what they will get.

If they know that you are personally going to take the time to do it, a section of the “just curious” crowd won’t fill it out.

One of the easiest ways to flush out the bad leads is to make it clear that you will contact them after the opt-in. Some will still give fake contact information to get access to your lead magnet.

That’s why I favor lead magnets that need at least a correct email address to access the offer — no reward for fake information.

3. Make them jump through some hoops

When you make the process easier on consumers, more will convert. The fewer clicks there are from beginning to end, the more leads you get.

Sergey Petrov / Shutterstock.com

Sergey Petrov / Shutterstock.com

Not everyone wants more leads, though. Some of you would rather have fewer leads that are higher quality. For a lot of you, that will depend on the systems you have in place for follow-up.

A large team with inside sales associates (ISAs) might look for more leads. A lone agent might favor higher quality. Either way, you still have a few things you need to do.

For every lead that comes in, ask some qualifying questions.

To weed out bad apples, get answers to those questions upfront. The more information people are willing to fill out, the more serious they are about wanting to move.

So, how do you capture this? One option is to make a multistep sign-in form. Ask consumers about their current situation, what they’re looking for, if they’ve been pre-approved, etc.

In that portion, also pose questions about their financial situation and timeline.

Another route is to have an autoresponder set up. So when interested parties fill out the form, they get an email with a list of questions. If they answer that email, they’ve earned lead status.

By taking that extra time to go to their inbox, they are proving they are, to a degree, serious.

These steps can improve the quality of leads you receive but will reduce the total number. You have to decide what’s the best strategy for your business.

How much time are you spending converting bad leads? Do the math.

If you spent 100 hours in a year on weak leads, how much money did you make off them? You will be able to see if it was worth your time.

Not every lead is a prospect. Force them to use their time instead of yours to increase the quality of the leads you are receiving.

Andrew Fogliato is the founder of Just Sell Homes. Follow him on Twitter or Facebook.

Email Andrew Fogliato.

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