Lead Generation Begins the Moment a Visitor Enters Your Site!
Congratulations to those real estate professionals who have great SEO with their websites showing up high in the search engines. We know that this is an elite group,
but congratulations also to those who recognize the value of PPC, Pay Per Click, for generating focused real estate visitor traffic for their websites.

And, kudos to those websites with great content, articles, information and statistics that keep their visitors engaged and even returning for another look.

With all of these things done well, you’d think that the leads would be pouring in. Wrong! Most real estate websites do a really poor job of generating leads, meaning turning that suspect visitor into a prospect by getting their contact information.

Just asking a website visitor to give up their email address in return for nothing, or a place on your “Guest Roster” is useless. What does a guest roster get them? They know – email junk. Even newsletter signup forms are not greatly effective. The visitor would have to really love your content, see that it is regularly updated, and want to get more of it via email.

The vast majority of real estate website visitors remain anonymous, and move from one site to another, harvesting the information they want from several. Then, at some point, one lucky real estate professional may get their email address if they need to ask a question.

Most do not, and they will simply drift away. Your task is to offer a compelling reason for that visitor to willingly give you their name and email address.

How to Use Reports
No matter how great your SEO, how high in the search engines your site is displayed, or how much you spend on PPC, Pay Per Click advertising, there’s only one measure of real estate website success …

leads and commissions.

Once you’ve managed to get a potential real estate buyer or seller to visit your website, they’re still only a “suspect.” To make them a “prospect” you must get their contact information so that you can continue to nurture the lead until they’re ready to buy or sell real estate. While you may have great content on your site, and you answer a lot of their questions, if they’re not giving you their name and email, you can’t convert them.

Your visitors are NOT going to give you their contact information to “sign into your guestbook.” That’s old and never was effective anyway. They’re not going to give you their email address just because you ask for it. They will trade you that valuable information for something of value to them. You should be creating reports, white papers and statistical analysis reporting for your market area. Examples of reports you can create might be:

  • Sold property analysis by quarter, or annually. MLS stats showing general average and median sold prices and average days on market till sold.
  • Purchase contract negotiations specific to your market area. This doesn’t really have to be that unique, just titled in a way that says you’re sharing negotiation tactics that you have seen and used in your market.
  • Repair issues specific to neighborhoods and certain age homes in your market.
  • Mortgage and financing issues in your market area.

There are more, but you’re getting the idea. These don’t need to be books, with 3 to 10 pages of material being quite enough to impart valuable information. You offer these reports on your site pages that are relevant. In other words, the sold statistical reports are offered on IDX search pages. The visitor is there searching for listings and is at the peak of their interest in the market and pricing. Getting them to opt in for a statistical report is much easier then.

Spot these report offerings all around your site, keeping the offering as relevant as you can to the content on the page. Have the visitor fill out a very short form, usually only email address and name.

If you have a phone number field, make it optional, not required. Make the name and email fields required.

Prepare an eBook to Offer Your Visitors
Another great offering on a website or blog that will entice your visitors to give you their contact information is an eBook. You pick up some credibility, as you’re now an “author.” That’s even though it’s just going to be in PDF format and delivered online. It’s still a book that you’ve authored. It isn’t as difficult as you might think.

First, open up your word processor, set up your title page, and then write an introduction about yourself and general real estate market information. A page or two is fine. After that, you’ll be pulling together content from other sources, stuff you already have:

  • blog posts
  • material from your website
  • any print material you’ve written
  • the reports we’ve just talked about on the previous page

There’s nothing wrong with recycling your content. After all, you’re offering a service to your site visitor by pulling it all together into one document that they can download and read at their convenience. So, once you’ve pulled it together and formatted it, hopefully with a simple table of contents, what’s next?

Hopefully, you have Adobe Acrobat or other software to print it to a PDF file. Then you get it uploaded to your website so that you have a URL to put in emails for the recipient to click and download the document. Then just offer it on your website. You get them to fill out a form with their name and email address, and they get immediate delivery of the eBook.