If there is one thing that is constantly changing in the online world, it is the way websites are being designed, developed and promoted. Each industry has its own unique design best practices that appeal to its prospective customers’ needs and desires the most.
In the real estate investing business, like in many other uber competitive industries, websites should follow certain effective strategies that will potentially funnel in substantial revenue.
This industry is very competitive with an average $3,500–$4,500 deal acquisition cost. With such high cost per deal, it is a must for every real estate investor to have a highly functioning and converting website.
To help you with that, here are some of the top four essential technology and marketing items that will help rake in more income to your real estate investment business.
1. Multi-step Contact Form
It is amazing how many real estate investor websites don’t utilize this effective technique of using multi-step contact forms. Instead, they have those long contact web forms that scare users away when they see how much info they need to fill out.
Of course, it doesn’t apply to forms that ask only for a few details like name, email and phone. But, if you don’t want to keep getting a bunch of spam submissions while at the same time qualify your prospects, you should start utilizing multi-step forms in your business.
Here is a great example of a highly engaging multi-step contact form that consists of over 15 steps with various qualifying questions. The form does a great job of determining the motivation of a seller through a series of qualifying questions.
Based on the data, after our team implemented that multi-step form, the conversion rate increased 247% compared to the old, one-page contact form.
This is almost three times more inquiries! For real estate investing, as well as any other business, such a drastic improvement might mean getting back in the black big time.
2. Mobile Optimized Design
It is highly imperative that your real estate investing website’s design is fully responsive and compatible with all the popular mobile devices.
Not only is it important because 97% of Americans today own a cellphone of some kind, but also because you’d most likely want to utilize effective marketing channels that directly involve mobile devices.
For instance, nowadays you can utilize old school direct mail marketing with a new, groundbreaking spin to it. Technologically-advanced direct mail marketing companies like PostcardMania, now can make your postcard recipients visit your website!
To be more specific, now you can run a direct mail campaign with QR code printed on your postcards that will send prospects straight to your website from a smartphone camera.
While this type of lead generation can bring a considerable return on investment, it can also completely bomb if you don’t have a mobile friendly website. Therefore, it is highly imperative you make sure your investor website is fully responsive for all the major mobile devices.
3. Property Marketplace
Many real estate investors don’t often take into account that the acquisition of deals is only one side of the coin. However, for many investors, especially wholesalers, disposition of deals is a critical component of every successful transaction.
In other words, if a real estate wholesaler gets a property under contract but then fails to find the end buyer, there goes their assignment fee, which usually averages $10,000.
In fact, it doesn’t simply end there. Since it takes time and money to acquire that deal, a wholesaler usually loses money. Finally, homeowners can even make wholesalers pay the earnest money deposit due to non-performance, which will get them in an even deeper financial hole.
This is why having an effective property disposition strategy is critical for every real estate investor who wants to run a successful business. Generally, there are many different outbound deal disposition channels such as: cold calling, email list renting, Facebook marketplace, JVs, etc.
However, there is one very effective inbound deal disposition channel that is overlooked by most investors. Yes, I’m referring to having your own real estate marketplace right on your website.
Unfortunately, most of the real estate investor website providers today lack property marketplace functionality. The vast majority of those website solutions simply concentrate on acquisition of deals for investors but completely disregard the disposition component.
There are really a handful of websites in the industry these days that utilize this opportunity to streamline their deal disposition. This investment property marketplace for example, does a great job marketing their deals to potential buyers.
This real estate investing company takes advantage of their own website to not only acquire deals but also dispose of them quickly by driving prospective buyers directly to their property marketplace.
To win in this competitive space you must be creative and willing to invest in technology. No surprise why real estate tech giants like Zillow, Realtor.com, and Redfin got so big and keep growing. All of them, without exception, heavily invest in technology.
4. Automated Follow Up
Did you know that the vast majority of your website visitors will never leave your website without contacting you? In fact, according to the Unbounce’s conversion benchmark report, about 96% of visitors will leave your site before filling out a form.
This is a heck of a number. Do you realize how many marketing dollars an average real estate investing website wastes? You spend all that money to drive traffic to your website but most of it goes straight to the drain!
What if you had an ability to get in touch with those 96% of visitors? Do you think you could convert at least a few of them into deals? I bet you would.
While there are a number of technologies available on the market today that let you retarget your website visitors, most of them require initial setup as well as ongoing optimization.
These are all good and I totally recommend taking advantage of them. However, you might not be a Google or Facebook ads specialist and would rather opt for a hands-off approach.
Well, now you actually have that ability with cutting-edge services like Website to Mailbox. Website to Mailbox is a fully automated follow up service that lets you send direct mail postcards to anonymous prospects who visit your website!
Technically, what it does is after a quick initial setup, the service will match your visitors’ IP addresses to physical addresses. If there is a match and a prospect meets your predetermined qualifying criteria, a retargeting postcard will be mailed automatically to each prospect’s matched physical address within 24 hours!
What is even more exciting is that you only pay per card mailed. Meaning, you don’t pay anything unless a postcard is mailed to your prospect! This is awesome because it allows you to set a particular budget you are comfortable with.
You can watch this quick video overview of the service in which Joy Gendusa, the founder and CEO of PostcardMania, explains in detail how the Website to Mailbox service works.
The goal of all real estate investors is to make their business a profitable one. Real estate business is considered lucrative but if investors don’t have the right tools and strategy, they might have a hard time closing deals.
There are tons of real estate investors in every market but only a few of them are making a good living. If you are running a real estate investing website but do not get enough leads from it, perhaps you are doing things the wrong way.
Start assessing your website and see what you can improve. Incorporating some or all the functionalities and strategies listed above will be a big help.
About the Author:
Oleg Donets is a serial entrepreneur, technology and digital marketing strategist with a solid track record. Since 2013, he has been successfully helping numerous startups and established companies from a wide range of industries to launch, grow and scale their businesses by utilizing his innovative technology solutions and progressive marketing strategies. Oleg is a founder of Real Estate Bees, a cutting-edge technology & marketing platform for the real estate industry professionals. Oleg is also a proud business mentor at SCORE, the nation’s largest nonprofit organization and a resource partner of the U.S. Small Business Administration. You can find Oleg on LinkedIn.