How tech ready are you and your real estate business? Test yourself with this quick tech test.
In a recent interview with industry trend and technology commentator Brad Inman, we discussed where real estate was heading and what the best agents are doing to connect with their clients and add value in new and exciting ways.
Brad has correctly forecast that consumers are getting smarter and will seek out the agent with the tools and tech savvy market profile to help them with their real estate solution. Pretty much a no-brainer one would think, except the majority of agents still don’t get it.
You can check out my interview with Brad at www.topagentsplaybook.com/38
When I listened back to my interview, I made a heap of notes and quickly came up with what I’m calling a Real Estate Tech Check so agents can test their tech readiness to attract new clients.
Take the test now and give yourself 10 points for every yes!
1. Do you have a personal website?
Here’s the thing: This morning, in the area where you make a living being an awesome real estate professional, someone woke up, yawned, rolled over and reached for their iPhone or tablet, booted up Google and logged a search for ‘real estate agents (your area)’
Did you come up on their radar?
Almost 2 hours later, somebody else woke up and decided to move to your area and also did a search. Did you make an appearance?
If not, that’s a couple of potential deals down the S bend 🙁
Now imagine that happening multiple times on a daily basis.
Take a squizz (that’s Australian for ‘look’) at www.GetWhatYouWant.ca and listen to my podcast with an agent who can get up to 1200 online buyer and seller messages every day. Yup, every day!
You can listen to my interview with Melanie at www.topagentsplaybook.com/19
She’s a breath of fresh air in a world of boring sameness!
Your own personal and excellent looking website will not instantly catapult you to page one on Google or any other search engine for that matter, but when you follow some simple rules, (like having a mobile friendly website which I’ll talk about in a sec) you will begin to climb upward in rankings.
You have a personal website? Give yourself 10 points
2. Is it a cool website that engages visitors?
Is it easy to navigate with an obvious phone number above the fold (top right is best) inviting visitors to call or text you anytime? Folks won’t wait. Folks will keep searching for an agent’s website that does.
In fact, here’s a cool idea: Why not add an online client questionnaire extension to your website (abcrealty.com/clientquestions) and email it to your potential client before your listing presentation. They fill it out and their response is automatically emailed back to you.
And because people are sticky noses, they’ll do some sniffing and click the ‘About’ button on your navigation bar to read up on you and see just how awesome you are! When you roll up to deliver your presentation, they’ll probably greet you with “Where do I sign?” (In a perfect world)
Your website is so awesome you have to have just one more look before you go to bed each night? Give yourself another 10 points.
3. Is your website responsive?
Meaning does it open easily and is it a great user experience on all tablets and mobile phones? (Use this Google test to see if your website is mobile friendly. https://www.google.ca/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/)
Keep in mind, your market is mobile and at the time of writing, most real estate websites are not user friendly. If a potential client is trying to navigate a non-mobile friendly website on their mobile device, they will think bad website = bad agent. Wouldn’t you?
Did your website pass Google’s mobile friendly test? Excellent! Another 10 points
4. Does your website have a blog?
There are so many ways to leverage a great article hosted straight from your website. You can put a link on Facebook or LinkedIn and the key words in your article will also boost the living daylights out of your organic search results over time! (Winning!)
In fact, when buddy rolls over and searches ‘real estate Austin Texas’, one of your blogs may come up before your actual website because your article is headed up ‘5 things you must know before buying in Austin’. There’s your connection right there. You’re shooting fish!
You’re a blogging legend and you post weekly. You just got 10 points. Boom!
5. Does your website have a pop-up chat feature?
A few months back, I talked one of my favorite clients into installing a pop up chat feature on his website. We set it to activate after his home page is open for about 10 seconds.
He kicked and screamed a little because he didn’t want to spend the money to add the feature (USD$29 a month) and was concerned tire kickers would be messaging him and wasting his time.
But I’m pretty persuasive and gently reasoned with him to at least try it out. But he resisted.
So I lured him to Reno, then hog tied him naked, covered him in pure Ontario honey and sat him on an anthill just outside town in the burning sun and he quickly came round to my way of thinking. (When a couple of people stopped and came over to see what was going on, I told them we were in rehearsal for the new season of Breaking Bad. They bought it.)
We set it up so the messages go to a very helpful 22 year old chap named Ravi who runs a thriving 24/7 support business above an organic curry joint in downtown Mumbai. When the chat enquiry comes through, Ravi, or one of his minions, jumps on the chat and replies in perfect English to the site visitor.
In the last 2 months, Team Ravi has handled more than 200 chat enquiries and my coaching client has listed 3 homes in his area and sold 2. Total Return On Investment assuming the listing will sell, $62,000! KA-CHING!
I hate ants and have a 24/7 chat feature installed on my website. 10 points
Let me ask you a question: If you were about to drop half a million clams on a piece of real estate, would you feel completely comfortable using an agent with a Gmail address?
The average real estate agent in North America is a 54 year old woman who does something like 2.3 deals a year and chances are she has a Gmail address or something similar. If you consider yourself a pro (and I know you are because you’re reading my stuff) don’t go there.
You don’t have a Gmail or Yahoo or Ymail or email@example.com business email? Give yourself 10 points partner!
7. Do you have smoking hot images of your listings?
Great agents use great photos to attract more buyers and sellers. This was happening way before the new economy so it’s amazing many agents still flunk the great photo test.
You will be judged by your photos and after your sizzling personality and engaging monologue, it’s probably one of the most important marketing assets you can have.
Yes Ray. My images are the talk of the town! Cool. 10 points
8. Do you have an up-to-date social media profile on Facebook, Instagram LinkedIn?
Remember back a few steps how I was talking about search? Well Social Media profiles play an increasingly important role in helping you get on the radar. Google is the new phone book but it’s not alphabetical. It’s a constant race to page1. Every link and entry you can have will help you get there.
And don’t fall for the trap of loading your listings on there. That’s not what Social is about. You’re looking to engage potential clients in your area with cool local and interesting content that involves others.
I’m all over social media and hardly ever post house pics! Nice. Another 10
9. Do you have smoking hot images of your yourself?
If your PMI or Personal Marketing Image (Okay… I just made that acronym up!) was taken back when the Dead Sea was just sick, it’s time for an upgrade. Otherwise, when you turn up for that listing presentation, they’ll wonder what the heck you’re doing there.
It is what it is and we are what we are and we can’t all look like Clooney or whatshername from The Hunger Games.
So get a good nights sleep and Google ‘Professional portrait photographer in (your area)
These Pros are paid to make us look good and you’ll have an awesome looking PMI to use everywhere.
Got it! My photo was is clear, sharp, with good light and was taken in the last 5 years and apart from that little sunburn incident in Mexico last year, I look pretty much the same. Good News! 10 points
10. Do you have a killer CRM?
I didn’t make this acronym up because if I did, I would have named it CRMS for Customer Relationship Management System but I digress.
A few dollars a day will get you a killer CRM and it’s a game changer.
Your CRM is the bucket where you keep your contacts and show them the love. You can customize mass emails and text blasts, buyer match your buyers to new listings and a heap more.
A good system will tell you who has opened your email and give your selling clients the option to log in and see the last action on their listing.
I guess it really comes down to deciding if you are going to be that average 54 year old 2.3 sales agent from Boise or are you going to leverage technology to get that swagger in your walk and kick some butt!
Yes I use a CRM and it rocks my world. Give yourself 10 points.
If you’re ready to take your real estate website to the next level, your first stop should be to check out my interview with top agent Melanie Piche. Her site is now attracting 2000 hits a day and is a constant source of leads for her thriving Toronto real estate business, The Brel Team.