If you don’t hook the visitor on their first visit, that’s no reason not to keep in touch. Perhaps they’re just in the research phase. Perhaps they didn’t find their dream home yet. There are many reasons it takes people many weeks and months to settle on their home purchase decision. Conventional wisdom says you need to follow-up with prospects for six months or more to finally reel them in. Following up is worthwhile too, as the cost of getting an initial visitor to your site is far greater than marketing to someone already in your database. So how should you be following up with past traffic? Here are a few effective ways:
Obtain your past traffic’s information before they leave – Yes, this is obvious. But you’d be surprised how many sites just let you walk away without any call-to-action. 78% of home shoppers visit more than three sites before reaching out to a person (NAR and Google’s “The Digital House Hunt” Study). Providing lead capture forms is a great way to obtain your traffic’s contact information before they leave, enabling meaningful, effective follow-ups. For example, offer highly demanded, localized content such as “South Beach, Miami’s 2014 Home Shoppers Guide” to home shoppers who enter their name and email address. By doing so, you obtain their contact information as well as their area of interest.
Have home shoppers create personalized accounts - In addition to lead capture forms, offer home shoppers the option to create personalized accounts. By allowing home shoppers to create an account on your platform, you enable them to save their searches, preferred listings, contact information, and email preferences. When new listings arrive that match their criteria, you can let them know through email or when your home shoppers log back in. This way, they don’t miss the listings they’re most interested in and are more easily equipped to find their next home. Tie this into your mobile strategy to increase stickiness even more. For example, you can seamlessly transfer the properties each home shopper saves online to their mobile apps …and vice versa. One additional recommendation here is to offer some highly relevant saved search options. For example, allow visitors to save searches based on the specific school they want their children to go to or a specific type of lifestyle they’re looking for like a “golfer’s paradise”.
Send past traffic personalized suggestions – Remain active by sending regular updates on new listings and other content that match your visitor’s search criteria. For example, you can send the past traffic that indicated they highly value schools an email displaying the newest listings within their desired districts and schools. Alternatively, send out more personalized emails to stronger leads, containing the homes that best match all of their search preferences. If you know their neighborhood of interest send them updates on not just listings but sales in the area, new businesses opening and even estimated value increases in the neighborhood. Doing so keeps your brand top of mind and will position you to be the brand they contact when they’re ready to convert. It also creates urgency.
The company that has perfected this approach was none other than Amazon. By knowing what people’s interests are based on search and purchase behavior, they’re able to target very specific offers to the right people, increasing the likelihood of a conversion. There’s (almost) nothing worse than be presented with products that have no relevance to you personally. So, while personalization makes a huge difference in effectiveness, “impersonal” communication can have a negative effect. So regardless of what you communicate, make sure it matters to your audience.
As for Onboard Informatics, there are numerous ways to automate the use of our content to create relevant, meaningful and personalized follow-ups that show your understanding of your past traffic’s needs. Reach out to us to find out more.
This is part 4 of the Real Estate Guide, a series dedicated to helping professionals obtain, retain, and convert traffic into clients. Read more on The Real Estate Guide here: