Over the years, the real estate industry has shifted from newspaper and bench advertisements to Internet-based marketing. Prospective homebuyers now have constant access to real estate content, listings and virtual tours from competing agents, all online. Therefore, an important piece of the lead generation puzzle is showcasing expertise online – potential clients look for a good track record when it comes to finding an agent.
Reviews and testimonials are key to attracting new business. They are important for converting potential buyers who are looking to hire a real estate agent who can help them on their home ownership journey. As the real estate industry constantly navigates an ever-changing economy, agents need to provide their prospects with real feedback from real clients to highlight how they’ve handled different challenges over the years.
According to a survey conducted by ZipRealty, 62% of online home buyers say they would contact an online agent based on great reviews clearly posted by real customers. Forty-three percent of online buyers who recommended an agent through word of mouth said they would use the Internet to research the agent before contacting them.
That’s why it’s important for agents to feature real customer reviews. Positive testimonials can help potential clients decide who will best help them through the life-changing step of buying or selling a home. Reviews are useful for showing an agent’s track record, as well as their commitment to being a great resource in their community.
Google, where most people start their search for products, companies, and services, has a section dedicated to reviews. But did you know that Google can also pull review information directly from Facebook? So, in addition to having reviews on your business website, adding reviews to your social media accounts, such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, can do wonders for you and your business strategy, and can provide future prospects with all the information they are looking for. , no matter where they begin their search.
To reiterate, reviews allow members of your community, or those interested in moving there, to research and understand how you can help them, bringing them closer to working with you. And that can set the standard for the experience they will receive.
The experience of buying or selling a home begins at the first contact with a potential client, from the moment they reach out, and continues until the closing of the transaction (and even beyond) . It’s important to keep in mind that every customer will have something to say about their experience, and that’s why follow-up even after the deal closes is essential.
When asking for reviews, ask for a few sentences or more based on their experience. Ask them to indicate how you helped them, whether they would recommend you to a friend or colleague, what specific challenges you helped them overcome, how quickly their transaction was completed if it was completed in one record time and anything else they would like to add. If you want even more robust content, ask for a video testimonial if a customer had an exceptionally good experience, as this can help potential customers feel more connected to you.
According to a 2019 local consumer reviews survey by BrightLocal, 76% of customers who were asked to leave a review did so. Additionally, 90% of these consumers also say they have used the internet to research local businesses, with 82% saying they always read online reviews before making a decision.
So what does this mean for your real estate business? Reviews are essential. Homebuyers want to be sure they can trust their prospective agent. As most people are on social media today, it’s more important than ever to not only be an active resource by providing content and keeping your community informed, but also to show how you’ve helped others in the past and how you can help them today.
Paige Brown is RISMedia’s Content Editor. Email him your real estate news and ideas at firstname.lastname@example.org.