When assessing a property’s value, many real estate investors focus on the mantra: “Location, location, location.” But for the kind of aggressive real estate buying that I do—the kind that drives buy-and-hold investors, fix-and-flippers, and wholesalers—the mantra is a little different: leads, leads, leads.
Getting leads to maximize your investment potential is the lifeblood of this business. That’s why it’s no surprise that there are a ton of companies that claim they have the best real estate lead generation websites. However, the leads that many of these sites generate aren’t always quality ones.
In this article, we’ll discuss:
- how to identify a quality lead;
- what websites work best for real estate lead generation; and
- the best way investors can get real estate leads.
Identifying a Quality Lead
For the most part, real estate generation websites do what they say they’re going to do: deliver leads. You could potentially get so many leads that you don’t even know what to do with them. However, there’s no guarantee that you’ll receive quality leads.
A quality lead—sometimes referred to as a “qualified” lead—is one that has an actual good chance of turning into a close because the seller is motivated. If you’re unsure whether or not you have a quality lead, here are three questions to ask yourself:
- Did the seller reach out to me? This shows a true intent to sell.
- Did they give me information freely? You shouldn’t be in the business of twisting arms.
- Is there a ton of competition? Competition drives up prices and makes deals less likely.
Another thing to consider is that a quality lead doesn’t always mean it’s a good deal for you. The real estate valuation process is different from the process that generates leads. But ideally, one leads to the other. Therefore, you need to have quality leads.
And as you’ll see, not every website offers quality leads.
The Best Real Estate Lead Generation Websites for Investors: Pros and Cons
When searching for the best real estate lead generation website, you must consider the pros and cons and how they may impact your overall investment goals. Let’s take a look at a few popular websites.
This is a fairly new service that uses predictive analytics to identify people in a given zip code who are most likely to sell. They use “data, statistical algorithms and machine learning techniques to identify the likelihood of future outcomes based on historical data.”
- Cost: $400-$500 a month (depending on zip code/market)
- Pros: By being able to target people who are going to sell but haven’t listed yet, you can eliminate some competition. You may be the first person to contact a potential seller and establish a relationship.
- Cons: You’re reaching out to people who might not be ready to sell, and sort of twisting their arm. The service is based on predictions, not hard evidence. You’re likely going to have a lot of misses.
Zillow has free offerings, but they also have a paid service that helps you get more real estate leads.
- Cost: $250 a month
- Pros: Volume! You’ll get a lot of leads—people who are ready to sell. And, you can be connected directly with buyers, too.
- Cons: These are very far from exclusive leads. It doesn’t mean it is impossible to make a deal, but there is a lot of competition.
InCom is a service that builds a branded website, leveraging SEO and other web best practices to generate inbound leads.
- Cost: $175 setup, $44.95 a month
- Pros: You have a professional website that can track leads and help you organize your funnel.
- Cons: There can be a lot of competition when inbound marketing. This is a good thing to have, but for the most part, it will serve as a validator for your leads rather than a pure lead generation machine.
This is another lead generation website with a more advanced CRM, as well as a lot of other features. This includes a valuation tool and access to Facebook marketplace.
- Cost: $249 per month
- Pros: This is a much more inclusive package (at a higher price point) and a more comprehensive inbound/outbound lead-generating platform.
- Cons: You are again just going on volume here, and not quality. You will still be spending a lot of time weeding through the not-so-good leads.
All of these have their benefits. Some are very budget-friendly. But it doesn’t matter how decent a service is to your wallet if it doesn’t bring in any income. That’s why a lot of real estate investors opt to generate leads in a better way.
A Better Way To Generate Real Estate Leads
What all these sites have in common is that they help you market yourself. They help you put yourself out there so that if someone wants to buy, they might get a hold of you. The uncertainty of whether or not I’d reach the right person at the right time wasn’t in line with my business goals. Instead, I chose to invest in an independently owned and operated HomeVestors® franchise.
As a franchise owner, I can leverage the We Buy Ugly Houses® nationally-known marketing campaign. When people need to sell their house, fast, they contact HomeVestors and I can get the lead. There’s little to no competition, the motivated seller has reached out to me, and they’re freely providing their information—all of the elements of a quality lead. Not only that, but tech tools such as UGVilleSM helps me nurture my leads, value the property, obtain hard money loans, and close the deal.
Volume is great. Location is great. But I’m all about generating quality leads for my real estate investing business.
If you’re looking for the best way to generate leads to boost your real estate investing business, request information about becoming a franchisee today.
Each franchise office is independently owned and operated.
HomeVestors of America® is the nation’s only real estate investing franchise, providing business opportunities to real estate and investment professionals across the nation.