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Real Estate | 9 minute read

How to Choose the Right Real Estate CRM

Gabe Cordova Apr 03, 19

Congratulations! You've decided your team can no longer miss out on the major benefits of using a real estate CRM. You're well on your way to achieving new heights of selling success. But you still have some work to do: namely, you still need to select the right CRM.

In order to make the right choice for your business, you need to consider what your priorities are and what is standing in the way of your team's ability to accomplish those priorities. Are you closing the right amount of deals? How is your lead follow up? No CRM will check off every single box or will run your business for you, but the right one will be both the option your team wants to use, and the one you can customize to meet your goals, your business objectives and your working style the best.

Look for These Key Features

Marketing & Lead Generation

You know most people want to learn more about you and your business via the internet prior to speaking with you.  It's imperative you have a website that not only gets found and greets visitors with your unique brand, but is proven to capture leads so that you can begin a dialog with the potential of sparking a deeper conversation.  While it's easy to get a website just about anywhere these days, the importance of having it built into your CRM is that visitor activity is actually recorded and shared with you via your CRM's notifications.  This means that you'll know which people have setup saved searches, what houses people are actually looking at and when their search seems to be heating up.  This information is extremely valuable as you show your value through proactive communication and deeper insights to homebuyers' needs.

A CRM that provides an IDX Website will give your team the competitive edge necessary for success in today's real estate market. Real estate buyers are more independent than ever before. No longer do clients reach out to a real estate agent without any homes in mind. People do their own independent research online. And when your leads are searching online, they are interacting with different listings on Zillow or trulia from an array of real estate agents. But when you have a front-facing website connected to your CRM via IDX, you not only get key information on your leads, but you also get monopolized advertisement space.

Think about it: On Zillow or trulia, you are competing with other agents for a lead's attention. A listing that links back to your website provides a space for only your listings and only your information. With IDX, you can search for the leads who are searching for and interacting with your listings in real-time. You'll then get a sense for the types of homes or qualifications within that lead's range, allowing you to reach out with targeted information at a specific juncture in the lead's buying journey, so you offer better engagement with your leads overall.

Another consideration is lead gen.  While you will likely have multiple lead sources, some CRM companies will actually provide paid search, Facebook, or other paid advertising to help you drive more leads into your pipeline.  These are often optional services, but can serve as a consistent supplement to your other marketing efforts.

Automation

You can't automate everything in your business, nor should you try.  However, introducing the automation a real estate CRM can provide allows you to focus on the service, communication, and relationships it takes to convert leads to clients.  With features like lead routing, customized lead distribution, drip text and email campaigns, you can automate the tasks that a technology platform can (and should) do better than you.  This allows you to focus on the more dollar-productive activities that you love and truly make you more money.

What's great about real estate CRMs is they are built specifically for your business.  You still need to do your homework and make sure the CRM you are considering isn't just a bunch of developers in a back room creating what they "think" will work.  Working with a CRM like Firepoint, you get a platform that is built by agents, for agents, which means that all those little details about your business have already been thought of.  There's nothing more annoying than getting setup in a new platform, only to find out that it won't let you do half the things you know will drive your real estate business.

 

Opportunities

So you've put your virtual shingle out there on the internet, even have some leads coming in and are getting them distributed to your team for the fastest speed to lead and follow up possible.  Now, it's time to really get to work on what you do best.  Choosing a real estate CRM that provides you an easy way to understand the low hanging fruit in your business is crucial.  You don't want to chase cold leads that aren't even serious about buying yet.  Your opportunities dashboard makes is simple to see your newest/hottest leads, who is most active on your website, and some potential opportunities to bring people further through your marketing pipeline.  This not only saves you time and frustration, but actually truly makes you more money as you focus on the right leads that are most likely to become your next clients.

Communication

Sparking new conversations is key to your business as you look to convert leads into clients.  Does the real estate CRM you are considering allow you to make phone calls and send text messages and emails?  Can you send image and video texts and emails?  Are the calls, texts, and emails all recorded within your CRM for easy reference and keeping other team members up to speed?  Can you do all of this from your desktop at the office and an app on your phone as you're on the go?  The communication tools built into your CRM need to be easy to use and reliable so that you and your team are sure to make the most of them.

Another important communication feature to consider need is how you can communicate internally as a team.  Make sure your CRM makes communicating with each other as easy as @mentioning so that teammates are notified and can easily respond... all through the CRM for the ultimate record of every lead and client relationship.

Reporting & Insights

So you've generated more leads, automated your workflows, seized your hottest opportunities, and converted more leads into clients... now what?  Just rinse and repeat, right?  Well, almost.  Now you need to look at your business and find what's kicking a$$ and what needs, well... some improvement.  Finding a CRM that lets you see the most important reporting on your business with just a click of a button can save you time and make your next decisions even easier.  Understanding what lead sources are working best, what your ROI is from each, and how long it takes to see that ROI can help you better understand which lead sources are duds and which ones just need more time to nurture.

You also need to be able to see how your team is doing at a glance.  Check out their activity and see whether they are hitting your expectations for calls, emails, and texts.  If they're crushing the call numbers, but flopping on setting appointments and sales – then click to drill into their actual calls.  Listen in to their recorded voicemails and conversations so that you can coach them to more effective scripting.

Integration

Let's be honest, no tool can do it all.  A CRM that integrates with your necessary tools is key to streamlining your processes and creating a truly centralized workplace with records to back up each phone call and each lead's information. Without this, your agents will be left with the expectation that they sign into all these different platforms and logins to simply make a call. In short, it just won't work.

Prioritize Ease of Use

Now that you've learned how to choose the right CRM, the bottom line is: The right CRM for your business will be the one you and your agents actually use. So, while a CRM might have every feature on your list, if it isn't easily adoptable by your team, it will be a wasted investment. Pick a CRM that prioritizes the user actually being able to quickly and easily be able to use the product... daily.

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Click here to download the guide: The Rule of Three

About Gabe Cordova

Gabe is an expert in residential real estate with over 16 years of sales success, team building, training, and system implementation. As the President of Firepoint Solutions, he focuses on building th...

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