When we ask agents “why do people go to Zillow?” 9 out of 10 times we hear “it’s because of their search.” While this may be true for some folks who like their search, this doesn’t explain those people going to Zillow who have never been there before. People who’ve never been there don’t know anything about the search on Zillow.
No, people aren’t going to Zillow because of the search. They go to Zillow because Zillow has the biggest mouth! We would also argue that most people who have gone to Zillow at least one time before go back because that’s the only place they really know where they can find listings.
It’s hard to say this, but Zillow is brilliant. They have paid 100’s of Millions in advertising and marketing dollars alone over the course of time to train people (your contacts) to go to their website to look at listings. They have had the biggest mouth – they are the marketing bully!
Question is, how loud has your voice been, how much have you spent? What have you done to get people to go to your website?
A Real Scenario to Ponder
Imagine tonight after work, a homeowner contact of yours goes home and sees a new listing sign in the yard a few doors down from their house. What goes through their brain? Right, “what’s that house selling for” and “how’s that relevant to my house?” Question is, where are they going to find out? Right again – Zillow.
NOW for the rubber meets the road part, why do they go to Zillow? Well, because Zillow trained them to, as we just expressed above, and you haven’t trained them to go to your website.
The Good News – It Ain’t Rocket Science – Just A Little Out of the Box
At a grassroots level – ahem the level where most of us live – you don’t have to spend tons of money to get people to go to your website you just have to yell a little louder – metaphorically speaking. You have to adjust your habits and alter your mindset if you want more from your website than a bill to pay each month. We say, if you want people to use your website, you have to intentionally send them there for the listings they want from you.
All you have to do is set up local neighborhood searches on your website for your homeowner clients (and even buyers), at a minimum, and then send a link to a respective search for a respective client on a recurring basis. We call these searches, Market Updates. We could call them Drip Campaigns, Neighborhood Updates, Neighborhood Reports, Market Reports or something else.
These neighborhood searches are for active, sold and pending listings. All of these listings are highly relevant to your homeowner client and are a huge reason why your clients go to Zillow.
Wait – I can hear the skeptic…”I do this with the MLS, I already send searches like this from the MLS, why do I need to do it in my website?”
Why not use the MLS – simply put:
- The MLS isn’t your website
- The MLS doesn’t get people to your website, and
- If you are complaining (or have complained) that people don’t use your website then what you are doing or have done to get people to your website and to use your website isn’t working (hasn’t worked) and it’s time to do something else. Stop the insanity.
- There’s no marketing benefit at all with using the MLS.
- You can’t be found in Google via the MLS.
- The MLS doesn’t promote you or your brand
What Can Your System Do For You?
If you aren’t a customer of ours, can your system do what we’re talking about here? Better yet, can you set up a search and start a recurring email campaign in just a matter of minutes from one single admin page? We’re not talking about sending an email with listings in the email – we’re talking about a link for the contact to click which takes them to your website – the one you own, control and pay for. If you can’t do this easily and you want more out of your website, it’s time for a new solution.
If you are a customer of ours, are you doing this? If not, why? We can train you to do it, or you can pay us to do it for you. There is no excuse to not do this – zilch, nada, zero. Well maybe if you want to keep thinking about your website as a liability versus a tool for your business – but that’s about it.
If you are a customer of ours and are doing this – good for you! We hear from our clients all the time who are doing what we tell them to do and the reports are that their clients love the listings.
As a licensed agent who uses our system with my own people, I see folks who I’ve had on the system now for quite a few months clicking on the links I send them month after month. Not everyone clicks every month, but I see folks missing a month and then clicking again. Most of these folks are homeowners, but a few are long term buyers I’m cultivating by sending them listings.
I can hear the skeptic…let’s stop it right there – this type of behavior isn’t social grease (maybe the first click was, but not subsequent clicks several months later and in a row) rather it’s that my homeowner contacts are interested in seeing the listings around their home that I’m sending them – period. It’s what I told them I’d send them – no other fluff, spam, recipes, staging tips, weatherizing tips, financing tips, newsletters or any of the other “noise” that agents send their databases. Just listings – active, sold, and pending listings around their neighborhood. The same thing goes for the buyers I have using my website – just listings.
Interested in learning more? How we can help you win your contacts back from Zillow for good request a demo and we’ll show you.