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More leads from your website: Lead generation forms

Earning leads to your real estate website isn’t magic – it’s science. The first part of that scientific formula is getting traffic (potential leads) to your website; the second part is converting that traffic – asking for the business!

To read more on the formula, refer to my article 5 steps to skyrocket website leads.

Imagine hosting an open house where you don’t ask for a follow up. You’d be missing opportunity. Same with online. Earning leads online is about asking for the business and the way to do that is through lead-generation forms.

Before we tell you where to put a lead-gen form, let’s address what it is. A lead-gen form is an opportunity for your website visitors to give you their contact information. This isn’t simply “given” (unless you’re a high producing agent they already know and want to work with), it’s earned. They need to be attractive enough to garner attention and convincing enough to warrant people giving up their precious contact information.

The six best places to put lead-gen forms

Having an attractive and convincing offer is critical – but so is the location of these forms. The six items below are the top-delivering spots based on behind the scene research from the clients of REwebsites and are listed in order – starting with the most important positioning.

  1. Pop up: While “pop up” has become a dirtier word than mud, or timeshare, this is the most effective lead-gen form there is. An average of 50 per cent plus of leads come in through a website’s pop-up lead generation form.
  2. Top bar: A top bar lead-gen form is one that is at the top of a page (above the menu) and often follows you down the page along with the menu. These forms bring in an average of 30 per cent plus of the leads that a website generates.
  3. Scroll boxes: Scroll boxes are call to action forms that generate leads, but only activate and pop-up (generally in the right- or left-hand corner) once a reader scrolls down to a certain point on the page. A common point is after the user scrolls 50 per cent down the page. These can garner up to 30 per cent of total leads. However websites don’t generally use the scroll boxes, top bar and pop-ups at the same time.
  4. Sidebar: A sidebar lead-gen form is in the sidebar of a website – the reoccurring element on pages on the right- or left-hand side – that shows on most pages with the exception of the homepage. As this is located on most of the pages of a website it has the most views after the pop up, top bar and scroll box. And the better the real estate, the more leads you will receive.
  5. Embedded forms: Embedded forms are lead-gen forms on your website that are unique to that specific page (not a pop up, not in the sidebar or top bar) and generally come after the content (although for long pages they can be half-way through so you capture the lead before the reader stops reading). These can be effective as they can be uniquely catered to that page’s content – for example, if that page’s content is about homes in X neighbourhood, that lead-gen form could be about “Homes in X neighbourhood most likely to increase in value”. While they can be effective for readers on that page, they won’t be viewed nearly as much as other options, which is why they garner five per cent of leads or less generally. While the percentage of total leads is smaller, they can be good-quality leads because the user was searching for information on that particular topic.
  6. Landing pages: Landing pages on your website are commonly used to siphon traffic from advertising campaigns. It is hard to give a percentage on these in terms of total overall leads because they run separate from the rest. They perform well if they use a tempting offer or intriguing information and can earn anywhere between two and 30 per cent of the traffic sent directly to them.

While having any lead-generating forms on your website is better than not having them, placing them strategically is of critical importance. Using only embedded forms on a few pages of the website can reduce your overall lead generation to five per cent of its total potential. But of course you need to use them in a way that complements the overall design and isn’t overly intrusive. Don’t use too few or you’re losing leads.