Whether it’s viewed as overall consumer confidence or just a general behavioral shift in how home buyers shop, website visits, across all devices, continue to rise. Builders we meet are looking to take advantage of this exposure by converting passive page viewers to hard leads. We’ve plastered every page of the site with simplified lead forms and sales contact information in hopes to minimize the effort involved for the user to initiate the first touch.
However, reducing the work seems to be only half the battle. In our experience, web form completion frequency is disappointing, despite the increase in visits. Are visitors confused by what they’re finding on your website? Is it too much commitment to call the sales office? Or are they too impatient to fill out the form and wait for a response? We chose “D. All of the above” and responded by implementing Live Chat for a few of our clients to gauge the willingness of visitors to ask their questions in a low pressure environment. For those who are unfamiliar with the idea, Live Chat is an application designed for businesses to provide online assistance to website visitors in real time.
When we propose this feature we often receive pushback and it all begins to sound the same. Do I have to hire someone to manage online chat? What if the sales manager is too busy on the weekends to respond to chats? What happens if a chat comes in at 9pm? Well here are some basic rebuttals. Clients can set their own hours of operation (no need for 24/7 availability) and incoming inquiries can be handled by individual community sales managers or by a dedicated online sales counselor. If a user tries to submit a chat and no one is available to respond immediately, they are presented with an option to leave a message which, to our surprise, is exercised frequently.
Still not convinced? We analyzed some data over the course of the second quarter and came back with these results.