Stop pushing yourselves on new clients. Convert more leads with a sales based website chat tool.

That might sound a little “pushy”, but seriously if you want to build trust with fresh blooded, potential clients it’s the hard truth that a lot of agents still unfortunately need to hear. Not only is the hard sell dead, but also without a pulse is the soft sell, the value sell and every other sleazy sales tactic you’ve ever learned. It’s time to start waiting patiently for your queue when to chime in and that starts with your ears not your mouth. Too many agents are using their website chat tool to stalk and harass potential new clients.

I was recently in New York City for the Inman Connect Conference and I was reminded about how much I hate being pressure sold. Of course none of this happened to me while on the conference floor, in fact, you could argue I was on the other side of the table, since I was in fact exhibiting. We can wax poetic about time and place a little later.

No, for me, the hard sell came out on the streets of New York when I ventured away from the secure, comfort of my Times Square hotel to indulge in a little retail therapy. It had been a few years since I had been in the city of Gotham, but it all came flooding back to me as soon as I heard the first familiar holler – “Hey ma’am you like comedy?” You want to laugh tonight?” A man freezing his appendages off in the bitter cold of January (the historic snowfall never came, but it was colder than Canada land down there) was waving a book of tickets in my face as soon as I stepped off the sidewalk.  A polite, “Oh, no thanks, I have plans already tonight.” and I moved along.

Three more feet. “Hey ma’am you want show tickets? You want to go to a show tonight? Come over here let me show you what show tickets I got.” Me: “No thank-you.” This continued incessantly as I tried to make my way to my destination. My responses got less and less polite and I started avoiding eye contact until I realized not watching where I was going had a side effect called – lost in New York.

All I wanted, in the few precious hours I had to myself, was to walk along with my coffee, enjoy the sights and sounds of the infamous NYC and do a little damage on my credit card that I may or may not regret later. Instead, I was bombarded by sales people coming at me from every direction offering tickets, passes, CD’s and tours to the point that I was forced to call it a day for fear I would either cave and buy everything they were offering or get trapped after dark on my own because I was too polite to say no.

After succumbing to purchasing demo CD’s from two smooth talking gentlemen who referred to me as J-Love, I finally chose to accept defeat and I left. Packed it in. Folded my hand and went back to the quiet solace of my hotel room. I was a little more than annoyed too. I’m a red blooded female with an affinity for shoes and I was a little miffed that I was scared back to my room by manic sales zombies, without the reward of new kicks to make it worth my while.


Autographed CDs for when they make it big.

I would rate this experience as a mid-grade sales barrage – it fits somewhere in between the beaches of an all-inclusive resort in Mexico and wait for it…what I see real estate agents doing to their clients on a daily basis with their website chat tools. The push. Not only is it annoying, but it’s also totally obvious.

Don’t get me wrong, agents aren’t stalking their clients while they’re half-dressed on a beach with offers of silver jewelry and phallic drink vessels, but they are pestering their prey by using ill-fitted chat tools on their websites that are designed with the sole purpose of retail support.  Those support based chat tools are designed to help existing already bought and sold clients with issues.

Let’s examine why this isn’t this ideal for an agent or broker.

You have to sign in for it to work

Uh oh. How many other things to make your life more efficient do you have to sign in to? CRM, website chat tool, website, MLS, portal account? It gets dizzying, that’s why having a chat tool that doesn’t require sign in and still opens up chat between your website and your mobile is ideal.  It means you can capture more potential leads without having to think twice about what your password is for yet another app.

You have to push to engage.

Now that you’re signed in to your support based, one size fits all website chat tool comes the pushing. Hopefully you like the incessant ringing of a doorbell to tell you when visitors are online. And by visitors I mean, any unique IP address, and by unique IP address, I mean you could waste half your day pushing website chats to robots scanning your website for traffic ranking purposes.

On the off chance you push a website chat to a visitor who is actually a real human interested in a property that you have; you run the risk of scaring them off because nobody likes the feeling that they are being watched as they surf through a website in the comfort of their own space. It’s freaky. They know it and nine times out of ten they will not only close the website chat tool window they will also exit your site as fast as humanly possible.  You’re better off having a chat box that can be called up at the request of the visitor when they’re ready to engage with you. Being available and responsive is key.

Your website is your sales tool.

So then your website chat tool needs to be looked at as your conversion tool.  You should be able to integrate your website chat tool into every listings detail page. If your website chat tool is not capable of integrating into your IDX listing data then it is just another generic chat tool. Not a chat tool designed for real estate.

Next time I travel to NYC I won't forget these, but you don't want visitors to your website coming equipped with oversize shades to avoid your website chat tool!The next time I travel back to the illustrious streets of NYC I’m going to be a little more prepared with some oversize sunglasses to avoid awkward eye contact with unsolicited street salespeople. My question to you is will anyone come back to your website knowing that you might still be waiting to push an unsolicited sales chat their way?