5 Secret Strategies Upside Realty Uses to Turn their Website into an Appraisal Appointment Generating Machine

In all my time of auditing real estate websites for conversion improvements there is only one website that I have audited where I simply said ‘there is nothing that can be improved on this site’.

Just like with anything in life – in order to improve we should learn from the best – so in this blog we discuss what the best real estate agency is doing right with their online presence and how you can sky rocket your own conversion rates by copying what is all ready working.

Upside does everything correctly when it comes to ROI (return on investment a.k.a most seller listing appointments booked).

Here I will show you exactly what they do right and how you can incorporate it into your website.

You don’t need to spend $100K+ on a website like Upside – these are elements that any real estate agent can apply on their agency site right now.

1. Create the connection and grab attention

Unlike the majority of real estate agent’s homepages – which begin their websites with photos of properties -they’ve sold or are currently selling-, or local city buildings and skyscrapers Upside sets the tone of their website with a smiling staff member wearing professional attire and looking directly at the website visitor.

The reason Upside does this is to create an immediate and personal connection with the prospect.

Being in the service industry – Upside understands that their value doesn’t come from the properties they sell but the personal service they provide.

Everyone wants to deal with a friendly, professional real estate agent that gets results – and real estate agencies are really about the people and right off the bat Upside differentiates themselves int his manner.

2. A strong UVP

For most real estate agents their UVP (unique value proposition or headline) are extremely generic and interchangeable with other real estate agents.

While a headline like “Discover Your Coming Home Feeling” or “We Help You Find Your Dream Home” sound good on the surface and are better than simply saying “Welcome”, in reality they say nothing about a real estate agent and what makes them unique.

Can we all agree that no website should ever need to say “Welcome to [company name]” – people know they are on your website – you should get to the point as quickly as possible about why they should do business with you.
Some don’t even have a UVP instead simply having their logo take up the space where their headline/UVP would be. Clients don’t care about your logo – they want to know how you can help them.

Upside’s Unique Value Proposition headline is quick, to the point and establishes the tone for the rest of their website copy about why people should choose them.

With Upside their unique value proposition is quick, to the point and establishes the tone for the rest of their landing page of why people want to work with them.

Upside’s UVP gets straight to the point of why someone would want to sell their home with them. Notice the sub headline fleshing out and building upon the initial headline.

You don’t have to be unique to have a UVP – the important thing is to be different in the mind of the prospect . Most real estate agents – if asked if they have hidden costs will answer that they don’t – yet Upside is the only agency that specifically claims this which gives the customer confidence and builds trust – and fits in with Upside’s focus on saving the client money.

3. One Main Powerful Call to Action (Do You Know What You Want? Then Ask For It!)

Most real estate websites have a property search as their primary call to action on their home page:

This is the wrong approach for two reasons.

Firstly – most internet users do the research phase of buying a property on major internet portals like realestate.com.au and domain.com.au – competing with these websites is next to impossible.

Secondly – a property search on your home page is targeting home buyers – not sellers. Since most real estate agencies make the bulk of their revenue through seller listings.

So why would you focus on buyers on your home page when your main revenue source is sellers?

Instead of attempting to target sellers with property search you should be targeting home buyers with an appraisal appointment call to action.

Upside’s call to action is clear – there’s no mistaking what they want the prospect to do – it’s right there in bright orange.

Upside’s home page speaks directly to the buyer and asks for minimum commitment and piques the prospect’s curiosity with a bright ‘Get Started’ button – to take the prospect to the next step in the sales journey and begin the process of booking an appraisal appointment.

Soon the prospect is asked to book an appraisal appointment with the professionally attired man smiling at them – and they see a very small form that’s not asking for anything other than their property address and they think “Why not – this seems quite easy let’s see how this goes” – and now they are on the path to becoming a listing.

This multi step form is different from the Market Appraisal pages that most real estate agencies have as it is asking only a few questions to take the prospect to the next stage.

4. Client focused copy

The purpose of your website copy (copy is the text on your website) – is to communicate to the prospect how you can help them and persuade them to take action.

Most real estate agents don’t pass the “so what” or “why should I care” test by talking about things the client has no interest in such as how long they’ve been in business, their company history and other un-necessary things – especially on the About Us page.

Upside side steps this all together by getting right to the point – even on their ‘About Us’ section of their home page they dive straight into the big question – “Why Sell With Us?” – after all that’s what the client is asking.

Every piece of your website copy should be entered around the prospect’s wants and needs – and play its role in moving the client to the next stage of the selling process.

5. A calculator that actually makes sense

Most real estate websites have calculators on their ‘Resources’ or ‘Tools’ page – such as a mortgage calculator for example.

Unfortunately most real estate agents use calculators on their website incorrectly because if a client is looking for a calculator or to conduct research they will not do it on your website. Domain.com.au invests a lot of money into a whole plethora of tools to help prospects calculate their mortgage payments and other information.

Most home buyers begin their home buyers journey – including using these calculators before they even get to your website.

However you can make use of a calculator by using it as a tool to show the prospect exactly how much money they stand to save or make by choosing your real estate agency.

Check out the genius way Upside has incorporated a calculator into their website.

Upside’s calculator passes the “what’s in it for me” text by giving the prospect the most vital information – how much they themselves would save using Upside – using an adjustable slider.

The slider then also states exactly how this number is arrived at with the fine print.

When using a calculator make sure it relates directly to your prospect’s needs/wants and make it serve the purpose of persuading the client to take the next step.

6. Testimonials Done Right

Because clients these days are more sceptical than ever about what businesses say testimonials are a powerful form of third party social proof (just like Real Estate Awards or appearances on major television or radio stations) – which lend a stamp of approval to your business.

Prospects won’t even bother to put you on their short list if your website doesn’t exude trust – yet most real estate agents do testimonials incorrectly.

Because prospects will do their own independent research on your business using a third party tool like RateMyAgent.com you should make this third party information available on your home page.

While Upside’s testimonials section is not perfect – as they don’t have a dedicated Testimonial page or pull any of their fantastic Google Reviews to display alongside their RateMyAgent.com reviews they do three things very well.

Firstly – they make use of the RateMyAgent brand as they understand testimonials need to be third party verified to be relevant to the customer – as otherwise anyone could put any review on their website – not only do they use the RateMyAgent logo but they also link directly to their RateMyAgent.com page.

Secondly Upside uses photos with people in them – as humans respond much better to faces. This is in contrast to most real estate agents who use photos of the property that was sold as their testimonial which drastically decreases click through and recall rates.

Finally every review is result specific and speaks to their client’s needs and UVP (unique value proposition) by stating how much the client saved in fees.

Even if your UVP is not based on price you could still use this technique by stating how much a property was sold at $x above asking price – focusing on how much more money you put in a prospect’s pocket and highlighting these testimonials on your home page.


Studying what your competition is doing right is important for inspiration. In this blog I have broken down a leading real estate agency when it comes to having a strong internet presence – Upside – and showed you exactly what they do and how you can replicate it for yourself.

Making a strong first impression by using the right photos on their header – calling attention to their call to action and having a strong headline immediately connects Upside’s message to the prospect.

Then the various sections on their home page like their savings calculator, their strong copy and their testimonials section with third party verification tools helps to strengthen and persuade their prospect to take the next step – just in case they weren’t convinced all ready.

Upside’s website works because all the elements work together to achieve a common purpose – get the prospect to engage – using all of these elements together is the most powerful – start from the sections of your website prospects are most likely to visit and see – which is the top of your home page – and then work your way down.

5 Ways to Optimise Your Real Estate Forms to Increase Conversions (by Up to 185%)

How your market appraisal and contact forms are setup is integral in moving your prospects to the next stage of setting up an appraisal appointment – however most real estate agencies are doing contact forms incorrectly.

The form is a very integral part of your website.

Besides the obvious of non working forms – from my research of real estate companies I have found 5 critical conversion killing issues with real estate forms – these are not being clear with what the client will receive, not having a call to action, -not u- having too many fields and not utilising a multi step form, not asking the right questions – or asking the wrong ones and finally and failing to utilise an appointment booking form.

Forms are critical to your business so let’s go to the first issue.

1. Be Clear about what the Client Will Receive

our Market Appraisal form should make it clear why the prospect would want to fill it out. If you provide information to your prospects – is it better or different to what they can find themselves on realestate.com.au?

Many real estate agencies don’t even bother saying why someone would want to fill out their form or what they will receive for it.

The site above assumes that the client knows what a market appraisal report is, what it contains and why the prospect would want it.

2. If you want your form filled out – then ask the client to do it and tell them what they would get

Many real estate agents hide their forms in the ‘Selling’ drop down without calling attention to it on the home page.

Property Square Realty 2021-01-01 at 6.39.50 pm
The Market Appraisal page is hidden deep within the site – there is no mention of it on the home page. It’s hidden in the ‘Selling’ section of their menu.

A real estate agency’s revenue is directly related to how many property appraisal appointments they can book – which means the main focus and call to action in your menu and home page should be to get the prospect to book a Home Appraisal Appointment.

Your form should not be hidden in a drop down or be put AFTER the Buying tab.

In this example the call to action is very clear as soon as the user lands on the website. By the way having a ‘Get Started’ button is a great way to request minimal commitment to move the prospect along their selling journey with you.

3. Don’t Feed Me the Whole Enchilada at Once (How to Ask for a Little Bit at a Time)

Coming out the gate with 31 questions on your form overwhelms customers and massively decreases your conversion rate.

Most Market Appraisal forms – have a lot of questions which demoralise prospects – and the way to fix this and ensure you still get the information you need from your prospects is with a multi step form.

This Upside form is simply asking for the prospect’s property address. From here the user is taken on a journey – entering more bite sized pieces as they go along. – I’ve included the entire funnel below:
Step 1
Step 2
Step 3
Step 4
Step 5
Step 6

By feeding your prospect bite sized questions makes the process of entering their details manageable – a prospect looking at the funnel below would probably say “Hey why not, let me put my address in and see what happens”. The prospect is now curious what the next step will bring and filling out the form piques their curiosity and makes the sales journey seem like an adventure.

Should the prospect choose to leave your website before filling out the entire multi step form you will have enough details to initiate a follow up procedure should you wish to.

This is impossible with a one page form – where if the prospect leaves you don’t even know that they existed and you can guarantee you’ve lost that lead.

4. Ask the Right Questions (and Avoid the Wrong Ones)

Choosing what questions to ask on your property appraisal form is a balancing act.

You don’t want to ask too few questions and not have enough information to qualify the lead and follow up correctly.

The client is now directing the shots – perhaps asking the questions – and you don’t have any information to take this to the next stage. You are left with simply answering the client’s questions and then hoping that the client then agrees to go to the next stage.

On the other hand you also don’t want to have a form with too many irrelevant questions that scare prospects away.

This form is asking way too many questions – and even though not all of these questions are required in order to proceed the client does not know this and instead simply sees a very intimidating form. Despite asking so many questions few of these questions will help the real estate agent close the sale and irrelevant – and only serve to make doing business with them more difficult.

The purpose of the market appraisal form is to qualify the client and to give

The real estate agent enough information to close the sale smoothly and professionally – more questions can always be asked on the initial appointment.

Rather than asking questions about the property – which you can discover yourself with minimal research you should instead ask the following:

  • When are you looking to sell?
  • What is your relationship with the property?

These are the questions that will help you make the decision to see if this client is qualified.

5. If you want appointments – make them easier to book (The Appointment Form)

A real estate agent’s revenue is directly traced back to the amount of seller listing appointments they book – since setting appointments is such an integral part of your business – shouldn’t you do everything possible to make it easier for your potential prospects to book them?

Rather than playing the embarrassing game of phone or email tag to pin down an appointment – why not let your website handle this for you?

An online booking form will allow the client to choose a time to speak to you through an online scheduling form – this scheduling application will automatically present available times to your prospect that don’t clash with other events on your Calendar.

Upside.com.au has a custom made scheduling calendar which automatically assigns you to the schedule of the agent closest to you based on the property address you enter.

There are many off the shelf scheduling solutions available such as Calendly – which I use myself and which has many options such as automatic redirect after a user books an appointment.

The best thing about an online scheduler is that you can email the link to the home seller where they can choose a date and time – this greatly speeds up the process and makes it very clear to you when a prospect is not serious and is wasting your time.

This is because with traditional email tag a prospect can evade you and say they are “really busy” right now – or ask you to call them back in a week. With the schedule link the prospect can simply make a time which works for them at any point in the future – so the “too busy”excuse is eliminated.

While you may not have the Scheduling form on your website – you can integrate it into your sales process and how you deal with new enquiries – and it can speed up the sales journey considerably.


If you are looking at optimising your forms to increase your enquiries then the steps outlined in this blog will help you achieve that goal.

You need to understand what the purpose of not only your forms is, but your website and your business. If booking seller appraisal forms is your website’s purpose then make sure that you include a visible call to action to your most important form (the Market Appraisal form).

When the user lands on your form you should tell them why they should make the effort and what they will receive for filling out the form – and you need to ask the correct questions.

Remember the purpose of the form is to book the appraisal appointment and to assist you in closing the deal and becoming an exclusive seller for the prospect’s property – every question you ask should assist you with doing this – and any un-necessary questions should be stripped.

When it comes to speeding up the process and creating great user experience – implementing a scheduling form in your sales process will ensure that you are not left playing phone tag, annoying the client with follow ups for an appointment and losing your power in negotiations.

4 Ways to Increase Your Appraisal Appointments 65% by Using Your your Real Estate Testimonials Effectively

78% of people start their search for a real estate agent on the internet – and social proof in the form of testimonials weighs very heavily into their decision in picking an agent to book an appraisal appointment.

Most real estate agents are taking their most valuable asset – what their customers say about them and completely mis using it – presenting testimonials incorrectly and failing to get the most juice out of them – and losing 65% potential home sellers along the way.

In this blog I talk about the top 4 biggest mistakes that real estate websites make when it comes to testimonials.

Step #1: Don’t Hide Your Testimonials

Home sellers will do third party research on your agency before they choose to work with you – why not make it easy for them and showcase your testimonials.

Many real estate agencies hide their testimonials deep in their website.

Many real estate agencies hide their testimonials in the ‘Selling’ or ‘About’ drop down.

Many sellers will not check your ‘About Us’ page as most customers simply don’t care about your company and are more interested in how you can help them sell their home quickly at the highest rate – having the Testimonials hidden in the About Us menu reduces the possibility that they will be seen.

You should never rely on a client to “investigate” your website to find the information that will help them become a customer.

Even if you have 100 testimonials and your competitor only has 5 – if your testimonials are hidden and theirs are clearly visible they will appear more reputable to the client. It is about the prospect’s perception – not reality.

You should have your best testimonials somewhere on your front page. Secondly if you have enough to warrant it – you should have a separate page for your testimonials – the Testimonials page should be a top level page – and in fact it should really be right next to the ‘Home’ link in the top header bar.

If you have enough testimonials they should have their own top level page

If you check your Analytics – you would find that -almost- ALL your future clients will visit your Testimonials page during their sales journey.

ou want the most important information available to clients in an easy to find place – especially testimonials.

Step #2: Use Photos of People (People Want Stories Not Houses)

People respond more to photos of people than they do photos of houses.

When real estate agents use a photo to accompany their testimonial – they use a photo of a home. Sometimes they even mention the address of the home.

Here is one example:

When real estate agents use a photo to accompany their testimonial – they use a photo of a home.

People respond well to faces, to stories and -to- the human element. And whenever you can – use a photo (or even a video if possible) of your past customers.

This is an easy way to differentiate yourself, increase the effectiveness of your testimonials and makes you more momorable and increases trust.

Bonus Tip: You can get the photo of your previous customers by searching for them on LinkedIn or Facebook.

Customers would much rather you used a photo of their face than a photo and address of their property due to privacy.

Using photos of your past customers in their testimonials will differentiate you, increase your client’s trust and make you more memorable during the initial research phase of the home owner’s selling journey.

Step #3: Use the Customer’s Full Name

Using an abbreviation (not using the full last name) on your testimonial decreases its effectiveness and makes customers cynical about the testimonial’s authenticity.

There is no last name and no photo – this testimonial looks untrustworthy in the customer’s eyes.
While anonymous testimonials are acceptable on RateMyAgent.com this is because they are independently verified and the RateMyAgent brand is trusted and not incentivised to create inauthentic testimonials.

As a real estate agent your testimonials will not be as trusted as RateMyAgent.com – so ensure that last names are included.

Your customers know that your website is not RateMyAgent however including a last name will build their trust.

Step #4: Use Third Party Verification

There are two kinds of third party testimonial verification – these are Google Reviews and RateMyAgent.com.

If you type [real estate agent + reviews] into Google you will see the following:

RateMyAgent and Google Reviews are the most popular third party testimonial verification tools.

On the right is the Google Places page which will show the real estate’s average google rating – this is very prominent.

RateMyAgent will be in the top 3 results as it’s a popular real estate agency review site in Australia.

Since most sellers start their search on Google it’s important that you have a presence on these two websites.

When you place testimonials on your website without including a third party verification link it is less effective and prospects will be -more- cynical to their authenticity.
When showing your reviews make sure to provide a link to RateMyAgent like Upside does above.

Another method is to have a Google testimonial widget to ensure prospects don’t leave your website:

A Google widget pulls in reviews from your Google MyBusiness account and shows them on your website. Customers can click through to the individual reviews to verify their authenticity.

In fact I use this on my own website. The idea behind this is that people can click through and see the review on Google – which immediately creates trust while staying on your website.

Another powerful widget is a summary review verification widget like these:

Add this to the top of your home page to build immediate trust quicker.

In summary if you have a presence with Google Reviews and Rate My Agent – make sure you make it known!

Bonus Tip: if you are looking to build your Google reviews you can send clients a direct link in an email which will take them to the ‘Post New Review’ page on your Google My Places tab. You can find this by trying to post a review on your page and then copy/pasting that URL into an email link.


Research has shown that testimonials increase conversions by an average of 34% on sales pages and 380% on higher ticket items.

Your testimonials are your most prized marketing asset – so make sure they are displayed prominently, include customer photos and a last name and are independently verified so that they do their job of building trust and increasing your appraisal booking rates.

5 Ways to Stop Home Buyers Abandon your Website by Fixing these 5 Critical Technical Problems

Technical problems on real estate websites make your real estate agency look cheap and incompetent.

Clients can forgive a website that is not flashy – but when things are broken that will reflect on how users see your brand – just like a dirty or unkempt office, arriving late to an appointment or unfriendly staff – technical issues add up to contributing to a prospect choosing not to do business with you.

Unlike a dirty office or unfriendly staff though – you will never even know they are the cause of lost business because clients will click away without a word.

Technical issues always boil down to 5 things –

  • slow websites caused by sliders
  • missing security certificates
  • incomplete tags
  • broken headers
  • broken forms

Unlike in person – on the internet there is nothing stopping a client from clicking away from your website and heading over to a competitor – there is no objection handling to be done – you will not even know you were being considered in the first place.

1. Big Sliders and Little Big Images (Slow Websites)

Website speed is more than just not making the client wait around for your website to load – much more importantly it directly affects your Google rankings.

Fixing slow websites have led to an increase of 36% for clients I have worked with.

Kosta Kondratenko

Most real estate companies don’t audit and test their website speed during handoff from a developer and actually believe their website performs generally well without being aware of just how much optimisation potential there is and the different it’ll make to their organic traffic and user experience.

There are two main reasons for a slow real estate website –

  • un-necessary sliders and
  • unoptimised property images

Un-necessary sliders

Many real estate sites have a slider at the top of their homepage with up to 7 images – all of which need to be loaded before the website can be displayed.

Sliders also offer no practical benefit because no customer is going to sit through a website slider – the attention span of the typical prospects is less than 3 seconds. They either click and scroll to what they’re looking to achieve – or they leave.

Screen Recording 2021-01-30 at 02.43.54 pm
This website has 3 large sliders.

Finally sliders decrease your appraisal appointment booking rates because they diffuse the focus and give the client too many options to click on – leading the prospect to become overwhelmed and taking them off the critical path to become a customer.

Sliders also decrease the amount of leads your website receives because they diffuse the focus and give the client too many options to click on – which means you lose the critical path that the user needs to take to become a customer.

Unoptimised Property Images

Many ‘properties recently sold’ or ‘recently listed’ sections on real estate websites can contain many listings and the images for these listings are not optimised – instead they load the large version of the property listing images which is the equivalent of loading all your real estate listings at once.

Here we have 4 supposedly thumbnail images – however when I check the source of these images you will see they are actually huge and not optimised for this section
This image is over 250KB – much larger than it needs to be. Now imagine having 20 property listings in a slider on the home page.

Clients with slower or mobile connections will have to wait longer for your home page to load and Google will penalise and put your site at the bottom of results if you have unoptimised thumbnail images.

2. Missing Security Certificates

Security certificates (also known as SSL Certificates) allow your browser to certify that a website is safe. These security certificates are responsible for putting a green padlock or ‘Not Secure’ message in your browser address bar.

So how do you think the client will feel when they come across a website like this.

While the client may not know what an SSL certificate is or what it means – it just makes your brand look cheap. If the first thing you see before your business name is ‘Not Secure’ what kind of first impression are you building with the client?

When your prospect sees ‘Not Secure’ as the first thing when landing on your homepage you immediately start off on the wrong foot and lose their trust.

The good news is you can easily fix this issue by calling your reputable website hosting company and getting an SSL certificate installed for free.

If your hosting provider attempts to charge you for an SSL then that should be a red flag – as most reputable hosts provide one for free these days.

3. Incomplete Google tags

Missing title and description tags destroy your brand message and makes you look unprofessional on your Google listings when prospects are searching for you on Google.

Even if you can appear in a prospect’s relevant search results your brand will be devalued immediately and will lead to low confidence in the prospect’s belief that you can sell their home.

How can you sell a prospect’s home using the internet when you can’t make your listing appear properly on Google?

Below is an example of a real estate’s Google listing when no Google tags are present.

The example above is a real estate’s Google listing when no Google tags are present. The two issues with this Google listing are:

  1. No Title – since there is no title tag on the website Google defaults to having the website’s URL again -in the title-. Not good – in fact it’s no coincidence that this company doesn’t come up for their own branded keyword.
  2. No Description – underneath the title you can see Google lifts the top menu text – this is because the website has no description tag – which Google looks for first to find out what it should put in the description field on its search results.

If you don’t have this description tag then it’s up to Google to choose what to show there – and Google doesn’t always make the best decision in these matters. In this case Google just shows the first readable text it sees – which happens to be the menu items since menus are usually the first text that a website renders.

ou wouldn’t create a mailbox drop with just your website URL and a list of menu items as that would make a horrible impression – so why do it on your Google listing?

Adding a title and description tag with your company name and tagline will ensure prospects know exactly what you are about and your UVP (unique value proposition) – to help you differentiate yourself, capture their attention and increase the click through rate.

The important thing is that when clients search for you on Google that it looks correct and is not broken and leaving a bad first impression.

4. Headers – Broken Menus and Humongous Spacers

Headers are the the top section of your website that houses your navigation menu items (Home, About Us – those kinds of links) and perhaps your phone number and social media links.

The two most common issues with real estate website headers are being too big and having unexpected and confusing navigation.

Here we have a header that takes up nearly half of the screen – and leaves the rest of the content barely visible.

It’s frustrating for the user to navigate your website and find the information they need when an un-necessarily large header is in their way – which leads to the client being annoyed by your brand.

The other issue to do with headers is unexpected and confusing navigation.

This website looks slick from first glance – but where is the top menu. If you look over to the right you’ll see 3 lines that when clicked bring up the menu.
People used to seeing a menu at the top of the page – no matter how slick it is. Also the popup menu lists the address and direct email on the left – another unconventional place to put this information.

Do not arrange your website navigation in unconventional ways – for example by having the user need to click a navigation button to view the menu like in the example above.

Attempting to be artistic by differentiating your navigation only adds to prospect’s confusion – and leads to prospects having difficulty in finding the information they are after – which is the last thing you want and leads to prospects being annoyed with your brand.

Difficult navigation usually happens when companies try to arrange their menus in a non conventional way. Perhaps due to inexperience or artistic reasons they try to make headers different from everyone else.

Unfortunately this is the type of differentiation that you DO NOT want for your company.

On a website you should have items in places where people expect for ease of use and to avoid confusion. The last thing you want is for people to not be able to find the information they want because they’re confused about where to go.

A common issue I see is menus like in the example above where the user has to click a navigation button to view the menu. Other times a whole section of menu items are hidden unless the user does something to reveal them – you must never underestimate how easy it is for prospects to get confused by your navigation.

Even if the prospect figures out how to use your menu they are all ready in a state of annoyance (and perhaps feeling a little stupid) that they couldn’t find what they were looking for – and everything you say will be tainted by this.

5. The Hidden Broken Form

Forms are essential in moving the client to the next stage of listing their home with you.

The two main technical issues that I see with online real estate forms that stop this from happening are

  • Non-asynchronous form processing and
  • Non-required fields

An asynchronous form is able to process the client’s inputs with minimum delay and not having to reload the page. This makes the form quicker to process and provides a better user experience.

An example of an asynchronous form

The second issue is required fields. A non required field in a form means an input that is not necessary to complete in order to submit the form.

When you don’t make certain fields required – like a phone number for example – this sinks your conversion rates because now prospects can send you questions without giving you their contact number which makes it impossible to follow up with the prospect to qualify them and move them to the next stage.

The three required fields you should always ask the client are:

  • Their phone number
  • Their property address
  • When they plan to sell

If a client is unwilling to leave you the following information they are unlikely to list their home with you either.

Upside does not allow you to leave an online message without a phone number – they only provide a Callback Form. The phone number is always required.


Slow websites, missing security certificates, unoptimised forms and broken menus are the most common real estate technical issues.

Fixing these issues will allow you to increase your appraisal bookings and charge higher commissions – as you will be seen as a premium service and a company that is easy to deal with – after all if your website is a breeze to use then your ability to hunt down home buyers and sell your prospect’s home must be just as efficient.

The 4 Deadly Mistakes Real Estate Websites Make (And How to Fix Them to Blow Up Your Appraisal Appointments by up to 483%)

In this blog I will list the 4 most common mistakes on your real estate website that are preventing home owners from booking appraisal appointments.

These include how to create a real estate headline that stands out and avoid generic “We Sell Homes” type headlines.

The counter-intuitive reason you should never include a photo of properties on your home page header.

What the focus of your home page should be and how to avoid getting stuck in trying to give everything to everybody and confusing your prospects.

And finally I discuss how to do forms right and how to avoid having your prospects leave your Market Appraisal pages.

Mistake #1: Generic Brand Statements (Yes I know you sell homes – but why you)

A headline is the first thing your website visitors read when they come to your website – it should summarise in a few words your UVP (unique value proposition) – how you help home owners and what makes you different from other real estate agents.

Your headline must be client centric and focus on their pains, needs and aspirations and avoid “self-centric” focus on yourself – when people land on your website they don’t care about your company’s history – they want to know exactly how you can help them.

Most real estate websites suffer from generic headlines – these are forgettable and say nothing about the agent.

This headline is too generic, says nothing and is easily forgettable.

Your website should not state the obvious – clients know that you are a real estate agent so you don’t have to point it out – e.g. “We Will Sell Your Home” or “Let us Find Your Dream Home” is stating the obvious.

Here is an example of a UVP focused headline.

“An Agent with a Guarantee – If I Can’t Sell Your Home Then I Don’t Get Paid”

You can also have a subhead-line that includes more specific information to expand on your Unique Value Proposition.

Upside uses a UVP focused headline to differentiate themselves through pice. The sub headline elaborates on the UVP headline with specifics.

You must state why the client should choose you immediately – you must know your ideal client and where you stand in the marketplace to do this effectively.

Mistake #2: Not Letting Customers Know Who You Are

Most real estate companies don’t show the faces of the people who make up the company – instead they show a generic photo of a building, an apartment or a lake.

Most real estate websites have headers based on generic photos of the city or town that they are in.

In a service based business customers expect the personal touch – what better way to do that then with a photo of the owner or a member of staff to create that connection and create a personalised experience.

Instead of hiding staff photos on the ’Team’ page – make them a focal point on your home page – no amount of design changes will create the emotional and personal connection that of a photo of an agent will.

Scientific studies show prospects are 2x more likely to click on and engage with links that have photos of people – rather than logos or non human photos.

There is a reason why brands pay millions of dollars for brand ambassadors and spokespeople to represent them.

Even though Upside has 30+ real estate agents they create the personal touch by having a friendly face greet the person visiting the site.

No matter how large or small your agency – a human photo on the front page helps build a personal connection with your prospects right off the bat and clients will be more receptive to your brand when you follow them up which will lead to more seller listings closed.

Mistake #3: Selling Properties (Instead of Selling Listing Appointments)

The focus for your real estate website should be to book appraisal appointments as they are the foundation to your revenue.

When your real estate website is focused on trying to sell your listed properties you end up competing with major property portals like RealEstate.com.au.

RealEstate.com.au and Domain.com.au are the two main websites, they are first port of call, trying to compete with these websites is impossible. This is where people begin their search for a home.

Instead of encouraging the prospect to browse properties the focus should be on selling appointments.

When your main call to action is encouraging people to search for properties you compete with the major portals.

Closing a listing appraisal will bring two customers for the price of one – the home seller and home buyers. Focusing on home buyers will only bring one type of lead.

EVERYTHING on your front page should be done with only 1 goal in mind – get the seller to take action and reach out to you and book an appointment.

Upside’s focus is on booking an appraisal appointment – with two calls to action in the header.
Every section of Upside’s home page is designed to move the client to the next step in the selling process.

Mistake #4: You Need More Than An Email (Bad Forms)

When done right your website forms help you book seller appointments and start the selling relationship on the right foot by asking the right questions and providing your sales agents and yourself useful information to help you take the home owner to the next stage in the sales process and close the sale.

As a minimum your form should have

  • The home owner’s phone number – don’t allow prospects to leave their email and waste your time with long back and forth messages.
  • The property address – this will help -you- in creating value when you follow up with the client.
  • Prospect’s buying stage – this will help you qualify the prospect and know if they are looking to sell immediately or are just shopping around to prioritise the your leads effectively.

Real estate agents either don’t ask these questions or they don’t make the questions required.

Asking these questions will make the sales process run smoothly and will stop you from losing your power in the sales process by forcing you to follow up without the relevant data.

Having forms that don’t ask the right question put you at a disadvantage in the sales process.
Asking too many questions will decrease your conversion rates significantly.


Just like a face to face appraisal appointment your website must have a system to control the flow of conversation and lead the client to the next stage of the sales journey with you. This system is accomplished with the words and images you use on your home page and determines how prospects view your company and how many appointments you book.

Just like your sales appointments have a structure so should your website – you wouldn’t spend an hour with a customer just answering random questions without structure that’s designed for a specific goal – so your website should be structured to achieve a goal.

Once your prospect decides to engage with you for an initial consult you must ensure your forms are optimised to make this process as easy as possible for the prospect – and ask the right questions for a smooth hand off to your sales team (or yourself).

The items I’ve just outlined – a UVP headline, correct header photo, forms and focusing on booking sales appraisal appointments – contain the fundamental building blocks of optimising your real estate website for maximum appraisal listings and can lead to up to 483% or higher conversion rates when used in combination.