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Agents back Rightmove for leads but are concerned about fake contact

Rightmove has been named as the most effective portal for driving leads but there is a sense of frustration about fake contact information being provided, an industry survey has found.

Former Fine & Country global chief executive Simon Leadbetter has released further results from his Voice of the Agent report through his unchained.marketing consultancy.

It features the opinions of more than 500 estate agents on subjects such as portal usage, marketing and fees.


Asked about which portal was best for leads, 92% identified Rightmove only 3% and 5% chose Zoopla and OnTheMarket respectively.

The survey results show that Rightmove is the most widely used and perceived as the most effective property portal among estate agency firms. 

Beyond the portals, agents were asked to select their top five methods from various advertising and marketing channels. 

The most popular method among respondents was social media, with 88% of estate agency firms using platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and TikTok to attract new vendors. 

Canvassing was the second most popular method, chosen by 68% of participants, “indicating that traditional face-to-face outreach remains an essential approach for many firms,” according to the report.

Direct mail was also a popular choice, selected by 66% of respondents.

Emails were used by 56% of estate agency firms as one of their primary methods to generate new vendors, while public relations was selected by 29% of participants and online newsletters, magazine advertising and in-housemagazines were each chosen by 27% of respondents.

Less popular methods included newspaper advertising at just 17% and mobile advertising at 10%.

Television and cinema advertising were not selected by any respondents as primary methods for generating new vendors.

Asked about marketing frustrations, the report said these include algorithms, budget constraints, the cost versus reward, time management, and the need for a dedicated team to handle marketing tasks.

It added: “Respondents also mentioned delays in preparing materials, issues with errors, administrative tasks and customer support from platforms like Google My Business, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

“The high marketing expense, fake contact information from online leads, and difficulties in generating high-quality leads were highlighted.”

The report also provides an insight into agency fee levels.

It found that the typical sole agent fees for houses priced under £500,000 is 1.27%.

No respondents reported charging fees lower than 0.8%, with most agents charging between 1% and 1.7%. 

Assessing the state of the market, a net of 26% of respondents expect online and hybrid agencies to experience decreased usage, reflecting possible concerns about service quality or preference for personalised assistance. 

Perhaps unsurprisingly, a net 5% expect high street agencies to see an increase, “suggesting continued appeal due to perceived expertise and personalised service,” the report said.

The most significant growth was anticipated for self-employed agents, with a net 70% of respondents expecting more vendors to turn to them, driven by demand for tailored, flexible services and the perceived value in working with dedicated agents.


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