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The 3 Biggest Struggles Real Estate Agents Face in 2021

As the pandemic reels on, real estate agents are continuing to face new and challenging struggles. From low inventory to new technology, keeping up and adapting to this ever-changing industry is tough. As a real estate professional, you face an entire set of challenges that other entrepreneurs couldn’t even imagine. Not only are you encountering the challenge of marketing yourself to find clients and fill your pipeline, but you’re also faced with learning to negotiate for your clients, understanding laws, and finding solutions to problems you didn’t even know existed.

In this week’s blog, we’re discussing the three biggest struggles real estate agents face in 2021 and how to overcome them.

Struggles Real Estate Agents Face – #1 Building a Database

As a Real estate agent, having a database for leads and referrals is crucial for your growth. However, most real estate agents fail at keeping an organized database. When your database is messy and unorganized, many find themselves struggling to follow-up with clients past the immediate close or initial contact.

Because there is a lack of follow-up, only 25 percent of agents manage to get referrals from their past clients to build a referral-based business. Not only are agents losing out on referrals, but only 83 percent remember their agents’ names, so the next time they’re ready to enter the market, they use a different agent.

While building a database and keeping it organized may be time-consuming, it’s one of the most effective ways to build relationships and convert leads. How do we know this?

Check out these stats from the National Sales Executive Association.

The importance of a cultivated database

You’ve heard the saying, the money is in the list, but that’s only partially true. Just because you have an extensive database doesn’t mean you’re guaranteed to make sales. The money is in the relationship you have with the list. Check out these stats by Brian Bufini.

25% of agents generate more than 50% of their annual business entirely through referrals.

88% of buyers claim they would use the same agent or refer them.

The average agent earns 42% of their business through referrals.

82% of ALL real estate transactions are REFERRALS.

One of the biggest struggles real estate agents face when it comes to growing their database is they’re only seeking out prospects in the final stages of the buying and selling cycle. When you’re only looking for clients who are ready to go now, you’re overlooking the importance of the clients’ journey.

Top real estate agents create a strategy for nurturing contacts through the earliest stages of the buying and selling cycle. When you consistently nurture your contacts, you remain top-of-mind with prospects long before they have a need.

Not sure how to find new contacts to add to your database when they’re in the early stages? Here are a few ways to help you get started. 

  • Offer freebies for consumers to opt-into from your social accounts and website.
  • Run social ads.
  • Host open houses.
  • Attend networking events.

How to stay in contact with your database to build relationships

The easiest way to consistently stay in contact with your contacts is to use a customer relationship management (CRM) software that allows for automation.

Scheduling your email delivery will save you valuable hours each week. When used correctly, marketing automation can also help you target your messages more effectively by segmenting your contacts into the right groups.

Here are just a few things you can achieve by automating your marketing.

  • Promote new listings
  • Share your latest blog post
  • Retarget your database with ads on Facebook and Google
  • Schedule social media posts for the month
  • Create autoresponders using Chatbots on Facebook and Instagram messenger

Struggles Real Estate Agents Face – #2 Low Inventory

It’s logic, without housing inventory, it becomes increasingly hard for you to make an income. No income means no business. For the past 5-6 years, real estate agents have been working hard to find listings in low-inventory markets. This is even more challenging for newer agents. Homeowners prefer to work with agents who have experience to ensure their home is sold in a timely manner and their profit is maximized. 

Whether you’re a new agent or a seasoned agent, finding inventory when it seems as though there isn’t any is tough. So how do you overcome this struggle, especially when no one enjoys door knocking?

How to Find Inventory in Low-Inventory Markets

The first thing you’ll want to do is focus on expanding your sphere of influence. Just like with building your database, you have to find new consumers to speak with about their real estate goals. Referrals are the best lead source for any business. If their friend used you, had a good experience, and they trust you, they’re more likely to trust and use you as well.

Another way to find new listings is to get active in the local community groups online. If you’re not already in community and neighborhood-based groups on Facebook, make that a top priority today. Real estate is a relationship-based business. When you get active in the local groups and engage with other locals by volunteering your time, talking about the new local restaurant that just opened, or helping out someone in need, when you post about the latest market trends or share that you have a client looking to move to the area, they’re going to be more receptive.

The NextDoor app is another great way to get active in your neighborhood. Similar to Facebook groups, you’re able to talk with other locals in your area to create relationships.

What I love about getting active in the groups online is you never know who is watching from the side. Who knows, maybe one morning you’ll wake up to a Facebook message and close a deal that day like I did a couple of weeks ago.

Struggles Real Estate Agents Face – #3 Adapting to New Technology and Trends

Website, Email Marketing, Social Media, Podcast, Video Marketing…

Should I continue?

There are so many ways to market yourself online that it can become overwhelming in a matter of minutes.

Every month there seems to be a new social app that is expected to be the latest and greatest, so everyone jumps on to become one of the first big users.

But if you’re constantly spending time learning new technology, when do you have time to build a business?

While it’s important to adapt and learn, you have to set boundaries for yourself.

And you know what, it can be challenging because you want to feel like you have to know it all.

Hire an Expert and Outsource the Project

Whether it’s writing and setting up follow-up campaigns, selecting a domain, understanding which app will help you grow your business, or keeping your database organized, you can’t be scared to outsource some of the work.

Outsourcing can be scary because you’re not sure if it’ll bring you a return on investment or if you’ll be wasting money.

Remember, when you’re growing your business, time is money. The more time you waste on doing something you don’t understand, the more money you could be making by prospecting. Don’t mistake activity for productivity. No one can run their entire business on their own. Contract workers are a great way to bring on team members as you need them.

Need help with growing your real estate business? Click here to schedule a free marketing strategy session to learn how I can help!

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