CRMs or Customer Relationship Management systems are a must for successfully running a real estate business. Gone are the days of heavy spreadsheets and calendar reminders, CRMs have started making life easier and boosting profits by automating almost everything real estate teams and brokerages did manually.
As a Broker/Owner, Team leader or CEO of a real estate team, you juggle various tasks on your own. A CRM then becomes a really important piece of technology that helps you manage all of your leads in one place, giving you time to focus ON your business rather than IN your business all the time.
Needless to say, if your real estate team has not yet invested in a CRM, this will be the right time to consider using one seriously.
Table Of Contents
- Choosing your CRM
- CRM comparison
- CRM customer feedback
- Summing it up
Choosing Your CRM
Even though most CRMs have similar basic functions, we will be comparing the best CRMs for real estate based on 6 important functionalities and their APIs.
Here are the features we will be comparing the top 10 CRMs on:
- Lead Ponds:
A new highly effective feature in CRMs where you centralize all unassigned leads. While working on multiple leads at the same time, there are instances where some lead follow ups go unchecked or unanswered, these can then go in the lead pond for any agent/ISA to grab.
Some CRMs - eg. FUB, Chime and BoomTown - have features where you can create separate lead ponds for different teams as well as agent groups within a team. You can effortlessly customize lead ponds in so many ways, it is truly a new way to reach unconnected leads.
- PPC Lead Management:
According to the Robert Slack Team (#1 Agent-Owned Brokerage in Florida), pay per click is the way to go when it comes to lead generation. There are various CRMs which manage PPC marketing campaigns internally. A lot of these features pick up lead source data, giving the team instant ROI and marketing reports. Yes, there are various sources which can integrate into your CRM for lead generation, but PPC marketing campaigns are strikingly looked over by various.
- Text Automation:
Texting is one of the best ways to quickly follow up with leads as well as have initial conversations. Emails & phone calls often go unanswered, but a text is easy to respond to. AI initial response texting has been a new introduction to CRMs, where bots can have behavioural conversations with the lead and then assign them to an agent after getting their requirements.
This reduces the response time from the team/brokerage and boosts lead connectivity.
- Agent Leaderboards:
Leaderboards are a great way to keep accountability and motivation at its peak. Appreciate the highest performing agents on your leaderboard through incentives and motivate everyone to be the best they can be.
- IDX Website:
“IDX or Internet Data Exchange is a software standard used by realtors, brokers, and their teams to display frequently updated listings from MLS”. Having an IDX website makes lead generation so much easier as it helps you show multiple listings on your personal websites.
There are a lot of CRMs that come with extra features where a team or brokerage can create easy IDX integrated websites.
- Open API:
Without going into too much technical detail, API is nothing but a “door or window into a software program, allowing other programs to interact with it without the need for a developer to share its entire code”. When this window or door is open, it becomes easier for other tech platforms to use your CRM hence making the decisions you take even more actionable.
In short, if you are using a CRM with an open API source, it becomes easier for developers to integrate with other applications that compensate for the aspects missing in your CRM.
Want to learn about OpenAPI advantages? Here are a few:
1. It’s open and free. You can easily collaborate and integrate with other tools which can help expand your CRM functionalities.
2. It eliminates the need to access multiple programs to get a complete picture of your team.
3. Through OpenAPI integrations, when you update information in one tool, it gets reflected on all the other tools automatically.
Here is a comparison of the top 10 CRM tools based on the above mentioned features:
After going through the CRM comparisons, let's look at some important customer feedback!
CRM Customer Feedback:
Follow Up Boss is easy to use and intuitive. Just like the name suggests it makes follow ups easy and helps the team/ brokerage give clients great service. The only drawback to FUB is the cost of the program and that it can be overwhelming to set up. 
Chime generates a great website as landing pages for ads, and is great for generating leads. The opportunities portion in the CRM makes it easy to identify leads searching for properties recently. The main drawback is that its reporting data is limited. 
It is easy to get lost in BoomTown’s software since it is a little bit difficult to use, compared to other CRMs out there. But, BoomTown makes it so easy to keep track of clients and when they reach out for property queries. The CRM is also great at segmentation and sending leads to the right agents and stages. 
CINC’s program is quite seamless and works brilliantly between desktop and mobile devices. The main feedback for this CRM has been for its customer service. 
The complete transparency in the platform also allows for leadership to engage in coaching moments to help improve and grow the agents to their maximum potential. But, the web builder is limited and clunky. Customization features sometimes disappear with heavy editing as the system gets overworked and needs to be rebooted. 
Pipedrive still cannot send followup messages based on a date and does not have built in marketing and contract management tools. But, it is good for anyone who wants to automate bureaucratic steps in their sales processes. This effectively improves results and relationships with leads. 
The direct contact links and drip campaigns are easy to use. But, the user system interface is neither advanced nor user-friendly. It might not be for advanced users. 
This software does a great job of staying on top of your client relations and reminding you to keep in touch with them. The bucket system for contacts is really useful. The main drawback for this CRM is that it has frequent glitches which leads to loss of work. 
The user interface is easy-to-navigate, allowing the user to easily complete the tasks needed to be done. But, there is no option to edit the lead stages so far. 
Real Geeks is very easy to use. It can direct and track web leads from the site. One major drawback is that its email blast function does not provide a lot of creativity & there needs to be more flexibility in its search criteria within the database. 
Summing it up:
Using a CRM is extremely important when you are trying to grow a business. This piece of technology will help you not only manage your team better but will also give you perspective on the other real estate systems you need to have in place.
Choosing the right CRM for your team is essential. Hence, going through various prospects, their integrations, customisability and especially aligning your goals and checking if they will eventually get fulfilled with your chosen CRM, becomes crucial.
If you do not have this in place, you should quickly make up your mind on what system you should choose before you move forward!