If you are a home improvement contractor, chances are you get a good number of sales calls, emails, postcards from a lead generation company trying to sell you their leads.
Assuming that a lead generation site is a good strategy for your business (that’s another topic all together), how should you decide which company is right for you? Here are some important things to consider when working with a home improvement lead generation company:
This is always an important factor. How much does each lead cost for you service? There can be a wide range of prices among lead generation companies for the same service. So one company may charge $45 for a painting lead while another may charge $29.
Another important thing to consider is how many contractors you are competing against. Many companies sell leads to 4 contractors, but some (like us) only match them to 3. So a lead may cost $30 at one company that sends it to 4 contractors but $35 at another company that only sends it to three. Your cost-per-job may be better with the second company, even though the lead is more money.
A note on exclusive leads: Some companies sell exclusive leads for a premium price. One thing to consider is that many times a homeowner gets a few more estimates on their own, so you paid a premium for an exclusive lead but you may be competing with 3-4 contractors anyway.
Contracts and fees
It’s always important to understand any contract you sign. Some lead generation companies have a minimum contract term, monthly fees, cancellation fees, setup fees that don’t go towards leads, limits to how long you can pause your account, etc. Unless you can afford to be stuck in a contract (I’m not sure of anyone who really can), don’t sign up with a company like this.
How a company generates leads is always an important thing to know. If a company buys leads from a 3rd party and then resells them to contractors they may have little control over where those leads originated. They may be old leads or they may have been sold to other contractors.
Typically leads generated in search engines are of the best quality, but also tend to cost more.
Credit policy and customer service
Another important thing is to ask about the credit policy for bad leads and then make sure you have it in writing. You always want to make sure that you can get credits back for leads with disconnected numbers and such.
Is it a niche?
Some companies specialize in just a few trades. Before we were CraftJack, we were LocalPainterquotes.com and we just specialized in house painting leads for painters. There are both pros and cons to being a specialized service.
For example, a specialty site may know more about your specific trade, so they may be able to get better quality leads. On the other hand, you may be a contractor who does a few services and a specialty site may not be able to meet all your needs. Also, specialty sites may be too small to really generate enough leads for your business.
Extras & Perks
Another thing to consider is what additional features your lead generation can provide you aside from just sending you people’s information. For example, some companies have Profile Pages and Lead Management tools.
If the company you work with has a profile page for your business, make sure and ask how it is listed. After all, do you want people searching Google for your company name to find you, or find your lead generation company page and then they charge you for that lead.
Like home improvement projects, lead generation companies come in all sizes. They can range from one-man operations to 1,000 employee companies. What kind of company do you want to work with? A larger company may send more leads but they may also have poor customer service. A one-man shop may have great customer service, but he may not be able to produce a lot of leads or he may be overloaded.
With all these things to consider, it’s no wonder there is a lot of confusion about lead generation. If it’s something you are considering, learn more about our contractor lead service online or give us a call at 866-332-7134 and we’ll tell you all about how we work.