Mortgage Daily

Published On: October 5, 2005
Closing Ratio By Lead Company

Lead providers discuss share of leads that close

October 5, 2005

By PAULA PARISOT

photo of Paula Parisot
Paula Parisot
A lead provider is claiming a recent survey indicated about 20% of the leads its sells close within a year. But an earlier version of the survey done for a competitor by the same research firm showed a much higher closing ratio.

The survey of 100,000 leads from HouseValues Inc. by an independent research firm showed that one in five consumers who sought information from the lead provider purchased or sold real estate within the next 12 months, according to an announcement from the Kirkland, Wash.-based company.

Leads obtained by HouseValues.com and JustListed.com between the months of January and March 2004 were compared to county records 12 months later to assess which consumers actually completed a real estate transaction, Los Angeles-based Real IQ spokesman Stephen Bedikian said.

“The ultimate goal is to capture, cultivate, and convert leads into closed transactions,” HouseValues CEO Ian Morris said in an e-mailed statement to MortgageDaily.com.

Real IQ reportedly did a similar survey last year for Calabasas, Calif.-based iHomeowners, Inc. that focused specifically on loan quote requests obtained through its portal, LoanWeb.com. After matching up the request contact information to public records, Real IQ was able to determine that 54% of those listed with LoanWeb did enter into a mortgage transaction within 61 days, according to an iHomeowner’s press release.

Neither study revealed the end service providers or the source of funding.

“Brokers and lenders need to be able to assess their own lead closing ratios in the context of the funding ratio for Internet mortgage leads they are working,” said John Hasenaeur, iHomeowners president in the release. “A closing ratio of 5% may seem good but if 50% of those consumers ultimately secured a mortgage from another lender, it suggests there is always room for improvement.”

While GoApply.com and subsidiary Eleadz.com haven’t conducted a formal study, corporate strategist Matthew Connelly said they work directly with their partners to understand how effective the leads are, and also seek feedback from their consumers to be certain they continue providing those that have a genuine interest in using any of the company’s service providers.

“Of all the institutions we supply leads to,” Connelly said of the Aliso Viejo, Calif.-based company’s lead success rate, “we estimate that an aggregate eight to 15 percent of the consumers seeking information do complete a transaction with one our service providers.”

Additionally, Connelly said about two to five percent of the company’s leads convert to mortgage loans.

In comparison, Tempe, Ariz.-based Leadbot.com President Ben Wagner estimates his company’s mortgage lead closing ratio to be about four to eight percent.


Paula Parisot is a MortgageDaily.com feature reporter and a blogger at CloserBlog.com who has also worked in the mortgage industry.

Email Paula at: [email protected]

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