Is Your Virtual Leasing Experience Converting to Sales?

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Virtual Leasing – The Good News

virtual tours are NOT the same thing as virtual leasingvirtual tours are NOT the same thing as virtual leasingTo learn all of the essential components of a profitable virtual leasing program download Virtual Leasing That Converts: The Essential Multifamily Guide to Optimizing Virtual Leasing.To learn all of the essential components of a profitable virtual leasing program download Virtual Leasing That Converts: The Essential Multifamily Guide to Optimizing Virtual Leasing.

virtual tours are NOT the same thing as virtual leasing

In the past year, the willingness of customers to lease without an in-person tour has more than doubled, increasing from 14% last year to 30% as of April 2020 (Kingsley Survey April 2020). While that’s great news for our industry and current situation, the same individuals noted that 48% of the time, their virtual lease experience didn’t give them sufficient information to make a decision. Without being able to go onsite, it’s up to leasing professionals to do a stand-out job of making the customer comfortable leasing sight-unseen.

 

Because it gives you the ability to show prospects what they want to see faster, virtual leasing has the potential to significantly increase lead-to-lease conversion rates. But for virtual leasing to convert, you have to ensure that every step of the process builds the trust, rapport, and confidence customers need to make a final decision. 

 

Here are a few of the most common reasons your virtual leasing might not be converting. 

To learn all of the essential components of a profitable virtual leasing program download Virtual Leasing That Converts: The Essential Multifamily Guide to Optimizing Virtual Leasing.

 

Leasing Agents Aren’t Using Video to Converse with Buyers

Having a strong connection with your buyers makes them more comfortable sharing their objections, giving feedback, and just being real. Showing genuine interest, a friendly smile, reading the customer, and finding a connection are important components of developing rapport that can be difficult to achieve over email or phone alone. Video allows smiles to be shared, body language to be read, and connections to be made. Building this trust and having this connection increases buyers’ comfort level in making a decision with you.   

 

Virtual Tours Are Self-Guided

The Internet is flooded with images and digital content. Even before this pandemic, 95% of customers started their apartment search online–looking at pictures, checking out 3D tours, and viewing videos. How can you be memorable in this space if you’re simply sending the customer a link to a self-guided video tour? A live leasing presentation is what makes the difference between a generic experience and a personalized one. Selling the features based on a particular buyer’s custom preferences makes the experience memorable.

 

Leasing Presentations Aren’t Collaborative

The ability to get buy-in and commitment from a prospective resident can be one of the most challenging parts of virtual leasing. It is up to the leasing professional to ensure the customer has the information and experience they need to feel confident in their decision without seeing the apartment in person. This is done through meaningful collaboration with the customer, engaging in conversation, asking purposeful questions with immediate, helpful responses that match their needs with the features of the community. It’s this investment in the customer that demonstrates the leasing professional’s genuine interest and achieves a higher level of customer service. 

 

If your goal is to maintain a high standard for customer experience, then it is important to know what is or isn’t happening in your customers’ virtual leasing experiences. Unfamiliar practices, new technology, stressful circumstances, and lack of training can all lead to missed opportunities and lost sales. Download our virtual leasing guide to find out how you can overcome those challenges and increase your sales.

In the past year, the willingness of customers to lease without an in-person tour has more than doubled, increasing from 14% last year to 30% as of April 2020 (Kingsley Survey April 2020). While that’s great news for our industry and current situation, the same individuals noted that 48% of the time, their virtual lease experience didn’t give them sufficient information to make a decision. Without being able to go onsite, it’s up to leasing professionals to do a stand-out job of making the customer comfortable leasing sight-unseen.

 

Because it gives you the ability to show prospects what they want to see faster, virtual leasing has the potential to significantly increase lead-to-lease conversion rates. But for virtual leasing to convert, you have to ensure that every step of the process builds the trust, rapport, and confidence customers need to make a final decision. 

 

Here are a few of the most common reasons your virtual leasing might not be converting. 

To learn all of the essential components of a profitable virtual leasing program download Virtual Leasing That Converts: The Essential Multifamily Guide to Optimizing Virtual Leasing.

 

Leasing Agents Aren’t Using Video to Converse with Buyers

Having a strong connection with your buyers makes them more comfortable sharing their objections, giving feedback, and just being real. Showing genuine interest, a friendly smile, reading the customer, and finding a connection are important components of developing rapport that can be difficult to achieve over email or phone alone. Video allows smiles to be shared, body language to be read, and connections to be made. Building this trust and having this connection increases buyers’ comfort level in making a decision with you.   

 

Virtual Tours Are Self-Guided

The Internet is flooded with images and digital content. Even before this pandemic, 95% of customers started their apartment search online–looking at pictures, checking out 3D tours, and viewing videos. How can you be memorable in this space if you’re simply sending the customer a link to a self-guided video tour? A live leasing presentation is what makes the difference between a generic experience and a personalized one. Selling the features based on a particular buyer’s custom preferences makes the experience memorable.

 

Leasing Presentations Aren’t Collaborative

The ability to get buy-in and commitment from a prospective resident can be one of the most challenging parts of virtual leasing. It is up to the leasing professional to ensure the customer has the information and experience they need to feel confident in their decision without seeing the apartment in person. This is done through meaningful collaboration with the customer, engaging in conversation, asking purposeful questions with immediate, helpful responses that match their needs with the features of the community. It’s this investment in the customer that demonstrates the leasing professional’s genuine interest and achieves a higher level of customer service. 

 

If your goal is to maintain a high standard for customer experience, then it is important to know what is or isn’t happening in your customers’ virtual leasing experiences. Unfamiliar practices, new technology, stressful circumstances, and lack of training can all lead to missed opportunities and lost sales. Download our virtual leasing guide to find out how you can overcome those challenges and increase your sales.

Is Your Virtual Leasing Experience Converting to Sales?

In the past year, the willingness of customers to lease without an in-person tour has more than doubled, increasing from 14% last year to 30% as of April 2020 (Kingsley Survey April 2020). While that’s great news for our industry and current situation, the same individuals noted that 48% of the time, their virtual lease experience didn’t give them sufficient information to make a decision. Without being able to go onsite, it’s up to leasing professionals to do a stand-out job of making the customer comfortable leasing sight-unseen.

 

Because it gives you the ability to show prospects what they want to see faster, virtual leasing has the potential to significantly increase lead-to-lease conversion rates. But for virtual leasing to convert, you have to ensure that every step of the process builds the trust, rapport, and confidence customers need to make a final decision. 

 

Here are a few of the most common reasons your virtual leasing might not be converting. 

To learn all of the essential components of a profitable virtual leasing program download Virtual Leasing That Converts: The Essential Multifamily Guide to Optimizing Virtual Leasing.

 

Leasing Agents Aren’t Using Video to Converse with Buyers

Having a strong connection with your buyers makes them more comfortable sharing their objections, giving feedback, and just being real. Showing genuine interest, a friendly smile, reading the customer, and finding a connection are important components of developing rapport that can be difficult to achieve over email or phone alone. Video allows smiles to be shared, body language to be read, and connections to be made. Building this trust and having this connection increases buyers’ comfort level in making a decision with you.   

 

Virtual Tours Are Self-Guided

The Internet is flooded with images and digital content. Even before this pandemic, 95% of customers started their apartment search online–looking at pictures, checking out 3D tours, and viewing videos. How can you be memorable in this space if you’re simply sending the customer a link to a self-guided video tour? A live leasing presentation is what makes the difference between a generic experience and a personalized one. Selling the features based on a particular buyer’s custom preferences makes the experience memorable.

 

Leasing Presentations Aren’t Collaborative

The ability to get buy-in and commitment from a prospective resident can be one of the most challenging parts of virtual leasing. It is up to the leasing professional to ensure the customer has the information and experience they need to feel confident in their decision without seeing the apartment in person. This is done through meaningful collaboration with the customer, engaging in conversation, asking purposeful questions with immediate, helpful responses that match their needs with the features of the community. It’s this investment in the customer that demonstrates the leasing professional’s genuine interest and achieves a higher level of customer service. 

 

If your goal is to maintain a high standard for customer experience, then it is important to know what is or isn’t happening in your customers’ virtual leasing experiences. Unfamiliar practices, new technology, stressful circumstances, and lack of training can all lead to missed opportunities and lost sales. Download our virtual leasing guide to find out how you can overcome those challenges and increase your sales.

 

A Better Way to Mystery Shop

How Grace Hill transformed everything about mystery shopping

mystery shop
Validate allows you to administer a high-performing and results-driven mystery shop program without investing extra time and money.

If your mystery shopping program isn’t working for your organization, you’re not alone. When Grace Hill set out to design a new mystery shopping solution, we went out into the industry to talk to the people who it impacts most—mystery shop administrators and employees. We conducted client interviews and focus groups, and what we found was that mystery shopping has a pretty negative reputation in multifamily. We heard that shops require too much administrative work, employees feel stressed because they know when they’re being shopped, and remediation training covers huge amounts of material just for missing one question. Worst of all, we found that the way mystery shopping is currently conducted doesn’t produce an accurate picture of the resident experience.

 

Despite its reputation, however, mystery shopping is still an organization’s clearest insight into customer satisfaction. It’s the single best way to identify skill gaps and drive performance in order to generate happier residents and higher revenue. We knew that to unlock the potential of mystery shopping for multifamily, we would have to completely transform the mystery shopping experience.

 

Bringing the best back to multifamily

Almost every industry conducts mystery shopping, and some do it very successfully. The retail industry, for one, relies on mystery shopping. So Grace Hill did some investigating to find out what they’re doing right.

 

One of the companies we looked at closely is Ralph Lauren. Ralph Lauren runs a robust mystery shopping program to evaluate the retailers that sell their product lines. The first difference we noticed is that Ralph Lauren never orders a shop for a particular salesperson at a particular store because they know they won’t get an accurate reading on customer happiness that way. They want to know about everything a customer experiences when they walk into that store. Do the displays look good? Are people drawn to them? What is the overall customer service level regardless of the salesperson? Ralph Lauren would never order a shop for “Bob at the Abilene Dillard’s” because they know they can’t tell a customer to only talk to “Bob.” Customers are going to experience whoever is available at the moment they walk in.

 

More mystery for more accurate results

mystery shop
Your property is judged based on whoever the customer encounters during their first interaction. Make every interaction count.

Prospective residents will judge your property based on whoever they encounter when they make a call or enter the front office, whether it’s a leasing agent, a call service, or a maintenance tech. To understand what residents and applicants are really experiencing, you need a good sampling of everything a resident could encounter. That’s the only way to identify gaps and generate higher revenue.

 

Grace Hill developed our new mystery shop program, Validate, around this central best practice. While you can always order additional individual shops when needed, Validate is constantly measuring every aspect of the customer experience at your properties. You’ll get a realistic overall assessment of property appearance, in-person customer service, and writing and telephone skills. And leasing agents won’t know they’re being shopped because it’s happening all the time.

 

Hassle-free administration

Another common complaint we heard about mystery shopping was the heavy administrative burden. It often falls on one person to figure out where, when, and how shops will be conducted. There is constant back and forth with the regional manager and general manager to coordinate scheduling and deliver invoices.

 

We designed Validate to eliminate all the excess administration. Validate automatically generates the shops you need each quarter. There’s no back and forth with management to target specific people. Shops are conducted on a regular basis through multiple channels without anyone having to manage it. You can just set it and forget it. Even budgeting is simplified with consistent monthly payments. There’s no budget guesswork for last-minute shops.

mystery shop
With the click of a button, admins can assign the specific short courses that will address any skill deficiencies identified.

Efficient, targeted training

Validate is the first mystery shop program to offer skill-level training remediation. Using business intelligence, Validate automatically analyzes shop results and recommends a learning path of targeted, 15-minute courses. With the click of a button, admins can assign the specific short courses that will address any skill deficiencies identified. Employees no longer have to feel they’re wasting time relearning skills they already have. And admins no longer have to spend hours assessing mystery shop results to figure out which skills learners lack and which courses they need to take.

Check the pulse on customer happiness

Customer happiness has become more visible than ever. From online reviews to social media comments, your current customers influence your future customers. That’s why it’s so important to have a consistent read on customer satisfaction. Mystery shopping is your most reliable line of sight on what customers are experiencing. And now Validate makes mystery shopping faster and easier – with more accurate results.

Schedule a Validate Demo to find out how we take the guesswork and stress out of assessing and improving the customer experience.