A few years ago, I used kvCORE as the website and customer relationship manager (CRM) solution for my team of 30-plus agents in Colorado. We thrived using their platform, but since real estate software changes so quickly, I decided to review the 2022 version of kvCORE to see how it stacks up against current competitors.
It turns out that kvCORE has evolved as a platform in many ways since we began using it. Here’s my take on the features, pricing, and overall value of kvCORE for teams and brokerages in 2022.
What Is kvCORE?
kvCORE is an all-in-one IDX website, lead generation, marketing, and CRM platform. Prior to systems like kvCORE, top teams and brokerages had to use multiple platforms to manage their IDX website, email campaigns, internet marketing, lead nurturing, marketing reports, and agent accountability. As you can imagine, making all of those different platforms work together isn’t easy or ideal. kvCORE offers everything in one turnkey package.
Thanks to systems like the kvCORE platform, a productive agent can focus on active clients instead of wrangling technology and chasing down internet leads, and team leaders can focus on managing agents and closing their own deals. Just keep in mind that it will come with a hefty price tag, so you need to make sure you are set up to take full advantage of all that the kvCORE platform offers.
The kvCORE platform is one of the most robust, all-in-one solutions on the market. If you have the team and time to dedicate to running the platform, it can be a good investment. From the automated campaigns to the lead capture landing pages, with so many customizable features any team or brokerage can make this system work for them. So, if you are a productive, lead generating team looking for an all-in-one solution, I recommend checking out kvCORE.
kvCORE is not for the novice technical user. I consider myself a solid 8 out of 10 when it comes to technology, and I found myself spending hours just setting up one Facebook marketing automation. While not unique to kvCORE, this platform isn’t as intuitive as using your iPhone.
Like most all-in-one platforms, kvCORE has a bit of a learning curve, and is not really set up for total novices. They do offer onboarding and training, but since there are so many features, learning the system and running it well can take time.
I hate to say it, but if I was still running my brokerage, I probably wouldn’t spend my money on kvCORE—and here’s why. First, it offers a lot of features I would never use. Maybe some brokers want all the bells and whistles for their agents, but not me. I find most are more time and effort than they are worth. That’s just my 2 cents, though. You may be different.
Second, I’m too lazy! If I am going to spend this much on an all-in-one platform, I would go ahead and spend the extra money on BoomTown, which is less “do it yourself” and more “done for you.” It’s a bit more expensive, but then again, more is done for you.
Lastly, I am at Keller Williams, where they provide KW Command. It’s a comparable product to kvCORE, and they provide it to all the agents for free. We recently named Keller Williams to our list of Best Real Estate Companies to Work For, check it out!) But if you’re not at Keller, want lots of features, and are willing to invest the time and energy to learn a complex platform like kvCORE, give them a shot.
kvCORE Pricing: What Does kvCORE Cost for 2022?
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kvCORE monthly plans start at $499 for two users and rise into the thousands for teams and brokerages. This is before you spend money on advertising. So it’s safe to say that kvCORE is not cheap. It is designed and priced for the serious agent, team, or brokerage that wants to take their lead generation to the next level.
That said, it’s not like other all-in-one platforms are cheap either. As they say, you do get what you pay for. Here’s how kvCORE’s pricing stacks up against other similar all-in-one platforms:
As you can see from the chart, kvCORE’s pricing is at the higher end. The silver lining is that the main features are all included in that monthly price, unlike Real Geeks, which has a lower monthly cost but the a la carte features and users are additional. If you want all the bells and whistles right out of the box, then kvCORE might work for you. If you want to add features as you grow, then a platform like Propertybase GO or Real Geeks might make more sense.
If budget is a concern and you don’t need all-in-one automated lead generation and marketing, then I’d suggest you look into an affordable CRM like LionDesk. LionDesk is an entry-level CRM with plans starting at just $25 a month. You won’t get an IDX website, but you will get the basics and for many agents and teams, that’s good enough. Always remember, the best CRM is the one you use!
Cost-sharing With Preferred Lenders
Like other all-in-one platforms, kvCORE offers cost-sharing with your preferred lender partner. Cost-sharing kvCORE with your preferred lenders is made easy by providing individual billing and a unique login for your lender partners.
Who Is kvCORE Best For?
kvCORE is best suited for teams and brokerages that want to scale their business and commit to mastering an all-in-one platform that offers them almost endless opportunities for customization.
kvCORE Drawbacks: Why It Might Not Be Right for You
kvCORE is an expensive solution that many smaller teams and brokerages might not have the budget for or time to master. Teams and brokerages with tight budgets may prefer to piece together solutions from multiple providers and make them work together using built-in integrations or software like Zapier.
If you’re starting to think that kvCORE might not be right for you, here are some other all-in-one IDX website CRM platforms that be a better fit:
|Best Real Estate Lead Generation Websites||Prices Starting At||Best For|
|$399 / mo||Agents seeking a highly customizable website with proven lead generation tools, excellent conversion strategies, and a built-in CRM|
|Real Geeks||$299 / mo||A solid website / CRM experience with a paid ad option you can scale as your business grows|
|Placester||$64 / mo||Members of NAR on a tight budget who still want excellent conversion rates|
|Chime||$599 / mo||A website with very little learning curve; something you can start using on day one|
|InCOM||$44.95 / mo||Agents whose customer base would also appreciate having recently sold info and foreclosure data available in search|
If you want to do a deep-dive on kvCORE alternatives, check out our Chris Linsell’s Real Estate Lead Generation Buyer’s guide here:
The 6 Best Real Estate Lead Generation Websites in 2023
kvCORE Key Features
The features of kvCORE are nearly endless. To make the task of reviewing each feature less endless, I broke them into five categories: Website, CRM, Lead Generation, Marketing, and Accountability, Reports, and Analytics.
kvCORE IDX Websites: Review & Example Sites
kvCORE provides individual IDX websites for each team member as well as their own unique login and interface. The best feature of these sites is that they integrate into the MLS without requiring a third-party IDX provider. This is important if you have a large team or are managing several agents, because it can cost up to $50 per website for IDX on other systems.
kvCORE Website Example
While kvCORE offers template sites that look great, what your site ends up looking like is largely up to your budget and imagination. Here is an example of a custom kvCORE website that was voted one of the best overall in the 2021 Real Trends Website Rankings: https://eragrizzard.com/
Website Customization Options
As you might imagine, the websites are endlessly customizable and adding lead capture, search and property widgets, new pages, and blog posts is relatively easy as most platforms are in this price range. Design is generally in the eye of the beholder, but the sites we looked at also looked like what you would imagine sites at the price range would look like—sleek, modern, and well-organized.
However, keep in mind that how you organize your site is up to you. It’s easy to take a great platform and put lead capture on the wrong pages, add ugly graphics, and so on. But overall, kvCORE sites perform on par with other IDX website providers like Real Geeks, Propertybase, and AgentFire.
There are also web design companies like KV Templates that offer further customization of your kvCORE website, so even if you don’t like kvCORE designs, you are not stuck with them.
Lead Generation Landing Pages
One of my favorite features of kvCORE is the unlimited landing pages and squeeze pages. You can also create individual property websites, Facebook and Google lead capture pages, and seller home valuation pages without learning how to code. That’s the promise of all CRM/IDX website platforms today, and kvCORE is no different.
kvCORE CRM Platform
But don’t call it just a CRM—kvCORE is a full-fledged real estate lead generation and marketing platform. So rest assured their CRM platform has a ton of features too. Along with the standard CRM features like sending mass emails and reminding you of important dates, kvCORE’s CRM can also nurture leads, route them to agents, and respond to leads using artificial intelligence (AI) technology, with emails, texts, and voicemail messages.
Lead Nurture Campaigns
Once the leads are captured, you can set up blended automated campaigns to nurture them until a transaction occurs. Each campaign can be customized based on the lead type and source. The campaign includes a series of templated emails, texts, prerecorded voicemails, and scripted calls.
While this feature is outstanding, it is difficult to use. When I used kvCORE, I found that adding and editing the campaigns took several hours for me to set up. I also didn’t feel that the prewritten campaigns were actually written by a real estate agent, so you may want to write your own. Again, though, most all-in-one platforms require some kind of learning curve, and great drip campaigns are the secret sauce that few good agents share.
If you are managing multiple agents, kvCORE allows you to route leads based on percentage or priority. It also can reroute leads if the team member is not responding within the given time frame.
When a lead interacts with the nurture campaign by clicking a link, searching for properties on the website, or responding to a text or email, the artificial intelligence (AI) can take over by communicating on your behalf—and it can quite literally set an appointment for you. This is a feature that many platforms do not offer, so if you want to dabble with AI, then kvCORE is a cut above the rest.
There is nothing worse than using a CRM that doesn’t integrate with your cell phone. Many popular CRMs don’t offer an app or integrate with your phone, but some make it easy, others, not so much. kvCORE has a dedicated app that has all the calling and general CRM functions that you would want on your phone.
A CRM does not work without leads, specifically fresh leads. Consistent lead generation activities produce the leads for your CRM to nurture. kvCORE has solutions for this too.
kvCORE CRM Alternatives
If you’re just looking for a CRM without an IDX website, check our Chris Linsell’s deep-dive CRM Buyer’s Guide here:
[Related article: The Best Real Estate CRM for 2022: In-depth Reviews & Pricing ]
kvCORE Lead Generation On & Off Your Website
kvCORE will enhance your current lead generation or lead-buying activities by providing you highly customizable and automated systems to capture leads both on and off the IDX website. You can set up custom lead capture anywhere on the site.
By prompting customers to register on the website using their email as their login and their phone number as their password to use your site, and requiring a two-step authentication, kvCORE boasts up to 15% capture rate compared to the 5% of their competitors. This additional step also ensures that you are receiving real contact information.
kvCORE increases an agent’s lead capture off the site as well. They provide tools like QR codes, text capture, call capture, and an open house registration app. Each of these tools is designed to round up contact information and seamlessly deliver them into your CRM.
kvCORE Marketing Features
As a real estate agent, advertising and promotion is a necessity—unless you’re one of those crazy agents who likes to spend their mornings making cold calls. kvCORE offers lots of ways to advertise your business, both DIY and with kvCORE managing your ads for you. You can choose to advertise through kvCORE, but there is no requirement to. They provide plenty of tools to do your own advertising. Here are a few examples:
Listing Posting Tool
kvCORE can promote your listings by using the listing posting feature to post for free through online sources like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn. They also have a convenient Craigslist posting tool (although Craigslist advertising fees may apply in your area).
Custom Landing Pages
kvCORE also features several other ways to use their platform to promote yourself for free. One example of this is using the free landing pages for your individual listings, blogging, vlogging, and Google search engine optimization (SEO) pages.
Core Present is kvCORE’s comparative market analysis (CMA) app, and it works just as well as any CMA app on the market. While it does the same job that CloudCMA does, we think kvCORE’s CMA presentations are a cut above. The design is more attractive, and pricing strategy is shown to homeowners in a way to allows them to really understand where their home sits on the market.
If you are someone who wants to “set it and forget it,” for as little as $200 a month, the kvCORE Ad Team will set up and manage your Google PPC, Facebook ads, and even integrate your other lead sources like Zillow or Realtor.com. Each lead then is automatically funneled into an automated campaign, and the behavioral response system uses artificial intelligence (AI) to nurture leads to maximize your return on investment (ROI).
kvCORE Agent Accountability, Reports & Analytics
The famous management consultant and author, Peter Drucker, once said, “You can’t manage what you don’t measure.” This is no less true for a successful real estate team. If you are spending tens of thousands each month on advertising, you need to hold both the marketing agents and the agents receiving leads accountable to the money spent. Here’s a quick overview of how kvCORE can help keep you and your team accountable.
If you are running a team or brokerage that provides agents leads, you must also have team member accountability. kvCORE can keep track of team member activities by allowing you to create your own custom task lists for each team member and track their progress in real time.
The system can track what time they log into the CRM, the number of emails, calls, and texts they sent, and any responses they received. All this can be seen on one simple screen.
Team members can update their contacts, activities, and tasks within their mobile app. Team members can quickly update the app in less than five minutes a day. This makes team management real time. No more hearing the excuse “I haven’t had time to update my task list.”
Reports & Analytics
kvCORE can produce progress reports on the effectiveness, conversion, and return on investment (ROI) on your advertising. It can also produce reports on your team members’ activities as well as providing accountability to their own lead generation and lead follow-up activities.
While you will still need a transaction file management software, kvCORE does integrate with Dotloop, DocuSign, SkySlope, and Brokersumo to update your transaction pipeline report. If you’re running a large team or brokerage, then you’re probably going to want to invest in a transaction management system like Dotloop too.
kvCORE allows you to create reports on the fly for your listing inventory, pending transactions, past closings, and more. kvCORE reports will give you a quick review of the health of your team
Over to You
Do you use kvCORE and have a different opinion? Think it offers more for your team than KW Command or BoomTown? Let us know in the comments and let the debates begin!