A few years back, I used kvCORE as the website and CRM solution for my team of 30+ agents. I heard recently that kvCORE added some new features, so I wanted to take a fresh look and review kvCORE in 2020 to see how it stacks up against other CRM platforms.
Teams that generate hundreds, if not thousands, of new online leads each month all have one thing in common—an all-in-one customer relationship management (CRM) platform. These robust systems assist the agents by funneling the leads using lead capture tools, IDX websites, and automated text and email campaigns. One of the most commonly used tools by these top teams is the kvCORE platform. Here’s my take on the features, pricing, and overall value of kvCORE.
kvCORE Pricing: What Does kvCORE Cost?
($250 special offer)
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Monthly plans start at $499 for two users and rise into the thousands for teams and brokerages, and this is before you spend money on advertising. kvCORE is not cheap. It is geared 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. Let’s take a look at how the cost of kvCORE stacks up against other similar all-in-one platforms.
kvCORE Pricing Comparison
(some features are additional)
As far as all-in-one CRM platforms are concerned, kvCORE is at the higher end. The positive 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 something like Real Geeks might make more sense.
If budget is a concern and an all-in-one automated lead generation isn’t necessary, then I’d suggest you look into an affordable CRM like LionDesk. It 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, that’s good enough. Remember, the best CRM is the one you use!
Cost-sharing With Preferred Lenders
Cost-sharing kvCORE with your preferred lenders is made easy by providing individual billing and a unique login for your lender partners.
What Is kvCORE?
kvCORE is an all-in-one IDX website and CRM platform. Prior to systems like kvCORE, top teams and brokerages had to use multiple solutions to manage an IDX website, email campaigns, internet marketing, lead nurture, marketing reports, and agent accountability. They were forced into having to figure out how to integrate each of the individual systems to work with each other. This made them become more like technology geniuses than real estate experts.
Today, thanks to systems like the kvCORE platform, a productive agent can focus on active clients instead of managing technology and chasing internet leads. However, if you are not planning on building an online lead generation machine or managing a sales team, you may find a system like kvCORE pricey and difficult to maintain. Like most all-in-one platforms, it’s a complex system with a lot of moving parts. However, like any system, mastering those features and making them work for you can pay off if you put in the time and effort.
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, Promotion, and Accountability and Reports. Here is a quick table of the features you get in each category. Then we’ll go through them in more detail after the table.
kvCORE Key Features: 2020
|Individual team member websites|
|Buyer and seller lead capture|
|Community pages and stats|
|Custom pages, blogs, and so on|
|Lead management and nurture|
|Contact information validation|
|Automatic lead nurturing|
|AI behavioral lead response|
|Custom campaigns and tasks|
|22 free lead generation tools|
|IDX squeeze pages and landing pages|
|Auto-publish to social media|
|Third-party integration with Zillow, Realtor.com, Homes.com, and so on|
|Real-time property alerts|
|Quick listing promotions to social and Craigslist|
|Branded open house app|
|Accountability and Reports|
|Contact engagement reports|
|Marketing source reports|
|Agent and team performance reports|
|Integrates with transaction management software|
kvCORE IDX Websites
kvCORE provides individual IDX websites for each team member as well as their own unique login and interface. The best feature is that the websites 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.
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 at 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 look and work well.
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 Website Example
Here’s a quick example of what a kvCORE IDX website can look like: https://www.silvercreekre.com/
kvCORE CRM Platform
But don’t call it just a CRM—kvCORE is an all-inclusive, real estate platform for highly productive real estate agents, teams, and brokerages, so 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 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.
I’m sure you all can relate to this story: You go to the office early and prospect for two hours before heading out for a showing in the afternoon. Then right in the middle of your showing, you receive a call from an unknown number. You decline the call because you think it is a solicitor or a recruiter from another company calling to waste your time.
But you actually missed a call from a lead you prospected that morning, and because your CRM isn’t integrated with your phone, their contact information didn’t show up. When you get back to the office that late afternoon, you realize who it was and try to call them back, but they are no longer responding. You missed the opportunity.
A CRM does not work without leads, specifically fresh leads. Consistent lead generation activities produce the leads for your CRM to nurture. kvCORE has some solutions for this too.
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.
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.
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 that uses AI to nurture leads to maximize your return on investment (ROI).
Accountability & Reports
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 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 or brokerage.
My Take on kvCORE: The Good, the Bad & the Ugly
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.
However, 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. This issue is not unique to kvCORE, but I want to make it clear this is not 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 is 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 am 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, in my opinion, 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. 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.
So, in the end, I guess I’ll save my money for a Porsche. 😏
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!