Considering purchasing leads as part of your 2023 lead generation strategy? Maybe you’ve heard of zBuyer, a popular lead generation company getting a lot of attention, and are wondering how it works and whether it’s right for you. Our zBuyer review is here to give you all the details!
We’re going to take an inside look at the zBuyer lead generation strategy, its pricing structure, who should use it, and what sets it apart from other lead generation companies in the market. Hopefully, you will get a realistic sense of whether zBuyer is a good option for you and your growing business.
What Is zBuyer?
Founded in 2003, zBuyer originally emerged as a tool for real estate investors and iBuyers, which is why it uses a fairly niche approach to lead generation: The cash-offer lead capture strategy. The cash-offer strategy attracts potential off-market properties whose sellers would be interested in selling—for the right price.
Today, zBuyer utilizes this approach to capture and sell verified (or, about as verified as you can get) buyer and seller leads. While many in the industry once considered iBuyers a frightening harbinger of a shifting landscape, that cash-offer strategy now benefits agents who can work the angle and turn a conversation about quick cash into a listing agreement.
zBuyer remains a fairly small company, one that puts a premium on customer service. There are no setup fees and agents receive one-on-one onboarding support, as well as a dedicated sales rep who acts as a single point of contact for all questions and concerns. The platform is easy to navigate and there’s a fully stocked resource center with scripts and videos. We especially like their lead count guarantee and their bad lead replacement policy.
Transparency drives a lot of the structures at zBuyer. The company bases its contact rate on the rule of quarters, meaning they expect ¼ of your leads to respond within a month. It also goes to great lengths to clearly outline their various lead generation strategies and their lead sharing policies. We find that it’s this demonstrated transparency and their commitment to customer service that really set zBuyer apart in a vast sea of lead generation companies.
What Does zBuyer Cost?
zBuyer requires a set minimum spend of $400 per month. Buyer leads generally cost around $12 and seller leads can range between $13 and $17. You can purchase any combination of buyer and seller leads and as many as you want, as long as you spend that minimum of $400. There is no contract and there are no setup fees.
zBuyer Pros & Cons
|zBuyer Pros||zBuyer Cons|
The zBuyer advantages are all about transparency, customer service, and the quality of leads. However, it’s important to note that this is not a golden unicorn; there are some important factors to weigh in making a decision to purchase leads with zBuyer.
How Does zBuyer Work?
The zBuyer platform is relatively easy to use and simple in execution. We particularly like how flexible it is; agents are not restricted by a contract or setup fees, allowing them to opt in and out as their business needs dictate. We also really like that zBuyer guarantees the number and relative quality of your leads, plus they throw in a free prospecting list of more than 300 older leads each month.
Let’s review how both buyer and seller leads work in the zBuyer system.
Agents can purchase leads from a specific county or ZIP code (or multiple counties and ZIP codes). They then select how many of each type of lead they want to purchase. Consider the example of Guilford county below. An agent can purchase up to 37 seller leads (for $15 each) and up to 50 buyer leads (for $12 each). Purchasing all of the available leads in Guilford county would cost $1,155. But agents are only required to spend a minimum of $400, so they could elect to purchase only 19 seller leads and 11 buyer leads and spend $417, for example.
Once purchased, leads auto-populate in your chosen customer relationship manager—there’s no zBuyer CRM—and the zBuyer mobile app, plus the platform sends you an email with all of the lead information in real time.
Lead information includes contact information and specs on the property if it’s a seller and what they’re looking for if it’s a buyer.
Are zBuyer Leads Exclusive?
zBuyer will only share a lead with six agents total, so if an area has that many agents already active, it will be “sold out.” The area statistics tab will show how many agents are already sharing the leads.
Let’s take a look at how the company generates leads. Again, zBuyer really puts a premium on transparency, so the entire lead capture process is on the website for anyone to demo.
Seller leads are generated through a cash-offer lead capture. Potential sellers enter their address and answer a handful of questions including when and why they want to sell, if they want to buy another property, and if they need financing. Leads must also verify their contact information and confirm their willingness to be contacted.
This is really exceptional in the lead gen world. How many times have you cold called and the lead yells at you, “howdyagetthisnumber?” With zBuyer, part of going through the motions of getting a potential cash offer means you’re agreeing to being contacted. This is next-level lead verification, and we’re impressed.
Sample Seller Lead
zBuyer captures buyer leads via its IDX portal, HousingNow.com. Prospects can search almost 1 million listings in more than 17,000 cities. When buyers want to save listings or ask questions about a property, they must offer up their contact information.
Sample Buyer Lead
In addition to the leads you purchase, you also gain access to a list of older, non-verified leads for prospecting. These are great for practicing the old cold call. And because they’re older leads, there’s a chance these contacts are actually closer to making a decision about their property than some of the newer ones.
Because zBuyer wants agents to convert their leads, they’ve created an extensive resource center chock-full of scripts and coaching videos. They also run a 5,000-member Facebook mastermind group. Some of the industry’s top thought leaders (such as the founders of LabCoat Agents) have collaborated on this, putting together resources specifically designed for zBuyer leads.
Who Should Use zBuyer
zBuyer is really best for agents who have some years of experience under their belts, and this is for a couple of reasons. The first is that, while there are no setup fees or contracts, it is expensive. If agents are willing to spend a minimum of $400 per month, they need to have excellent lead nurturing and communication strategies already in place.
Secondly, because zBuyer uses a cash-offer lead generation strategy, agents who are part of a brokerage that does cash offers, who might be investing themselves, or who have already developed investor networks will definitely have a leg up. zBuyer doesn’t make cash offers but experienced agents will often have relationships with investors or iBuyers to keep that option on the table.
It’s important to also check the status of your geographical location. As of this writing, a lot of Virginia, for example, is “sold out.” If you’re in Richmond, you’re not currently able to purchase zBuyer leads. There doesn’t seem to be any real pattern as to which areas sell out and which are rich with leads (like the above example of Guilford county), but it’s best to check out your farm area’s status before counting on zBuyer.
Remember, buying leads should be just one part of an agent’s larger, overall lead generation plan, and success with purchased leads is all about consistency, thoughtful nurturing, and stellar follow-up. All that being said, there is a lot to like about zBuyer and it’s worth a close look.
Room for Improvement
We would like to see zBuyer continue to refine its buyer lead funnel. The HousingNow.com website was a little glitchy for us. We imagine serious homebuyers will have an easier time navigating Zillow or realtor.com.
We also hope that zBuyer will consider selling leads in packages of smaller geographic zones. Selling by county or ZIP code makes sense across a lot of the country, but zBuyer could probably divide up some of the higher-density areas so more agents have access to leads. Serious real estate farmers generally want leads from a more hyper-specific location.
Final Verdict: zBuyer
zBuyer is truly an excellent option for paid lead generation if you have the budget and the tools to nurture and convert leads. It is important to remember the rule of quarters and have realistic expectations of the statistical rates of lead conversion. Getting from the new lead “ding” all the way to the closing table takes time and patience. It also requires a lot of nurturing and expert follow-up. If this isn’t something you’re willing or able to do, save your pennies and consider other lead generation strategies.
Overall, we really admire zBuyer’s commitment to transparency and customer service. Leads, especially seller leads, answer a series of questions to confirm their interest and contact information before they end up in an agent’s CRM. That, plus their flexible month-to-month option, lead guarantee, and lead replacement policy, all make zBuyer an exciting standout in this market.
Alternatives to zBuyer
If, however, zBuyer doesn’t sound like a good fit for you or your business, consider some of our other favorite lead generation companies:
|Company||Best For||Our Favorite Feature|
|Market Leader||A guaranteed number of leads each month||The ability to customize how many leads you get and where they come from|
|REDX||New real estate agents looking for budget-friendly, effective lead gen||Various lead types available for all business needs|
|Revaluate||Agents with a large sphere of influence||One of the highest conversion rates of any provider on our list|
|BoomTown||Realtors looking for a CRM/lead gen combo||Fantastic lead-sharing and assignment options|
|Zillow Premier Agent||A high volume of mostly buyer leads||Presence on the highest-trafficked real estate website on the internet|
|StreetText||Agents looking for advanced social media ad options||Ability to sort genuine leads from fake ones with industry-leading accuracy|
|BoldLeads||Exclusive, unique leads you won’t have to share with other real estate agents||Easily customizable automated nurturing campaigns|
Bringing It All Together
It can be tough to navigate all of the many paid lead generation companies. We hope that, after reading this zBuyer review, you can decide whether or not it’s a good fit for you and your business. The company has a lot to offer in terms of flexibility and lead quality, and we think it’s a solid addition to the lead generation market.
Do you have experience with zBuyer? Questions? Comments? We’d love to hear from you below!