How Zillow Premier Agent Works ― Are Zillow Leads Worth Paying For_ (1)

How Zillow Premier Agent Works ― Are Zillow Leads Worth Paying For?


Zillow is the largest real estate search engine on the web. It provides an effective platform for real estate agents to advertise and reach potential leads. With over 160 million visitors per month, Zillow provides big opportunities for agents via Zillow Premier Agent—but is it worth the cost?

In addition to being the largest place for real estate agents to advertise, Zillow provides great value. We estimate that for every dollar you put into Zillow Premier Agent, you can get around $2.60 back in commissions. Read on and see why we think Zillow Premier Agent is worth every penny.

How Zillow Premier Agent Works

Zillow Premier Agent provides increased exposure for agents in two ways: 1. If you’re a Zillow Premier Agent and submit a listing, you will appear as the real estate agent next to the property details.
2. For listings submitted by non-Premier Agents, you can appear as one of three Premier Agents beneath the actual listing agent, giving you an opportunity to capture leads for listings you didn’t submit.

These are the two major benefits of becoming a member of Zillow Premier Agent:

Exclusivity: On listings you submit to Zillow as the seller’s agent, you get to be the exclusive agent promoted on the page, which increases your odds of getting the full commission of a sale; if you don’t sign up for Zillow Premier Agent, other agents will appear on your listing
Wider reach: As a Zillow Premier Agent, you also get to advertise on the local listings provided by non-Zillow Premier Agents; while three Premier Agents can advertise on a single listing, it is still a great way to generate buyer leads

For example, the listing agent circled below is not a Zillow Premier Agent. Her profile is listed first and labeled “Listing Agent” on the sidebar of the listing, but there are three other agents listed below. This occurs because the three other agents are Zillow Premier Agents and the listing agent is not. Some leads will contact the listing agent, and some will likely contact the other Premier Agents in the sidebar.Conversely, if you’re a Zillow Premier Agent, then you are the agent who appears on your listing page. This means that potential buyers have one real estate agent to contact if they are interested in a property, increasing the chances you will earn full commission for the sale of that property.

How Much Zillow Premier Agent Costs

Zillow is free to use for homebuyers and sellers. It also offers basic free services for real estate agents, multiple listing services, and brokerages to post their listings on the site. Zillow Premier Agent, however, is priced at $20-$60 per lead, depending on the average home cost in your ZIP code, the amount of competition in your area, and how much you budget for advertising.

Zillow Premier Agent charges agents based on three main factors:

  • ZIP Code sales: The cost to advertise in different ZIP codes is based on the price of homes in that area and the competitiveness of the market
  • Competition: The number of real estate agents in a certain ZIP code can change the cost of Zillow Premier Agent advertising; the more agents in a ZIP code, the higher the cost per lead
  • Budget: The total amount each agent has allotted for advertising in Zillow helps determine whose profile will appear on which listings, and how many listings they appear on

How to Calculate Your Zillow Premier Agent Costs

Zillow Premier Agent refers to your share of available Zillow leads as “Share of Voice,” or SOV. This is calculated using a combination of the three factors above — ZIP code sales, competition, and budget.

SOV ― ZIP Code Choice

  • If you target a ZIP code in Zillow with a high average sale price, then your leads will cost more. For example, leads in a Malibu ZIP code — where home prices average more than $5 million — will be more expensive than leads in Charleston, where homes sell for an average of $260,000.

SOV ― Market Competition

  • Any time there is more than one agent in a ZIP code, the size of the market share per agent, or SOV, goes down. For example, if there are two Zillow Premier agents in a ZIP code near San Francisco, and they both have allocated the same advertising budget on Zillow, then available leads will be equally divided between each.

SOV ― Advertising Budget

  • As alluded to above, an agent’s advertising budget in Zillow Premier Agent is key to determining lead costs — and is the only cost factor an agent can control. As an agent’s budget increases, they are given a greater share leads, or SOV, in the Zillow marketplace.

For instance, if agent A has a budget of $100 and agent B has a budget of $200, then agent B will get twice as many leads in their shared ZIP code. When an agent increases or decreases their budget, the SOV adjusts accordingly.

How to Adjust Your Budget to Increase SOV

Because there is an available placement for three agent profiles on non-Premier Agent listings, Zillow Premier Agent considers the total lead pool, or SOV, of a given ZIP code to be three times 100 percent or 300 percent. If there are three agents in one ZIP code and they all have the same advertising budget, each one can secure placement on all leads — splitting the total market share of 300 percent equally so they each of 100 percent SOV.

This changes when budgets fluctuate, however. For example, let’s assume that all three agents mentioned above start their advertising budget at $100 per month. But, Agent #1 wants more leads, so she increases her budget to $400 per month. To determine her new SOV, Zillow Premier Agent would divide her budget by the advertising budget of all agents in that ZIP code, then multiply that by 300% to determine her new SOV.

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