CMT Team·Mortgage Broker News·August 29, 2011Mortgage Broker Websites It’s hard to imagine being a mortgage broker without a website. Websites are the business cards of the 21st century and essential marketing tools for lenders and brokers. Argentum Mortgage CEO, Albert Collu, explains why: “An overwhelming percentage of borrowers will seek out mortgage information on the internet before making contact with a mortgage professional,” he says. The data backs that up. Over 80% of first-time buyers use the net to research mortgages, according to CMHC’s Mortgage Consumer Survey. It’s probably even higher than that. What’s more, “the largest demographic using mortgage brokers are between the ages of 25 and 35 (the Google generation),” adds Collu. But despite the importance of websites, brokers often fail to invest in a top-notch Internet presence. Collu cites two reasons for that: “The average age for mortgage brokers in Canada is 44.” (Many in this age group are “intimidated” by technology, he says.) “The average annual mortgage volume per broker is approximately $3M.” (At low funding levels, it’s hard for smaller brokers to invest in websites that can cost $3,000 to $5,000 or more, plus hosting). Argentum has responded by creating websites that cost its brokers nothing. They’re funded by advertising, and sponsored by League Assets. Many other brokerages also offer free websites to their members (free meaning they’re paid out of the broker’s split). Brokerage-provided websites have some issues though: They’re typically template-based—so a broker’s site may look the same as hundreds of other brokers. Search engines don’t rank template sites with duplicate content as highly as non-template sites with original content. Most brokerage sites have no unique value-added features (i.e. they’re not sticky). Despite these shortcomings, a brokerage-built website is better than none at all (and way better than an unprofessional home-grown site that leaves a bad first impression). Rob McLister, CMT Like news like this?Join our CMT Updates list and get the latest news as it happens. Unsubscribe anytime. SUBSCRIBE! Thank you for subscribing. One more step: Please confirm your subscription via the email sent to you.