Is your Customer Relationship Management software, or CRM, just not cutting it for your real estate business? Perhaps you’re here because you’re thinking about upgrading your CRM system to Follow Up Boss or LionDesk.
Or, you just made a decision to purchase one of the real estate CRMs, and now you wonder if you made the right choice.
In this post, we’re putting Follow Up Boss and LionDesk up against each other and we’re going to share our honest, unbiased opinion on the real estate CRM that is best for real estate agents.
Let’s get ready to rumble. Ding-Ding.
Incredible Value In Real Estate CRMs
Before we dive into analyzing Follow Up Boss and LionDesk, I want to say that both software solutions offer incredible value to their clients. In a world of capitalism, if these software solutions didn’t provide value, they wouldn’t be in business.
No real estate agent would choose to pay for Follow Up Boss or LionDesk if the CRM wasn’t providing value that agents felt was worth the price.
I’ve personally used both real estate CRMs in my career, so I know firsthand the value they can provide. On top of that, I’ve used two additional CRMs. I have quite a bit of experience with real estate CRMs and how they compare.
To determine the winner of Follow Up Boss vs LionDesk, I relied on my previous experiences using both real estate CRMs.
Each CRM is evaluated based on what I need in my business and what I feel like agents at various stages and business development need in their business and career.
That’s one thing that gives this post a unique perspective – it’s written by a real estate agent with experience using both platforms. It’s not written by a software developer or a marketing company that has limited experience as a real estate agent.
When looking at both CRMs, we considered which is better overall and which is better for certain real estate agents in specific stages of their career.
Best Overall: Follow Up Boss
The best overall winner in our Follow Up Boss vs LionDesk comparison is Follow Up Boss. As mentioned, both CRMs offer value to their agents and can help them close more deals. But, here’s why Follow Up Boss is the best overall winner.
Follow Up Boss does a better job at being a viable CRM solution for real estate agents at all stages in their careers — from the solo agent who is just starting to the agent who runs a mega-team.
Follow Up Boss, when applied in different ways, is a real estate CRM that will grow with you. Meaning it will work with you when you’re a new agent starting out, to becoming experienced, to adding team members, to starting a mega-team.
I refer to this as scalability.
And, the kind of scalability that exists with Follow Up Boss is hard to find in many CRMs and real estate software solutions.
As I was shifting my real estate business from being a new inexperienced agent to a top-producing individual agent within my broker, I felt the need to find a solution that would grow with me. This is the main factor that drove me away from LionDesk, which I was using at the time, and to Follow Up Boss.
Work With Lenders
In Follow Up Boss, you can work with lenders, share leads, and collaborate. If you have a strong relationship with a lender on your team, this is a feature that is worth using in Follow Up Boss.
Here’s an example scenario of the agents who get the most value from this feature: an agent and a lender are co-marketing and joint marketing on Zillow leads. All leads are fed into Follow Up Boss for follow up.
The lender and real estate agent can work to convert the lead into a home buyer. They minimize their communication and constant “check-ins” because they can instantly see where that lead stands.
Second, this can be a value add to your lender partners. Let’s say you want more referral leads from your lenders.
Go to your lenders and say,
“Listen… you can pre-approve someone, but at the end of the day, you rely on a real estate agent to take that approved buyer and make them a buyer so you get paid. Have you ever lost a deal because a buyer connected with a real estate agent and went to their lender? That’s lost money. I have a CRM that I provide to my lending partners. When they have a lead, they can input it into our CRM, we will follow up with the lead and you can track that. We do everything we can to turn your pre-approved buyer into a closed transaction.”
With the lender functionality, you will close more transactions and get more leads.
All that said, there are some negatives to Follow Up Boss.
Cons Of Follow Up Boss
Depending on where you are in your real estate business, Follow Up Boss is an expensive CRM solution. Especially when there are free real estate CRMs out there and your broker often provides a CRM and marketing solution.
The entry price — best for solo agents or small real estate teams — is $69 per month. For large teams, needing 10 users, then it starts at $499 per month.
This is a little hard to swallow if you’re a new real estate agent or with a small team. I’d say it’s one of the more expensive CRM solutions in the real estate industry. Of course, there are much more costly CRMs outside of real estate, like SalesForce.
Follow Up Boss has A LOT of features, and by far, the best user layout. It’s far better than LionDesk. However, the software has a large learning curve and it can take some time to really master the software and fully leverage Follow Up Boss’s capabilities.
I will add, though, that Follow Up Boss does everything to mitigate this issue — from an excellent customer support team to training videos for new users.
However, it will take a dedicated person to learn the software and how to use it. Failure to do so will prevent folks from using it on a regular basis, and therefore, get limited value from the software.
Best For New Agents: LionDesk
Okay, first, I believe that both real estate CRMs — Follow Up Boss and LionDesk — aren’t the best options for new real estate agents.
I would rather see a new real estate agent find a FREE real estate CRM until they have enough cash flow coming in to justify the expense of a real estate CRM.
The biggest reason real estate agents fail is because of a lack of cash flow. They have too much money going out and not enough coming in for the first few months. New real estate agents need to do what they can to preserve their cash and minimize expenses.
For example, pick a free real estate CRM, join a brokerage with no desk fees, or consider a real estate team.
That said, if someone clasped both their hands onto my forearm and threatened to give me an arm burn by pulling the skin in opposite directions if I didn’t pick Follow Up Boss or LionDesk, then I would go with LionDesk.
Lower Cost Of Entry
As mentioned, cash flow management is critical when you’re a new real estate agent. The best way to increase your chance of success is through cash flow management. In other words, minimize your expenses when you have no cash coming in.
A great way to do that is with LionDesk. At roughly $21 to $25 per month, depending on your billing plan, you can upgrade your CRM.
Comparatively, your savings are roughly $500 per year. That might not seem like a large amount, but keep in mind that most new real estate agents have very little money coming in for their first six months to a year.
It takes the average new agent time to get established. Keep in mind you will have many more expenses when starting out as a new agent — from MLS fees, to desk fees, to marketing expenses.
Save where you can. A free real estate CRM or lower cost option is a great way to do that when starting out. If you want a more expensive CRM, upgrade when you have more deals.
Easier To Implement
LionDesk lacks functionality that Follow Up Boss has. You could consider it a disadvantage, but this makes it a benefit for new real estate agents.
With less functionality, it’s easier to learn how to use LionDesk CRM and get it up and running in your business.
New real estate agents have a lot to learn — from marketing, to contracts, to local real estate knowledge, to branding themselves, and more.
By using a simpler CRM software, like LionDesk, agents spend less time learning HOW to use a CRM and more time USING the CRM. Allowing them to follow up with leads, and hopefully, get more clients.
Agents get paid when they effectively follow up. Not from learning how to follow up. LionDesk allows agents to put more time into following up rather than learning.
Best For Experienced Agents: Tie
When it comes to Follow Up Boss or LionDesk being best for experienced real estate agents, I call it tie.
Which real estate CRM is better is going to come down to your lead sources, your full technology stack, and your exact real estate processes.
Your Lead Sources
Where do your leads come from? An agent whose leads are primarily within their sphere of influence and referral network is fine with LionDesk as their CRM solution.
On the other hand, an agent that has lead sources coming from single, and especially multiple, online marketing channels — Facebook ads, Zillow, Realtor, etc. — is best served with Follow Up Boss.
Follow Up Boss has over 200 integrations with various lead sources. Examples include BoomTown, Cinc, Dave Ramsey ELP, and most broker websites.
LionDesk offers several integrations, but they’re not as robust and comprehensive as Follow Up Boss. Plus, Follow Up Boss is constantly adding more and more integrations with various lead providers.
A big reason to get a CRM is so that agents aren’t managing leads in various CRM solutions, like their broker CRM and then Zillow Premier. And, a CRM with lead integrations eliminates double-entry and manual work.
Freeing your time up to focus on converting leads into clients.
Your Technology Stack
Your technology is all of the software you use in order to complete your real estate tasks — from email communication, to transaction management, to marketing, to your request for reviews.
Your goal is to build the simplest technology stack for your real estate business. In an ideal world, that would be a single software solution that allows you to do everything you need to do in your real estate career.
Unfortunately, we don’t live in an ideal world. Often, you’re using multiple software solutions. The average experienced agent’s technology stack looks something like this:
- MLS software for homes and listings
- CMA software like CMA ToolKit
- Multiple CRMs
- A Transaction Software like Skyslope
- A Signing Software Like DotLoop or AuthentiSign By LoneWolf
The list goes on and on.
Since we rarely have an all-in-one solution, the next best thing is to pick a CRM that has the most integrations with other software solutions.
With over 30+ integration options, Follow Up Boss does a better job at helping agents simplify their technology stack, save them time, and make closing a deal easier.
Best For Real Estate Teams: Follow Up Boss
For many of the reasons already discussed — scalability, lead integration, and lender functionality — Follow Up Boss is the winner when it comes to real estate agent teams.
Let’s talk about one other reason Follow Up Boss is best for real estate teams.
Part of building a successful team means taking a leadership role and developing the agents on your team. It’s the only way to build a team that gives you freedom to live life on your terms.
Through Follow Up Boss’ tracking and built-in reporting who will know which agents are performing and which ones may need more development. From recording calls to tracking agent conversion, you can find coaching opportunities for developing your team.
Final Words: Follow Up Boss Or LionDesk
Both real estate CRMs offer value and you can find countless stories of agents using both software solutions to grow their business. Check out the website of each CRM and you will read or watch stories of agents who are having great success with Follow Up Boss and LionDesk.
Overall, the winner goes to Follow Up Boss. It has far more functionality and scalability than LionDesk. However, real estate agents most concerned with pricing or usability should give LionDesk a look.
Agents will find a lower cost — time and money — to get up and running with LionDesk.
However, our overall recommended real estate CRM is pipedrive. We found it’s the easiest to use and can help real estate agent manage leads, their sphere of influence and play a part in the transaction management process. You can get started with a free 30-day trial.