Boost Your Sales: The Vital Role of Online Sales Consultants (OSCs) for Home Builders

Man in an orange shirt talking to a client on a headset and working on his laptop

The role of the online sales counselor shouldn’t be a new concept to new home builders. Sometimes called the online sales consultant, the online sales specialist, online salesperson, or internet sales specialist, etc. this role has been around for at least 20 years. Despite this, some builders still don’t grasp how vital the role of online sales consultant is in the home buying process or for online customer engagement, brand reputation management, and conversion rate optimization.

When you take the time to examine these four concepts and incorporate the role of OSCs, you can’t help but boost your sales.

How OSCs Help Boost Sales

The Home Buying Process

Almost 100% of buyers will do some research online before purchasing a new home. Often it is a process of elimination with the home buyers researching builders to decide whether they are worthy to visit.  With a strong web presence and easy to use website where the OSC is presented as the face of the builder, buyers are invited to utilize the OSC as a resource for information in a non-threatening environment.

You wouldn’t build a model home and not have a sales representative there to answer questions… why would you build a website and not provide an online resource to answer questions? Your website really is your digital model, and your OSC is the informational guide helping people along their customer journey. The more we can create this sense of customer care along the customer journey, the more we will see strong lead conversion from our digital marketing efforts.

Customer Engagement

When the role of OSC is implemented correctly they are truly the first stop on the buyer’s journey, and we can create customer engagement that makes sense. An OSC is different than a salesperson even though they hold many of the same responsibilities. An OSC is not there to sell a house, they are there to sell an appointment.

The key to this is a strong, qualified appointment, not just anything. This role was designed to be some of the earliest engagement in your sales funnel, and to carry through with long-term engagement for those who are not yet ready to buy.  Creating a trusted advisor for your customers gives them a human to do discovery with, without the fear of being sold a house.

When an OSC can build rapport, create trust, and discover a buyer’s wants, needs, and desires, they can set a strong, relevant appointment that will allow a sales agent to take the next steps.  We know that 50% of people buy within the first 30 days. This means it will take the other 50% of buyers longer than 30 days, and if we are not taking the steps to create authentic customer engagement beyond the 30-day point, we are missing out.

Brand Reputation Management

The OSC is well placed to receive feedback from prospects and buyers which can help marketing teams stay aware of issues that may affect brand reputation. While the OSC’s primary job is not to be the digital hall monitor, they are in a position to know if people are frustrated with any part in the buying process.

Since OSC’s touch 30-50% or more of your leads in the home buying process they are often in the position of trusted advisor; they can help problem solve or create transparency before an issue even arises.

Measuring Success of the OSC Role

Conversion Rate Optimization

As the OSC role has grown in importance over the last 20 years, so too has our digital marketing and digital presence online. One of the most notable parts of online sales is a much more trackable process from lead generation to appointment, to sale. There is a trackable path for most buyers and our metrics show even with the return of walk-in traffic post-COVID-19, a well-trained online sales counselor can account for 30-50% or more of a home builder’s overall sales.  It’s important to keep track of the numbers and know what your conversion rates and benchmarks are. These are the 6 key conversion ratios important to track:

  • Unique website visitors to inquiries
  • Inquiries to appointments set
  • Appointments set to appointments kept
  • No show ratio
  • Appointments kept to contracts written
  • Contracts written from OSC appointments to overall contracts written

Industry averages and benchmarks for these six key conversion ratios look roughly like these:


  • Unique website visitors to inquiries – 1-3% This can be even higher when digital assistants like chat bots catch more leads at the top of the funnel. But it’s important to think about quality and not quantity.
  • Inquiries to appointments set – 25-35% This can be even more depending on lead sources, and less if the majority of your leads come though 3rd party sources.
  • Appointments set to appointments kept 90% – Strong appointments and strong handoff equals a very low no-show ratio.
  • No show ratio – 10% or less Anymore and you have to ask what is going on with your turnover process
  • Appointments kept to contracts written – 20-33% 1 in 3 to 1 in 5 leads should eventually convert
  • Contracts written from OSC appointments to overall contracts written – 35-55% This can be even higher when there is a strong collaboration between marketing, sales and online sales.

When online sales counselor roles are implemented properly and intentionally – with the right person in the seat, with collaboration between marketing and sales, with the buyers journey in mind and with the proper training and tools, it will inevitably boost your sales and keep you on track even in a soft market.

This year’s Home Builder Digital Marketing Summit will be offering an OSC Eduction track in partnership with Leah at Blue Gypsy, Inc.  Register now and save your seat at the table where you can learn to manage a productive OSC program that nurtures those online leads and sets strong appointments for your sales team.

Register before July 15th and receive Early Bird pricing on every registration!

Leah Fellows of Blue Gypsy, Inc.
LEAH FELLOWS, CEO & ONLINE SALES TRAINER, BLUE GYPSY, INC.With the belief that not all home builder sales programs can be run the same way, Leah founded Blue Gypsy, Inc. in 2010. Her boutique online sales training solution provides a customized approach to each individual client and successfully serves builders across the country.


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