2022 Placester Review – Pros, Cons, Pricing, Testimonials

expert placester review
Founder of InboundREM an inbound marketing lead generation company focused on SEO. Blogger. Real Estate SEO expert. Real Estate Lead Generation expert. Real estate online marketing fanatic. Podcaster. Occasional public speaker and frequent vlogger.

Table of Contents

🏆 Top Affordable Real Estate Website Company

This Placester review includes everything you need to know. It has two in-depth video reviews, pros/cons, who should and shouldn’t consider becoming a client, Placester pricing, example Placester websites, and more. 

4/5
4.8/5
0/5
N/A
Pricing
94%
Lead Generation
55%
Design
68%
Client Satisfaction
95%
Support
83%
Overall Rating
3.7/5
3.9

In-Depth Video Review (2022)

Quick Placester Review

Placester is a leading real estate website company that is easily among the Top 3 companies providing highly affordable websites, along with Real Geeks and Easy Agent Pro. 

They’ve had issues with providing helpful customer support, and they aren’t a great option for agents and brokers who want to focus on creating SEO-driven lead generation websites. It’s possible they learned from their customer service and scaling issues but we won’t know for sure until the end of 2022.

They still do not allow clients to own their website.

On the positive side, they are great for anyone who wants a highly affordable DIY website. Clients can integrate the Placester platform with many third-party tools and software, in addition to a large range of built-in add-ons. That’s rare and highly valuable.

The new platform is also built for scalability, so they can grow seamlessly with your business.

Website and Service Description

Detailed Placester Website “Builder Information”

  • Responsive real estate IDX website 
  • All websites are DIY template websites
  • Includes Customer Relationship Management software and CMS
  • 80-90 add-ons and marketing options
  • Excellent integration with third-party tools and software
  • Content marketing and direct advertising options (Read reviews before investing)
  • Drip-email marketing campaign (basic)
  • Landing page creation 
  • Options for agents AND brokers

Important Company History

With 30-40,000 active customers, Placester has more live real estate websites than any other company, period. But in the past years, they became victims of their own success. 

Their huge client base had contracts with minimal monthly fees, but they required significant support. The Placester support team couldn’t handle the overload. 

Way back in 2017, I had a very tough time trying to get support on behalf of a client. Since then I have written and made videos highlighting this point. Generally speaking, the company is still trying to extricate themselves from this situation. 

However, they have relaunched their platform for far better performance and therefore less need for customer support. It remains to be seen if the new platform will deliver as well as the company and its customers hope. 

That said, at the beginning of 2022, Seth Price reached out to me regarding this point. We interviewed him on the MailRight podcast, which you can check out below.

He gave me access to the backend (what a Placester client uses), which looks promising. Plus the customer support team has been very proactive about reaching out to me. Of course, it’s possible that I’ve received special attention as a voice in the real estate marketing world.

What Does That Mean For You?

It means that any negative Placester reviews you find could reflect a previous version of the company. That goes for the efficacy of the website platform and the attentiveness of its customer support team. It seems that recent client Placester reviews look better than before, but there is still a mixture of good and bad reviews.

Interview with Seth Price, VP of Product

Biggest Pros

1. Very Affordable Websites

For NAR realtors who pay annually, pricing plans start at $64/month with a $0 or $100 setup cost. The setup cost is low because you will receive website templates and create your website yourself. Small and medium sized teams will pay $120/month and up to $950 for setup costs. 

Of course, the work of a DIY real estate website is continual. You’ll have to create a landing page for every new listing, or pay Placester $75 to do it for you. 

 

2. Scalability

Placester’s new platform is designed to grow with your team. You can choose one service package and upgrade to another. Plus there are 80-90 “add-ons” that allow you to customize your digital marketing strategy. 

 

3. Integrations

Placester has achieved a rare feat in that their platform is one of the best all-in-one platforms. First, it comes with a CRM and lots of potential add-ons. But on top of that, the platform integrates well with many third party products and software. In other words, you’ll often be free to choose the best tools for your needs without Placester standing in the way. 

 

4. Resource Center

Placester may have the best resource center of any real estate website company out there. Super helpful webinars and training videos are essential to their business model. It cuts down on the need for a support center. In this sense, they’ve succeeded powerfully.

Biggest Cons

1. Clients Don’t Own Their Websites

If you know me, you know I talk about this a lot. It’s very rare that real estate website companies allow you to own your own website and it’s content. It’s like paying to build a house and then paying rent on that property. Plus it presents a risk of your data possibly being shared. 

Personally, I wouldn’t pay for a website I can’t own, which is why all of my clients own their websites. Unfortunately, this is very rare among real estate website companies.

 

2. Clients Can’t Easily Change Service Providers

Well, of course you can end your contract. But you’ll lose your entire investment, both in time and money, when you start over again with a new company. This is another major reason to consider owning your own website.

 

3. SEO Lead Generation

While the new Placester platform is designed to scale up with a growing company, SEO isn’t a primary focus. SEO-driven lead generation real estate websites are a very specific beast. Any company that doesn’t specifically focus on SEO-driven leads is going to have a difficult time succeeding because the competition is so fierce. 

In my opinion (and the opinion of many real estate marketing experts), SEO is the BEST way to leverage a website and gain the best possible ROI. 

For example, about 1000 people search for “moving to Los Angeles” every month. Currently, the best blog articles on this topic drive 2000+ visitors each month and will probably continue to perform similarly for years. 

You can see how an article like that could supply a small team with all the leads they can handle. Granted, getting that #1 spot on Google won’t come cheap. It may take thousands of dollars and at least a year to achieve. But the ROI can VERY EASILY and GREATLY outperform any PPC or other digital marketing strategy. 

If you plan to succeed and grow, you want this option in your backpocket. That said, few inexperienced agents will have the necessary budget in the first few years. If you first choose a Placester website, you’ll lose a relatively small investment when you switch providers. 

It’s also worth mentioning that Placester does have SEO experts. Their own website generates AMAZING content. It’s just a matter of how much that expertise has been funneled into their client platforms. At this point, I’d wager it’s more potential than actual.

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Other Considerations

1. Customer Service

In the past, Placester clients have had many problems with the customer service and support teams. Previously customers could pay only $5/month for a basic website. Eventually Placester grew too fast for their own good. They had 40,000 clients, many of whom paid almost nothing each month but still required support.

The customer service team became overwhelmed and failed to meet client needs on a large scale. Placester still has many of those contracts, and they are trying to gradually phase them out in an ethical way. 

2. DIY Websites

Placester is inexpensive mostly because they provide DIY websites. You’ll get a template that you have to fill out yourself. This is not a one-time process. Every new listing will require a new landing page. Websites also require regular maintenance and updates. 

If you’re especially busy, Placester won’t be a great option for you. You’ll either have a poorly functioning website, or you’ll end up paying significantly more than your base monthly pricing. Assess your free time and personal motivation, now and in the future, before committing to a DIY real estate website service.

3. Venture Capital

Placester is backed by venture capital, which means there is more pressure to have a great bottom line than lifestyle companies. For example, a lifestyle company might be a family-owned business that can place values like customer happiness over a bottom line. 

On the other hand, my conversations with Seth Price have led me to believe that there’s at least one executive with a strong value system that wants to do right by people. 

This may be a complete non-issue for the experience of many clients. But it’s still worth noting in a super in-depth Placester review.

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Who Should Consider Placester

1. New and Inexperienced Agents

Agents in the first 3-5 years of business should strongly consider Placester. But keep in mind that Placester offers DIY websites, so you’ll have to do a fair amount of work yourself. That’s true upfront and ongoing. 

If you’re already strapped for time, it may be better to look elsewhere. That’s also true for agents who foresee themselves needing lots of customer support. 

The more you feel comfortable finding solutions to website problems or questions, the better Placester is for you. An ambitious, DIY attitude can easily translate to lots of savings. 

2. Agents with Low Budgets 

If you can only budget $100/month or less for a website, then consider Placester. Again, keep in mind that a low budget means you’ll have to personally work on your site. The platform is very easy to use, but problems still arise. 

3. Large Brokerages With Low Digital Marketing Budgets

The new direction of Placester is built around catering to brokerages and agencies, rather than standalone agents. If your brokerage doesn’t plan to invest in SEO-driven lead generation, but wants to focus on PPC, social media marketing, etc., then keep your eye on Placester. 

As humbly as I can say this, it’s my expert opinion that SEO is the best way to achieve massive long-term ROI. My own clients have achieved a 12:1 ROI in the first two years of a contract. 

However, SEO takes time and money, and many agents are more interested in short-term ROI. If your long-term marketing plan will focus continually on short-term ROI, then Placester could be a great option. The new direction of the company will probably keep your kind of business at the front of their mind.

Who Shouldn't Consider Placester

1. Agents Who Want to Own Their Website

Personally, I think everyone should own their own website. But unfortunately, almost all real estate website companies force clients to lease their website. It keeps clients tied to them, since agents and brokerages will lose their investment if they switch companies. 

I think that’s simply unfair, which is why all of my clients own their content. If you want to switch companies, you’re free to do so without losing your investment. If you’d like to learn more about how InboundREM is truly on your side, reach out for a free consultation about your needs. 

If I don’t think your needs and my services match really well, I’ll point you in the direction of another service who will. That’s just how I do business.

2. Agents with Low Tolerance for Headaches

I think Placester reviews are showing that the company is working hard to fix its customer support issues. Some clients have fantastic experiences, but negative Placester reviews are still popping up. A lot remains to be seen. 

Anyone who wants to know they will have a great customer support experience should probably consider a different company. Here’s a pro tip: don’t focus too much on the positive reviews for a company. Pay more attention to the negative reviews. 

InboundREM has only 5-star reviews on Google and other platforms. Check them out on our homepage or at the end of the article.

3. Agents/Brokers Who Want Optimal Long-Term ROI

The key to excellent long-term ROI in digital real estate marketing is an SEO-driven website. It’s a very competitive space, but deep experts can provide insane results. Anyone in a place where they can invest time and money into a long-term marketing plan should do so.

4. Agents/Brokerages with Large Marketing Budgets 

Generally speaking, if you’re spending over $1000/month on a real estate website, but you’re not blogging or driving SEO leads, then you should probably rethink your strategy. 

Larger brokerages and agencies with big budgets have reason to hesitate with Placester. On one hand, Placester has redesigned their product specifically to cater to these clients. 

On the other hand, the experience these clients will have depends greatly on the Placester support staff and project managers. While the company has made a concentrated effort to pivot away from their support issues, it remains to be seen how successful they will be.

 

Let's have a talk

Schedule a meeting with me

Let’s chat about how an SEO-focused website that YOU OWN can generate high-quality leads and exceptional long-term ROI. If my services aren’t the best move for you, I’ll gladly point you in the right direction

Placester Pricing Plans

Placester pricing has four tiers, ranging from $100/month to $1250/month. The first two tiers are for individual agents or small teams, while the second two are for larger brokerages or agencies. 

NAR Realtors receive a 20% discount for the first two tiers. Plus, any client that pays annually receives a 20% discount. In effect, the starter plan and advanced plan can be as affordable as $64/month and $120/month. 

Monthly Placester Pricing

  • Starter Plan: $80/month
  • Advanced Plan: $150/month
  • Office Builder: $300/month
  • Concierge Custom: $1250/month

Placester Setup Costs

  • Starter: DIY for free or pay $100 for Basic Setup
  • Advanced: DIY for free, $100 for Basic Setup, or $650 for Custom Build
  • Office Builder: DIY for free, $100 for Basic Setup, or $650-$1350 for Custom Build
  • Concierge Custom: Free Custom Build
placester pricing plans

Additional Costs

With 80-90 add-ons and custom work options, there are other factors that can change your total purchase price. 

These are typically one-time costs ranging from $75-$200 or more. Relative to the monthly costs, these services are fairly expensive. 

cost of additional services for Placester clients

Placester Client Reviews and Testimonials (2022)

There is a strong mix of positive and negative reviews for Placester. On average, the company receives a 3-3.5 star rating from clients. 

You can find dozens of reviews on these websites:

Plus you can also check out our selected customer testimonials below. Our comment section also has plenty to say.

Typical Positive Placester Reviews

Testimonial #1

“Moved my sites to Placester a few months ago, and though we did have one crazy week, it’s been a great move for me. I have moved all my sites over, and even added domains, and plan to add those to Placester very soon. Endorsed by NAR, and if you are a Realtor, you even get a discount on the service, which helps with your monthly expenses.

Great looking sites, Wordpress based for functionality, and lots of “bells and whistles” that I like and use. At the same time, unlike Wordpress and having to use it for your sites, you won’t get bogged down like I was with updating all the time with new plug-ins, etc., and it will load much more quickly. Plus fully SEO friendly, and Responsive with indexing too!

My sites are still works in progress, but check out my profile and take a look at a few of them! Let me know what you think? If you have any questions about my Placester experience before you get your site(s), feel free to text or call me. I am always available to help fellow Realtors.”

Mike Thacker [ACTIVE RAIN]

 

Testimonial #2

 “Best Indie Brokerage Website Manager – Hands Down”

What do you like best?

I think the intuitive design and ease of use make the biggest difference for us. As a growing brokerage with a small staff, we’re able to easily edit our website while creating a beautiful overall look, as well as do the same for our agents – managed all in one place. Looking at it, you would never know it’s a template site.

Review collected by and hosted on G2.com.

What do you dislike?

We’ve worked with Placester for over 6 years now and I can honestly say that even when there have been issues to address, their team is quick to communicate and fix anything that has cropped up.

Review collected by and hosted on G2.com.

What problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

Currently, we’re finding ways to better scale our business by means of Placester’s new Concierge program. This gives us the option to hand some of our marketing efforts over to a team that can be quickly trained, rather than going through the hiring process in hopes we find the right new staff member for our team (not an easy task).

Typical Negative Placester Reviews

Testimonial #1

What do you like best?

Don’t know yet…have not been able to make it functional for me yet…I’ve been having MAJOR issues with the Placester Support department. They area having a “technical issue” going on for almost two weeks not upgrading my account to genius level so it can be professionally modified….their support department, while very polite, have been completely ineffective in getting any movement on getting the issue resolved. Meanwhile, I have a couple of thousand dollars invested with a support company waited to do the modifications……

What do you dislike?

Polite…but ineffective support department

– Anonymous [G2 Crowd]

 

Testimonial #2

“Not competitive with other companies and will try to walk off with your money”

What do you like best?

The price was competitive and slightly lower than other companies.

Review collected by and hosted on G2.com.

What do you dislike?

The salesperson seemed knowledgeable upfront, but in the end, they had not been listening to my needs. When we talked about the mapping feature that I need for my buyers to be able to use, I received three answers. That made it very confusing on what I would be getting. Within three days, I had my meeting with the website team. I had paid for a semi-custom site, but all they had done is put the wrong address in a template and claim they had worked on it. Placester completed no custom work completed. A buyer can not do the mapping to select where their desired neighborhood would be like competitors allow. Placester expected me to draw 89 maps for the potential buyers. This was not as discussed in our two meetings.

When I requested the cancelation, my salesperson told me I had to do it online. I canceled the order only to find they intended to keep all of the money.

After an exhausting chat (no, they would not answer the phone), they are still fighting to keep my money.

Placester Website Examples

Check out these websites for a typical Placester website:

sample Placester website

Leadership & Company Summary

Placester is a Real Estate Technology company that sells WordPress real estate websites which include IDX and online marketing options. With over 400,000 customers, 1/6 of real estate professionals in North America use their services.

Placester vs Easy Agent Pro vs Real Geeks

Placester, Easy Agent Pro, and Real Geeks represent the main players for highly affordable real estate website providers. Find out more about which might be best for you with the articles below. 

Or you can find out more about how InboundREM can provide you with AMAZING long-term ROI.

Let's have a talk

Schedule a meeting with me

Let’s chat about how an SEO-focused website that YOU OWN can generate high-quality leads and exceptional long-term ROI. If my services aren’t the best move for you, I’ll gladly point you in the right direction

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