Mortgage Strategy\'s monthly guide to the lead generation companies brokers could be doing business with. Justine Tomlinson looks at the options available to intermediaries

Crystal Clear Global Solutions provides a web-based lead generation service. All leads are generated via one website called onlinemortgagecentre.com which is owned and controlled by Crystal Clear. Leads are delivered instantly to the adviser’s email address and can also be sent via text message to a mobile. National and postcode leads are offered with two levels of service provided.

The website is straightforward but professional and promotes advice via mortgage advisers. There are no gimmicks and low rates are not promoted. The site’s main purpose is to direct consumers to complete an enquiry form if they require mortgage advice. So the site does not run into any financial promotions problems and the absence of gimmicks should improve the conversion rate.

The enquiry form captures the basic contact information with the loan amount details and purpose of the loan and so complies with introducing rules. Once the customer enters their postcode, details of the advising firm appear on the screen. There is a minimum upfront payment of 300 but this is not tied to a time limit so leads can be switched on and off at any time. There is a control panel where postcodes can be added or removed and daily limits increased or decreased. National leads cost 20 and leads selected by postcode cost 28.50 including VAT. The costs are competitive but it is not possible to select category of lead.

Advisers can also set up a deluxe account whereby leads can be sent via SMS and notes added, plus it offers an appointment alert and conversion rate system. This adds 1 to each lead.

This service has been set up by an IFA so the level of compliance knowledge in the company is good. The refund policy is also fair. I recommend giving this company a try based on its compliant process and the low cost of leads.

Right to reply: CCGS
Applying our inhouse marketing and web development technologies to the online sector along with our values of fairness and honesty allows us to provide professionals with high quality mortgage leads at a realistic price.

While developing the systems (www.LeadAdminSuite.com) we had the mortgage professional as our focus. We knew leads had to be of high quality so a basic website was built (www.OnlineMortgageCentre.com) with the idea of putting off users not serious about talking to a mortgage professional. We decided not to use affiliate marketing as we knew affiliates would be focussed on generating a lead at any cost, which would reduce quality.

All our marketing is online and managed inhouse. For more information visit www.ccgs1.com

LeadX is a relatively unknown entrant into the world of lead generation, and has been trading since September this year. The company acts as a trading floor where the market dictates what a lead is worth by sellers requesting a price per lead and buyers placing a bid price per lead. This creates an open market to enable leads to be traded in real time. The leads can be issued via phone calls, XML feeds or web applications.

There are 10 criteria to select from in terms of category of lead. So if advisers know what type of lead they want to buy they will have to contact LeadX and establish the bid level before setting their own bid for that type of lead. On the other side, the lead generator – these can be web-based leads, lender leads or survey generated leads – will set a minimum price of what they want to earn on their leads.

Express consent is obtained in the usual way for web-based leads and for live lead transfers, this is done via an automatic voice message. The system will select an adviser based on his postcode area and bid value, and this will be provided to the customer in an automatic voice message.

I was unable to obtain an expected conversion rate but am informed advisers will get an indication of expected conversion based on the type of lead they are seeking. The minimum deposit is 500 but if the adviser decides the system is not working they can obtain full credit back, less any leads they have obtained. A sub-prime remortgage lead costs between 70 to 200 and a purchase FTB lead would cost in the region of 30.

My concern about this process relates to the source of the lead. Under regulation it is good practice for an adviser to know the source of the lead and be able to provide evidence if required. With a range of lead generators, this could be a complex process.

Right to reply: LeadX
LeadX is not itself a lead generation business. It is a trading platform that brings buyers and sellers together.

We aggregate many sources of sellers of leads and allow buyers to bid for the type of lead they require.

Both buyers and sellers can log into LeadX.com and see trades in real time. They have the ability to set and amend their own sell or bid prices in relation to the prices being set by other buyers and sellers.

Buyers of leads can also become sellers and generate revenue on lead types they cannot service themselves.

LeadX is simple to use, compliant and gives users complete control of the process and costs involved with mortgage leads.