The Buyers Journey For Home Builders

The buyers journey for home builders

Understanding your client before they become your client is the single best investment you can make.

This is where knowledge of the buyers journey is invaluable. Knowing each clear phase a future client moves through will give you an advantage as to how you can win clients over.

Tailoring your digital marketing activities, website content, social media activity, online ads as well as key promotional material for different phases in the buyers journey will give you better results and higher quality, qualified leads.

What are the phases of the buyers journey?

Before anyone decides to build their new home, we know they move through three very distinct phases.

They are; The Awareness phase, the Consideration phase and the Decision phase.

Each phase signifies different customer behaviour and the way they think and respond. In this guide, we break down each phase so you have a clear understanding of your future customers behaviour.

buyers journey Phases


When they become aware they want to build a home.


When the customer has land & finance ready and know what they’re looking for in their new home.


Making their final decision on who will build their home

Your clients (on average) will move through all three phases over a period of 12 weeks. This can be shorter for first home buyers and much much longer for knock-down rebuilds.

Awareness Phase

1. Awareness Phase

At the beginning of the home buyers journey, your clients are most likely unaware of who you are and if you’re suitable for them.

This is because they often haven’t settled on a block of land and probably don’t have finance in place. They just know they want to build a new home and have started looking at options.

Your Challenge

To market your building company successfully, you’ll need to create awareness for your company, your display homes, your custom home design service or your financing options for house and land packages.

Large volume builders shold allocate budget towards this phase, but mid and small size builders may be better off spending all their budget in the Consideration phase.

  • Best Channels: Instagram & Facebook
  • Second: Google Display (Banners/YouTube)
  • Third: Search (SEO & Google Ads)

Search Engines

When customers want to research something in Australia 86% of them turn to Google (Gizmodo 2016). So it’s only fair to expect when someone thinks about building, they search on Google.

The first stages of search are generally broad and then narrow down the further along the buying cycle someone travels.

For example, did you know there are 16,200 searches each month for “Floor Plans” and “House Plans”?

“Display Homes” are less than that at 9,900 and both are higher than “Home Builders” which is only 5,400 searches each month.

Searches become much more specific later in the buyers journey as can be seen here;

“Custom Home Builders” – 720 searches

“Narrow Lot Homes” – 320 searches

Social Media

16 Million people use Facebook in Australia and just under 15 Million use YouTube – meaning your customers are more likely to be there than reading a newspaper.

Currently video on Facebook costs less than almost every other medium (including YouTube) and has demographic targeting more powerful than TV.

This makes social media like Facebook, Instagram and YouTube a great medium to connect and grow awareness for your building company.

Videos can drive foot traffic to display homes and you can use lead magnets such as Case Studies and Floor Plans to capture customers in your marketing automation software.

Knowing what customers are looking for can provide you with insight into what you have on your website and how prominent that information should be.

At such an early stage of research, it’s important that you begin collecting prospective customer’s information in exchange for what they’re looking for. This should tie into the front end of your communication plan and enhance marketing automation efforts.

** Nurtured Leads produce, on average, a 20% increase in sales opportunities versus non-nurtured leads. (DemandGen Report 2016)

Marketing Tip 1

2. Consideration phase

Once home buyers have secured their land and obtained preliminary finance approval they’ll have a better idea of the home they can build. So now is the time they’ll narrow down their choices to a few different builders.

At this stage, they’re really going into comparison mode – seeing what makes you different to the other builders they’re currently considering.

They’ll consider the most obvious but also the not so obvious. Things like;

  1. Price
  2. Inclusions / Specifications
  3. Design / Home Size
  4. Who they like or trust most
  5. Reputation
  6. Intangible differences like expertise, advice, unique abilities within a Company or Group.
  7. Added services like interior design
  8. Timelines / Milestones

All builders should make this phase their #1 priority because customers in this phase are what most would call ‘qualified leads’. They have their land and finance and are ready to start.

  • Best Channels: Search (SEO & Google Ads)
  • Second: Instagram & Facebook
  • Third: Google Display (Banners/YouTube)
Consideration Phase

Appeal to their desire

During the consideration phase, new builders still have an opportunity to come into the picture and win the business. Also, if a builder or their sales consultant isn’t performing (in the eyes of the client), then clients are more likely to switch. Delays with discovery calls, a lack of follow up or being unavailable as a sales rep can all put you behind your competition.

Appealing to their biggest desire to get the ideal plan will be the strongest approach closely followed by a competitive advantage like price and a systematic follow up system for your sales team.


It’s at this stage getting a micro commitment can make a huge difference to your sales numbers. A micro commitment is where you get the client to cross an invisible barrier – for construction, it’s typically a payment of some kind. A small amount is often enough for a micro commitment to lock in a new client.

For example, having them pay you to arrange a site survey or enter a design agreement. While it doesn’t guarantee a sale, it is a step in the right direction where the client has now entered into a formal exchange and money has changed hands.

Marketing Tip 2

Intangible differences can set you apart from your competitors and even significantly distort price comparisons allowing you to charge more for your service.

Remember: People will pay more for what they value most. The extra percentage on your bottom line can make a big difference over time.

Decision Phase

3. Decision Phase

By this phase, your future clients are already in discussion with you. So the outcome of the Decision phase will depend on your sales skills more than anything else.

Sales skills and your sales process is essential in converting clients into real jobs.

A clear roadmap will go a long way to speeding up the contract signing stage. Sure, you can use the ‘impending price rise’ as a motivator, but most people are only pausing here because they still have many unanswered questions.

This goes beyond marketing, but we highly recommend having a system in place that you always follow. This will ensure your sales to construction process is smooth and will cause less client headaches.

Is your construction company ticking all the boxes?

If you’ve read our buyers journey and think you could benefit by hiring an agency to ‘fill in your gaps’ with your digital marketing and sales process, contact us today. We help builders win more work with our proven signature system.

Consider a ‘What Happens Next’ handbook or flyer that explains what the client will need at each stage.

Remember most people haven’t built before, so what comes naturally to your business is very foreign to them. Break it down in simple, easy to understand language.

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