Founder of Search Realty Corp.
Sterling Wong founded and runs the number one, fastest-growing real estate brokerage firm in Canada. The CEO of Search Realty Corp shares how his journey from a no-network no-capital Realtor in the middle of an unknown city took him to the lead-generating heights his agency now successfully pioneers.
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Like many aspiring Realtors and their clients, Sterling Wong uplifted his life and found himself in Mississauga. But unlike the vast majority of agents, the CEO-in-waiting had no friends or family to lean on–the known norm for the industry–whether for a little bit of help-out capital, word-of-mouth advertising, or decent close-to-home leads. Starting as a Re/Max agent, he quickly realized how difficult it was to find new leads when busy trying to focus on serving his clients.
Wong had only one tool in his pocket–the internet, specifically, Google. Sterling became a self-taught digital marketing guru, which served as a crucial first step to finding his USP and disrupting an industry in desperate need of innovation. Learning the ins and outs of Google and online marketing freed him up to generate leads until the point, as he says, got him “obsessed with results.” The realtor made sure that he was the end result for any search in real estate in his locality until all results–ten out of ten, one hundred percent–were him and his business. Googling any key phrases an interested buyer might input, like “Mississauga homes for sale,” would inevitably lead to one destination–his websites. By pursuing this strategy, coined by the man himself as “multi-organic SEO,” Sterling was able to generate massive business and was growing at a consistently scalable rate.
Unable and unwilling to allow his winning streak to get disrupted, he is now focused on pioneering his “Leads On Demand” system. The innovative technology automates generating and distributing various types of leads for real estate agents in “any denomination, in any location in the world, in any language, and any price range, on-demand.” The precise nature of the system – how it generates leads from the bottom of the sales funnel – makes it a great stand-out in the industry. It’s unlike anything else created, and as a result, it creates a much more consistent method of lead generation.
That’s how Wong’s business became the number one fastest growing realty brokerage in Canada by removing the number one problem for realtors. Agents who come to him for help no longer have to worry about how or where they will get their next client.
As he continues to spread the leads on-demand system, he’s also set to launch a comprehensive real estate closing portal to combine eBay-style bidding with sold statistics, trends, neighbourhood data, and more. His eyes and mission are on greater expansion in every area of his business and every area of the Canadian real estate market.
Founder and CEO of Search Corp.
Search Realty Corp.
By utilizing SEO & SEM strategies, Wong was able to reach 52% YoY growth in his first 3 years as a real estate agent. When he realized that he was onto something that had the potential to change the world of real estate, he decided to start his own brokerage, Search Realty Corp., with a focus on lead generation technology.
Even in the early stages of his business, the mission was clear for Wong – to use the tools that helped him succeed and pass them on to others so they could pursue their goals and build a successful business of their own. By offering perks like zero desk fees, access to cutting-edge technology, training and free leads, new agents who were starting out with no experience or capital had the means to build a successful business with the help of Search Realty.
By maintaining a strong focus on utilizing the best tools and technology to serve the needs of home buyers, sellers and agents, Search Realty was getting noticed and quickly grew into a recognizable brand. In a short period of time, Wong went from having 1 real estate agent to over 300 and rapidly grew his online following.
Search Realty Corp soon became Canada’s only real estate brokerage to be a certified Google partner in 2016. This also defined Search as the only brokerage that was focusing on internet marketing to improve both the customer and agent experience. As a proud Google partner, Search Realty connected agents with proven innovative marketing solutions, increasing conversions through advanced search and advertising functions.
Fastest Growing Company
In 2018, Search Realty Corp had a 1,942% growth revenue over the past 5 years (fiscal 2013 to 2018). In 2021, the company had an 86% compounded growth rate from 2018 to 2020 alone. Because of such rapid growth, Search Corp. was soon featured on numerous award lists for fastest growing companies, including the 2018 and 2019 Growth500 List, Deloitte’s 2020 Technology Fast 500™ list, the Globe and Mail’s Canada’s Top Growing Companies for 2020 and 2021, and the Financial Times Fastest Growing Companies 2020 and 2021.
Great Place To Work
As a global authority on high-trust and high-performing workplaces, Great Place to Work® also certified Search Realty Corp based on employees’ ratings for credibility, respect, fairness, pride and camaraderie. It’s yet another testament to Wong’s ongoing commitment to creating an environment where agents can feel supported with unlimited opportunities to grow and succeed.
Search Mortgage Corp.
In 2015, Wong opened Search Mortgages Corp., a mortgage brokerage working with over 100 different lenders to further service the needs of consumers today. This quickly gained attention and led to Wong being featured as one of Canada’s Young Gun’s Top 100 Real Estate Professionals Under 35 by REP Magazine.
Leads on Demand Inc.
After 10 years of research and development, Wong launched Leads on Demand to real estate agents across Ontario in 20. This game-changing technology provided agents with scalable lead generation in any city, on demand. Through keyword optimization strategies and Google ads, the system enabled agents to produce as many qualified leads as they desired within 24 hours. Thus, it eliminated the typical costly, time-consuming marketing tactics and sped up the entire conversion process.
With 3 successful operations in motion, Wong decided to restructure the company in 2019 into a real estate holding corporation. Search Realty Corp. became the parent company for its known subsidiaries – Search Realty, Search Mortgage and Leads on Demand.
By leveraging digital marketing solutions and cloud-based tools, Wong was able to replicate the process to quickly grow his business from a solo operation to over 300 buyer agents, spanning numerous offices across Ontario with further plans to expand throughout Canada. This repeatable and scalable process is the foundation of his franchise business today.
Sterling Wong has also been recognized for his philanthropic work in the city – most notably his sponsorship at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto. Spending time himself as a child in the hospital, Wong was motivated to give back with a percentage of all commissions earned by Search Realty to contribute to improving children’s healthcare. Today, those donations have accumulated more than $50,000 and have earned Wong a permanent placement on the SickKids wall of donors.