Many real estate agents tell their sellers that open houses are a waste of their time because they don't sell the home. However, these real estate agents are only looking at open houses from the possibility of themselves picking up the buyer for the home.
I look at them differently. It is true that I rarely pick up the actual buyer for the home a am doing the open house on, but I DO often find THE BUYER, who has their own agent, for that home. Often, seeing other buyers actively looking at a home, hearing their comments, will strike a chord with a buyer & create the urgency to get their offer in on the home. Even yesterday, I held an open house on one of my listings. A buyer came through. Then they returned with their parents for a second look. Within 30 minutes of having left the open house, I had received a call from their agent to get back in with them in the evening. And they tell us that they will be writing an offer this evening.
Do open houses work? Absolutely! Are they worth my time? Absolutely. If it results in a sale for my clients then it is worth my time as that is the reason they hired me. It is just a tool in the toolbox for marketing the property & myself.