The internet is a valuable tool for house hunters. 90% of would-be purchasers use it at some point as they hunt for their dream home, and around half of these half kick their search off online. These figures demonstrate just how important it is for Estate Agents to engage this significant traffic, and so focusing on getting their SEO (Search Engine Capability) pitch perfect has never been more vital.
- Focus on Local Keywords
A high percentage of house hunters begin their property research with a local keyword, for example ‘(name of location) estate agent. Though lots of estate agents have a fairly wide catchment, it makes sense to concentrate on your main target area first when building your web presence. Optimise your site for common search phases such as ‘(location) house for sale’ and its derivatives, ensuring each appears across your website and you should capture as many hits as possible.
- Helpful Resources
Most house hunters are looking for a lifestyle as well as a bricks and mortar property. Therefore, the more helpful local information you can provide on your website, the better. Details about local schools, public transport, crime stats and local facilities such as shops and leisure facilities can all encourage browsers to stay on your pages for longer, making it more likely that they will be persuaded to use your services.
- Unique Content
It is essential to include extra unique information to your listings page, such as any additional features the property may have, photographs and video, and even selected testimonials from satisfied customers.
- Blog It
Most estate agents hold large portfolios of available properties. However, if there are some particular listings that you are keen to lavish with a bit of extra attention, a blog post can be a great way to go. Each post should include the address of the property. Thus, the address becomes the keyword and as such should be included in the meta description, title tags, file and alt tags on photos, and general content. The bog content should be a short description of the property’s key features (NB this should be different from the content on the main site). Remember, if you want the address keyword to rank, you’ll need to ensure such content is unique.
- Visual Aids
Video content and photographs are often significant drivers on websites of all varieties, but this is particularly true of estate agent sites, for obvious reasons. Potential purchases love to watch footage of the home they are considering buying – and research shows that doing so can even stop them getting cold feet after a physical viewing. As well as a video tour, you could also consider uploading some positive testimonials from satisfied clients.
- Mobile Friendly Website
More people than ever are searching for their new home on their mobile device. Nearly 90% percent search via mobile at some point during the home buying process, which is why it is so important that estate agent websites are fully mobile-friendly. Research has shown that home buyers tend to visit mobile sites with a number of aims. These include to read general background information, to get directions to a property they wish to view, to compare sale prices and feature, to scroll through the inventory, to get contact details, to read reviews, to research different types of mortgaging and its cost, or to look at photos or watch a video.
Therefore, ensuring your website is fully mobile-friendly (ideally with responsive design) is absolutely key.
- Property Portals
Property search portals get a huge amount of hits, so it is very important to ensure your properties are included on them to ensure you’re capturing as much traffic as possible, this may then be re-directed to your own website. Many home buyers use these portals to browse and get an idea of what’s available on the market before opting to hone their search via a local agent.
- Social Media
When it comes to building new relationships with potential purchasers, or improving ones that already exist, social media is absolutely pivotal. An estate agent with a strong social media identity has the ability to interact with their clients wherever they may be, day or night via Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest. Be prepared to put in some time to research which sites your clients tend to frequent most often, and then target them there. In addition, being able to demonstrate your good reputation via social media helps to build trust – vital when selling property because of the huge costs involved. As discussed above, video and photographs are persuasive selling tools in the property world, meaning that a decent presence on Instagram and Pinterest is a must. With regards to Facebook, search for and join groups based on location and make your company known to the local community. On all social media platforms you should be mindful of operating strategically, using carefully considered hashtags.
If you are looking to drive more leads to your Real Estate business be sure to get in touch with the team at Prosperity Today!