What Real Estate Agents Can Teach Us About SEO and Marketing
Through my agency and with my work as the featured writer for a home magazine, I’ve had a lot of interaction with real estate agencies and Realtors. I’ve learned about as much from them on my marketing, as hopefully they’ve learned about SEO from me. How Realtors successfully market their real estate listings provides a great analogy for how you market your own services online. After all, you’re trying to get your business noticed above the other industries in your market, just as a Realtor must get homes noticed among similar properties.
With today’s hectic lifestyles, potential homeowners move quickly when looking at homes. If they pull up to a home and don’t like its appearance, they’ll simply go to the next home on their list. This is why a fresh coat of paint, a nicely mowed lawn and clean windows are a good to have for an open house. The same goes for visitors to your website. You only have a few seconds to capture the attention of a visitor to your site and you can’t blow it. This doesn’t mean having something flashy like a lot of images. People are there because they are interested in your products or services. Your home page or landing page should look professional. If you have any awards or have well-known affiliations such as the Better Business Bureau, have those logos be prominent and above the fold. This instills confidence in your visitors. You either make that good first impression or your visitors will just drive onto to the next listing.
Make Sure Your Home Is Ready to Sell
People selling their homes know from their Realtors that they have to be presentable on the inside, as well. If potential homeowners go in and find it hard to get around because there are boxes all over the place or too many furnishings, they’ll likely lose interest. When visitors arrive at your site they’ll have questions such as your experience or what guarantees you offer or what products are available. If they can’t find what they are looking for, even though it is hidden somewhere on your site, you’ve failed. Your website should be intuitive. Have someone not affiliated with your company review it. Ask them to look for specific information or a specific product. If they lose their way doing, so, then you have a problem.
Market in your community
When selling a home, Realtors focus on either people in their community or prospects potentially moving there. This means they list the community with their listing so that people understand where it is. It doesn’t do them any good to have a buyer in New York be interested in a home if they’re not ever moving to St. Louis.
When it comes to SEO or pay per click marketing take a similar approach, especially if your business services a specific community. For example, if you’re a restaurant you want people in an approximate 30 mile radius exposed to your ads. Run ads that target the general phrase restaurant that can only be seen by people in that radius. To reach people potentially traveling there, then focus on words like St. Louis restaurants or St. Louis Italian restaurants. I’ve seen too many businesses run pay per click campaigns that people outside their market are exposed to. For example, I assisted a RV rental company that only rented RVs in a few states, none of which were Iowa, where I live. Yet, their ads ran nationally and the ads popped up often for me, with no indication that they didn’t serve Iowa. So my clicking on their ad did nothing more than cost them money. Market to your community and people in your community for your sales.
List all your features
Homes are easier to sell if they have a lot of features that potential homeowners are looking for. This is why their listings have so many details such as number of bedrooms, a pool or spa, the style of home etc. By providing a long list of what the home has to offer, they can help attract the attention of prospects looking for specific amenities.
If you offer a number of services then list all of them out on your site. And if possible even devote a page to each service, particularly the major services. This gives prospects more opportunities to find your site and your business. Each page could be optimized for a specific service.
Price to Sell
Very seldom do two homes that have the same features have the same asking price. One always has some amenities the other house might not have, making that home easier to sell. If you are in competition with a company that sells the same products then you better be able to explain why they should choose you over them. That your customer service is better, that shipping is cheaper. Most people looking for a product or service are first interested in price. Then they look at what they get for that price.
Also with listed homes, you’ll see the asking price right in the listing. This helps eliminate those that can’t afford the homes. This is a good tactic for your business to take with pay per click especially. By listing your price in your ad you can eliminate those that can’t afford what you offer.
If you want to put a sold sign on the products or services that you offer, you have to market it online in the proper way. If you’re not doing it right then you need to consider do what homeowners do. Not hire a Realtor, but hire a professional who knows how to market it.