Get ‘Webby’

Get ‘Webby’: Must-do’s For Your Real Estate Website

If it seems like more and more of your real estate business is coming to you through the Internet…it is! The future (if not the present!) of real estate is online – are you prepared? A recent joint study by The National Association of REALTORS and Google found that 90% of home buyers searched online at some point during their home-buying process. Real estate related searches on Google have grown 253% over the past four years. Check out these must-do’s below to help make sure you’re not missing out on sales your website should be earning you.

How Does Your Mobile Website Look?

According to the Google/NAR study, 89% of new home shoppers use a mobile search engine at the beginning and throughout their research. Realtors need to make sure their mobile website and marketing are providing online shoppers with the information they are looking for and in a user-friendly display format. For those who used their mobile device to research real estate, 28% went on to call a brokerage, 21% used it to locate a listing agent, and 18% contacted a brokerage (in a way other than calling). These are real, qualified sales leads that you could be missing out on if your mobile presence is less than ideal.

Optimize for Search Engines

47% of first-home buyers used the Internet to search for a home, and 77% of first-time buyers drove by a home that they had previously viewed online. Home buyers are looking online before they physically view homes they are interested in, making it very important that your real estate website is ranked well by search engines. How can you get on Google? Start with Google My Business and put your real estate business information on search, maps and Google+ so that customers can find you, no matter what device they’re using.

One way to help your site rank well is to link to relevant, quality websites, helping to establish your real estate website as an authority in the industry. Try creating a list of online resources for your clients, like the mortgage lending partner you work with or a moving company with great reviews. Ask them to do the same, and you’ll both reap the benefits!

Focus on Local

Make sure that you are using the most effective local terminology on your website and in your listings. For example, many people call the Washington DC-Maryland-Virginia metro area the “DMV”. Home buyers often search as they speak, and since 69% of home shoppers who take action on a real estate website began their research with a local search term, it’s important to use the same language they do. Think about the local slang that home buyers may use to narrow down their search online, and use some of it on your website.

The off-peak season is a great time for realtors to take a look at the supporting factors that will help you succeed throughout the year – like how well your real estate website can be found online. Make sure you are showing up in search engines for local search terms, and that your mobile presence gives potential buyers the information they are looking for.