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The 8 Elements of a High Converting Real Estate Landing Page
Why do real estate agents invest so much time and effort into online marketing? Simple. To grab the attention of new prospects and direct them to their website. The only problem is, most traffic that comes from social media and advertising tends to bounce when it lands on a real estate website. Why Do Most Real Estate Prospects Leave Your Website? When you create an advertisement, let's say on Google Ads, your goal is to make the prospects curious enough to click on your content. This can be done with a clever line of text or an intriguing picture. At the end of the day, a potential client will click on your ad because they believe it will bring them value. They have a need and you are offering some sort of solution. The Problem with Real Estate Home Pages If someone takes the time to click on your advertisement, why wouldn't they investigate your website once landing there? In most cases, the prospect likely experiences some level of disconnect. Let's say your advertisement was tailored towards confused first-time homebuyers. An ad like this might have a high conversion rate because the process of purchasing a home for the first time is daunting and confusing. First time home buyers are actively seeking out answers to their specific questions. The disconnect occurs when they land on your homepage or services page which doesn't provide the exact answers they were searching for. Most real estate agents set up their web pages to be fairly generic, proving a broad overview of all their services. While this might be a good place to start for your average client, when a prospect is looking for an exact solution, your homepage could have them looking elsewhere. How Real Estate Agents Funnel Traffic There are a few common ways that you can attract attention to your real estate website. Social Media Organic Search (SEO) External Linking Paid Advertising Agents use social media to build an online following. If you are looking to bring traffic from your Twitter feed to your site, you might share a timely insight followed by a call to action (CTA). This CTA would outline how you could help the prospect and link back to your site. Organic search brings users to your website after they have used a search engine to attempt to answer a question. If you have created content with SEO in mind, hopefully, Google directs the prospect your way. External linking directs traffic back to your site by mentioning your brand or services on an external source such as someone else's blog. And paid advertising is the process of creating marketing materials on platforms such as Facebook and Google that hopefully catches the attention of browsers and funnels them back to your site. Real Estate Landing Pages: A Specific Solution All four of these options have the ability to attract the attention of a potential prospect with a specific message. However, if you don't have a specific solution for the prospect to explore and interact with, you will likely lose their interest quickly. The solution: a landing page. What Is a Landing Page? A landing page is a single web page that is designed for a specific topic or purpose. Using our previous example, you could create a first-time home buyers landing page where all the corresponding traffic could be funneled. This way, when the visitor lands on your landing page, they will be interacting with the content that can directly answer their questions. All real estate landing pages should be created with one goal in mind: Conversion. All of the pictures and text found on your landing page are there to help lead the prospect to your call to action. The Fundamental Elements of a Real Estate Landing Page Ready to harness the power of landing pages? Here are the 8 qualities of a landing page that successfully converts online real estate leads… #1) Embrace Minimalism Have you ever landed on a webpage and instantly felt overwhelmed? Avoid giant walls of text above the fold on your web pages. A simple, clean, and minimalistic design will allow a prospect to easily see that the content pertains to their particular need. This style of landing page also leaves the prospect hungry for more information which will prompt them to begin scrolling down the page (towards your CTA). #2) Announce Your Offer/Value Proposition Right Away When a prospect lands on your page, they should be able to decipher your proposed offering within seconds. It should be extremely clear and exciting. Long lead-ins typically don't perform well on real estate landing pages. Additionally, ensure your main title and headers contain the keywords that relate to your landing page topic. #3) Utilize Endorsements and Trust Signals Every great landing page includes some sort of endorsement where a previous client explains the value that you brought them. This gives the prospect a glimpse into your abilities and also begins to create trust between the prospect and your brand. Real estate agents can also use "trust signals". These are images or logos that increase your credibility. Have you been nominated for the Top 40 Under 40 in your city? Perhaps you are accredited by the Better Business Bureau. Utilize the brand imaging from these recognitions to further build trust. #4) Match the Advertising Style When you are creating your landing page, use your advertisements as inspiration. The styles of your landing pages and your marketing materials should be very similar. Use the same type of language and phrases. You will also want to make sure that the color schemes are the same. Remember, a landing page is an extension of the ad that they first clicked on. #5) A/B Testing Your first landing page design may not be the most effective. The only way to find out is through some basic A/B testing. Create two or three landing pages and funnel similar traffic to all of them. After a set amount of time, perhaps a two week period, you can analyze the metrics and see which page converted at the highest rate. #7) Create a Sense of Urgency The best landing pages create a sense of urgency. Your ad copy should slowly build in momentum and push towards your end goal or CTA. Perhaps you are running a free course for first-time homebuyers in your city. Your landing page should touch upon the fact that there are limited spaces available and that the date is fast approaching. TIP: Countdown clocks can instantly convey a sense of urgency on any style of landing page. #8) Provide Alternative CTAs Always provide prospects with multiple opportunities to interact with you. Maybe the user isn't ready to contact you for home buying services today but they found your information very useful. This is where a secondary CTA can capture any of the leads that were not convinced by your main CTA. One of the most common and successful secondary CTAs is an email capture. If you have a monthly email or you have authored an ebook, provide an email sign-up at the very bottom of the page. Remember, if someone took the time to read through all of your copy and scroll to the bottom, they are very close to converting, you just have to give them the right outlet. Conclusion These 8 elements have the ability to increase your conversion rates 10x if implemented properly. Constructing the perfect landing page is not a simple task but it will be well worth your time. To view the original article, visit the Parkbench blog.
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The Key to Real Estate Lead Generation: Custom Landing Pages
Are you searching for ways to boost both your website lead generation and the effectiveness of your online advertising? Custom landing pages, which users "land" on after clicking one of your ads, are one of the biggest keys to lead generation. Landing pages are designed with one goal in mind: to earn the contact information of people who click your advertisements. Of course, to get that contact info you'll often have to offer something in return. Learn how to put landing pages to work for your business with our guide to custom landing pages for your website.
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Landing Pages for Real Estate Seller Lead Generation
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4 Essential Landing Page Features to Improve and Convert Leads
Nothing drives away a potential customer like an unclear homepage that leaves them digging through various tabs and web pages to find what they need—and that's if they even take the time to browse past the landing page. Make sure your landing page has these key features to improve lead capturing.
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Consider a Lifestyle Section for Your Real Estate Website
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Over-Qualifying of Website Visitors Can Cut Your Leads
There should be little or no argument that the primary purpose of a real estate website is lead generation. No matter which niche markets you serve or what customer types you prefer, the website must generate real estate leads, or it's just a billboard to look at on the way past it.
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Effective Real Estate Website Calls-to-Action for Lead Generation
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3 Ways to Refresh Your Tired Real Estate Website
How long has the anchor content on your website been up on the web? Take a trip through your real estate website with an eye on how many images and how much text could be updated for a fresh new look and better usability. As you look through the site, keep one question top-of-mind: If I am a regular visitor, would I be bored having seen this content over and over? Here are some tips and ideas for refreshing your site that will make it more interesting, especially for repeat visitors. You could also generate more leads.
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Using Internal Linking and Navigation to Keep Visitors on Your Site
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Realtor.com Introduces New Web Experience for Home Search
Realtor.com today introduced its new home search web experience which emphasizes visually engaging design to support a faster, simpler and smoother home search experience. Consumers using realtor.com's desktop and mobile web platforms can explore the new search experience starting today. "Searching for a home is a very stressful process, especially in today's market. The new realtor.com web experience puts more listings at our users' fingertips and makes it easier to compare homes side-by-side," said Chung Meng Chung, realtor.com's chief product officer. Realtor.com's new web experience better equips users to access the information they want quickly and efficiently. A few key highlights: No "FOMO" - New Listings and Open Houses: For serious home shoppers, the "Fear of Missing Out" is real. Users can now see at first look how many hours ago the listing was added to the site as well as the date of any upcoming open houses. More listings per page: Users can now see more properties per page and make visual comparisons, as total listings per page increased from 15 listings to 48 on desktop and from 50 to 60 on mobile web. Updated listing page design: See the listing information you want, when you want it. Listing page sections, such as "Property Details" and "Property History," are collapsed upon page opening for easier navigation without overwhelming the user. Listing pages load up to 10 times faster: Navigating between search results and listings is now up to 10 times faster, saving users time as they explore multiple listings. More immersive photo gallery experience: Mobile users will now see all listing photos in a single page rather than needing to swipe through each photo. "Mobile is our fastest-growing platform and our new web experience is designed to make it even simpler for people to search for homes on the go," said Suhail Ansari, realtor.com®'s chief technology officer. "Consumers can now seamlessly transition from one listing to another, browse property photos on a single page, and easily connect to a real estate professional."  
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Real Estate Branding by Niche Market Will Grow Your Business
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Homes.com Nails New Website Design
Homes.com has been running in fourth position in the portal race, tucked in behind Zillow, Realtor.com, and Trulia. I thought that their old site was fine, but their new site adds in artificial intelligence in ways that make the consumer experience fantastic. In a world of sameness, Homes.com has changed the game. The first experience for a visitor is incredible. The site is the first major portal to look at my machine's IP address and make the site conform to what I probably am looking for. In this case, I run my Safari browser in Private Mode and I had not logged in, just visited the site. It knows that my IP address is in Arroyo Grande, CA and pulls up other criteria based upon the average home in my town – three bedrooms around $730,000. Yes, California home prices are outrageous, but that is a conversation for another day.
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How to Create Community Webpages that Sell
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Is Your Real Estate Website Outdated?
In today's hyper-connected, digital landscape, everyone is using the internet to look up information, check references and find the tools, resources and services for just about everything in their lives—including real estate agents and brokers. Homebuyers and sellers work with real estate agents because they provide industry and market expertise. A real estate agent's website needs to portray that same industry and market expertise. Your website should be an invaluable tool for your clients and prospects, and it should be a source of quality leads. If your website is not up to date, you risk missing out on those clients and losing them to other agents. Attracting new clients starts with providing the best information and the easiest and most pleasant user experience online as possible. If it's been several years since you've made any updates to your site (or you simply don't have one), it's quite possible your site is outdated and needs some TLC to make it once again a powerful tool for you and your clients. Take a look at our recommendations below and ask yourself whether your site falls into any one (or more) of these categories.
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3 Keys to Creating Effective Real Estate Landing Pages
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5 Tips to Finding Images for Your Website
Images communicate, draw attention and create interest. Images can keep people on your website if chosen correctly or lead people to leave your website. When choosing images for your website, it is important to choose images that are high quality, relevant, aligned with your brand, aesthetically pleasing and attention grabbing. So where can you get great images? Here are five ways we get images for our own site.
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8 Components of a Lead Generating Website
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Five Ways to Use SEO to Drive Real Estate Leads
Ninety percent of people start their home search online. Ninety percent! For consumers, the most difficult real estate challenge is finding the right property, followed by finding the right agent to buy or sell a home. As a real estate agent, how do you make sure these consumers find you? One crucial tactic you need is Search Engine Optimization (SEO). While most agents and real estate outlets do have an online presence, most report that keeping up with technology in the digital age is a challenge. Most prospective home buyers these days use search engines, like Google, to find properties or to find an agent to sell their home. You can use SEO to help people find your business and the services you provide. While SEO can be complex, there are some tried and true tactics to help you be found online.
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Choosing a Not-Com Domain Name to Set Your Business Apart
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5 Tips for a Website that Showcases Your Brand
In today's real estate market, more and more people are turning to the Internet. In fact, just last year The National Association of REALTORS® reported that online websites were seen as most useful in the home search process at 86 percent. Furthermore, real estate agents' websites were listed as a top marketing method for homes at 50 percent. So just how important is it for a real estate professional to leverage their own website as an information source? Very! According to Top Producer, "no one knows better than you that first impressions matter. Since many prospects will be forming those impressions by checking you out online, your website needs to be sleek, mobile-friendly and above all, accurately showcase your brand and tell your story." If you're ready to win at the digital marketing game, they also offer five tips to keep in mind while creating or updating your website: 1. Make sure it displays flawlessly on any device Last year, 72 percent of buyers used a mobile website or tablet search device in their home search (NAR Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers 2016). Not to mention, mobile and tablet traffic surpassed desktop worldwide at the end of 2016. Users will increasingly browse from their mobile device, so prepare your website to support the multi-device user. 2. Use a stunning, meaningful hero image Your website's visual assets are what will initially capture the attention of your audience and encourage them to continue to browse and hopefully convert.
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Page Features Your Website NEEDS If You Want to Generate Leads
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How to Get Leads from Your Real Estate Website
The numbers are in, and they've proven that real estate websites work well for agents who want to close more sales and make more commissions. In fact, last year over 240 million unique users visited real estate websites (RealTrends). With a search volume like that, savvy real estate professionals are recognizing the importance of a solid web presence. Creating your own real estate website is the first step towards boosting your business, but it doesn't stop there. For your website to be worthwhile, it needs to be generating quality leads for your business. Here are some of the best ways to ensure your real estate website is driving leads: Get real estate leads by being mobile friendly. Studies have shown that 40 percent of the 240 million visitors who visit real estate websites come using a mobile device; that's a huge portion! Perhaps your website is a masterpiece on a destop computer, but have you checked how it looks on a iPhone or tablet? To get more real estate leads, your website should display properly on any device, making you more accessible and removing any roadblocks for your website visitor. A mobile friendly website should be a priority. If your site isn't mobile optimized now, it's time to make a change. Get more leads with quality website content. Not every real estate agent has a knack for writing online copy – and that's ok! Text written for real estate websites needs to be engaging, clear, brief and professional. If writing isn't your strong suit, your website may be turning visitors off as soon as they start to read it. Opt for the help of a professional writer or a website that includes quality, professionally written content to engage your website visitors.
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Your 'About' Page is About More than Your Real Estate Career
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Why Real Estate Websites Don't Generate Leads
Websites are online containers for your branding, lead capture tools and calls to action (CTAs). You could have the greatest looking website in the world with the best CTAs and lead capture tools, but without TRAFFIC, the tools will go unused. Websites, in of themselves, do not generate leads without traffic. Getting traffic to your site today is totally different than it was "back in the day." Four years ago, even, if you were doing SEO correctly, you actually had a chance to appear on page one of the search engines organically, whether from your own efforts or from those of a professional SEO company. Now that Google has removed the "7-pack," most of the page one search results are filled up with Zillow, Redfin, Realtor.com, Trulia, Movoto and international brokerages. Organic traffic has been reduced significantly. Then again, Google has been acquiring real estate technology companies, and who knows what is around the corner. Organic search results are dying, so you need to pay for real estate leads or traffic. That gives you two options. You can pay for leads from the Zillows of the world, Facebook ads, seller lead systems, display ads, etc., or hire a company that manages pay-per-click campaigns on your behalf. Back in the day, BoomTown was the leader and now there are any number of companies offering PPC lead generation for Realtors.
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Agent Websites Are Dead
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Should You Force Visitors to Register on Your Website?
Most modern real estate websites come with a setting called 'forced registration.' You may have scrolled past it in your site's control panel. When activated, this option forces your site's visitors to register in order to continue searching for properties. But should you force visitors to register on your website? It's a debate that's raged on for years. On one hand, you get more leads with forced registration--but you also risk turning off consumers. Is the trade-off worth it? While only you can decide what's right for your business, we're happy to help guide you. Here's a look at the pros and cons of both sides of the argument. Use the Force, Luke As we mentioned, you get more leads when you force registration. If you're a broker, requiring registration can help satisfy your agents' requests for more leads. However, it's important to look at the quality of those leads. Do a significant number of consumers submit fake contact information in order to keep using your site? This can be discouraging for agents trying to follow up with these leads. Even when submitted contact information is correct, how many of these leads convert compared to other lead sources you use? (To find out, use this formula for calculating ROI.)
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Have You Bought into this Dangerous Myth about First-Time Homebuyers?
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Agent Website Makeover: 8 Winning Ways to Boost Consumer Appeal
One of the easiest ways to spoil the potential of a good agent website is to keep the default content that it came with. Never change it. Never personalize it so that visitors understand who you are and what you offer. Fortunately, this fate's easy to avoid. The trick? Just customize your templated website in a few key places. To hone in on what these key places are, let's look to the winners of IXACT Contact's recent "Best Realtor Website Contest." Each of the winning agents took the time to tailor the pre-written content that their sites came with--and it paid off, BIG! Here's a look at the 8 places that the top three winning agents customized their website's content. 1. The Homepage First-place winner Flint Adam caught the judge's eye with the customized homepage of his site, Nolensville Realty. Adam transformed the front page with a custom bio, mission statement, and a even a welcome video of himself to virtually introduce himself to visitors right from the get-go. 2. Business Directory Second-place winner Birdy Perry offers something visitors can take with them when they leave her site--a free download. Perry compiled the contact information of her most trusted homes services providers in a PDF. Visitors can download it and refer to it when looking for lenders, contractors, home inspectors, and more.
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What Does Your Real Estate Website Say About You?
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Real Estate Online Marketing Tactics: Part 1
6 Tips for Building Your Real Estate Website Like a Pro 60% of buyers Google their real estate agent according to a study. What would a prospect find if they Googled your name? Do you have a professional REALTOR® website for them to find online? Today I'm going to zone in on this one area – online marketing tactics, specifically your Realtor website. This platform offers so much potential for real estate success, and in today's day and age, it's a crucial area if you want to stay ahead of your competition. The primary goals of online marketing are real estate lead generation, brand awareness, and more repeat and referral business. These goals work together to help you acquire new customers and stay top of mind among your past customers. So how can you ensure that your Realtor website is helping you achieve these goals? Let's find out. The Real Estate Website In a recent study by NAR, 82% of home buyers said online websites were a very useful source of information. To capitalize on this, you must establish your online authority. This requires launching and maintaining your own real estate website. Although this may seem intimidating at first, it's easier than you think. The end results will be worth the effort, and you'll have this website to use for your real estate business for years to come! Just make sure you follow these guidelines: Present your brand. Your clients trust you with one of the biggest financial transactions of their lives, so they need to feel like you are professional, capable, and savvy. Remember, you're selling YOU, and everything you put into your business matters. This includes developing and presenting your professional brand. As you think about what you want your brand to represent, remember the following: give people a reason to choose you. Trust your gut and take risks, stay up-to-date, keep your brand as real as possible, and be creative. All of these elements combine to present you as a memorable and personable real estate professional.One of the ways you can present your brand is by displaying an attractive, mobile friendly Realtor website that incorporates your visual identity (your photo, logo, and colors) and tells your story. Your other marketing materials should match, including email headers and signatures and social media banners.
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Accelerate Your Income with Simple Conversion Strategies (7/14)
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The HTML Guide for Real Estate Agents Over 40
One of my favorite classes back in college was on HTML (hypertext markup language); it was sort of a mashup of an art class and a writing class. I also liked it because it was one of very few classes that didn't require me to purchase a $300 textbook. Everything we covered was (and still is) available for free on w3schools.com. So if you want to master HTML, go check that out. Here, we're just covering the basics that will give you more control over your content. Finding the HTML box: Most websites and blogs will have a button in your edit window that will let you switch to HTML. This button will usually be in one of the corners of your editor. If you have a Homes.com website, your HTML button is on the bottom left. Here's what you need to know: The greater than and less than symbols (also called angle brackets) should enclose your HTML. Without them, your code will show up as text on your website instead of editing your site. Inside the brackets, you put the "tag" for what you want to accomplish. Most of the time, you only need special HTML tags like bold or italics in part of your code rather than on your whole page. To indicate where you want your formatting to end, for most HTML tags you just add a / in front of the tag. For example, this: is the tag for a new paragraph, so you use the following to end a paragraph: Example:
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Best Practices for Your Real Estate Website
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3 Strategies for Improving Your Website’s Conversion Rate
Develop Effective Messaging and Calls to Action It has always been important to have clear and compelling messaging in print collateral and advertising, and the same is also true for the messaging that appears on your website. The foundation for compelling messaging is well-developed and organized copy. Begin pages you want to capture visitors' contact information on with a compelling headline, followed by body copy where key points are neatly summarized in a sentence or short bulleted list, and then place a call to action at the end. Research has demonstrated that the headline is most critical for generating conversions, followed by the call to action, and then the body copy. It's important to recognize that your website's visitors will often scan the first three words of sentences and paragraphs rather than taking the time to read them in entirety. The following are some additional copy formatting and styling best practices that improve conversion rates: Make page titles clean and simple. Keep the first paragraph short – no more than two lines. Use important words related to what consumers are most interested in at the beginning of sentences. Vary the length of paragraphs and use no more than four to five lines per paragraph. Use readable sans-serif fonts (e.g., Arial, Helvetica, etc.). Use different colors and bold fonts, but only do so sparingly or else your website (and, by proxy, you) will look amateurish.
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Anatomy of a Real Estate Landing Page
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10 Expert Real Estate Website Optimization Ideas for Agents
Here's the plain truth about your real estate website: It's a never-finished project. Setting it up, adding some blog posts, throwing together some neighborhood pages, and including your contact and brand info is just the start of what is an ongoing real estate marketing activity. What's required to see pronounced success with your site — lots of visitors daily and tons of leads generated monthly — is a concerted focus on enhancing your web presence routinely: publishing fresh content that enlightens and advises your home buyer and seller audience and keeps them coming back for more. Discover 10 aspects of your real estate website you need to work on and improve consistently to get the most out of it below, where we use a Placester site as an example. 1. Prominently display listing photos, visual branding collateral, and contact info atop your homepage. Your website homepage is the first digital interaction the bulk of your audience will have with you, so make sure it offers every detail they would want and need to know about your brand, including your agency name (ideally through a stunning logo), your social media accounts (through social sharing buttons), and your contact information. Moreover, you need to constantly update the photos featured on your homepage — ones that ideally showcase your latest listings if you're a seller's agent or the most notable (a.k.a. visually appealing or interesting) homes for sale in your area if you're a buyer's agent. When optimizing your homepage, think of it as introducing yourself at a networking event to someone you've never met before. It's your first opportunity to explain your brand in a clear and concise fashion, so you need to make the most of this chance and relay all of the important info you want the world to know. Get some of your friends, colleagues, or associates to look at your homepage and ask them if they get a complete picture of your brand's value proposition and details: who you are, what you do/sell, where you're located, how they can get in touch with you, where they can learn more about you, etc. Key Takeaways: Frequently change listing photos on your website's homepage to keep it fresh and ensure it features the most attractive homes. Make sure all types of contact information — phone number, email address, and social media accounts — are listed atop the page. Put yourself in your audience's shoes: Would they know who you are just by looking at your homepage? If not, adjust it accordingly.
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How Are You Helping Agents to Monetize Their Contacts?
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These Simple Website Changes Can Earn You Better Results
As a real estate agent, you wear a lot of different hats. At some point you'll probably find yourself working as a marketer, sales representative, counselor, financial advisor, photographer, landscaper, and–as much as you may hate to hear it–a web developer. Now, I realize that you aren't actually a web developer, and that's perfectly fine. Many agent websites today are pretty much ready to use; all you have to do is connect your MLS's IDX and a custom domain name. But...if you want a fantastic, amazing, customized website, you'll need to do just a bit more, and we're here to help. Here are three ways to enhance your website's menu. Determine What Should Be on Your Menu What's on your website's default menu depends on your provider. When you first sign up for a website with Homes.com, for example, your menu has five main items: Properties, Buyers, Sellers, About, and Contact. This is a good place to start, but every menu could use some customization. One addition I recommend for every website is a "Home" button to help visitors find their way back to the main page of your website. Now, before you start building your menu, think about your business. What information do your leads and clients really want? Do you work with a lot of first-time home buyers? If so, make sure basic real estate information, guides, and processes are easy to access. If you work with a lot of military families, they may warrant their own menu category with the information that is specific to their home buying/selling experience.
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Landing Page Tips to Help You Generate More Leads
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The Most Useful Website Features, According to Home Buyers
Is that shiny, new "must have" website feature really something you need? Maybe not. In their recent Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends survey, NAR asked more than 6,400 recent home buyers which features they most valued on real estate websites during their home search. Not surprisingly, photos topped the list with 87 percent of buyers ranking property images as "very useful." And here's some absolution for all you lapsed bloggers--only 8 percent considered news/articles as important to the search process. Today, we're taking a closer look at each of the features covered in NAR's survey and offering tips on leveraging them on your own real estate website. The number next to each item below is the percentage of buyers who found the website feature "very useful." 1. Photos (87%) - Good listing photos are the best way to attract and convert buyers online. If you're in the market for a real estate website solution, look for a platform that lets you display big, beautiful high-definition property photos. Tiny, grainy photos aren't likely to win any buyers. If it's not your website but your photography skills that are lacking, try these tips for better exterior and interior shots. 2. Detailed property information (84%) - Once you've lured buyers into a listing detail page with an attractive photo, it's your property description that needs to blow them away next. Florid prose isn't necessary, but a wealth of details is. Much of this data ported in from the MLS, so make your IDX solution is equipped to display as many fields as possible. You can learn more about creating strong listing descriptions here.
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New .Homes Website Domains Now Available to Real Estate Pros
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Top Online Marketing Trends for Real Estate Pros
How many articles have you read that list the many ways 2016 will be a great year in real estate? Sellers are selling and buyers are buying. But how do you, as the real estate professional, capitalize on said growth? Utilizing the latest and greatest in online marketing technology will definitely help! Provide shareable, interactive content It’s time to take your blogging seriously! No more poorly written or irrelevant posts. Not only is it important to start writing articles about content that your prospects are actually interested in, but you also need to focus on creating content that’s share-worthy. REALTOR®Mag recently offered the following tips to better leverage your blog: Be an amazing storyteller and let your personality shine through your posts Use pictures, infographics, and interactive content to engage readers and grab their attention Be a friend to local businesses by mentioning them in your posts–this benefits you both! Use technology to automatically share your blog posts to various social media sites Incorporate video Video will continue to play a big part in online marketing this year, providing a great visual and helping to make your marketing messages more personal. Target your videos to the audience you would like to reach with a carefully crafted script. According to the National Association of REALTORS® report on “Real Estate in the Digital Age,” 26% of buyers are using online videos sites such as YouTube during the home search. You don’t even have to have fancy equipment. Many of today’s mobile phones take high quality videos. For iPhone users, you can change the quality of your recordings by going to Settings > Photos & Camera and then selecting Record Video to update your video resolution settings.
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5 Helpful Tips for Creating an Effective Website
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Friday Freebie: Twin Solutions Prevent Leads from Falling through the Cracks
Nothing's more bittersweet than the one that got away. You attracted them, maybe even got their phone number. But when it came time to take the next step, you dropped the ball by hesitating... and they moved on to someone else who was better at taking care of their needs. I'm talking about leads, of course. Unless you have strong follow-up plan, any skill in attracting new leads means nothing. It's not uncommon for agents to fail on the follow-up, though. In fact, a study on agent responsiveness found that 48% of buyer inquiries were never responded to. Of those that did respond, the average response time was over 15 hours--long after the chance to convert that lead has dropped precipitously. Agents looking to seal the cracks in their follow-up process should look to two technology trends: integration and automation. Today, we're looking at one solution that offers both. Free 5-Week Trial of Integrated Website and CRM System Want to dramatically increase the likelihood of converting leads? Follow up with them immediately. IXACT Contact automates this process by creating a seamless lead pipeline that spans a Realtor website, CRM, and email marketing system. Imagine this: a new lead comes in off your website and is automatically added to your CRM. During this process, your new contact is also assigned to a drip marketing plan and immediately receives a follow-up email from your system--complete with your branding and contact info. The lead feels acknowledged and you don't feel pressured to interrupt whatever you're doing to respond. That's what IXACT Contact's integrated system is all about. For years, they've been known as a CRM with built-in email marketing capabilities. However, last fall they launched an agent website solution that's integrated with the CRM--and can therefore automatically manage incoming leads--at no extra cost. You can learn more about it in our product review. If you'd like to give IXACT's integrated system a try, they offer agents a free 5-week trial. There's no heavy lifting either--IXACT will set up your website and import all your contacts for you the same day.
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Best Tips for Driving Traffic to Your Real Estate Website
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Get More Targeted Leads with this IDX Website Feature
Do you want more targeted leads from your IDX website? How about on-site content that's more attractive and relevant to consumers? Of course you do! That's why today we're showing you how to use an underappreciated IDX feature that can put both of these things within your reach. We're talking about custom search URLs. Depending on the IDX solution you use, this feature is also known as "saved search pages," "IDX custom hotsheets," "custom IDX URLs," and more. Agents can use this feature to create links to specific sets of listings, such as condos under $200k, homes with pools in X neighborhood, etc. This is useful for driving website visitors to relevant properties quickly and easily. Here's an example of an agent who's using custom search URLs to flesh out her website's neighborhood pages. Minneapolis area Realtor Jan Worthen has created informative pages for each area that she serves. In order to quickly get consumers in front of the specific type of property they're looking for, Worthen built multiple custom search URLs for different price points and property types (highlighted in red):
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7 Signs that Your Real Estate Website Needs a Redesign
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How a 375-Unit Super Agent Uses Technology
Kris Lindahl is pictured here on the left with RE/MAX President Jeff Lewis and top producing Nashville agent, Gary Ashton Super agents and real estate teams are changing the dynamics of real estate. RE Technology CEO, Victor Lund, met up with Kris Lindahl from Minnesota to learn about his success and the technology tools that he leverages in his business. In terms of production, Kris Lindahl was doing over 150 units a year with one assistant. He realized that for his business to grow, he needed to develop into a team to support expansion. Today, the Lindahl team just completed a year of 375 transactions supported by 10 people with a total dollar volume of just under 100 million. A primary component of Kris' success is centered on his website domain strategy. He owns some fantastic URLs - MinneapolisRealEstate.com and SaintPaulRealEstate.com. Knowing this does not provide you with much help, but I would suggest that in your market you seek out domain names like "cityname+real+estate+blog.com" or "cityname-real-estate.com" or some other derivative. The takeaway here is that not only is a good domain name a valuable asset for success, but what you put on the domain is also a key ingredient. In Lindahl's case, he is contracting with Real Estate Webmasters for his website. His primary site is KrisLindahl.com. "I generate a lot of leads off of my website, but where it really helps is in listing presentations," says Lindahl. "I explain to sellers that in working with me, they gain access to the largest RE/MAX office in the world – RE/MAX Results, the international reach of REMAX.com – and only with me will they be featured on my popular area websites that are optimized for the way that consumers search."
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Real Estate Website Design Isn’t Just Colors and Page Layout
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Friday Freebie: IDX Property Search for 3 Months Free
Is your current website a lead generation dud? Leave it behind and give your sales pipeline the gift it really wants this year--a site that attracts, engages, and captures more online leads. Get 3 Free Months of WolfNet's Responsive IDX Property Search The end of the year is a great time to identify the tools that give you a poor return on investment. If your website is one of those things, consider upgrading. Save a bit of cash by looking for year end deals, like WolfNet's current special on their IDX search. They're offering 3 months free, plus 50% off the setup cost of their newly released Responsive IDX Property Search until December 31. Features include: Responsive design that works on all devices and screen sizes Sophisticated map search with street view, points of interest and driving directions Optional VOW data like days on market and sold listings Optimized lead capture features Support for high-resolution listing photos "Smart search" that automatically suggests search terms as the user types WolfNet is also offering 2 months free and $100 off the setup of their Modern Agent and Broker Websites through the end of the year. Claim or learn more about both offers here.
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An App Isn't Enough to Make Your Business Mobile Friendly
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5 Types of Pages You Need on Your Real Estate Website
Having a website is one thing, but having an effective website is another. One aspect that can make or break your agent website is the content on its pages. Providing valuable information – information your audience is looking for – is crucial if you want them to become leads and clients. That's why it's so important to have the right types of pages and content on your website. When creating your site, try your best to include the following types of pages: A 'Buyer' Page Having a section dedicated to Buyers allows you to tell potential clients what the process of home buying is like and what it's like to work with you. Potential buyers may be nervous and have a lot of questions about the process, so make it easy on them by providing the information they crave. Try including additional pages or pieces of content that talk specifically about the following steps of the home-buying process: Selecting an agent Financing What to expect when viewing homes Making an offer Closing the sale Staying organized with multiple properties Signing up for email alerts Mortgage calculator
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9 Elements of a Great Website Homepage
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WolfNet's Upgraded IDX Platform Helps Agents Compete with Portals
Agents looking to compete with search portals need look no further that WolfNet's upgraded IDX solution. Dubbed WolfNet Responsive IDX, the update marries high-end design to an IDX property search (with optional VOW data!) that would easily be at home on expensive enterprise-level websites. As any modern web solution should, the updated platform displays beautifully on screens and devices of all sizes (see the image below). But beyond the aesthetic improvements, WolfNet has designed Responsive IDX to boost your website's engagement levels and lead capture rates. Let's take a closer look to learn how. Zeroing in on the Front-End Responsive IDX plugs into your existing website and is easy to integrate into your site's design, thanks to easy wrapper creation tools available in the solution's admin panel. The solution also adapts to your website's CSS stylesheet, letting you control font and photos sizes to further refine how it displays. Let's take a look at the results page, for an example. Consumers have the option to view results either on a map, in gallery view, or in list view. In the gallery view pictured on the next page, users can hover over a property's thumbnail to scroll through more listing photos without having to click into the property details page.
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A "Lead-to-Lifetime" Solution: Popular CRM Now Includes Agent Websites
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6 Ways to Update Your Real Estate Website
Updating your real estate agent website is always a good idea, and it doesn't have to take very much time. A site that is frequently updated is more appealing to visitors and more likely to inspire confidence in your business than one that stays static over time as available information and technology changes. Today we'll show you 6 easy ways you can freshen up your site in almost no time at all. Try a new theme If you have a template website, check in periodically to see what kind of new designs are available. Often they are being updated to match current website trends. You want to choose a theme that uses responsive design, meaning that it is mobile-friendly and works well on any sized device. Customize your colours Don't settle for colours that don't reflect your brand! Pick a palette that pairs well with your offline marketing materials for a consistent look. Add your contact info to every page Website visitors can come from anywhere and land anywhere (not just your homepage), so your contact information should appear on every page of your website. Maybe someone emailed a link to your buyer resources page or they found one of your neighbourhood pages through a search. Make sure it's easy for potential clients to know who you are and how to contact you, no matter which page of your site they're on.
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How to Drive More Traffic to Your Real Estate Website
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The Definitive Guide to Using Images on Your Website
We've looked before at where you can find images to use for your website, but what happens once you've chosen the images that you want to use? There are still some tricks that you can put into practice that will help your images appear the best they can on your website! One of the trends that we've seen all over the web recently is the use of large imagery on websites. While this definitely does make a huge impact on people visiting your website, it can also cause your website to slow down if the images haven't been properly cropped, resized and optimized. Cropping and Resizing Your Images One of the biggest mistakes that people make (even those who have been working with websites for years!) is that they resize images directly in their site's web manager instead of resizing and cropping an image before it is even uploaded to the file manager. Resizing an image means that you're changing the dimensions that the image is displayed at – usually so it's smaller than the original image. Doing this in your web manager doesn't actually make the file physically smaller – it just displays it smaller. What this means is that if you upload a 1MB file to your file manager, and only display it at 25% of its size, the user still downloads 1MB of data in order to view your image. In an environment when users expect everything on your website to load immediately, that extra time to download all of that data can quickly add up!
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Six Items Every Real Estate Website Should Have
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Appraising Your Digital Property: Where Agents Should Be Online
Let's talk about property--digital property. These are virtual "places" like websites, social media and search portal profiles where prospects can find you online. Without a presence in the digital world, today's web savvy consumer will pass you by in favor of the competition. Buyers will never even know you exist. Sellers, on the other hand, will question why they should list with someone who can't even market themselves online. That doesn't mean you have to join every social network you can find, however, or run out and buy single property websites for each of your listings. When it comes to building an effective Internet presence, it's better to leverage a few web properties well. Here's a rundown of which are most important. Profiles on Property Search Portals According to a joint study by NAR and Google, over 90% of consumers start their home search online. Thanks to the way they dominate search results, property search portals like Zillow and Trulia are often the first place those consumers end up. That's why it's crucial that you claim your profile on each of the top three portals. If your brokerage or MLS sends listing data to portals, your name already appears on your listings. In the case of Trulia and Zillow, both display the listing agent's phone number and a link to their portal profile where consumers can see their other listings and read customer reviews. However, it's not uncommon for brokers that aren't meticulous about keeping track of their agents' contact info to send outdated phone numbers with their listing data. Claiming your portal profile will not only ensure that this information is accurate, it allows you to build a robust online property that's attractive to consumers. Be sure to add a recent headshot and solicit past clients for reviews for best results.
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15 Places to Advertise Your Website
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Market Leader for Sale and Real Estate Websites/CRMs: What You Should Know
If you haven't heard, the acquisition baby of Trulia-then-Zillow, Market Leader, is for sale. But what does this really mean for real estate professionals, and especially Market Leader's customers? Well, for a lot of people in the industry, this is an interesting development around the acquisition of Market Leader by Trulia, followed by the acquisition of Trulia by Zillow. There are also a lot of people in the industry that are not overly surprised that Market Leader may not be the most profitable business segment for Zillow now, since many feel that Market Leader's technology is ancient. I can't claim to be un-biased in my view on the technology, but there are some clear facts that are important for Market Leader customers and others around the industry to know. 1. Market Leader will continue to see some big changes The fact that this is all a bunch of noise right now, and will likely quiet down a bit more over the coming weeks does not mean that this is the end of some pretty big shifts. Market Leader is known as a big company in the industry, but has also been viewed by many as a non-flexible, behind-the-times solution. They have had some big deals with some brands that have helped keep them going. It is likely some of that traction may be lost, and they could see an exodus of customers.
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Top 10 Real Estate Landing Page Tips
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How to Get More Leads with Landing Pages
Consider your website to be an airport, and your site visitors are going to land on the runway to which you direct them. An airport can't just let airplanes choose the runway they want, as that results in crashes. You shouldn't be allowing new visitors to choose the page on which they land; not if they're a new visitor from a marketing piece. Sure, many will arrive via searches, and they'll end up on the most relevant page. You'll have lead generation calls-to-action on most of your pages, so that's OK. But, when it comes to specific marketing, ad campaigns, and effective lead generation, you need to direct them to where you want them to land. Not doing so won't be as catastrophic as our airport example, but you definitely will not get the leads you can through creation and management of landing pages designed with your mission in mind. First, you should consider every page you create, every article, and every blog post as one type of landing page. They are pages where visitors land from searches or navigating around your site, landing on information they're seeking. Each should be thought of as covering a topic, or answering a question. So, if you are writing a blog post or article about "What is a title binder exception?" it's going to appear on a page of its own when a searcher arrives. Now it's a page on their screen on which they've landed, and it's relevant to information they're seeking. You can create calls-to-action with specific page-relevant premium content or report offerings to get leads from that page. You might offer a copy of a title binder exception page via email. Use strategies we'll discuss here when talking about specific marketing landing pages.
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How to Generate More Real Estate Leads
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A Look at the Marketing Opportunities .REALTOR Offers
In the early days of the internet, there were just seven top-level-domains (TLDs); .com, .org, .edu, .net., .int, .gov and .mil. These were put in place to provide some distinction between the types of websites a user was visiting (e.g., commercial, organization, education, etc.). Now, in 2015, there are more than 1,300 TLDs, including the new .REALTOR domain, which brings a unique and a powerful marketing opportunity to REALTORS®. Technical Background: In 2014, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) released the .REALTOR domain to NAR. Today, NAR is in good company with hundreds of major brands and categories that have also received approval for a top-level domain, like .tv, .bank, .Google, .Canon, .Honda, .Marriott, and .MLB. View the latest list of delegated TLDs. Like other major brands and professions that are unleashing hidden branding potential with new TLDs, REALTORS® are differentiating themselves from other real estate professionals online. .REALTOR is a short, distinctive domain with a focused extension that lets consumers instantly know they've found a trusted source for real estate. The Marketing Opportunity: As a REALTOR®, it's imperative to know how TLDs will impact your web presence and online marketing. As more TLDs become mainstream, the Internet is being divided into categories. This makes it easier for consumers to navigate the online world and locate exactly what they need. Sooner than we think, the widely recognized .com domain will be viewed as dated and generic.
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What Online Prospects Want from Real Estate Agents
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What’s Your Website For, Anyway?
The Internet has been around now for years, and much of the real estate community has embraced the Web and most of us have a website. Some still resist, and many are new and trying to decide how to proceed with an online presence. It's easy to see how the decision can be a tough one, as we're also being instructed by marketers to have a social presence with Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest and others. Let's assume that you're continuing to read this because you believe that a website is important to your business. It is your business, as you're an independent contractor. You need your own website, not a display page on your broker's site. So, here you are, trying to figure out how to proceed. If you're about to spend time, effort, and money in building a website, you should have a very clear idea of what it is you expect from it. If you're really into listings, and you believe that the primary purpose of your website is to display your listings and use your site to impress listing prospects, that's OK. However, if that's all you expect from a real estate website, you're really going to get very little for your efforts. Let's be realistic. Even with great SEO and a reasonable stream of visitors, and even if you have a dozen listings, how many of those visitors will be in the market for precisely those homes? The fact is that buyers will be at your website to search listings, but they want a much wider selection than just your listings. You must have a great IDX search solution to keep them around. Sure, one of the functions of a great real estate website is to showcase your listings. Doing that well should help you in marketing to future prospective listing clients. You'll also want to show them other major sites that have their listings displayed through syndication. However, if this is all you're doing, it's a monumental waste of opportunity. Here are the major reasons for a real estate website: Present your business and you as a local real estate expert. Generate qualified leads. Generate qualified leads. Generate qualified leads.
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You Can Get Listing Leads from Your Website
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Websites Should Offer Value After the Deal
When it comes to your website, success is simply defined as a site that generates leads that lead to commissions. In this article, we take a look at what we do after we've achieved success. What can we do to add value AFTER the transaction closes? After all, we love referrals and those come from continued contact with our clients, especially after the successful closing. You may still be sending letters and follow-up birthday or other greetings to your past clients. However, there is an online strategy that will add value to your website and create loyal ongoing past client visitors. One of the value-added online services is the continued updating of market statistics. Past buyers will always be interested in what nearby and similar properties are selling and for what prices. What about offering a follow-up CMA, Comparative Market Analysis, for property owners who have purchased a home in the past few years? This will interest not only your own buyers but others who may be considering listing their homes. You shouldn't fear a CMA that doesn't show significant increases in value, or even one that shows a flat line or slight decrease. If your clients were happy with your services, they'll appreciate getting a true picture of the current market and the value of their property in that market.
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Google’s Mobile Algorithm Set to Change April 21. Is Your Website Ready?
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7 IDX Tips for Real Estate Website Success
IDX, or Internet Data Exchange, is how most real estate sites provide MLS listing search functionality for site visitors. All of the participating MLS member listings are able to be displayed on any site, a great improvement over pre-IDX sites with only the listings of the brokerage on display. Recent surveys of real estate consumers, both buyers and sellers, show that the vast majority spend a lot of time searching home listings on websites. NAR found that last year the average time for buyers to search before making a purchase was 10 weeks. It is imperative that you somehow attract site visitors and keep them returning so you will be top-of-mind when they get ready to take the plunge. To keep them coming back, you MUST have powerful IDX functionality. If you do, they'll bookmark your site and keep coming back for searches until they're ready. Here are seven tips to make that happen for your website. Tip #1: Minimum IDX Search Capability The visitor to your site, at a minimum, should be able to search the MLS listings using various criteria that they are using for home selection. At a minimum, they should be able to search by: Price range Bedrooms Baths Garage Square footage (if allowed in your area) City Zip Address MLS number County Proximity (homes within a certain distance of a starting point, home or location)
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How to Drive More Organic Traffic to Your Real Estate Website
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Top 10 Website Features That Buyers Expect From You
According to NAR's 2014 Profile of Buyers and Sellers Report, 93 percent of buyers stated that a real estate website was the top resource used during their search for a new home. If there's only one thing that you take away from this finding, let it be this: demand for a website that includes any and every tool buyers might need is at an all-time high. Whether it's determining travel time to their most frequent destinations or getting an idea for what they can expect to pay for a mortgage, everyone's looking for something different out of a real estate website, and it's up to you to make sure they have it. Here are the top 10 features that today's buyers expect your website to have. 1. Quality Photos to Highlight the Property Providing photos for each of your listings is something that simply cannot be overlooked. Your goal is to highlight what makes each of your properties unique. The quality of these photos also need to be of the highest standard. Luckily, most of today's smartphones come equipped with cameras that are capable of capturing those unbelievable photos! 2. Detailed Explanations of What the Home Has to Offer When it comes to listing information, the opportunities are in the details. Rather than stating that a home has "hardwood floors," be more descriptive and say "beautiful original oak hardwood flooring that was just refinished two years ago." If you can paint a vivid picture of your listings, then buyers will use their imagination to visualize it as a place to call home.
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Top Home Buyer FAQs
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8 Signs Your Website Is Stuck in the Dark Ages
We've all seen them: Websites that are supposed to sell, but wind up making their owners look dumb, inept or out of touch. We live in a digital era. According to the 2014 NAR Profile of Homebuyers and Sellers: 92 percent of homebuyers use the Internet when looking for information 76 percent of buyers view homes or drive by homes for sale that they first find online 43 percent of buyers found their home on the Internet This business is tough enough, but if your website is making you look like you're stuck in the 90s, while the rest of the real estate industry is moving on without you, you're ceding a massive marketplace to competitors. Here are eight vital signs your website presence needs a massive overhaul to catch up with the 21st century. Have a Flash Intro on Your Website This is especially true if there's text in the Flash imagery. Search engines can't read text in a Flash animation. To the internet robots, they just look like image files. It's like handing a photocopy of a braille book to a blind man and asking him to read it. It just doesn't work. If you have text in a Flash piece, retype it into regular text. Then dump the Flash.
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Best of 2014: 4 Lead Generation Sources - Which Should You Budget for?
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3 Ways to Make Your Website More Than Simply an "Online Brochure"
In my day to day course of business, I probably look at at least 20 to 30 real estate agents' websites per day. Sometimes it's because people ask me to review their current site, so we run them though things like the Marketing Grader. Sometimes I'm checking out new technologies I hear about on agent or brokerage sites. And sometimes I'm even just surfing the web, for the heck of it. What I've come to find out, though, is that while there are many features that can be on websites and many amazing technological advancements that have been made, when you boil it down, there are still two main types of real estate websites. There are sites that are informative, interactive spots for home buyers and sellers to go to and educate themselves, and there are sites that are simply "online brochures." So you want more than simply an online brochure, right? What are the differences? Today, I want to share with you three tips you can use on your real estate website to make sure that you have more than just an online brochure. 1) Remember, if you want to be seen as THE Expert, you need to establish yourself as an expert While it might be tempting to have statements and information all over your website about how you are the top percentage of this or that, or how you have sold $x amount of real estate in your career, etc., don't do this. The truth is nobody cares about any of this. As humans, we are all a little bit selfish and only care about ourselves. Additionally, if a buyer or seller has found your website through a search engine, it is because they are online, researching and educating themselves for what they are about to embark on. The quickest way to establish yourself as the thought leader and expert in your marketplace is to give the people what they want. Write blog posts that address common questions people have about buying and selling real estate. Have pages inviting people to events related to learning facets of buying and selling (e.g. team with a mortgage professional for a loan workshop). Make sure you give people an easy way to subscribe to these articles so they automatically go right into their email inbox.
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Everything an Agent Needs to Know About Gaining a Client’s Trust Online
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How to Write a Great 'About Me' Page
Have you ever sat down to create or update your agent website and struggled with the 'About Me' page? The sudden onset of writer's block is not uncommon when faced with a blank page. And here you are, supposed to create an 'About Me' page that inspires complete strangers to use your services. That's a lot of pressure! We completely understand, and we're here to help with easy steps anyone can use to create a compelling 'About Me' page that says who you are, what you do and why readers should get in touch with you to handle their next real estate transaction . 6 Tips to Create a Winning 'About Me' Page 1. Use first person 'About Me' pages are painful enough without the stilted formality of first person. Do you call yourself Mr. Smith or ask your clients to refer to you by your full name? We didn't think so. 2. Be yourself Write like you are introducing yourself to someone you just met at an event, not like you are Wikipedia. Let's put tips #1 and #2 into play: Before: Mr. Smith is originally from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, but now works in the Miami area. After: I am originally from Fort Lauderdale but moved to Miami in 2004 because I fell in love with the vibrant culture.
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10 Tips for More Effective Calls to Action on Your Real Estate Website
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Friday Freebie: Get Your .REALTOR Domain Name Before It's Gone!
Realtors, the moment your web presence has been waiting for is finally here! As of Oct. 23, members of NAR and CREA can claim their very own .REALTOR domain name. Even better--if you're one of the first 500,000 NAR members or the first 10,000 CREA members, you'll able to register your first domain name FREE for one year. Here's how. Claim Your .REALTOR Website Domain NAR has made the domain registration process pretty easy. In fact, the most difficult part will probably be deciding what domain name to register (see the guidelines here). Below is the step-by-step process: Go to https://www.claim.realtor/ Enter your name, zip code, and area code number in the pop-up box when prompted Select the domain names(s) that interested you from the generated list of suggestions, and click "Add to cart" If none appeal to you, you can try another is the Search bar at the top of the page Once all of your selections have been added to your cart, click "Proceed to Checkout" From there, you'll be prompted to log-in to your NAR or CREA account and walked through the checkout process. Once you've claimed the domain name(s) you want, you can use them in a few different ways. If you have an existing website, you can redirect visitors who type in your .REALTOR address to your current site. If you'd like to change your existing site's default address to your .REALTOR domain, ask your website company or administrator to change the Domain Name Servers (DNS). You can also claim a FREE realtor.com profile website. This is a great option if you don't have a site currently or just want to take advantage of having an extra spot on the web for consumers to find you. These profile sites let you display your social media streams, client recommendations, listings and more all in one place. You can see an example profile site here. Remember, only the early bird gets a free .REALTOR domain. Claim yours today!
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Five Real Estate Website Best Practices
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Why Your Broker’s Website Doesn’t Matter (To YOUR Business)
Whether you work for one of the "big brands," a smaller regional chain of real estate offices, or even a smaller yet "boutique" firm, they all have various levels of things that they offer agents that work for them. These things range from items like free marketing collateral (e.g. listing presentations, company brochures, etc.), integrated web-to-print portals for your print marketing, or a page on the brokerage website that the agent can use as their own web page. Before I jump into the meat of my article, let me say first that I think there is absolutely nothing wrong with working for a brokerage, rather than setting out to work on your own. Working at brokerages gives you many benefits. Besides things like the examples above, brokerages also give you extra resources and manpower that you may not as easily have access to if you were your own broker, running your own firm. So why is it that I am saying your broker's website doesn't matter? Because it absolutely doesn't. Even though the prospect of a free page on your broker's website that you can redirect your URL to could sound appealing (after all, who doesn't like free?), it will literally do nothing for your business, at all. There are some very good reasons why this is the case, so today I thought I would share a few of them with you, and give you some alternative suggestions that will end up helping your business.
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Getting Started With Google Analytics – Part Two
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How to Draw Home Shoppers to Your Real Estate Site… And Keep Them There
Homebuyers, more than ever, are searching for homes online. Attracting those individuals to your web site is essential for your real estate business. Keeping them there is even more essential. Google and the National Association of REALTORS® teamed up to study digital media usage and trends among home shoppers. They learned that not only do nine out of 10 homebuyers use the Internet to look for homes, 52 percent begin their searches online. And those numbers are growing 22 percent per year. In today's web-driven world, getting a home shopper's attention is more difficult than ever, and your real estate business depends upon it. Luckily there are a number of steps you can take to draw your audience to your web site and keep them clicking. 1. Local Focus How do most real estate searches begin? According to the Google/NAR study, 69 percent of home shoppers begin their search by typing a local term (e.g. "Indianapolis homes for sale"). Even if your real estate business focuses on multiple cities, start at your base and work your way out. The more targeted you can be, the better. For example, if you're based in Phoenix, Arizona, populate the content on your web site with terms like: Phoenix homes Phoenix realtor Living in Phoenix Phoenix schools
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Real Estate Websites 101
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Free .realtor Domains Available To NAR and CREA Members Soon
If you're a member of NAR, you will soon have the option of grabbing a free .realtor website domain from the organization. These new addresses should be available to members by the end of September. Back in 2012, the trade group applied to ICANN (Internet Corporation For Assigned Names and Numbers) to create and manage the .realtor top level domain. Now NAR has officially signed the contract that will enable them to launch signups for the new domains. They expect to be able to start offering their members access to these new domains by the end of the current quarter, which ends September 30th. NAR is offering an introductory deal for its members--a free .realtor domain for one year to the first 500,000 people who register. NAR's Canadian counterpart CREA will be offering 10,000 free .realtor domains to their members, as well. Single year registration will regularly cost $39.95 with discounts for registering for multiple years. GTLD Domains Are New Territory These new domains will definitely be of interest to agents looking to brand themselves in the online world as a Realtor. It will do a pretty good job of telling your prospective clients what you do just from reading your URL, though it will take some time. Generic Top Level Domains are a new concept for the public, so to a certain point it will take a bit of getting used to for the average user. In time they'll understand that all these URLs, like .coffee, .technology, .email or .photography will work just the same as the tried and true .com, .ca and .net, but there will be an adjustment period of these domains become more common.
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11 Key Things to Include on a Real Estate Agent Website
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Tips on Making the Most of Your Real Estate Web Space
At the end of the day, judging success in real estate comes down to closing deals and putting people inside homes. Studies show that 20 percent of agents are responsible for 80 percent of all the homes sold. This is a frightening disparity because no agent wants to be in the bottom of the barrel. Here are some quick tips to help your business get the most out of your blogs and lead capture forms. Be the local expert: Really be the master of the market you're selling homes in and try to be a local resource for homebuyers. What's the city or town known for? Where is the best spot to grab a beer? See live music? Educate young children? But knowledge is only half the battle. You can use this knowledge to develop blog posts that boost your competitive advantage. For example, an agent working out of Minneapolis probably already knows the city has some of the best public parks in the country. With this information you can write a blog titled something like, "10 Best Parks in the Minneapolis Area" or "Top Kid Friendly Parks in Minneapolis." Posts like this will increase your businesses website traffic, local creditability and visibility within the community. If you turn yourself into a resource for local information, the leads WILL follow.
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Online Marketing 101
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Canada’s Top Agent Website Hitting America
Ontario, Canada has been home to one of the best real estate agent website companies in the world, Moneymaker™. Moneymaker™ was purchased by brokerage enterprise solutions powerhouse Lone Wolf Real Estate Technologies, enabling agents from across the United States to have access to this extensive website platform. It is more than just a real estate website – it is a full spectrum business suite for real estate agents. With the acquisition of the Moneymaker™ platform, Lone Wolf will now be able to provide agents with deep levels of functionality that will support all of their online marketing needs. Here are the key features: 100% customizable website: This is not a template website. They have an innovative drag and drop website builder interface that allows agents to layout any page of their website as they like. For agents who would like help with their website design, the Lone Wolf design team will provide custom website support. Before Moneymaker, agents would pay thousands of dollars for this level of custom website. Now these sites are available for $50 per month complete with MLS/IDX integration. Responsive design that works on all mobile devices and all mobile and desktop browsers integrated email Unlimited community pages can be added by agents for every market they service Social Media integration features built-in, connecting your website to Facebook, Twitter and other leading social media channels to expand your online reach Built-in blog integration allowing agents to publish an ongoing real estate information feed on market conditions or community happenings Flyer generation for listings, open houses and other purposes
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Four Hard Truths About Real Estate Websites
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Getting Started With Google Analytics – Part One
It's 2014, and we are at a point where the vast majority of real estate businesses have a website. While having a web presence is a given, tracking your performance will help you make better decisions, create a better user experience, drive more leads and best represent your brand. One of the best free ways to track the performance of your website is with Google Analytics. It takes a little bit of work to set up, but the data it provides you is completely worth it. It's one of those things where the more you use it, the more you wonder how you survived without it. In part one of this series, we will discuss the steps involved in setting up Google Analytics for your website. Sign Up If you don't already have a Google account, you will need to sign up for one. Having a Google account gives you access to a lot of the great tools that Google provides to internet users for free. Once you have created a Google account, head over to http://www.google.com/analytics/ and sign up. You will need to create a name for your website, provide your URL, select your industry, time zone and decide what website analytics information you wish to share with Google.
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5 Things You Want to Check on Your Website Right Now
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Introducing PressRE
Did you know that more than 100,000 new WordPress sites are created every day? Some of those sites are big names, too, like TED, CBS Radio, CNN and Forbes. With numbers like that, chances are good that you have either tried WordPress yourself or at least given serious thought to using it as the backbone of your agent website. WordPress has a lot of perks, especially its price tag--a big, fat zero. It's an open source platform with a world of themes, widgets and plug-ins that make it easy to customize to your site. WordPress is a great option for DIY types, but if you're not the kind who enjoys tinkering around with web layouts, there are other options. Most come with a price tag, but their pull is offering users the familiarity and ease-of-use of WordPress. Today, we're taking a look at one of those solutions. PressRE is a turnkey WordPress website made specifically for real estate agents. The idea behind PressRE is to offer WordPress with industry-specific features. Where normally it would require some technical knowledge to implement tools like IDX, PressRE has these built into specialized real estate templates. Since templates are arguably the most important part of any website offering, let's start by taking a look at what PressRE has available.
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Visual Hierarchy and Your Website
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5 Things That Should Not Be on Your Real Estate Website
Spelling/Grammar Mistakes NOBODY is perfect. It's always best to check and recheck the spelling and grammar on your site on a regular basis. You might also want to get a second person to read your content as well, as not all programs are going to find all errors. Your Entire Life Story While it is nice to show your clients that you are human and can relate to them, there is a balance you need to remember. Your bio should give an indication of how you can relate to clients without any unnecessary details. For example: "I was born and raised in Port Dover, Ontario, and have since lived in numerous places throughout southern and central Ontario. I have been happily settled in Cambridge, Ontario for the past 8 years where I now reside with my two boys." From this, a potential client can gather that I: Know what it is like to relocate Know what it is like to move children Understand that I know how to budget for a household Know the Cambridge area fairly well Can handle noise, messes, and chaos in general
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WordPress Basics for Agents
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Meta Data Matters!
Many SEO "experts" claim to fully understand the algorithms that search engines use to deliver results. If these experts don't admit to even a little uncertainty, they're lying. The truth is that it's practically impossible to know all the factors (and the weight of those factors) that go into search results. The most anyone can do is to provide a best guess. That being said, there are some basic tenets of SEO that you can pretty safely rely upon. These include, but DEFINITELY are not limited to: Meta tags (our subject for today) Title tags On-page content Site performance Incoming links from other sites Domain name Sitemaps Images and video Regularly updated content In doing research for this article, I found a great resource that may come in handy: the Google Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide. Depending on your tech knowledge, about 60% of this document might not make sense. But it's worth reading for the 40% that does make sense.
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