The real estate market has changed in recent years. These days, there are a lot more places for potential buyers to research properties and for potential sellers to list their homes. Frankly, the online marketplace is getting pretty crowded. That’s why it’s more important than ever for real estate agents to stand out from the crowd by establishing a great web presence.
Despite the heightened competition and the changing industry landscape, real estate brokers are far from obsolete. Many people are more comfortable buying or selling property via an agent. What’s changed is that before they decide to use your services, potential clients will probably research your company online. And if you don’t have a great website, your business just won’t seem credible. Here are four ways your website can help your business stand out while giving customers what they want.
1. Show Branding and Develop an Online Personality
With your own website, you can create a strong brand for your business that you can market consistently, online and off. A website gives you the opportunity to show what’s great about your agency by telling your story in your own words. You can also develop a distinctive online personality by adding articles and videos that go way beyond any profile on an agency listing.
2. Cater to the Local Market
While you can list a property anywhere, there will always be some areas of the market that you know especially well – most likely, your local market. With a website, you can use off-page SEO to create a structure, page titles and keywords that make it easy for local property buyers and sellers to find your services. That’s even more important these days, as people use mobile devices to search for services near them. To cater to these people, be sure to include a map and your address details on your website. Find out more in our article on local and mobile search optimization
3. Be an Information Resource
When people come to you, they are not just looking at buying or selling a home, they are looking for information. Your website is a great place to offer some virtual hand-holding, providing guidance and resources for buyers and sellers as they move through a process that can sometimes be intimidating. Your property listings can also go beyond the standard MLS entry by showing additional photos and videos that customers will appreciate. And keep in mind that you can save money on printing by making electronic copies of your standard paperwork available to download from your site. Buyers’ and sellers’ guides and how-to information help lead to better-informed consumers who KNOW why they are using your services – and that’s good for business.
4. Reassure Customers
When it comes to doing business online, social proof
is where it’s at. That’s how you build trust and win repeat business. Think about it: when you shop at Amazon, you don’t just look at the product descriptions. Related products and customer reviews also play an important part in your decision to buy or not. As a real estate agent, your website is the best, most cost-effective place to showcase customer testimonials and service reviews. A good example is Toronto Lofts, which has several pages of reviews.
Branding, local presence, information and trust are just four of the many ways your website can help you. If your business hasn’t got a website yet, now is a very good time to start.
Looking for more ways to succeed with your real estate website?
In this e-book, we look at five of the must-have features that every real estate website needs in order to be competitive in today’s marketplace.
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