Though real estate was once dominated by traditional methods and word-of-mouth marketing, the real estate industry has shifted to the digital space. More and more home buyers are using the internet to find homes and commercial properties, so real estate businesses need an online presence.
It’s not enough to have a website and social media profiles, however. You need to ensure your content and real estate listings are making it to the top of the search engine results pages (SERPs) to target searchers – and that requires real estate SEO.
SEO for real estate agents is a way to optimize your website and content to drive traffic from organic searches. Using content on your website, you can optimize for relevant keywords to target search users and draw them to your site.
Though SEO used to be focused on keywords and backlinks through link building, it’s become more complex. Google and other search engines like Bing and Yahoo! now consider a lot of factors in search engine ranking, including the user experience, mobile friendliness, and technical aspects of your site.
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Online presence is crucial for the real estate industry. Here are some advantages of using SEO as part of your real estate marketing strategy.
Part of SEO is creating quality content that drives traffic to your website from your target audience. As you gain more traffic and visibility, you have a better chance of turning leads into paying customers.
SEO has the goal of getting you high on the SERPs, putting your website and content in front of more searchers. Over time, people looking for information on real estate will come to see you as a reliable source of information, building trust and credibility. Every time someone interacts with your brand in a positive way, you’re improving your brand awareness.
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Real estate SEO isn’t a tactic that exists in a vacuum – it’s part of an integrated digital marketing strategy. As such, it drives more leads into your sales funnel and into conversion points like your newsletters and contact forms, getting you more paying customers.
A lot goes into SEO, but here are some actionable tips to help you improve your SEO strategy.
Keyword research provides a deeper understanding of your target market and how they search for content, services, and other information. You need to know what keywords potential clients are using to look for homes or properties in a Google search.
When you look for real estate keywords, it’s important to pay attention to their search volume and competition. The ideal balance is keywords that have a sufficient search volume to drive traffic, but not too much competition to make ranking extremely difficult.
Long-tail keywords are great for SEO for service-based businesses like real estate. These keywords are longer phrases that are very specific but don’t have a lot of search volume. They’re more niche and less competitive, but they’re still relevant to your audience.
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The primary goal of SEO is increasing your visibility to help visitors find your website more easily. Content is one of the best ways to do that, but it has to be quality. Thin content that provides little value to visitors won’t help your SEO.
For each web page, focus on a target keyword and include it in your content, but avoid keyword stuffing to the point that it harms the readability. The most valuable content offers an answer to common questions and provides in-depth information to help your visitors solve their problems.
Schema markup, or structured data, is a code that you can add to your HTML to help search engines interpret the information and understand how to index your site. Essentially, it’s a language that search engines understand.
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Most search users are looking for information with mobile devices, so search engines like Google are increasingly weighting mobile friendliness in the ranking factors.
Many websites automatically switch to mobile first, so Google crawls the websites with mobile bots to see if it’s optimized for mobile users. If the bots struggle to navigate your website as a mobile user would, the rankings will drop.
Some things to check for mobile friendliness include page load speed, responsive web design, and mobile-friendly popups.
Everyone deserves to access different websites easily, regardless of personal limitations. For example, someone with a visual impairment can use a screen reader to access websites, but if the website isn’t created with accessibility in mind, they won’t have a positive experience.
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires business provide equal access and services to people with disabilities. Most businesses consider accessibility in terms of wheelchair ramps or Braille but forget about the effects on websites.
All businesses need to be ADA compliant, but it’s especially important for real estate agents. In fact, the National Association of REALTORS has been a long-time advocate of full compliance with the ADA, not just in physical locations but with web content.
Some of the guidelines for ADA compliance include:
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Local SEO helps to improve your rankings for searches with local intent, such as “real estate agent near me” and other local keywords. The more places you have your site listed with your name, address, and phone number (NAP) citations, the better.
The first place to start is the Google My Business page, which is Google’s free directory for local businesses. These results appear near Google Maps and before the organic search results, giving you a better chance of ranking for local searches.
Once you claim your Google Business Profile, make sure all the information is included and correct, such as your business name, address, hours of operation, and phone number. You should also include business categories and images in your business listing.
In addition to Google My Business, put your information in all other relevant directories like Yelp and Yellow Pages. There are numerous real estate directories as well, such as Realtor.com, Yahoo Homes, RedFin, HomeSnap, Zillow, Trulia, CitySearch, and Manta.
Search these directories to see if you have a business profile you need to claim, then include your information. Users do a lot of searches on these platforms, so it’s essential to create additional sales channels and improve your lead generation.
Real estate has fierce competition, especially now that prospective home buyers are looking for homes online. SEO will help you improve your visibility and maximize the opportunities when users search for homes or other properties on search engines, even if you’re up against big-name real estate agents.
SEO for real estate is a way to optimize your real estate agency website and content to attract more visitors through the organic search results, instead of paid advertising methods like pay-per-click and Google Ads. This includes content on your website, mobile apps, and social media channels.
SEO has excellent click-through rates, conversion rates, and other metrics, making it a more cost-effective method of marketing. Better yet, a strong SEO foundation can lead to long-term results that pay off for months, or even years.
While all factors work together to improve your ranking, one of the primary SEO factors for real estate is keyword research. The keywords you choose for your real estate SEO are key for driving relevant organic traffic and generating qualified leads.
SEO for real estate investors is similar to real estate SEO – it’s the process of increasing website rankings to improve your website’s visibility. The main difference is that you’re targeting keywords for searchers with the intent to purchase real estate as an investment, rather than for personal use.