Are you fed up with paying for a real estate website but not receiving any Google traffic? Many real estate agents believe that when they launch a new website, it will be discovered “magically” by search engines. That isn’t the case at all. Many real estate websites are crawled, but they aren’t indexed.
Having organic traffic to your website is more important than ever before whether you are a REALTOR, a local brokerage, or a real estate franchise.
In 2020, the internet playing an increasingly important role in real estate transactions. Furthermore, the Coronavirus has shown the importance of maintaining a good digital presence. You’re losing out on a lot of business if your website isn’t identified for commonly searched real estate words by people in your market. Unfortunately, many REALTORS are unaware of what is needed to rate their website organically. We’ll go over the fundamentals of using real estate SEO best practices to rate a real estate website.
How do I optimize my real estate website for search engines?
Understanding real estate SEO can be difficult, so we’ve broken it down for you…
- DIY Real Estate SEO
- Step by Step Guide
- Local SEO for REALTORS
- Real Estate Keywords
- Completing a Website Audit
- Meta Title and Description
- Mobile, AMP and Speed
- Leveraging Local SEO Tactics
- Getting Real Estate Backlinks
- Social Media Syndication
- Using Schema and Reviews in Your Marketing
- Hiring a Real Estate SEO Expert
The Guide to Real Estate SEO
While real estate SEO is more competitive and presents specific challenges, many of the steps involved in ranking real estate websites are similar to conventional website search engine marketing.
I DO NOT BELIEVE A WEB DEVELOPER WHO SAYS SEO IS INCLUDED IN THE WEBSITE DESIGN.
The process for agents, brokers, and franchises to get the organic search results they need for traffic and lead generation is outlined below.
The method of ranking a real estate website is outlined below, rather than a list of real estate SEO tips.
The First Step is Local SEO
The first step in rating your real estate website in 2021, more than ever, is to master local SEO. Google has put a lot of money into their GMB infrastructure and is continually adding new features. “Real estate is local,” as it has been said a million times. In the world of online real estate marketing, this has never been more true.
Creating and claiming your Google My Business listing is the first step in establishing your local SEO. This will officially inform Google about your company’s brand, name, address, and phone number. This is referred to as the NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number) by digital marketing experts. Making sure your NAP is consistent with your Google My Business (GMB) account and other online mentions like Facebook, Twitter, and, of course, your website is a crucial part of this operation. A postcard sent to the claimed business address is normally needed to verify your GMB listing. A PIN will be printed on the postcard, which you must enter into GMB for verification.
You’ll want to create/update citation accounts once your Google My Business account has been created and verified. Citation accounts, such as Facebook, Yelp, Yellow Pages, and Foursquare, are websites that reference your company online. You can place your business details on literally thousands of possible citation/directory websites. We cannot emphasize how important it is that all citations have the same NAP as your Google My Business page.
The next Step is Keyword Research.
Real Estate Keywords
Many of the broker-provided agent websites claim that using “real estate keywords” as meta tags would magically outrank the local competition and even major real estates aggregates like Zillow and Realtor.com. This is completely absurd. Real estate SEO entails a lot more than just picking the right keywords. In reality, Google stopped considering meta keywords as a ranking factor many years ago.
That doesn’t negate the importance of keyword research in any SEO campaign, and real estate keywords are no exception. You must be aware of the keywords you wish to rank with. The “main keywords” for any given page should be defined as such. Do you want to be ranked for *your city* homes for sale or *your city* real estate? How many searches are made in your region for unique subdivisions?
What Should be Your Real Estate Keywords?
The obvious key phrases are *your city* real estate or *your city* homes for sale. These are also the most searched keyword terms, but they aren’t always the ones you should be pursuing.
Low Hanging Fruit Keywords
You’ll need to identify clear keywords that your future clients are looking for and that aren’t too competitive. It’s possible that your area has its own terms, such as “shotgun homes” in New Orleans or “Boston Brownstones.” You can find some keywords that the big boys haven’t gone after if you dig deep and consider your client’s purpose. All of the pages are generated automatically by large portals like Zillow. This gives the custom-built page with exclusive content a major advantage. The first step in your keyword research should be to find some “low hanging fruit.”
Keyword Research for the Real Estate Industry
True Real Estate SEO experts can go beyond basic “homes for sale” searches. You can also search for latent semantic keywords to ensure that your content is properly seeded.
Not only the obvious keywords should be included in your keyword analysis, but also any variations of those keywords. *Your city* + homes for sale, for example, should also include:
- *your city + state abr* homes for sale
- homes for sale in *your city*
- homes for sale in *your city + state abr*
- *your city* real estate
- *your city + state abr* real estate
- *your city* real estate for sale
- *your city + state abr* for sale
- real estate *your city*
- real estate in *your city*
- real estate for sale *your city*
- all of the above with the state abbreviation
- similar search phrases with subdivisions
- similar search phrases with counties
Each of these search phrases will have a different number of monthly searches, different levels of competition, and ultimately the user (the person doing the search) will have a different intent.
With Google’s algorithm learning at a rapid pace, the connection between keyword research and user intent is more crucial than ever. In 2021, Google BERT will be used on almost all searches. BERT is a Google Algorithm update that uses artificial intelligence to interpret search queries better. Is there a different user intent if the search is *city* real estate vs waterfront condos for sale in *subdivision*? Of course, there is. The “real estate” search may be wanting statistics on the local market or other general information on the real estate in the respective city. Where the “condos for sale” search is expecting to see active listings in the respective condominium complex. Coming up with your specific set of real estate keywords takes time and a methodical approach.
Complete a Website Audit
The next step is to conduct an SEO website audit once your local SEO is in place and you have a clear idea of what keywords you want to be found for.
For most of you, your best bet in the website audit process is to either use a free website audit tool like the one One Click SEO provides, you could also use specialty SEO tools like Screaming Frog, ahrefs, SEMrush or SERPed. For the most part, your best bet in the website audit process is to either use a free website audit tool like One Click SEO provides, or you could also use specialty SEO tools like Screaming Frog, ahrefs, SEMrush or SERPed or to hire a professional website audit company. Hiring an SEO agency to perform a manual audit is a more expensive but more thorough solution. A manual SEO audit should cost around $500 and go up from there, depending on the size of your site.
Once you’ve received the audit results, you’ll have a better idea of where your website stands technically. It’s important to remember that there is no such thing as a silver bullet when it comes to search engine optimization – there are many moving parts that must all work together in order for a website to rank well.
Meta Titles and Descriptions
The next step is to go over each page’s meta headers. Meta titles and meta descriptions are a simple and important aspect of your on-page SEO that you should update regularly.
Each page’s meta title should include the main keywords you want to rank for. It would help if you ended up with your meta title after boiling down all of the content on the page. Each page’s meta title should be between ten and seventy characters long.
People will see your Meta Title and Meta Description on the search engine results page on Google and other search engines.
Most real estate website platforms make it simple to change the Meta Title and Meta Description. The title has a significant influence on rankings, while the description describes what is on the page.
At 160-300 characters, your meta description is slightly longer. Each page’s meta description provides a brief summary of the page’s content. The meta title has a significant impact on the page’s ranking, and a well-written meta description will entice users to choose your site over the others in the search results.
Mobile Responsiveness and Site Speed
In the year 2021, anyone who is remotely serious about their website will have made it mobile-friendly. This should also be caught in your website audit, but it’s so important that we thought it deserved its own section.
We even recommend building your real estate website Mobile First because mobile devices account for more than half of all internet traffic. A mobile-first website is one that is designed to be viewed on a mobile device first, then adapted for use on a desktop computer. This may appear to be a minor distinction, but it has a significant impact on the web design process.
Assuring that your website is as fast as possible is another no-brainer. These two factors are related in that the speed with which your website loads is even more important on mobile devices. In addition to how the site is built, the hosting that your website uses will have a significant impact on its speed. We’ve put in a lot of effort to find the best WordPress hosting for SEO purposes.
AMP Pages for Real Estate
AMP is another new technology that can help your real estate website load faster. Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) is a method of making a stripped-down version of your website or blog that is compatible with AMP. The AMP pages are then delivered directly from Google’s servers, resulting in speedy results. Having AMP pages on your real estate website for your blogs can provide your readers with a lightning-fast experience.
Backlinks from Authoritative Real Estate Websites
Google recognizes you as an authoritative source of quality information based on the quality and quantity of backlinks pointing to your real estate website. Backlinks can be acquired in a variety of ways, but it’s important to remember that not all backlinks are created equal. The backlink is more powerful if the site linking to you is authoritative and relevant. It can actually hurt your SEO if you have a lot of spammy backlinks pointing to your site. Furthermore, just because you have a link from a well-known real estate website doesn’t mean it counts. You can have a profile page on Realtor.com, Zillow, and many other large real estate websites, for example, but this will give your website little authority. The rel=nofollow tag will prevent that link from passing any “link juice” to you. Some people go to great lengths to hide outbound links. Even the most powerful real estate domains, such as Zillow, linking to your site from a profile page will have little impact on the authority of your real estate website.
The Best Backlinks
The most authority is passed from within the content of otherwise powerful real estate websites. For example, if Zillow published an article on their blog mentioning the term “discount real estate brokers” and using that term as the anchor text and pointing to your site, that link would be compelling in terms of ranking for that term.
Here are a couple of ways that you can create and sculpt your backlink profile.
- Guest Posting
- Study Your Competitors Backlink Profile
- Content Marketing
- Social Media Syndication of Original Content
- Creating Citations for Local SEO
- Finding Broken Backlinks From Sites You Want a Link From
- Web 2.0 Sites
Socially Syndicate Your Original Real Estate Content
Without a strong social media presence, you can’t be a successful REALTOR today. All of the community pages and blog posts from your real estate website should be shared on your social media accounts. Most real estate agents use their social media accounts to share articles from real estate websites like ActiveRain, Inman, and Realty Times. Isn’t it more sensible to promote your own real estate content wherever it appears on your website?
All agents and brokers should have the following social media accounts:
- Facebook Business Page
- Twitter Page
- LinkedIn Profile
Many products are available to let you socially syndicate your original content from your website. Buffer and Hootsuite are both prominent content-sharing apps.
Schema for Real Estate Websites
Google and other online giants use schema structured data to figure out what your company is all about. Your real estate website’s schema should represent whether you’re a real estate agency, a real estate broker, or a real estate agent, for example. Your site’s schema should also include your actual Name, Address, and Phone Number, or NAP. Your hours of operation, the location and longitude of your office, and the real estate markets you cover are all tags schema.
For a newbie webmaster, implementing schema markup can be intimidating. The majority of minimal schema apps or plugins merely do the bare minimum (which, of course, is better than nothing). Some programming knowledge is required to get all of the appropriate tags set on your real estate website.
Aggregate Online Reviews from Past Clients
The value of the online review is clearly understood by most REALTORS, brokers, and real estate teams. You should make the most of every testimonial, whether you acquire them from Zillow, Yelp, Google, or your own real estate website. All of your reviews should include the right schema and an aggregate rating for Google to recognize the material as a review. Be cautious; if you tag your site’s reviews incorrectly, Google may believe you’re copying an existing review and trying to receive credit for two.
Hiring a Real Estate SEO Expert
Although it is feasible to rank your website on your own, many people prefer to hire a professional due to the intricacy and particular obstacles that real estate SEO presents. Due to the high level of competition, you may find that SEO pricing for the real estate vertical is greater than for other verticals.
Is Real Estate SEO Hard?
Search engine optimization for real estate is more difficult than it is for most other online activities. The fact that huge, countrywide organizations like Zillow, REALTOR.com, Trulia, and Homes.com dominate Real Estate SEO presents a hurdle. You’re up against the big brokers after those authoritative websites. Even real estate franchises like Keller Williams, Remax, and Coldwell Banker must be fought. Finally, practically every agent now has their own website, and there will be approximately 2 million active real estate licences in 2021.
Search Engine Optimization for Real Estate
We’ve been specializing in SEO for Real Estate for over 8 years, and our results speak for themselves. Working with some of the country’s leading real estate brands, specializing in real estate search engine optimization.
As Real Estate SEO professionals, we view search rankings as just one component of a larger Digital Marketing Package aimed at generating a return on investment from your online presence. Because all SEO takes time, we’ve designed a method to start providing new leads right away while also improving your website’s SEO over time.
We use Google Ads to drive quick traffic and leads and Facebook REmarketing to help you establish your brand. Creating focused visitors not only improves your SEO in the long run but also quickly generates new seller leads. Follow-up marketing on Facebook keeps your real estate brand in front of potential consumers for months after they visit your website.
If you are looking for fully managed real estate internet marketing – by true real estate experts, contact us.