RISMEDIA, May 25, 2009-What do you want a website or blog to accomplish for you? Are you only interested in listings? If so, you want to present a nice site that showcases listings well for future presentations and business generation. Do you also want buyers? That expands the need for content to accommodate those who need to learn about the area, the process of buying a home, negotiations, and more.
Now, disregard all of the above. That’s the standard thinking that creates “standard” websites which create standard business volume. Exceptional websites create exceptional income. Don’t use a thought process that assumes, incorrectly, several things:
-Seller prospects only want to see that you’re going to present their homes well on the Web.
-Sellers live there, so area information isn’t important if I don’t want buyers.
-Unless I want buyers, I don’t need buyer or area info pages with a great deal of content.
How Web-savvy do you think your customers are? Many probably have more knowledge than you do, and the use and understanding of the Internet is increasing quickly among consumers. If this is the case, why would you think that a prospective listing client wouldn’t care about buyer information on your site?
One Realtor with a successful business-generating website told me that he gets listings all the time from sellers who tell him that the comprehensive information on his site is why they gave him a call. They know that the more information that is provided will lead to the more visitors, and the greater the possibility that their home will be sold quickly. And, we don’t even need to ask, as his site generates a lot of buyers as well.
If we’re on the same track now, then we agree that a successful real estate website, one that generates business, must have comprehensive content for buyers, sellers, and others, like investors. Plus, there are things to think about in the area of SEO, Search Engine Optimization. Here are some guidelines for content:
Planning – Lay out a plan for your site, main pages, sub-pages and how the visitor will get to major information.
Each page is an information unit – You might think of this as “each page is an answer to a question.” The ideal web page is probably anywhere from 300 to 600 words, as you can answer a specific question very well in that length. For SEO, use one or two key phrases that apply, and work them in as often as possible without making reading difficult.
Every real estate site should have pages dealing with:
-Areas and neighborhoods
-The negotiation process
-Title and insurance
-Current and previous sold property stats
-Your interpretation and comments on the market
-Inspections and repair negotiations
-Building and zoning codes
-Local business information
If that doesn’t seem like a whole lot, those are categories, not pages. A successful site will have multiple pages in each of those categories of information. Don’t despair though, as you can get help from others.
You may already be acquainted with subdivision or neighborhood association individuals who would love to give you information and maybe even write content for you.
You definitely already know inspectors, movers, interior designers, repair people, builders, and other real estate related business people. Many would be happy to email you a short page about their business, with an image.
Example: Ask one home inspector to talk about radon, and then you edit and use “radon” and “radon in YourTown” as key words. Do the same with another inspector, but make the topic about mold or something else.
Take a break and think about all of the people you know who can write a short email to you about what they do pertaining to real estate. Then ask them to provide you with information that can be used on your site and be sure to promise them a link back to their site. If they don’t have the time, ask if you can re-write or paraphrase one of their site pages.
To summarize, think of pages not as pages, but more as answers to questions, or bite-size chunks of very specific information with one or two key phrases. Arrange them in categories that are major pages, and then the individual subject pages as sub-pages. Then, get to writing or soliciting original content.
Peyman Aleagha is the founder and President of RealtySoft.com. RealtySoft provides Realtors with Real Estate Web Design (http://www.realtysoft.com), Real Estate Print Marketing and Free IDX (http://www.realtysoft.com/freeidx.php) solutions.