6 Top Online Marketing Tips for Real Estate Agents
November 7th 2022 | By Emma Grant
You’ve optimised your window display. You’ve done the whole QR code thing. Your direct mail and local advertising campaigns are set to max. You’ve enhanced your customer experience. Now all you need to do is turn your attention to the very place these customers are looking for your services. Online. Because when it comes to property and real estate marketing ideas, you need to be where the people are.
68% of online experiences begin with a search engine. So it’s vital that your real estate marketing ideas involve an SEO strategy. Whilst it’s not a quick fix, and there’s plenty to do to get ahead of all that competition, if you’re not investing in boosting your online presence, you are simply going to get left behind.
But before you start your property and real estate SEO campaign, it’s important to make sure you have some decent foundations in place.
When we started our SEO campaign for specialist letting agent homes2let, there was a whole host of fundamentals missing. They had a one-page website, a single negative review and, unsurprisingly, zero search engine presence. This was all despite having built up a great reputation through word of mouth, and having honed their specialist expertise in the guaranteed rent market.
So, going back to those foundations, we knew there was going to be lots to do before we could even think about getting started with SEO. And this forms the first of our online marketing tips for real estate agents… make sure you’ve got an SEO website in place that’s built for success, from the ground up.
Tip #1 – Make sure your website is built for SEO success
Search is constantly changing, and the importance of building a website that’s SEO friendly from the ground up can’t be over-emphasised.
Site architecture that makes it a breeze for search engine crawlers to analyse the pages. Structured data that lets search engines understand the content of a website. Reader-friendly page URLs. Well-organised redirects. Properly constructed meta tags. Search engine friendly code and A-grade technical performance for Core Web Vitals. Up to date web technology. A streamlined user experience.
Sometimes, you may need to rebuild your website for SEO. Other times, it might be possible to optimise an existing site. Whatever way, before you start any sort of SEO campaign, you’ll need to be ready with the right foundations.
Tip #2 – Get your branding to stand out in the crowd
When it comes to real estate marketing ideas, one of the most important has to be finding a way to stand out in a crowded market.
This is where branding kicks in. Standing out from other estate and letting agents is the name of the game. Ensuring you appeal to your target audience is also crucial.
Everything you do needs to be audience-focused, so that you capture attention.
When we were working on the homes2let campaign, we identified that there was a typical appearance that competitors carried. So we took the new branding down a standout route, with bespoke animations rather than stock photography. We developed a logo that was in-keeping with the audience and industry, adopting a friendly, illustrative style that shone through the crowd.
Tip #3 – Work on boosting engagement and list-building
Real estate marketing is all about building authority in the industry, and creating trust amongst existing and potential customers. To do this, it’s going to take a whole host of engagement tools.
With the homes2let campaign, we were focused on placing the agency as a knowledgeable figure amongst the UK lettings industry. This included tactics such as writing and designing the ‘Ultimate Landlord Survival Guide’ e-book, creating a monthly newsletter and adding a newsletter sign-up function to the website.
We also researched, wrote and published weekly landlord insights, keeping the audience up to date with breaking news and helpful tips and advice.
It can take time to build a following that’s ready to trust you and buy from you. Keeping in regular contact with newsletters, blogs and free e-books is a great way to do this.
Tip #4 – Be prepared to change tack
Sometimes it becomes apparent that the ideals and strategy you were originally focused on may not be as lucrative as you’d first imagined. Sometimes, it’s necessary to take a change in direction.
This is something we went through with homes2let when they realised they needed to hone their audience focus into a particular niche location, due to the fact their business model only worked in certain locations. So we refocused their SEO campaign on area-specific keywords, and amended content across the website.
The lesson here is to be prepared to change direction if the need arises. Plodding along doing the same thing day in, day out may not get you to where you want to be.
Tip #5 – Combine PPC with organic SEO
You will find countless online marketing tips for real estate agents cite an SEO campaign as the way to go. But fewer will think of combining pay-per-click (PPC) advertising with organic SEO to achieve that wider share of the search results.
Many online marketing strategies segregate paid advertising such as Google Ads from organic SEO. But Google research has revealed that actually, PPC and SEO can work very well together.
Numerous studies have concluded that SEO impacts on the volume of clicks received by PPC ads. Google has discovered that when a website has strong organic search results, their click-through rate for their PPC ads on the same search engine results page will be positively affected. Further research has indicated that this can also work in reverse, in other words, PPC can help SEO.
For the homes2let campaign, we ran a PPC campaign alongside the organic SEO strategy. The client had a limited budget, so we ran a closely targeted and meticulously managed campaign, optimising for the widest reach possible with the lowest cost per click so as to optimise the budget.
Tip #6 – Optimise your Google Business Profile
93% of searches display the Google Map Pack in the top position. For the real estate market, local search is vital, so it’s essential that you make sure you have a Google Map Pack presence. If you’re not in the top three, you may well get overlooked.
Building reputation is important here. The more Google reviews you have, the more likely you are to climb to the top of the Pack. We helped homes2let with a reputation management campaign, building their reviews up to 60 with an average rating of 4.9/5. Other tactics, such as adding images, posting regular updates and setting up a Q&A section will make it more likely you’ll secure a top spot in the Map Pack.
With these strategies and others, we were able to achieve top 3 positions for as many as 35 search terms for homes2let.
Looking for real estate marketing ideas and top online marketing tips for real estate agents?
The work we did on the homes2let SEO campaign was all-encompassing. But it got results. It also won us the award for Best Use of Search – Real Estate and Property at the UK Search Awards 2022.
If you run an estate or letting agency, or any property sector company, and are interested in growing your business through a tailored SEO campaign, please do get in touch and talk to the team here at Figment.
We’ll get to know how you work and what your ambitions are, and then come up with a bespoke plan to get you to where you want to be, just like we did with homes2let.
We look forward to speaking with you.