Let’s look at Real Estate Community Pages for Generating more leads.
First, let’s define a “lead” where it comes to this graph. For us, a lead is someone that has expressed interest in buying or selling real estate. This can be done in a formal request, IDX registration, or home value/home selling information request.
Some of our pages do offer items of value that are not related to real estate. The consumer will register to download this information and we begin communicating with them in our database. They are, however, called a “prospect” in our CRM, not a “lead”. This graph only shows “Leads”. These are consumers that have directly expressed interest in real estate based on their actions.
The graph above shows our highest lead generating pages. Again, these are not necessarily our highest visited pages. One example of a highest visited web page that does not also bring in a high volume of leads would be our blog post about Las Vegas Allergies. It ranks well on Google and brings in a lot of local visitors (which is great for building the “Google” long term relationship). Although it does also feature real estate listings and an offer for home values, the visitors did not come to the website to browse properties. They came to find out how to get rid of their allergy symptoms. While some will browse listings, most will not. Therefore, this page is great for traffic, not great for IDX registrations.
Our first discovery was how well the “niche” real estate community pages were doing. Homes with Pools have sky rocketed both in visits and in leads. They bring in traffic because they rank well on the search engines. They rank well on the search engines because very few real estate agents take the time to build out pages based on features. Most real estate agents leave the “search widget” to do the work instead of taking the time to build these out one by one. Yes, it’s a lot of work. No, it’s not hard. The rewards are massive.
These pages capture well because they are designed with one simple customer and focus in mind, the right real estate listings for the right consumer who wants to buy a property in a certain location, in a particular price range, with a special feature.
They are not pages designed with longform content as we often suggest for blogging. These pages are PROPERTY driven. Notice, at the top, we have given them additional simple options to click over to a new price range. We have also included a search widget that allows the user to perform their own search.
On average, these pages perform at less than 3% bounce rate. A bounce is when someone performs a search query on the search engine, chooses a result from the SERP (Search Engine Results Page) and then lands on a website. If they bounce BACK to the search engine because it’s not what they wanted, it’s a bounce. These rates are calculated and indicates how well that website fits the users clicking on that link from the results page. You want people clicking once they land on your page. Because our page is designed so specifically for one type of shopper, we have very low bounce rates on these pages.
You’ll also notice that they are mobile responsive. We design our pages for mobile first, desktop later. This is because mobile traffic has passed desktop traffic and the designs are quite different. Speed of the pages is also very important when focusing especially on a mobile user.
When studying our scrollmap, we can also see that most users scroll down to the 2nd row of listings and click there. Very few scroll past the first 10 listings, yet most scroll past a few. So what we know here is that our IDX listings exactly match what the user was wanting to find. This is the real “secret” to internet marketing. It’s knowing the target audience and providing them with the product or information or service they need that is spot on to their needs.
This study also showed us that geographic farming communities are also bringing in a large volume of leads. Again, it’s because we hit our target. Summerlin is a master planned community in Las Vegas. Most real estate agents would allow the search widget to offer up a neighborhood search and leave it at that. We take the time to build out each and every community one by one. Then we build out features such as ‘3 Bedroom Houses in Summerlin’, and ‘4 Bedroom Homes in Summerlin $300,000 – $400,000’ and ‘Homes in Henderson with Casitas’ and so on. You’ll notice many of our specific geographic pages have more content. We want to describe the community, schools, nearby attractions and so forth for the non locals that need more information on what the neighborhood offers. Locals will also be curious about what schools are in that immediate area.
“I’m a believer! I started over in my business and happened to come across your trainings. I took pages of notes and began implementing some of the teachings. I ended the year at 7 mil production and over a third of that came from your teaching. If I am consistent and track what I have on the pipeline so far, I’ll double that this year.” – Andy Green
Using Google Maps, you can even build in your own community map and add in the schools, popular work places, and any other features your visitors may find valuable. Always ask yourself “If I were moving to this area, what would I want to know about it?”
This is how people search. I’m not assuming this, I have the data that brought me to this conclusion.
Of course, in your market, you’ll choose the features and locations that make sense to you. Consider building out pages around schools, popular work places, attractions, zip codes, communities and so on. Maybe, in your market the hot feature will be views, or mother in law quarters, or victorian style homes, or waterfront properties, or golf course frontage, or walk out basement, or boat dock. You have to hit every “pocket” in your area to discover which niches you can rank for. In some cases, you can find these by evaluating your local competition. I use a great tool called SEMrush to look up competitors in a market and build on some of the ideas already proven. Below, you’ll find a link to more on this tool.
If you are worried about the domination that some of the major IDX driven sites such as Zillow, and Trulia have, do the work to build local. These sites are data driven, not customer driven. They can’t beat you in your own sandbox if you build HUGE castles! Now, I assume that’s coming from these guys as well, so you must jump on this wagon now.
The more pages you build, the more likely you are to hit the hot spots and gain leads. The beautiful thing about this kind of search engine focused marketing is that it rains leads while you sleep, while you are on vacation, and while you are attending to special needs. Other forms of lead generation like cold calling, open houses, and networking require you to physically be active to generate leads. SEO does not.
As with any lead generation strategy, you must apply a certain discipline and spend time on task. These pages are not going to build themselves.
People often ask me what platform I prefer for a website. The honest truth is that I’ve done well ranking on the search engines with most platforms. In 2016, it’s much harder. You are going to run into issues if your platform and host and content is not “up to speed”.
I use WordPress. I find it to be an easy enough platform to learn on the fly, yet robust enough to build as one’s skills grow. I also have chosen WordPress because it is an all in one website and blog. With simple PlugIns, I can add in IDX, CustomLanding Pages, Great Tracking, Pop Up or Button Offers, Local Maps and so much more. Our team at Ballen Marketing (702.917.0755) can help you with a WordPress site if you are in need of getting one set up.
Sometimes, you will receive a website from your real estate company. Most of these are great options for beginners. That being said, once you begin to build, you may find yourself frustrated with the limited PlugIn settings, IDX structure, Forced registration and so on. In addition, there is nothing worse that putting so much work into a website and then you leave the brokerage and can’t take the site with you. In some cases, the company may even end the relationship with the original web designer and now you lose your site.
There are amazing platforms out there like Boomtown, Kunversion, and Commissions Inc, but you must remember, they are only yours as long as you pay for them. My advice is that you always own your own domain and content regardless of what platform it is on. WordPress has a database that can be exported to a new website and host if needed. Make sure whoever you use for your WordPress designer will give you full rights to this database to back up periodically. Protect your work.
Check out more on learning Do it Yourself Online Marketing at www.TheBallenMethod.com
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