The top most priority of a real estate agent and real estate broker is to build a strong relationship with clients. Clients are looking up to you for some sensible, realistic advice. They are looking for options and want to know what best choice they can make with your assistance? Once you start giving the necessary assistance, this leads to building a trust relationship developing a comfort level in doing business with you in future. Your website is launch-pad of this relationship building.
Your business website creates the edifice of a long term trustworthy relationship. But have you observed that most real estate websites segregate choices according to neighborhood, number of bedrooms, price etc. Well, these are the standard categories which are supposed to be available on any real estate website that is online on internet. Such websites give ideas in general about the kind of properties available with you in a particular area.
You want to have a real estate website where home buyers get pulled to and make a decision? Then, you have to give people something extra. Isn’t it true that we all are looking for something different and something more when we are making a buy decision? Your customers too are same, give them the reason to come back to your website and rely on content posted on it.
The real estate market has changed, home buyers browse through internet to know more about available projects and options even before they talk to real estate agents, majority of buyers while they are searching for home use internet in some or the other way. Do you want an edge over other real estate websites? Then the best way is to know what your buyers are looking out for in a Real Estate website.
What are home buyers looking for in a Real Estate website?
When I interacted with end users and real estate agents I found below mentioned items will enrich your real estate website as they provide all necessary information to end user searching for a property. Use these tips to pull more audience and close leads.
Media – Picture and Video
When it comes to pictures you have always heard this one sentence, a picture speaks for thousand words, why? Because, it is the truth. Property location is good, room sizes mentioned are ok, all other information provided to user is also OK but no one is going to make a decision to purchase property by imagining the room and apartment size. Why there are no pictures of property?
OK, a user is not going to make or break a deal over internet but for sure pictures can influence his buying decision as pictures make a deeper impact on the minds of the user. All the properties that you deal in MUST have photos uploaded. These photos should not just have view of the interior but also the exterior of the home. Grab the first opportunity to impress your buyer by providing visual information.
Advise – It is worth the extra money that you invest in professional real estate photographers to capture photos of properties.
Remember: You should always show realistic pictures of all properties listed with you. Want to use Photoshop and hide or enhance something? No, do not do that. The relation that you build with client is based on trust. You don’t want your client to see the photo, fall in love with the property make a decision to visit the property and get disappointed by realizing that he was misled.
Will it be possible for you to take a video of property and offer a video tour? Yes, you must make it possible. This will pull a lot of online traffic to your website. Ensure that uploaded photos and videos are of good quality and is not an amateur work. Align both photos and videos together with your brand, use logos and overlay text wisely.
Information about the Neighborhood
When a house is bought, of course the neighborhood or thing called as locality matters. Why not provide this information first hand to the user that will help him to take a call? Every individual visiting your website comes with a specific purpose, some might visit your website to check for prices while other few could come and find more about the locality i.e. neighborhood. People are always anxious about what the neighborhood is like, as they want to know what area they are moving into.
Typically every real estate agent says that the neighborhood is great. Why not immediately produce evidences and show some photos and videos? Provide some information and statistics from government agencies and associations that keep a track on the crime rate, income levels of the people there, the school ratings. This will not only help user to take a call but also help in increasing your trustworthiness. Always provide accurate information about neighborhood even if these things are not that great.
Bonus Tip – You can have an exclusive section dedicated to neighborhood areas where people can contribute and discuss. They can give star ratings and upload pictures. Home is a priceless gift to family; everyone wants to live a descent neighborhood.
Blog on Your Website
An attractive, full of relevant information, up to date blog is always a traffic puller for any website. I always recommend hosting your blog on your own domain (i.e. your own website instead of wordpress.com or blogger.com) and provide information that is relevant and useful.
On your blog start to discuss the latest trends in the real estate market, population growth in areas that your operate-in and deal in properties, share the latest community events. Keep searching for new topics that interest the readers and start to blog on them. Even social media can help you in finding topics. Engage with your readers, read what people are commenting on a blog post and reply back promptly.
A consistently updated blog can help in increasing you brand recall value and prove to be a source of valuable information. Blog gives user a reason to come back and check your website. A blog can connect you with people who are not willing to buy a property at this time but in future and are accumulating information for that cause.
Offer Free Expert Advice
Share information with your buyers that is useful and give some expert advice that they are eager to know, even before you talk to them personally. You can help them in the process of buying a home, give them mortgage options or share case studies. You are in the field of real estate for long and you have a wealth of insider information. You know ways to get the best price for a house, how to secure the best deal for mortgage, who to contact when you need a contractor or a lender? Don’t think too much while you share this useful information with you prospective buyers.
Knowing the Market
When you provide market information it’s not only about sharing what kinds of houses are popular today. It’s about providing information about the local market, what are the trends in sales? Is the market a buyer’s market or seller’s market? In a particular area what are the price?
A profile or the job of the real estate agent mostly is about educating the client, so start building a background for this through your website by giving reliable market information to the clients.
Give choices of various price ranges, sizes, locality and preferences. Allow users to use filters and narrow down on their selection. You could have dozen luxury properties on your website and they look attractive and striking but a property situated in location A is not your user is interested as he is looking out for properties in location B. Allow users to filter out unnecessary items.
Speed and Mobile Compatibility
Google has made it official both speed i.e. load time and mobile compatibility will be considered as ranking factor. Speed and mobile compatibility is not only going to help you in gaining better rankings but these are going to offer a much better user experience when user is browsing through your website. On mobile devices who wants to wait for 30 seconds and see a page where fonts are way smaller and unreadable? Offer a great user experience by making your site load in seconds and making content available in format that is easy to read based on type of device a user is using.
Are all these efforts really a worth of? Yes, indeed, for sure. Be assured that these changes will take your real estate website to the next level. These things will help you establish as a thought leader with you prospective clients and customers. You can become a trusted advisor on real estate and that is what prospective buyers are looking out for before making a buy decision. Users will start to trust you as you know the market and the client’s need which can be witnessed from your website and your capabilities to share the same.
Merely having an online presence is not enough to generate leads and profitable business. I am sure that if you could implement all above ideas on your real estate website, these changes will help you to gain more visitors and leads and in return will help you to increase your business and build reputation and trust.