According to research by realestate.com.au (REA), 78 per cent of Australian buyers are turning to real estate websites as their primary resource to search for property. This means ranking highly in online search results is vital to your success as an agent.
We reveal how REA has nailed the art of using SEO to ensure its website ranks highly on search engines and why real estate agencies cannot ignore SEO if they want to outrank their competitors.
Ranking highly in online search results doesn’t happen by accident. Rather, it comes down to a coordinated SEO (search engine optimisation) strategy that aims to inform Google, and other search engines, that your office website, property microsite or personal agent website belongs at the top of a very long list of search results.
The good news is there are several SEO techniques you can use to boost your search engine marketing efforts and improve your Google ranking. Use these five tips to get started.
1. Embrace long-tail keywords
Keywords are essentially the search terms your target buyers commonly use when browsing online property. Short-tail keywords are broad, general terms such as “homes for sale”, whereas long-tail keywords take a more specific focus such as “apartments for sale in Glebe”. Using long-tail keywords in all your digital marketing content will help you cut through irrelevant traffic and connect with better-quality leads.
2. Utilise your keywords
How and where you use your keywords is vital to achieving SEO success. Include your keywords in the URL and page title. Also use your keywords once or twice within your page content in a natural way – Google will penalize you for keyword stuffing, the practice of loading or stuffing a web page with keywords in an attempt to manipulate a real estate site’s ranking in Google search results. Keyword stuffing will also cause your content to appear unnatural and difficult to read or digest for the audience. It also pays to use your keywords in the title and image alt tag of any images you feature on the page.
3. Content counts
Google rewards sites that publish regular, quality content. Ensure you have a content marketing strategy in place and that your page content is relevant to the keywords you have selected. Also, try to use your keywords in the first few paragraphs. A good technique is to begin the webpage with a short introduction that summarises the content and include subheadings.
4. Don’t forget to link
Search engines pay attention to how your web content is linked. If you’re publishing a blog article, for example, link to older posts or to other pages on your real estate website where relevant. This helps search engines discover your other content and will have a cumulative effect on your search rankings.
5. Overhaul your site
Google penalises slow-loading sites and website that are not mobile-friendly. Ensure your website is lightning fast and optimised for mobile devices by having a responsive website design, resizing images to low resolution JPEGs or PNGs, and removing any widgets or plug-ins – such as auto slideshows – that are not necessary. Use Pingdom to test the speed of your site for free. A load speed under three seconds is ideal. Anything longer and your real estate website might need an overhaul.
Blog Source: Campaign Track | SEO 101 for real estate agents