These days, people shopping for anything, from a phone case to a 4-bedroom house, usually begin their hunt online. They research different features, providers, prices, and customer reviews. A Joint Study from The National Association of REALTORS® and Google found that 90% of home buyers searched online during their home buying process.
Most real estate agents have an internet prong in their marketing strategies for service and property advertising. Some go further than others, getting deeper into social media marketing for example. But one element many may be overlooking is search engine marketing (SEM). That NAR study also found that real estate Google searches grew 253% over the past 4 years.
What is Search Engine Marketing (SEM)?
Businesses strive to increase their visibility on results pages when people search for their products, services or related topics, through paid advertising or keyword adjustment. A key element of SEM is search engine optimization (SEO), which involves tweaking targeted keywords on web sites and marketing content to rank higher.
The term “search engine marketing” typically means paid efforts and “search engine optimization” is often unpaid earned traffic through smart keywords selection and employment.
What Kind of Search Marketing is Right for You?
It depends on a variety of factors:
- Your budget
- Your competitors
- Your target
- Your keywords
Companies can buy increased web traffic and may employ professionals to handle their SEM and SEO and web marketing strategies. But that may not be in the budget of a small real estate firm. SEO is the more affordable route, but it requires time and research.
A small company like a local brokerage firm may prefer to use “long tail keywords” because their business is unlikely to appear on the first results page for a search for real estate in the state. Long tail keywords, longer and more specific to the service or product than regular keywords, can lead to higher rankings and more specific targeting. Also, you can gather leads who are closer to buying with long tail keywords.
What are the Best Keywords for Your Business?
Do some keyword research with the Google Adwords keyword tool, which helps identify the best keywords to go after for quality leads. You may need to test to see which phrases work best for your goals.
How Do You Use SEM for Your Business?
Once you have your keywords, revise all of your marketing content and insert long tail keywords where appropriate. Then going forward when you’re writing marketing copy, try to incorporate your keywords where they’d naturally fit.
Use the available tools to track the effectiveness of your SEM and SEO.
Because the real estate business is so influenced by local markets and trends, local SEO is important for a real estate firm. Methods to employ local SEO include:
- Local references and citations
- Customer reviews
- Creating useful, relevant content
- Meta data (description of web sites, including keywords)
- Emphasizing your exceptional service
- Being unique and standing out from the crowd
- Great headlines
- Your contact info on every page of your site
So, the things above may be good to get you started. Keep reviewing, revising, tracking, and creating engaging content that brings people back to your site.
There’s so much more to learn about the real estate biz. Click over to 360training.com and check out the convenient online real estate courses.