REALTORS® are told they badly need a website – and that’s true, but is that all?

That you should simply order a website, have the designer throw in a few seemingly terrific features, and voila! You’ll have the most lethal lead generator in your arsenal of marketing tools.

No, that’s the least you have to do and don’t expect massive success from just that. Instead, put yourself in the shoes of a property buyer, then visit your website, and find out if it does the following three things:

  1. Helps you conveniently search for homes
  2. Provides answers to the burning questions you have as a property buyer
  3. Offers useful content. That includes localized and non-localized information.

Does it? If yes, that’s just the beginning. There’s a lot ahead you can use to take that performance to a whole new level.

If it does neither or just a few of the three things, take hope in the fact that you can turn that around. There are specific things property buyers want to see on your website and right now is your chance to find out what they are and to implement them.

1. An Advanced Search Functionality

Top amongst the reasons potential clients visit a REALTORS® website is to go through the maze of available listings with the hope that they will find satisfactory results and use them to make a better decision.

Normally, the website is expected to have listings for either residential or commercial properties available for rent, lease, or sale. The size of the listing will depend on the area covered.

Now, considering that each listing has attributes such as description, location, price, etc., advanced features such as a broad match search, auto-suggestions, and a fast search should be present in order to make the search convenient for the user.

In addition to that, adding a complete Internet Data Exchange (IDX) search will enable your visitors to view a broad selection of listings. While looking for IDX solutions, make sure you pick one that works with your Multiple Listing Service (MLS).

PS. No idea where to get IDX solutions? Try RealtyNinja’s IDX: www.realtyninja.com/idx

2. Testimonials

In order for potential property buyers to take you seriously, they have to trust you and see your business as credible. One of the common places they look for this is in testimonials. Naturally, consumers will more easily trust the opinion of fellow consumers about a product or service than they would a word from the business.

This testimonial about Slack and it’s amazing features serves as a great example. Almost hitting a million views now, it grew the interest of many in what Slack is all about.

In fact, the video pretty much explains why of all available content types, testimonials rank relatively higher in effectiveness. After gathering data from industry experts and other sources, Webdam put the rate at 89%.

Provided it’s done properly (video testimonials tend to perform a lot better), a testimonial will also pave way for your visitors to gain insight about who you really are and what your brand is all about.

Another important thing to note is that how you position your testimonials also matters. While you can simply set aside a testimonials tab or page and plaster the content there, you stand a chance of getting better results if you scatter them all round your website.

3. Fresh & Useful Content

Besides coming to view your listings, many viewers are also interested in reading news or any trending topic related to real estate that looks relevant to them.

That’s why your website needs fresh content. And the only way to achieve that is to create and update the content on your website regularly.

Fresh content aside, there will be those after localized content such as local market statistics, neighborhood information such as best attractions around a particular area, events, city data, cultural information, etc.

Non-localized content could be anything from DIY projects, tutorials, financing information, home improvement tips to frequently asked questions (FAQs), home buying tips, and so on.

PLEASE give it to them.

As we mentioned earlier, you can use written text, videos, or pictures to communicate this information. Each medium definitely works best with specific types of information.

For instance, it would be great to share news, and neighborhood, cultural, and financing information through written text and/or pictures. As for DIY projects, tutorials, property tours, interviews and the like, videos deliver the best results.

Generally, fresh content is a way to give your visitors something to read and to show them that you are still fully invested in the business. Useful content, on the other side, shows that you care about your visitors.

For all these, they are likely to consider hiring you.

4. High-Quality Videos & Imagery

There’s no doubt that written content matters but it shouldn’t cover every space on your website. Admittedly, some people would rather read, so get them useful blog posts. At the same time, there’s also a larger percentage who are more visual and, thus, prefer to absorb videos and pictures.

Some of the spaces where video has proven to work better include in highlighting listings, introducing yourself and your business/profiling your business, giving property tours, and testimonials.

Here’s a sample real estate video tour to inspire you.

Before you begin the video creation process, have a goal/purpose for it. This is a top requirement for creating quality videos. As for the creation process, if you can’t do it yourself, enlist the help of a competent video production company.

Images, on the other hand, are mostly used to improve the quality of listings. To give the listings more impact, make sure the images you attach each show the different relevant dimensions of the property in question.

Besides helping your site gain more traffic, quality videos will keep prospects engaged in your content for a longer period of time and grant you an opportunity to develop a relationship that could lead them to becoming your loyal clients.

5. About Me Page And Contact Info

Here’s a disturbing fact. There are probably hundreds of thousands of REALTORS® like you (and the number keeps going up), with goals similar to yours, which implies the competition is tough. If you fail to set yourself apart and develop a distinct brand identity, the competitive edge you thirst for may never come.

For prospective property buyers, sorting through this maze can be overwhelming and so they will likely stop the moment they find a REALTOR® who appears to tick all the boxes (credible, competent, reliable, honest, self-motivated, engaging personality, etc.)

And guess what? Your about me page is one of the places they will scout for that. They will expect to find your qualifications, the number of years you’ve been in the business, any awards you’ve received, your educational background, testimonials, etc.

Special qualifications such as being multilingual or having a background in finance can also give you an edge over your competitors.

Videos also work well in making the audience aware about you and your business, what drives you, your past experiences, and all that. This short video by Kate Miller, a North Vancouver REALTOR® and RealtyNinja customer, serves as a great example of how you can profile yourself through video.

If your visitors are pleased with what they see, the next thing they will want to do is to contact you.

Your contact information (phone number, email address, contact us forms or real estate chatbots) should be easily available and easily accessible. In fact, it would be best to have them right below the information on your about me page among other places.

Final Thoughts

Clearly, we all have needs and preferences, and for property buyers touring a REALTOR® website, these five sum up the important things they want and expect to see on your site in order to make a decision. There’s no doubt that some real estate pros are already doing them, but what distinguishes the best from the rest is how they do it.

Thankfully, what I’ve shared should act as a solid foundation to build on and for you to become the greatest REALTOR® you can be.

Remember, in a world where few are willing to go the extra mile in order to achieve their goals, REALTORS® who take these five ideas into consideration and implement them properly stand a higher chance of turning more prospects into loyal clients.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
 

Sabine Ghali is Director at Buttonwood Property Management, a property management company in Toronto. She is an entrepreneur at heart who endeavors to help investors create real estate wealth over time in the Greater Toronto Area. Sabine is published in a number of media outlets, including Toronto Sun and Gulf News, among many others.