Understanding the 6 visitor personas explained in this article will help you convert more traffic into leads with a few simple tweaks of your REALTOR® web design.
There is another species in existence on planet Earth that creates a “web-site” to capture “prospects.” Can anybody guess what species I’m talking about?
A spider’s primary objective is ensuring that its “web-pages” are strong and tightly woven. Not only to capture oncoming “traffic”, but to keep that traffic “engaged” long enough to convert them into “clients.”
Although you don’t plan on eating your prospects, the methodology is the same: tightening up the holes in your real estate website with the right content and calls to action will turn more people into customers.
Tightening up the holes in your REALTOR® web design starts with understanding your visitors. If you want to influence people’s behaviour on your website, you should start by analyzing how they interact with your web design.
There are six predominant visitor archetypes:
- Direct Visitors
- Repeat Visitors
- Tribes Folk
- Active Visitors
- Persuaded Visitors
- Influenced Visitors
These personas represent the different ways people arrive at your real estate website. Below I will dive into each of them in detail, and provide you with actionable feedback that you can apply to your REALTOR® web design immediately.
Persona 1: Direct Visitors
To kick things off, let’s talk about people who visit your website by directly entering your URL into their web browser and hitting Enter.
These people are already aware of your brand. They either know your domain off by heart, have it saved in their browser cache (for auto-populating the URL), or have some physical marketing communications in front of them with your site on it. For instance, a feature sheet or your business card.
For the most part, these people are entering your real estate website on the home page. Some of them may be reading physical marketing collateral that points them to a specific real estate landing page as well. Both your homepage and the landing pages you promote through your print and other physical marketing need to be optimized to convert that traffic into customers.
~ Recommendations ~
Depending on your objective, add elements to your homepage and landing page web design that influences people to take the action you want. As a general rule:
- Include 1 – 3 clear calls to action on your website homepage, directing people to your desired objectives. For instance to (a) view your sold listings, (b) subscribe to your mailing list, and (c) read your real estate blog. Whatever your website objective, make it clear on your homepage.
- Your real estate landing page should have one clear call to action that users can either click, fill out, or otherwise interact with right from the page. For instance, to receive a free evaluation of their home by filling out an embedded form. Keep landing pages clean and focused on the goal.
Make these call to action links stand out using vivid colours and visuals. Make it easy for people to access what’s most important on your website first. Convenient for direct visitors who are often interacting with your homepage or landing page for the first time.
Persona 2: Repeat Visitors
There are probably people in the world who have bookmarked a specific page of your website so that they can refer to it again later.
Create some bookmark-worthy content for your website. A lot of real estate agents include widgets on their site such as Mortgage Calculators. While these do get repeat visitors regularly, there is way too much competition for Mortgage Calculators online.
Why not try creating some local resources for your communities that are only available on your website? This type of strategizing will result in a lot of return visitors to your website.
~ Recommendations ~
Check your website analytics, and see if there are some pages on your website that are regularly getting more traffic than others. Particularly look for pages that are receiving a lot more pageviews than unique pageviews. A page with 800 pageviews and only 100 unique pageviews means that roughly 100 people visited that page 8 times each on average… AKA repeat traffic… AKA potential bookmarkers.
Once you’ve identified one or two of these pages, determine their main theme. For instance, you may have a couple blog posts on your site called “Small Condo Staging Checklist” and “10 Questions to Ask a REALTOR®” that both meet the above pageviews criteria. You determine that the main theme of these pages is that they are in the easy-to-digest list format.
Now that you’ve determined the theme, it’s time to create 2-3 more blog posts that match that theme and then connect them all together with interlinks. Since the theme from our example above is lists, the 2-3 new blog posts could be something like “The 20 Best Family Restaurants in [Area],” “Decluttering a Small Kitchen in 15 Steps” and “Everything You Need to Do in [Area] This Fall.”
Once you’ve written these posts you will now have 5 total list style articles. Either at the bottom of each of these articles or somewhere throughout, add links to the other four articles with a note such as “I think you’ll also enjoy these articles”. Feel free to use big bold calls to action, or a simple bullet list – the important thing is to make sure people who are returning to this page can see the update.
You are already the go-to site for some people on one or two topics, why not aim to be more to them than just that? Creating more useful content for them and interlinking it to your other articles and pages is great. Don’t lose sight of the main objective though – which I presume for most agents is converting those engaged readers into active leads.
Persona 3: Tribes Folk
This group of people is already part of your ‘tribe’, in that they receive either your social media updates or email marketing from you. They have opted in to hear from you, and in a lot of cases they are looking to you to produce content for them to consume. In some case they are passive followers who do no more for you than serve as another number for your total “likes” and “followers.”
Still, many people are actually following you online, actually open your emails, and actually click on your social media posts. A lot of those who will read this week’s Dojo article either clicked through a RealtyNinja email, Facebook Post or Tweet. (Thanks for reading!)
You’ll notice that when you are finished reading each of our weekly articles we ask you to download our free ebook (see bottom of page.) This exists on every blog post we publish. We believe that people who are reading The Dojo regularly (you) are part of our tribe already – now we want to bring you closer to us Ninjas by giving you our slick modern marketing guide for REALTORS® in return for your email in our mailing list (if you’re not on it already.)
~ Recommendations ~
Find ways to bring your tribe closer and closer to your brand without being aggressive or annoying. If your tribes folk find their way to your site through a social media post, be sure to capture their email while they are there so you can stay in better contact. Use embedded email optin forms from services like Mailchimp or OptinMonster to help you do this.
If you want to influence people to subscribe to your mailing list and bring them closer to your tribe, you’ll need to incentivize them. RealtyNinja is offering a beautifully designed marketing ebook for REALTORS® which is full of important info. What will you offer?
Put yourself in the visitor’s shoes and picture yourself receiving your offer and ask yourself “Is this worth my email address?” If you wouldn’t download it yourself, don’t peddle it to your visitors. Always look for ways to provide your tribes folk with real value before asking them to do something for you, including opt-in to your mailing list. The ability to influence people is never free, but it also doesn’t have to cost a lot.
Persona 4: Active Visitors
People are actively searching for things on their favourite search engine. From where their kids should go to school, to which trails are nearby their place, to new restaurants they should try, and the list goes on forever.
In many cases active visitors are your most likely group to convert into leads. A lot of these people are searching for a real estate agent in the area, and your website pops up. They are ready to start speaking with someone pretty soon, and you might be that someone (if your web-site is tight like the spider’s…)
Whether you’re sending people to a landing page on your website with a paid AdWords campaign, or your “[Area] Community Guide” is coming up on page 1 of Google is of little concern. The fact is that active visitors on your website are there because a specific page of your website appeared to contain what they were searching for so they clicked a link to it.
Is there a chance that if you have something they are searching for, you might also have other things they’d find useful?
~ Recommendations ~
If you have any search engine ad campaigns running, you’ll want to ensure the page you’re sending people to is tweaked to influence visitor behaviour. This is a somewhat redundant section, as we already covered landing page call to actions in Persona 1: Direct Visitors. Make sure there is one clear call to action that matches the ad the user clicked.
For instance, if I clicked your ad that said “Free Home Appraisal Via Email” I would expect a call to action on your landing page that gets me a step closer to my free home appraisal.
If people happen to find one of your blog posts or one of your web pages via organic (un-paid) search, you want to make sure that you’re influencing their behaviour there as well. Your objective should be to keep them on your website by feeding them more of what they like.
Ultimately you want to take Active Visitors and turn them into the Repeat Visitors and Tribes Folk I mentioned in earlier Personas. People who arrived on your site via paid or unpaid search ads shouldn’t be leaving without subscribing to your mailing list, or bookmarking something!
Persona 5: Persuaded Visitors
If you’ve never heard the term Remarketing before, it refers to online advertising that follows people around the internet for a period after they’ve visited your website.
Let’s say I was on your website yesterday, and today while on Facebook I see a Facebook advertisement about a real estate town hall you’re hosting next week. The reason I’m seeing that advertisement is that you chose to target past visitors of your website when you were creating it. Thus effectively creating a Facebook remarketing campaign.
Keep in mind, sometimes people left your website because they didn’t find what they were looking for. If you happen to convince these people to return, you’ll need to really impress them. In other cases, people will have had a positive experience with your site and they will be pleased to return for more.
~ Recommendations ~
If you’re not currently running any remarketing campaigns, I would recommend looking into it. Remarketing can be a pretty powerful way to re-capture someone’s attention after they’ve had an encounter with your brand.
Let’s talk about what people see after they click your remarketing advertisement. Is it a homepage? Is it a specific page on your website? Is it a landing page? Is it even your website? Refer to my previous example about the real estate town hall. That could be a remarketing campaign that simply invites your past website visitors to RSVP to an Event next time they are on Facebook.
Alternatively, that ad could link back to your website where there is an embedded RSVP form. In order to get their free ticket, they must first subscribe to your mailing list.
In the both methods above, you’re converting a Persuaded Visitor into Tribes Folk by having them engage with you on Facebook or join your Mailing List. You will probably earn less email addresses than you would Facebook Event RSVPs, but the email addresses are more valuable – decisions, decisions! Why not try both and pick a winner? See: A/B Testing
If your remarketing campaign is sending visitors back to a page on your website, make sure there is some cohesiveness to the experience. I wouldn’t recommend a remarketing campaign that simply sends your previous visitors to your homepage. You’ll need to invoke some moderate REALTOR® web design tactics to influence your Persuaded Visitors’ behaviour.
Persona 6: Influenced Visitors
This is a unique group of people. They were referred to your site by a 3rd party online. Meaning they clicked on a link to you from somewhere else on the internet.
Link-building is a highly important activity when it comes to search engine optimization. If other sites (particularly high ranking sites) are linking to your website, search engines will look at you as a reputable domain, and recommend you more frequently.
When these people arrive on your website from a 3rd party link, it’s usually because they have a certain expectation or need. They may need the product or service you’re offering, or they may expect a specific piece of information based on the link they clicked.
This group of people are much easier to influence with a lot less effort. They are coming to you through a recommendation which starts you off with a gold star. It’s up to you to keep it.
~ Recommendations ~
My feedback to you for these people would be to tighten up every page of your website with calls to action and awesome content. If you receive only 2 Influenced Visitors every month, your spider web should be able to convert them into leads with ease.
This visitor persona encompasses components and recommendations from all the others. That’s why this group is a great reminder to optimize every aspect of your REALTOR® web design to keep people engaged, clicking around your website, getting closer with your tribe, and ultimately getting in touch with you.
Good luck, and as always let me know if you have any questions in the comments or via email.