It took me 90-hours of work but it was finally done! My real estate website was looking amazing! I DIY’ed it, and saved $4000 dollars, I thought to myself as I sipped my cappuccino in my local café. I couldn’t wait to launch it and let all my clients and peers know that I not only have the skills to pay the bills in real estate but I could easily moonlight as a web designer. Boy was I wrong!
After what I considered a “successful” launch, I was ready for the leads to start flowing in. In the next 3 months I succeeded in getting one lead from my cousin. Who used a fake email to sign up for my email list. After consulting with some web designers and spending a bunch of money trying to fix the issue I was able to turn it around. Now my website converts at a higher level than it has ever done before, and I no longer have to pay a premium for leads from sources like Realtor.com and Zillow. So, here are the 5 tips I've learned that helped me take my website from zero leads to a lead capturing machine.
Tip 1: You do not have to build your real estate website from scratch.
This one might seem like a shock to you and it was a hard pill to swallow myself. I spent a week of my life building a website from scratch and apparently I did everything wrong. I overcomplicated it and I was ignorant of what makes a website stand out and convert. I thought it was the colors and copy that would pluck people off the internet and into my sphere. Although color and copy do assist in branding, it's less important than setting up a page that is geared to obtaining your prospect's information.
There are many services out there that have optimized the proper conversion set up so you don’t have to. These pre-made websites allow you to do everything that Zillow does without breaking your bank, and messing it up yourself. Sometimes a simple approach works better. One example is Kvcore. It is an amazing all-in-one service that can help you create a great-looking website that is simple and converts. There are many of these pre-made website options available, it just requires a bit of research.
Tip 2: Your homepage is not the most important page on your website.
Many agents are guilty of this mistake. I was even guilty of it as well when I first started creating my website. When you think of the home page you think of the face of your website. It is the digital brochure of your business but what happens to most brochures? That's right, they get discarded, and thrown in the trash.
A website is no different. Don’t spend a ton of time making your homepage perfect, because most traffic is not going to land or spend a lot of time there. Most traffic is generated through blogs, vlogs, paid traffic, and landing/squeeze pages. Which we will go over in the next tip.
Tip 3: Utilize Landing Pages and Squeeze Pages.
As mentioned above you should never send traffic or potential prospects to your website’s homepage. As attention spans grow shorter in our society our approach as Realtors has to be more direct. Prospects are jumping onto your website looking for something distinct, whether it be properties in a specific area and price range or information on closing costs.
This is why landing pages and squeeze pages are so valuable. Usually, when someone ends up on this page there is literally only one thing to do: Browse for properties or give their information in order to obtain something. The prospect will not be distracted by your bio, contact information, and other irrelevant information (Now I’m not saying your bio or contact info are irrelevant, but they distract from being able to collect the lead’s contact information). They are getting what they want faster and it is overall a better experience for them.
Tip 4: Make sure your website has an IDX solution.
If you still decide to DIY your website make sure you have a live feed of MLS properties on your different pages. If your website only consists of forms and info pages you are really doing yourself a disservice. There are many IDX solutions to choose from. If you would like something basic I would recommend IDX Broker. It works with many different template websites and is simple to use.
Tip 5: Don’t shy away from paid-for traffic!
Most people think once they create their website prospects are just going to find them through the power of the internet. That may have worked at the beginning of the internet and when AOL dial-up was the only way to log on. However, now there is more competition and floods of people creating websites about real estate, daily. Paid advertising is one extremely good way of helping your brand stand out among the competition. Facebook, Google, and Youtube Pre-Roll Ads are the top three paid traffic sources of driving traffic to your slice of the pie.
The more people see your landing pages and content the more conversions you will have. Which will inevitably lead to more business.
Are you thinking of building your own website using a platform like Squarespace, or opting to use a service like KvCore? Let me know in the comments below.