We are all pretty much in agreement now that people are looking for homes on the internet. So my question is: What is the make up of a great Real Estate website?
I have some ideas and maybe others in this community can help me expand on those ideas. I am thinking of reworking my site “Homes in Columbus GA” and would love to hear your thoughts. Here are a few things that I have been thinking.
- Search Capabilities. A great Realtor Website should first and foremost have great search capabilities as most potential clients want be able to search homes in your area. If you are worried about giving this information away – don’t be – because someone is going to provide the information and you want to be the one they turn to for info. a) Map Search
b) Lots of ways to search: Subdivision, Areas, MLS #, City, etc.
- Visual Appeal. A great site should also be pleasing to the eyes. a) Colors should be pleasant and indicative of your company and personality
b) Uncluttered - just like staging a house
- Memorable. Check out my friend Cal Carter’s site for Gulf Shores Condos – Gotta love that Crab!
- Realtor Info:
b) Reviews – We have had several clients tell us that we were picked based on our reviews.
- Area Information. Schools, Entertainment, Utilities – the more the better.
- Tools for Pre-Qualification, Mortgage Payment, and other helpful client info.
- Organized. Everything on your site should be easy to find and access and make logical sense to your visitor.
- Easy to Find. If no one can find your website – it is worthless. Either you have to work on your SEO to the point that the search engines put you on the first page or you need to be using a PPC service like HomeGain. Actually a combination of the two is the very best in my opinion. So a great website is Search Engine Friendly.
- Lead Capture – Realtors need ways to know who is visiting their site so they can follow up. If you cannot follow up with potential clients then you are not likely to have them end up using you. Usually the best place to get this done is through the IDX search system. As leads log in to look at homes the Realtor can follow up and customize searches for their clients.
- Incorporates a Blog – A real estate blog is almost essential in a great Realtor website because of the ease of updating content on your site and the search engine friendliness of most blogs. This is the place for Realtors to connect with their clients.
What else is important or will be important in the near future? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments section as it will help me develop my new real estate website.
Thanks for the compliments Wayne. I can’t wait to review your new site! It is going to look great and perform even better!
November 12th, 2008 at 12:23 pm
It should also include an area where different homes pictures rotate, so that the visitor does not have to click on anything to see all of the properties you’re listing.
November 12th, 2008 at 6:09 pm
All great advice, although I’ve seen some real estate websites that lead to a lot of leads but look horrible.
November 13th, 2008 at 9:40 am
Nice Post. Cals site is one of my favorite REW sites.
November 13th, 2008 at 2:07 pm
Good stuff Wayne! The key to the above blog is lead capture of course. You can have the best website in the world, but if you do not have it set up to capture leads, then you are leaving business on the table. Personally I’m not a big believer in spending thousands of dollars on websites…frankly I have to many ideas for different sites and currently have 6 with more to come. It would cost me over $100k in sites. I prefer templated sites that have the tools I need and only cost $50 per month!
Great blog Wayne! It was great meeting you this past weekend finally!
November 14th, 2008 at 4:30 am
Wayne, I have a few ideas for you. I don’t claim to be an expert, but if you like I’ll run a few things by you.
November 14th, 2008 at 1:43 pm
Thanks for the input!
@ Mitch – you are exactly right – conversion is the main thing. I do think that a good experience and tools for your clients can result in not only more leads but a more satisfied customer.
@ Charles – I would very much like your input. What is the best way to catch up with you? Phone? IM? E-mail?
November 26th, 2008 at 4:38 pm
Although home values are stabilizing, it is still very much a buyer’s market. Sellers today are confronted with a challenging market when it comes to listing their home.
July 31st, 2011 at 10:19 pm
I agree with what you have to say. I checked out Cal Carter’s site and it was great.
November 10th, 2011 at 10:31 pm