At CategoryCode we do quite a bit of real estate marketing and we have begun to build a proven process by which we’ve achieved great success. Because of this we love seeing new stats regarding this local niche.
On October 30, Top Draw Inc. posted an infographic on there blog called Alberta Searches 2012. In their infographic they display what Albertans are searching for most on Google. They did an absolute fantastic job and we were happy to see some stats on real estate. If you browse to the section “Home Sweet Home” you will see some great stats.
We always educate our real estate clients at how competitive this market is. It takes work to penetrate, but it can be done with a strategic plan in place. Finding statistics like those of Top Draw’s really help when planning your marketing strategy.
The #1 searched term for real estate is mls followed by rent. Some of the more long-tail terms are homes for sale and mls edmonton.
These are great and now let’s start to think of a marketing strategy.
Firstly let’s look at traffic generation. You want to get your website in front of the people looking for your services. This is called Inbound Marketing. Well, these statistics show that some of the most searched terms in Alberta are “mls”, “rent”, “homes for sale” and “mls edmonton”.
Let’s set the ‘rent’ keyword aside for a second. The majority of these terms are buying-centric. This helps us take our strategy a step further. There are more people on Google looking to buy than looking to sell. This is demonstrated by none of the top 10 keywords being “selling a home” or “free home evaluations” or related to selling.
So as we setup of marketing strategy we can see some solid keywords we can target to capture some internet traffic. Now trying to optimize for “mls” alone will be difficult, so you can start to look at long tail versions of this keyword and use it as a root to build from. Taking it one step further would be “mls edmonton”. You can continue to build from there. Using a term like “mls edmonton” will still have weight for “mls” in organic seo and you can target both when using pay-per-click advertising.
The next section of the infographic is important as well. You can see that when it comes to branded terms, “Remax” is the most searched term. Followed by “comfree”, “vrbo” and “century 21″. This is also fantastic information. If you happen to be a RE/MAX REALTOR® then you definitely should do some work with that keyword as it is highly searched for. Since RE/MAX has spent that much time and effort on there brand recognition, take advantage of it!
Now if you aren’t with a RE/MAX brokerage, then we can still use this to our advantage in a different way. Another form of traffic generation we use is per-per-click advertising with Google Adwords. We classify the above mentioned keywords as competitor keywords. If people are searching for your competitors, you can still advertise to them! If your with a different organization, there is still a large amount of people searching for “Remax” so let’s put your business in front of them and see if we can’t sway them by the benefits of working with you.
Conversion Rate Optimization
Inbound Marketing is highly important. If you do not have people coming to your website then having the best website in the world will not do you much good. On the other side of the coin, if you have thousands of visitors but a poor website, that is money down the drain as well.
Conversion Rate Optimization is the other piece of the Real Estate Marketing puzzle.
Essentially CRO is building and designing a website that will turn your website visitors into leads and/or customers.
When we begin working on this part of the strategy these statistics play a very important role. To create a highly effective webpage you want the message of webpage to match what the visitors are looking for when they come to it. We call this continuity.
For example, if you follow our tips from above and are targeting “mls edmonton”. People searching for this are looking for MLS real estate listings in Edmonton. This means they are looking to buy (in most cases). But, if they click through to your website and the first thing they see your marketing is focuses on promoting Free Home Evaluations there is a very good chance they will leave.
To create the highest converting pages you need continuity to match what the visitor is looking for. If they are looking to buy then your page should be built with this in mind. You can still have information about Free Home Evaluations but it shouldn’t be the focus.
Extending and Building on the Strategy
What we have discussed is a foundation for a solid strategy. However, this can be extended and scaled to be even more effective. Here is one of many ways you can extend your strategy.
Multiple Landing Pages
Having multiple landing pages is a very effective way to increase your conversion rate. Since your in real estate, you help people with both buying and selling. So you don’t want to only focus on one. A tip however is to create multiple landing pages for different types of visitors. If you have Google Adwords running and you have some keywords targeted towards buyers and some targeted towards sellers, give them what they want!
If someone comes to your website from searching “mls edmonton” it would be best to have them land on a page about buying.
If someone comes to your website from search “free home evaluations it would be best to have them land on a page about selling and free home evaluations.
Always Track, Test and Measure
With everything you do, you need to track and measure the results. We have provided an overview of the foundation of our marketing strategy, but we track, measure and test everything.
In-depth keyword research is needed to determine the best and most useful keywords to target. Targeting “mls” may bring the most visitors, but targeting “edmonton mls listings” may bring more leads. These are things you must always test and measure.
Likewise, we are always testing the best landing page to display to our website visitors. If they are looking to buy we are always testing different elements to try and generate the most leads by identifying what they truly want and what triggers them to convert. You can only discover this through testing.
The key to constant improvement is testing new ideas and tracking the performance.
We have gone over a lot here. Here are some important take away points:
- Use inbound marketing to put yourself in front of the people already looking for you
- Make sure the message on your website matches what the visitor is looking for
- You can always scale things up or down
- Always track, test and measure performance to continually improve
As always there are many exceptions to the rule. This is an overview and a foundation of how we build our real estate marketing strategy. We have an in-depth process and extensive tool-set which allows us to bring targeted users to targeted landing pages and convert them into hot leads. However, this is only done by continuous market research and testing. Marketing is an ever-evolving and on-going process and it is never complete. You must always test new ideas, new strategies to continuously improve!
View Top Draws full Alberta Searches 2012 infographic.
Interested in Real Estate Marketing? Contact us today.