I think you’ll agree with me when I say: It’s REALLY hard to design a great real estate agent website.
Or is it?
Well, it turns out, you can have a real estate website that truly differentiates you from the competition.
There are millions of real estate related searches online every month. The simple fact is that most real estate websites are set up in a way that they don’t receive any of that traffic.
Your real estate agent website can drive more sales, generate more leads, and create a great first impression about your business.
But why is it that most websites generate almost no traffic, rank poorly for your target keywords, and do little to help your business?
…because you have been thinking incorrectly about your website.
And today I have information that will help you design and create the kind of website that outperforms your competition.
37 insanely actionable real estate agent website design and marketing tips that you can use right now.
Look: Most real estate agents think any website will do for their business.
But in my experience, who designs and builds your website is hugely important.
People that succeed in real estate do two things very well:
First, they identify marketing techniques that get them prospects and property listings.
Second, they put 100% of their resources into executing and scaling those techniques.
But you are probably wondering:
“What does that have to do with websites?”
In one word, EVERYTHING.
The right website will help you generate more prospects and more listings.
Here is the deal:
You could learn to design your own website.
But, is learning how to design a website going to help you succeed as a realtor?
I know it is tempting to try one of those do-it-yourself or free websites. But if you want to differentiate your real estate business from the rest you need a professionally designed website.
Here are the top reasons your real estate website should be designed by a professional designer:
- When people look at a DIY website they know it. Don’t create a negative first impression about your real estate business with a homemade website design.
- Hiring a professional web designer will save you time. You won’t sell more real estate by wasting your time learning web design. Hire an expert to design your website quickly.
- When you design your own website you will most likely use some template that looks the same as thousands of other real estate websites. Your custom designed website will differentiate your real estate agency.
- A professional website designer will create an easy to navigate website.
- A web design company will point out important website features you might not have thought of.
- An experienced website professional will help you with SEO to target your market.
#2 – Switch to WordPress
Guess what…currently, 75 million websites use WordPress.
Because WordPress is an easy to use open source website platform.
Your real estate website will benefit from WordPress the following ways:
- It is an open source website platform. What does that mean to you? It means that you are not locked into some company’s proprietary website platform.
- WordPress is a powerful website platform. As a result, your real estate agent website will have great features from the very beginning.
- WordPress makes adding content and editing your web pages easily. For example, if you want to list one of your newest listings you can add it to your website in a matter of minutes.
- WordPress is also a search engine friendly website platform. Realtors are in a super competitive situation. SEO (Search Engine Optimization) for your website is essential.
#3 – Keep your website consistent
Users need a consistent look and feel throughout your website. Keep your website predictable.
Because a predictable website is easy to use. Easy to use websites are more effective.
There should be two main designs within your real estate agent website, the homepage and the inner page design. This biggest reason you want a consistent website design is that you don’t want visitors to be confused.
There are several ways to keep your website consistent:
- Keep your navigation the same throughout your website. If your navigation is on the top on your homepage, make sure it remains in the same area on all other pages.
- Use the same one of two font types throughout.
- Maintain a uniform font size and color throughout your website.
- Place your address and phone number in the same area on each web page.
- Keep a consistent voice throughout your website.
- Use a consistent color palette. If your colors are blue, gray, and white, don’t add orange and purple to your design colors.
- Use professional, high-resolution images.
- Headers, footers, and sidebars should be consistent.
- Keep button colors the same.
- The more important the menu item the closer it should be to the left side.
#4 – Optimize for mobile
There is a good chance that 50 percent or more of your visitors look at your website using a mobile device.
What’s the bottom line?
If your website is not optimized for mobile, visitors will click off your website and head to your competition.
#5 – Simple website navigation
A simple website navigation will increase your website conversion rates. It is that simple. Simple navigation simplifies the user experience. A happy user is more likely to stick around, use, and return to your website. And, that’s what you want.
A simple navigation includes the following features:
- It is consistent throughout your website. If your navigation in on the top on one page and on the side or bottom on other pages, you are confusing your visitors. Keep your navigation in the same area for all of your pages.
- Use easy to understand labels. For example, don’t name your “About” menu item something unexpected. Creativity is great, but making your visitors guess what a menu item means is a recipe for disaster. An “About” page should be called “About” and a “Contact” page should be called “Contact” or “Contact Us”.
- Limit the number of menu items to seven. Fewer menu items are simple for people and good for search engines too.
- Avoid long lists in your navigation. If you have a long list of items, group them into chunks of five or fewer items.
#6 – Build credibility
As a real estate agent, you are competing with many. Your website will help you differentiate you from the other real estate professionals if you use it to build credibility.
There are many ways to build website credibility:
- Have a professionally designed website. Homemade or DIY websites hurt your credibility. People judge you by your website. Make it look great.
- Make your phone number and address visible at all times. I recommend placing the phone number in the header area and your business address in the footer area.
- Make it easy to get in touch with you. Your “Contact” link should be in the navigation all the time.
- Use simple language everyone will understand. Avoid industry terms. Your visitors are not industry experts. Use words and language they easily understand.
- Provide photos of yourself and your staff.
- User real photos. Avoid stock photos.
- Show customer testimonials.
- Show measurable results and avoid superlatives. Instead of “Best real estate agent in San Diego” show the number of properties you have sold.
- Show logos of professional organizations you are a member of.
- Show customer reviews.
- Write a blog regularly, publish at least once a month.
- Get authority recommendation. For example, if you are just starting out in real estate, get a more experienced or more successful real estate agent or broker to endorse you.
- Have at least one active social media outlet.
#7 – Optimize the top of the fold
The top of the fold area of your website is what people see first. Therefore, it is the most valuable area of your website. Place the most important information in the top of the fold area.
Here is what should be included in the top of the fold:
- Your phone number
- Call to action
- Powerful image
- Search window
- Email squeeze feature
#8 – Use white space
Want to know the best part?
White space makes your website better.
A white space on a website is like a well-timed pause. It creates emphasis. It draws attention.
There are many advantages of white space in web design:
- Easy on the eyes. White space between paragraphs, images, and other website elements helps people understand what they are looking at.
- White space increases comprehension by 20 percent. according to Human Factors International.
- White space highlights a call to action.
- Your web designer uses white space to create balance in the site layout.
- Nothing makes a more effective separator than white space.
#9 – Add a value proposition
A value proposition is a must have for your realtor website.
You know you have a great value proposition when you have a statement that paints a clear picture of what your brand has to offer for prospects.
Your value proposition should communicate the following:
- How your real estate service solves or improves problems.
- What benefits can your clients expect working with you?
- Why should customers work with you instead of an another real estate professional?
#10 – Add a call to action
No real estate website is complete without a call to action. Think about all the possible actions you can take while visiting a website. You can make a phone call, download a file, subscribe to an email list, make a purchase. And, the list just goes on-and-on. Your website needs a call to action to convert visitors into prospects.
What do you want visitors to do once on your website? Do you want them to call you to schedule an appointment? Then, tell them to “Call now to schedule an appointment”. Do you want them to subscribe to your email list? Tell them why they should subscribe.
#11 – Answer prospect and customer questions on your website
Your website should have answers to the 100 most often asked questions in real estate.
Because your prospects will use the same questions to search online. When you answer commonly asked questions you improve your search engine rankings. In addition, when on your website visitors are more likely to stick around because you have answers to their questions.
Here are some common customer or prospect questions:
- Why should you list my home for sale?
- Why should I hire you to find my dream home?
- What makes your real estate business unique?
- How are you different or better than other real estate agents in your area?
- How long have you been in business?
- How is your customer service exceptional?
- What are your past customers say about the service they have received from you?
- How can you help me sell my home faster?
- How can you help me sell my home for the most money?
#12 – Use easy to read typography
There is no easier way to improve website usability than using the right fonts. Typography can improve website conversion rate and usability and increase comprehension. The right font will also increase the speed people are able to read content on your website.
There are several ways you can improve the typography of your real estate website:
- Use no more than 3 font types
- Use sans serif fonts and avoid serif text.
- Use a font size that is easy to read. 12pts for Times New Roman, for example, is a good start.
- Use standard fonts. It is true that it might not be the most creative to use standard fonts, but you will have a user-friendly website.
- Use a mix of capitalization. It makes sense to use ALL CAPS in some areas, lower case in others.
- Use proper character spacing.
- Use limited font colors.
- Don’t use blue for font color. People associate blue text with clickable content.
- Avoid red text color. People associate red with errors.
- Never use the same font color as background or other web page element colors.
- Avoid moving or blinking text. Sorry, it is annoying.
#13 – Proofread all of your website content
You might think that proofreading your website content is a waste of time. Proofreading is important because spellchecker will fail to pick up many writing errors. You might spend 20-hours to write an epic blog post about getting a home ready for listing, and your hard work could suffer if there are errors in your writing. Spelling and grammatical errors convey carelessness and unprofessionalism. It is the exact opposite of the impression you want your website to create.
The following proofreading tips should help you improve your website content:
- Don’t proofread your writing right after completing an article. Give it some time between the writing and proofreading.
- As you proofread text, read it out loud.
- Aim for consistency in writing style, capitalization, services, spelling, and industry specific terminology throughout your content.
- Create a quick reference style guide to be used proofreading all of your website content.
#14 – Use bullets
Bullet points make scanning a web page easier. If you want a great real estate agent website, you better know how to write bullet points that grab the reader’s attention.
Here is how to write great bullet points:
- Show a clear benefit and promise to the website visitor. Think of bullet points as mini-headlines.
- Try to keep all of your bullet points approximately the same length. It is easier on the eyes.
- Keep your bullets easy to read by avoiding sub-bullets. Sub-bullets might create confusion.
- Bullets don’t have to be complete sentences. A bullet is more like a headline not necessarily sentences.
#15 – Limit the number of slides
Homepage slideshows are very popular with real estate agents. Unfortunately, sliders are not what makes a great website. Slideshows have a very low click thru rate. What does that mean? It means that users to use them. Only about 1% of site visitors interact with slides. Almost 90% of the interaction is with the first slide.
The simple fact about slides is that while they might look good they will hurt your conversion rate.
Slides also slow down the load speed of a web page.
#16 – Show testimonials
A customer testimonial is the best possible social proof there is. Your prospects can hire any of your competitors. When you show customer testimonials you are increasing your credibility score. It is a great way to differentiate yourself from the competition.
The best testimonials have the following features:
- Ask for testimonials that provide details about your real estate transactions. Make sure that testimonials show the benefits of working with you.
- Use images with your testimonials. It is very effective to use photos of your past real estate clients next to their testimonials. Images make testimonials more authentic.
- Create a testimonials page and show a long list of testimonials. Don’t limit your testimonials to one page. Show off your testimonials throughout your website. Include them on your “Contact” page, your “About” page, etc.
- Try to get testimonials that include a short story about the service you have provided. Ask your customers to share what made working with you different than others.
- It helps to have some video testimonials. You don’t need a professional video production team to do this. You can make amazing videos with your smartphone.
- Use real testimonials only. Never use fake testimonials.
#17 – Use images
Images make great websites. Whatever you are trying to do from differentiating your business from the competition or explain a service the right images will help. Use images to support your text content.
There are several reasons to use images on your real estate agent website:
- Images make your website content more interesting.
- Photos give a break for the reader. Seeing only text makes reading slow and difficult.
- You can optimize each image with the alt tag for your target keyword.
- Photos give clarity to text content.
- Great images make your website look more professional.
- Images encourage social media shares.
- Photos are great at invoking reactions.
- Images a beneficial for visual learners.
- Images grab visitor attention and hold attention.
- A great image will make your website more memorable.
#18 – Optimize each image
To get the greatest benefits of images, they must be optimized.
Here are several ways to optimize images:
- Reduce the file size before you upload it to your website. Modern cameras and even smartphones take very high-resolution photos. There is no need to have such high-resolution images on your website. They will slow down the load speed of your site.
- Add an alt tag to each of your images. For example, if you are optimizing a web page for “real estate agent website designer” add the same alt tag to the image on the page.
- Name the image file to start with the target keyword. If your target keyword if “real estate agent web designer” name your image “real-estate-agent-web-designer.jpg.
#19 – Include target keyword in headline
Your headline should include the target keyword of the page. For example, if you have a web page that targets “real estate agent website design”, make sure that you include the keywords within the headline.
#20 – Create an exceptional “About” page
Your “About” is one of the most frequented web pages of your website. It is important to have a great “About” page. A great “About” page is about telling a compelling story about your business.
Here is a list of features that make an “About” page exceptional:
- Include a short video about you. Why are you in business? What motivates you? How do you want to help your customers?
- Include at least one customer testimonial. Share what others say about your services. Prospects trust your customers more than they trust you.
- Display your accreditations, accomplishments, and achievements.
- Share your involvement with nonprofit organizations.
- Tell the story about your business. When did you start? Why did you start? Where have you been and where are you going?
- Include photos of you and your team members.
- Show an image of your office.
- Include your address and contact information.
#21 – Create unique title tags
The most effective website optimize each web page for a different keyword phrase. The keyword of the web page should be in the page title.
#22 – Optimize each page for your target keyword
For best results, you must optimize each page for a target keyword. It is a mistake to optimize a web page for several keywords. Focus on one keyword phrase.
The following steps will help you optimize any web page for any keyword phrase:
- Include your target keyword in the page title.
- Start the meta description with the keyword.
- Use the right alt tag for images.
- Include keyword in headlines.
- Your content should include the target keyword.
- Include related keywords.
- Include keyword in internal link anchor text.
Google doesn’t rank websites, it ranks web pages. Your goal should be to rank each web page for a target keyword.
#23 – Optimize your internal links
Your internal links should contain target keywords. For example, if there is a web page that is optimized for “real estate agent website” other internal pages should link to the page. Each page should use “real estate agent website” in the internal link anchor text.
#24 – Maintain your website
Your website platform should be updated at least once a month. If you are using WordPress, as you should, make sure that the platform is updated once a month. At the same time, your website’s theme and plugins should be updated too.
#25 – Squeeze an email from each visitor
Email marketing is still one of the most effective online marketing tools. The first lesson about email marketing is that you can’t be shy about it. You have to make it loud and clear that you want visitors to subscribe to your list. The challenge is to give people a reason to subscribe. You have to give people real value. Otherwise, they will never subscribe to your email list.
#26 – Show your contact information
This is one of the simplest things you can do yet many websites fail at it. Show all of your contact information. Make it easy to find. Show your phone number in the header area. Show your business address in the footer area. Also, show your contact information on your “About” page. Your address and phone number should be visible on every page.
#27 – Use Google Analytics
GA (Google Analytics) is not only a great tool, but it is also free. Make sure that you ask your web designer to install GA on your website.
#28 – Write exceptional website content
Great content will differentiate your website from the competition.
Because most websites have really bad content.
Great website content is hard to create. If you look at this article it is over 4100-words and took many hours to write. That is why most real estate websites don’t have great content. Because the real estate office is not willing to put in the time to create great content.
There is no more effective way to differentiate your real estate website than by creating epic website content.
#29 – Keep your website content fresh
Most real estate teams never update their websites. Once the web designer is done building the website the real estate agent stops. That is the wrong approach. Once your website is live it is your job to add new content, regularly. I don’t mean once every six months. You should add content several times a month.
#30 – Create optimized landing pages
If you want a great real estate website, you should have multiple landing pages. For example, if you are listing condominiums you should have a landing page for that. If you are selling detached homes, you should have a landing page for that. If you are providing home valuations, you should have a landing page for that. Do you get my point? You need to have a landing page for each major service area.
#31 – Upgrade your hosting
Many real estate agents have low-performance websites because they want to save a few dollars on website hosting. It is true that you can buy website hosting for a few dollars a month, but you get what you pay for. Your website will be slow, crashing, and likely infected with malware before you know it, a great way to get your site banned by Google.
Invest in a good quality website hosting service.
#32 – Improve page speed
Fast loading websites have higher conversion rates.
There are several ways to improve the load speed of your WordPress website:
- Sign up for a top quality website host. Don’t look for the cheapest hosting service. Look for quality.
- Optimize your WordPress database.
- Decrease the file size of your images.
- Use a caching plugin.
- Use a content delivery network.
#33 – Test your website in multiple browsers
You don’t know what browser your visitors will use. It is the best to test your website using the most popular browsers.
Your website should be tested in the following browsers:
- Google Chrome
- Mozilla Firefox
- Microsoft Edge
- Of course, also test your website on Android and iPhone browsers.
#34 – Check for Malware
Unfortunately, no website is perfectly secure. Hackers target websites to upload malicious code. It is possible that your website will be infected with malware someday. If your website hasn’t been updated in the last 30-days, your website is even more vulnerable. When your website is infected with malware it will be removed from the search engine indexes.
What that means is that your website no longer exists to the searching public.
Getting your website delisted from Google and the rest of the search engines is one of the worst possible things that could happen to your website.
The most important thing about malware is quick detection and removal. Scan your website for malware once a week. If you are not sure how to do this make sure that you hire a professional.
#35 – Blog Regularly
To blog is to differentiate your real estate website from your competition. Regular blog posts are required to create a successful website. You can personalize your website with a blog. There is no better way to differentiate than yourself than regularly publishing on your blog.
Here are some ideas for real estate blog posts:
- Share interesting real estate transactions. You can share interesting stories about past deals. Make it a learning experience for your prospects.
- Answer the 100 most frequently asked questions. What are the top concerns of prospects who contact you? Create a detailed blog post answering each question.
- Create video interviews with homeowners.
- Blog about your processes. What makes your processes better than the competition?
- Write about the different neighborhoods of your niche.
- Make a list of the newest developments.
- Blog about a list of famous people connected to your market.
- Make a list of false assumptions about real estate and debunk them.
- Blog about a list of resources for people relocating to your city.
- List private and public schools in your area.
- Write a list of things-to-do in your city.
- Create a list of cheapest properties for sale.
- Blog about what you love the most about your area.
#36 – Create Videos
Video is one of the most popular types of website content. When you add videos to your website you increase the value of your website. Make sure that your videos provide valuable information for your website visitors. You can add videos answering frequently asked questions. You should also add some video testimonials. Another great place to add video to your real estate website is on your “About” page.
It is important to keep your videos fairly short. The most effective website videos are two-minutes or shorter.
#37 – Be Social
You should be active on at least one social network. Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, or another social network, make sure you are active on at least one of them. Your website should link to your social network page. You should share new content with your followers.
The key is to stay active and engage with your followers. Most real estate agents have useless social network accounts. If you are inactive on social media, then what’s the point?