With millions of local real estate websites trying to get ahead of your own agency website on Google and other search engines, you need a strategy to ensure yours stands out from the competition. The higher your website listing is on a search engine page, the more traffic your website is likely to generate.
Focusing on building your main search result position is too often ignored or misunderstood by agents, costing them potential clients. No matter how good your website is, it will generate far less traffic if it is listed too far down the search results page.
Here are my seven tactics you can use to make sure your website leapfrogs past the competition on the major search engines.
1. Use Google Search Console to fix errors
This free, handy tool can make sure your site stays clean by fixing any errors detected and resolving malware or spam issues. It can also monitor your website traffic, optimise your Google ranking, and make decisions about the appearance of your site’s search results.
2. Take Google’s own courses for how to make a good website
Take Google’s Webmaster Academy course to learn how to make a website that will show up well in Google search rankings. Understand and follow Google’s Webmaster guidelines so Google can index, find and rank your website.
3. Write a comprehensive meta description
Meta descriptions are short sentences below a website’s link that summarise the website content. You have 160 characters to grab readers’ attention, so use precise, descriptive language. Include a call to action and use relevant keywords as much as possible, such as “real estate”, “property” or “listings”, to help your website improve its relevancy in search results.
4. Have your clients give a Google review rating
A well-designed, accessible and informative website will help improve Google reviews. Always remind your customers to leave reviews of your business through Google and make it a part of your client feedback outreach. It is unlikely that your business will be reviewed positively every time, so reply to negative reviews to show other users you are invested in your clients.
5. Have a URL that is search engine friendly
Your URL has a major impact on the position of your search results ranking. It is important to use a straightforward file name that will make your listing seem more relevant to users. When you are creating URLs for your website, make sure you are paying attention to keywords and their placement.
6. Use photo snippets on your website listing
Snippets are information such as photos, ratings or time it takes to complete a task, that can be added to the search listing. Snippets are important for content such as articles and blogs, as they assist users in determining the relevancy of a website to their search.
7. Optimise your website for local searches
Fill out your business profiles on local directories, especially in Google Maps. When Google has more information and a greater understanding of what your business is, it increases the chances of your website listing showing up on Google Maps when you type your business (or a competitor’s) into Google.