Real Estate SEO tips
SEO: Search Engine Optimization
Goal: Get your website on the first page of google
And get lot’s of leads 🙂
It all starts with the SEO research!
Every blog post, every page on your website, everything you ever do for your real estate presence online should be based off research.
For our blog we do it two ways:
Find keywords with low competition and decent traffic that we can rank for easily.
Writing blog posts with the sole purpose of ranking high for the keyword. This is a great way to start getting traffic but, a lot of times the content itself will suffer and get less shares/comments/views/etc.
Create high quality content first and figure out what keywords you can target after.
You will have to go back through the log post and make some changes to optimize for the keywords but, generally it ends up in a lot better content for the readers.
The key is finding a balance between the two.
Our balance is 90% content for our audience, 10% for keywords. Reason being, we want to focus on creating really, really great content. I don’t think you can do that when having to focus on optimizing it for a certain keyword.
How to find keywords with less realtors to compete with
We use a couple tools, one of them is paid but, I couldn’t live without it. I absolutely love it
Long Tail Search Pro (Free trial, worth checking out!)
This allows us to research many keywords at a time and easily let’s us see what type of traffic they’re getting as well as how big the competition is.
You will need a Moz account and Google Analytics account, both of which are free.
Remember, to rank well for a keyword you’re going to need some links back to your content.
A great way to do this is guest posting and writing an in depth article on something while linking to yourself as a resource.
Uber Suggest (free)
Start with a keyword that you want more ideas for
And it instantly gives you a list of related keywords
Then take these keywords and use them in Google’s Keyword Planner. This will allow you to see the traffic these keywords get.
Also check out these guides:
Discover other real estate agents backlinks
Backlinks are the #1 way google decides how to rank you.
If you spy on your competition and see where their backlinks are coming from, then you can go to the same places and try to get some as well.
You can use open site explorer to see who is exactly linking them.
After you type in a website you will get back results
When targeting these results, you want to target the pages with the highest page authority and domain authority. Those will serve the most benefit to you. Also as a general rule of thumb, don’t try to get any links under the rating of 10. Google might look at them as spammy links and penalize you for that.
Go to those websites and contact the web master and see if you can get a link as well.
If you have never built backlinks before or are having trouble building backlinks, I highly suggest checking out this post on link building.
These are some other resources you can use for checking backlinks:
https://www.backlinkwatch.com/ (really simple)
Long form content rules
Google loves posts that are around 1500+ words. That doesn’t mean make every post 1500 words.
What it does mean though is that you should make all your content as in-depth as possible.
serpIQ analyzed the top results in Google and this is what they found:
The average website that ranks in the #1 spot of a Google search has at least 2000 words.
Content marketing also has the side benefit of picking up long tail keywords. Rather then targeting them specifically, Google will actually crawl through all your content, see which keywords it can rank you for other than your main target and it will rank you automatically for these long tail keywords.
To get automatic long tail keywords for your real estate blog you will need long form content.
The more in-depth your posts are, the more chances you have for ranking in keywords you didn’t even know existed.
Long form content also get’s more links.
Try to create content that will get your potential buyer or seller lead sucked in and want to share after they’re done reading it.
Which leads to the next point!
Content is king for Realtors and everyone
If you want to rank well for keywords you need backlinks.
To get backlinks you need content worth linking to.
What makes content great though?
Make sure your blog is formatted correctly and easy to read for the reader.
It’s not proven that Google actually analyzes this but, many SEO experts think that Google actually analyzes how easy your posts are to read.
Use images to break up content. No one likes reading a wall of text. It’s intimidating because of the time it will take up. Make the content easy to consume.
Time spent on content
To give you an example, every blog post on this blog has at least 3 hours dedicated to it. If you want people to share what your writing it has to be good.
I don’t know any writer in the world that can just take a topic, write about it once and have people love it.
Write a draft and then quickly go through every section and ask yourself :
“How can I make this better”
Then go through it again section by section and ask yourself:
“Is this the best it can be? Can I add any informative links? Will the reader be lost anywhere?”
When you can answer yes, that section is done.
Good real estate blog theme
I would suggest using WordPress as a platform to do your real estate content marketing on.
There is a certain level of expectations people have on the web today. When they visit a website they automatically judge it within 1 second. If you want to decrease bounce rate and have more people read what you’re puttin’ down, then make sure you have a great design! There are tons of free WordPress themes you can install with a single click! No excuses!
WordPress SEO by Yoast
If you’re using WordPress I highly suggest this plugin.
There was a day when you actually had to know HTML and all the SEO on page optimizations to rank well for a keyword in your real estate niche. Not anymore!
This plugin let’s you type in the keyword that you want and then tells you exactly what to do in order to make it rank high on Google.
Here it is helping me with the basics of on page optimization:
Next is the page analysis where it reads the content like Google would and let’s me know how to make it attractive for higher real estate rankings:
I personally don’t look at it until i’m done with the blog post completely and then start the optimizing. Content first always!
Google Webmaster Tools
This is separate from Google analytics.
Some basic benefits:
- Access to more accurate keyword research. See what type of rankings your real estate website is actually ranking for.
- Latest data on links to your website.
- Get updates if your site is doing anything Google doesn’t like and might be penalizing you for so you can fix it.
- Insights of crawling activity and how they’re indexing your site
- Index and get ranked faster by fetching your site (can only do this limited number of times)
Google Webmaster tools will let you know if you have any errors on your page effecting your SEO, such as duplicate content coming from meta tags.
Sounds like it could be a complicated issue right?
Not if you’re using the WordPress plugin above.
It also allows you to see all the real estate keywords you’re currently ranking for.
(not our data)
Unlike Google Analytics where it may only pick up a couple keywords here and there.
Not a lot of Realtors are using this tool, use it to your advantage!
This is great because you might find a keyword you’re ranking for that you weren’t expecting and it might be driving a lot of traffic too.
After you see that then you can start crafting the content to that keyword so you rank even higher and get even more traffic.
Installing this on all your real estate websites / blogs is a complete MUST.
Create link bait material for other Realtors
Link bait is content created for the single purpose of having other people link to it. No, not everyone will want to share your blog posts.
A great example is infographics
They always attract back links because they look awesome and you also learn so much from them! Naturally people want to share these and it’s a great way to start attracting backlinks while gaining authority as a Realtor.
- They are also one of the most shared types of content on Twitter.
Infographics aren’t the only type of link bait though, there is regular blog posts and other stuff you can do to create link bait.
When creating link bait you want to put yourself in the mindset of:
“What can I create that other people will share?”
It might be something as simple as a funny real estate meme.
Use some of your creativity and try multiple things until you figure out what works for you.
*Side note – Image Search (after link bait)
Do a Google image search after your link bait campaign. If anyone has the image on their website or blog and is not linking to you, you can e-mail them and ask them to link to your website if they want to keep the image up. 99% of the time they will give you a back link. It’s a great strategy for building easy links.
The title of your post matters for more reasons than you think
The #1 thing you want to consider when creating a title is “Will people click this title?”
Google ranks you in searches based off clicks as well. If you create an awesome post with a crappy title that no one is clicking, you will start to lose some ranking.
This should be enough reason for you to start thinking more about your titles if you aren’t already.
If you have some time check out this video on titles The Science Behind Great Headlines (It’s by far the most in-depth video on titles on the web. Worth the watch if you have time, they analyze data from very successful sites and give it to you in small chunks you can use right away.)
Ever heard of UpWorthy ?
They require all authors to make at least 25 titles before picking a single one to go with.
When you take time and put effort into every single aspect of content marketing and SEO, it pays off.
Partner with local small businesses
This is something I don’t see anyone doing!
Every community has a ton of small businesses and they all have websites.
Contact them and work out a deal with them to get a link back to your real estate website or blog.
A great way to prospect for these is craigslist under the services section. I just did a quick search under the service section and clicked a random persons advertisement and this is what I found
A local small business with a website.
Make a deal that is mutually beneficial for them to link you on their website.
Maybe add a ‘Trusted local businesses’ section on your website where you link to them and they link to you.
Figure out a deal you can work out with them and pursue it. They want SEO benefits just as much as you do and are willing to listen if you put in the effort.
The GREATEST SEO tactic of all:
If you made it this far in the post, great. You’re already ahead of your competition.
You should be happy SEO is a tough, long, enormous up hill battle.
Because only the dedicated get rewarded.
If you put in time, consistently learn and always try to improve, you’ll be at the top of the rankings in no time.
Remember once you get there someone will have to work twice as hard to get where you are.
SEO Resources every Realtor should subscribe to
And don’t forget to subscribe to our blog of course 😉