Many property companies and real estate agents operate profitably with poor digital marketing or without it at all. Ironically, because the industry has generally high profits, issues can persist for years without grabbing the attention of business owners and marketing managers. What’s more, the availability of other channels, such as third party aggregator sites like Zoopla, often means property companies don’t rely on their own website to generate most of their business. Less profitable businesses don’t have the stamina to carry these issues, but property companies usually do.
Luckily, this also means digital marketing for property businesses can often be improved greatly. We’ve written this post to highlight some typical, low hanging fruit, that we come across when marketing real estate businesses.
If they sound familiar or relevant, this means that you can probably improve your digital marketing and make it more efficient.
Your property business might have numerous audiences that you’re trying to reach. Typically, certain enquiries are worth more than others. A large developer looking to commission an agent is worth more to your business than a new tenant enquiry. A sales enquiry will probably generate more revenue than a rental one. Having many goals is probably essential for many realtors, but can cause issues for both the humans overseeing campaigns and also the machine learning trying to optimise them.
There are several solutions
Organising your conversion set up so it makes sense for your business can get quite technical, but it will ultimately help you understand your performance easily and intuitively.
Conversion rates can seem quite theoretical for non-marketers but they are extremely important for online businesses. In online commerce, businesses live or die based on their conversion rates.
I’ll give you an example, if your conversion rate is 0.45% and you managed to raise it to 0.90%, this might not seem like a lot. But the result? Either half the digital marketing spend or twice the number of enquiries for the same budget.
What’s more, when your campaigns are operating efficiently, you can increase the budgets further and dominate your competition. You cannot do this if your conversion rate is low, it’ll just waste your money.
What often makes understanding conversion rates harder, is that you probably have multiple conversions and multiple conversion rates. I recommend focusing on your most valuable conversion rates first and making sure they are well optimised.
Usually, there is something on the page that inhibits users from completing your desired conversion and becoming a lead. From my experience working on digital marketing for real estate this can be:
In the real estate industry, there might be terms and names that are used by real estate professionals within the industry, and different terms that are used by the general public. I manage PPC for property companies so I also get to see what people search for. Using jargon can have an off-putting effect on website visitors. It’s also easy to underestimate how many people might not understand your jargon.
To fix this, I recommend the following:
I cannot overemphasise the importance of having clear contact information. I often come across resistance from clients saying “people can find it on our contact page” or “we have all the details in the footer”. That’s true but website visitors are not the logical creatures that think they are.
I’ve personally measrred results from A/B tests on a property website. In the test version, I added a phone number to the top of the page. The results astonished us all. Not only were people more likely to call the business, the enquiries through website forms also doubled. My conclusion, displaying your clear contact info proudly throughout the site sends a message “We are open for business”, “We’re waiting to take your call”.
It’s the digital equivalent of an “Open” sign on your shop door. Yes, bypassers can see that you're in there. They know that it’s business hours and you're probably open. But unless you spell it out for them, some will shy away.
Many real estate businesses are underserved in terms of digital marketing services. The ones that insist and find out how to improve their digital marketing performance generate more leads, survive and succeed. Your real estate business might be doing fine, but chances are that it can do a lot better with a few changes.
Finding these low hanging fruit can move your property company further with higher profits and growth. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes, compare yourself with the industry leaders and ask yourself the hard question: Who offers a better and easier online experience?
Don’t settle for less.
I’m a London based digital marketer and PPC consultant for real estate companies. I’ve worked with a host of companies, goals and budgets. I’m also a certified Google partner, advanced Google Analytics user and general digital marketing strategist. I work with a small team of highly skilled digital marketing professionals to deliver massive improvements to clients’ performance. If you have any questions about real estate digital marketing, don’t hesitate to contact me.