Ten Profitable Real Estate Blogging Tips

November 1, 2010

Your real estate blog can vastly improve its sales lead-generating ability by using these profitable marketing techniques used by top non-profit fund-raisers.

Blogs integrated into your business website add content to your site, alert search engines to your new content, and bring your blog traffic to your site.

Since “time is money”, asking for a potential client’s time to read your entry uses the same selling principles as asking for a patrons donation.

  1. Use captivating headlines, if you see a headline that grabs your attention, keep it and modify it for your use.
  2. Focus your entry on a particular market segment and address their particular housing buying or selling needs. Don’t try to be all things to all people – that’s called writing a book. Blog entries are well-suited for reaching your short-attention span, specific interest, online market.
  3. Following on #2, outline and schedule a series of articles by defining different markets (by buyer, seller and/or area of town) and client benefits for each market.
  4. Illustrate your real estate successes with detailed stories, help your audience identify with your past clients. One great story is more effective than three general stories.
  5. Show results from your past selling performance. People buy and invest with proof of a successful track record and show more trust in businesses that measure and track their performance.
  6. Introduce any call to action in the first paragraph and reinforce it at the end. Remember you are dealing with what amounts to an Attention Deficit Disorder readership – many read the beginning and end of the article.
  7. Bolding the sentence that carries your major point makes sure your reader’s eye is arrested in their fast travel from article beginning to finale.
  8. Occasionally use the PS at the end of your blog entry – habit and the curiosity factor make the postscript one of the most read parts of any letter or blog article.
  9. Develop your own real estate online community of local appraisal, home inspection and mortgage experts that you “converse” with or quote in your entries. This can have a secondary benefit of opening guest blog opportunities that draw traffic to your real estate website.
  10. Build your case for the timeliness and homeowner’s benefits of buying or selling at this particular time – don’t let national financial trends eclipse the reality of the benefits currently available in your real estate market.

Contact IMCD Web Design for your real estate website complete with a real estate blog. You do not need to be technically proficient to transfer your real estate skills to blogging – we consistently help our real estate agent clients quickly adapt to using their new real estate blogs as effective market expanding tools.

Custom IDX and MLS Listing Web Design Solutions

October 4, 2010

Real estate agents can have their cake and eat it to with IMCD Web Designs custom integration of IDX and MLS listings in their Realtor websites.

There are five key benefits to integrating an IDX feed into your Realtor website:

1. Enter your property listing once for the IDX feed and it automatically appears in your website’s online searches – no need to upload the information and images twice.

2. Your online marketing investment in your Realtor website is maximized – visitors do not leave your website with its branded message to go to a third party website hosted elsewhere. This is doubly beneficial since a) your visitor is presented your sales message while the property information is searched and viewed and b) the search engines see that visitors to your site stay and view the content – a major plus in search engine optimization.

3. Realtors can chose which IDX options they want in their website, each option provides more web page content and customer-friendly real estate search tools. You can have pages that focus on specific markets and pages that offer home buying tools like the ability to bookmark properties for later review and order email alerts for new property listings.

4. Utilize all the search capability of your IDX provider, including the map search, on your website.

5. Your Realtor website’s IDX search has the familiar search features and look-and-feel that home buyers and sellers in your area have become familiar with – you ride on the coattails of your local IDX’s refinement of a user-friendly search mechanism.

Our Realtor website design packages offer a 360 degree approach to serving your online clients’ needs. IMCD Web Design creates Realtor websites that include integrated blog and article managers for posting up-to-the minute news, video tours of homes, maximum search engine optimization, and custom graphic design. With custom web design work, your unique branding message is carried on every page in a very professional graphic design.

Improve your online real estate marketing with a highly effective Realtor website from IMCD Web Design. Contact our experienced real estate website designers to find your best Realtor website package with integrated IDX listing solutions and get your sales message to the greatest possible audience.

Web Design Empowering Real Estate Agents

September 7, 2010

Many real estate agents want a professional web design that allows them to post material without needing to know HTML coding or buy a  professional web design software. IMCD Web Design has semi-custom real estate websites that allow maximum control to real estate brokers and agents. Three areas can be set up in the web design that can be controlled through a browser connection – no new software or training needed.

The first option is an integrated blog that fits in with the graphic design of the website. A blog offers many search optimization benefits as well as allowing Realtors to post images of property and homes, blog entries addressing any news and information in the local and national real estate market – and all the information is automatically archived in a way that makes it very easy for website visitors to quickly find the information that interests them.

The second option, that complements an IDX integration, is a featured property module that allows real estate agents to post more pictures and more in-depth property information on their website. No need to drive traffic away from your real estate website to someone else’s website to see your property listings! As easy as checking email online, you only need a username and password to log in and then upload pictures and content from your computer. A very Realtor-friendly web design.

The third option that especially helps brokers and large real estate companies is the agent listing option. Similar to the featured properties module, this one allows brokers to easily maintain and promote their online roster of agents. As new agents come on board, the broker simply logs on their real estate website through their browser and uploads any pictures and background information on their sales team – no need to add an extra hurdle of getting the webmaster to maintain your agent list!

IMCD Web Design, recognizing that time is a precious commodity for real estate agents, creates web designs that are the most robust and user-friendly so you can have both professionalism in the web design and user friendliness for real estate agents’ ability to control a large amount of their website’s content. This web design empowerment means that agents and brokers can quickly adjust their websites to changes in market forces or company’s sales force line up.

If you feel like you have lost control of your real estate website, contact IMCD Web Design about our various web design packages that put you back in the driver’s seat of your online marketing.

Cut To The Chase Web Design

August 30, 2010

A successful real estate web design addresses two competing desires: the web visitor’s intent to quickly view property or homes for sale and the real estate agent’s desire to capture web visitor contact information. If superb search engine optimization and marketing steps have brought web visitors to your real estate website, too many navigation steps (or mouse clicks) can undermine your marketing.

In a good real estate web design, two mouse clicks to the information is generally the limit before visitors bounce off to another website or web search. IMCD Web Design, with the experience of creating web sites for real estate agents that consistently bring in sales leads, has found the balance between customer satisfaction and the agent’s high return on web design investment.

In online real estate marketing, clients often spend 75% of their time searching for property and real estate agents – so in a typical home buying cycle, six weeks are spent looking online and then two weeks with an agent with the clients highly refined search parameters. This means that the client may be using the real estate agent’s website for searches for five or six weeks before they contact the agent to go visit properties.

Successful contact gathering methods center on providing market updates and ongoing information, such as through a real estate blog, rather than forcing users to sign in before accessing properties. Part of this market adjustment is driven by an agent’s competition with real estate websites that are simply property review portals that do not offer real estate agent services, but exist only to collect online advertising revenue. They use property listings simply to drive traffic, not as their primary business purpose.

IMCD Web Design offers real estate website design packages that position Realtors to be very competitive in their local markets against national chain websites and home listing directories that offer no services. Our market-tested web designs have a “triple crown” track record of high search engine ranking, graphic design that attracts and keeps visitors attention and web content that leads to successful harvests of visitor contacts.

If your real estate agency is looking for that competitive edge in your market, contact IMCD Web Design for that professional real estate website that will put you on the Internet map and generate a consistent stream of sales leads for your business.

Does Your Business Web Design Meet New Web Design Standards?

May 3, 2010

Is your business’ professional website design ready for the new web design standards…and how do web design standards affect your business? First, how do web designs affect your business – in the short run not much, it is the long term changes that may render parts of your web design invisible or not as you envisioned. Web design standards are used by web designers to develop web site designs and by browser creators for the next version of how their browser will show your website’s code.

The timeline for change is set by the adaptation of the newer browser versions. Newer browsers will not always stay backwards compatible to the older codes. Two of the biggest changes is the greater use of cascading style sheets (CSS) to remove all style directions – like font size and color – off the page and create stricter standards for how the code that creates the architecture is written. IMCD Web Designs has always kept its web designs current with the web design standards as well as keeping an eye on changes that are on the horizon. Our latest semi-custom website templates for small business and our real estate web designs are based on the latest standards, giving our customers peace of mind that their investments won’t be in need of overhauls in the future.

The latest ripple in the web design standard pond is how Adobe’s Flash slide shows and videos will fare in the new HTML 5 standard. Apple Computers created their latest iPads without adding Flash. The good news for businesses is that Flash is not the only slide show software on the market. Businesses can still use slide shows to parade their products without needing to utilize Flash, so while Adobe and the web design standards experts wrangle over issues, your professional web design can continue to be rendered correctly in the Explorer, Firefox, Chrome and Safari web browsers.

For the best of professional websites that are developed and validated to the latest web design standards – as well as visually pleasing, search engine optimized and targeted to your niche market – contact our expert designers at IMCD Web Design. Invest today in your professional web design that will market well tomorrow and for years to come.

Passing The Website Design Usability Test

March 29, 2010

Does your Internet website pass the web design usability test? To see you user friendly your website is, check these factors that attract or repel your online visitors.

1. Is your navigation clear – can a visitor find any page on your website in two to three clicks? A website design that eliminates visitor frustration has intuitive navigation – a visitor arrives at your homepage from a search and can quickly find the information within a few clicks.

2. Is your navigation visible to the search engines? Website designers know that the search engines use the navigation to help index the content on your website. Website designs that use Flash, hide certain elements of the navigation so your site is not easily indexed. IMCD Web Design uses Cascading Style Sheet (CSS) navigation to maximize the search engine optimization capability of your web design’s navigation.

3. Is your domain name memorable and optimized for the search engines? Website domain names that focus on the keywords of your product or service meet the website design usability criteria. It may be a blow to your ego, but using your name is not the best domain name – you miss the vast Internet population that is searching for your business, but does not know your name.

4. Do your contact forms solicit more information than the 2010 census? People do not like their privacy invaded. Website design that succeeds the best demands the least amount of information necessary for you to contact them. IMCD Web Design uses time tested visitor information capture forms that balance ease of answering with drop down menus and minimal questions. A time-tested form is the key to improving your return on your website design investment.

5. A Flash intro page. A sure sign that an Internet site needs a new website design is the Flash intro page with the “Click to enter” button. A business website only has one home page to serve up to the search engines. When the home page is a Flash slide show, no matter how appealing to visitors, the search engines cannot decipher any of the information offered. IMCD Web Design knows the best places and ways to use Flash in a website design to capture online audiences. Those places are never the ones that search engines are using to index and catalog your business website.

Contact IMCD Web Design and connect your business with a web design that meets your business needs and passes your clients’ website usability tests.

Successful Real Estate Blog Copywriting Secrets

March 1, 2010

Writing a real estate blog website entry can be considered a success if you have a hard time just getting one written. There are online real estate marketing secrets to successful real estate blog copywriting. The success is measured in increased real estate sales activity as well as increased traffic to your agent website. Internet Marketing Consultants has researched the best online marketing minds to bring you a few secrets that will improve your blog entries.

1. Capture your creative ideas.
Ever notice that some of your best ideas come when you are driving, taking a shower or listening to a seminar (not all at the same time)? Be ready with 3 x 5 cards, a note book or your cell phone’s memo capacity to capture your thought. These little sparks of genius often lead to blog articles that capture your audience’s interest.

2. Rewrite your entry’s title.
By rewriting your title three or four times, you can hone down the most captivating, short, keyword-rich way of introducing your article. Your title is the primary tool you have to capture your real estate website visitor’s attention and move them to read your article. Time spent perfecting the headline is well worth it.

3. Give information through a story.
Possibly we have all been jaded by getting bored sitting through lectures in school, however, whatever the reason, people tune out when presented information in a lecture dry fact way. Introduce a story and you capture your audience’s attention. Do you remember getting captured by Reader’s Digest articles on a dry subject (“I AM Joe’s Adam’s Apple) only because the article started with a riveting story and then withheld the resolution of the story until the end of the article? It is a formula that the magazine still uses effectively.

4. Provide a safety net for your call to action.
Two elements in a call to action increase the safety factor and improve your lead generation: third party testimonials and a guarantee of success. Testimonials have two benefits – a third party authentication of your real estate services and a story element.

Add these marketing success tips into your next real estate blog entries and benchmark your ability to improve your visitor’s response to your call to action. Is your real estate website still limping into the twenty-first century without a blog or article manager? Contact the experts in effective real estate web design at IMCD to accelerate the effectiveness of your online real estate marketing campaign.

Is Your Real Estate Website Confusing The Search Engines?

February 15, 2010

Real estate websites that follow a key search engine optimization principle on content creation rank higher in search results because they do not confuse the search engines. How can you confuse a search engine when they have banks of computers running time-tested algorithms written by authentic geeks? Unfortunately it is rather simple. Information overload.

For all the computing power behind a search engine’s indexing of your real estate website, the algorithm boils down to answering a simple question, “What one idea is this web page about?”

The key search engine optimization principle on content creation is “write one page per keyword”. Translating this SEO principle to real estate websites means making sure you have pages for the “your market real estate home buyers”, first-time home buyers, home sellers, investors and any other niche market you want to target with your keywords and advertising.

Experienced real estate agents gain that sense of when they are starting to give too much information on a property to a client – the glazed eyes, the monosyllabic answers. Unfortunately, in creating your web page content you do not get that kind of feedback from the search engines. So, follow the rule, introduce one keyword concept and stick to that. If your start to broaden your scope to include other keyword concepts, remind yourself that this content either needs its own page or maybe use the information in your real estate blog or article manager.

On a marketing note, when home buyers search your site, they will be drawn to any information that they find is of signal benefit to their efforts to buy a home. Having information on your home buyer’s web page of how you make sure you get top dollar for a home sale does not instill confidence in your home buyer clientele.

IMCD Web Design  has over a decade of experience creating many semi-custom and custom real estate websites and we have found that the Realtors that make the most use of their online real estate marketing opportunity – adding the most keyword-specific web pages – get the best results both in the search engine ranking and in sales lead generation.

Contact your IMCD real estate website sales team to get an honest assessment of your real estate website and what your online real estate marketing campaign needs to generate sales leads and a healthy return on your online marketing. Our web page options are keyword specific opportunities to feed SEO optimized content to the search engines.

Real Estate Websites – Your Bully Pulpit

February 8, 2010

Real estate websites are your “bully pulpit” as Teddy Roosevelt called the presidency. It is your information-rich site that, in selling properties and the attractions of various neighborhoods, sells your real estate services.

A major turning point in marketing is seeing your services as your customer sees you, not how you perceive yourself. When soliciting testimonials from clients to add to your Realtor website, get a frank assessment – it can give you the direction that not only improves your performance, but spur a marketing angle that can set you apart from your competition.

One of the top rules for marketing and adding content to your real estate blog is “never assume your audience knows what you know”. As an experienced professional, real estate sales to the first-time home buyer may often seem like an exercise in belaboring the obvious. However, feedback to the different Realtor associations all point out that more educational material on real estate websites is wanted, not less.

Make sure your real estate website carries over the message of availability you convey in person. Certain real estate websites reviewed in marketing the agent’s popularity and busy sales schedule understated the “Call me anytime” message. Your website is your pulpit to show how available you are and every page reinforcing the message to your website visitors that you welcome their calls, emails or inquiries.

Accentuate your desire to connect with them by telling them the best ways to contact you. In reality, every way is most likely the best way, however, by listing the way the potential client feels most comfortable contacting you, you push the right marketing button.

Tell potential clients what real estate service to expect from you – if part of your website reads like their autobiography, human nature being what it is, your website visitors will find you very intelligent.

All these real estate website marketing tips may seem like obvious items, however, successful lead generation depends on replacing every “I don’t know how to or what to do” obstacles with the sense of “oh, that’s easy”.

IMCD’s semi-custom real estate website designs include a full array of guides and checklists covering many aspects of the home selling, mortgage and home buying experience. The integrated real estate blog option allows agents more freedom to easily post entries that go into depth on any area of the property transfer process. For your attractive and effective bully pulpit, contact our real estate website developers and get started.

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