If you operate a real estate business, having an effective and impactful website is not just recommended, it is vital to your livelihood. Like many other industries, real estate has moved online, and although we are still talking about physical bricks and mortar, the value that you can add with a well thought out, visually compelling site will make a huge difference to your business, meaning your ability to sell properties quickly, at or above going market rate.
Does your business’ website need an overhaul? Here are three signs that it potentially does:
A High Bounce Rate
You may not know what a bounce rate is, but it’s a pretty simple concept. A ‘bounce’ is when a user clicks onto your site, but the quickly leaves, hence the ‘bouncing’. Not only is that disappointing from a business perspective, but it’s actually damaging to SERP (search engine ranking page) results. The big search engines like Google, Yahoo! or Bing, for example, all factor in bounce rate (which they measure) when ranking web pages for relevance and value, so a high bounce rate can actually impact upon how many people are visiting your site.
So why would users ‘bounce’ off your site? There are many reasons, but the most obvious are a lack of relevance, poor loading speeds, and ill-thought layout. A lack of relevance would be caused by the keywords that are scattered about the content and links on your site not being totally relevant to what your business is, so the first step would be to make sure that you are optimizing the correct keywords for your business (this is that all-important SEO that you may have heard so much about).
Poor loading speeds are an obvious drawback too, and are usually caused by poor Webhosting choices, or containing images on your size which are too large, and need to be reduced.
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The second reason mentioned is a poor layout, and this is self-explanatory. Will a user see what they want to see immediately landing upon your page? Does your site look professional, is it visually interesting, and is it easy to navigate around? If the answer to any of these questions is ‘no’, then it is probably contributing to a high bounce rate, which you immediately need to reduce.
If you would like to know how to discover your bounce rate, then use a simple tool like Google Analytics which provides this information, and a whole lot more relevant data which can help you optimize your site.
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Poor Mobile Compatibility
Is your site optimized for mobile devices? If this is something that you have never even thought about, then it is essential that you make the necessary changes. Did you know that, as of 2019, more than half of all online videos that are watched are done so on mobile devices? If, as you should, you are offering virtual video tours of the properties that you have available, but your site is not optimized for mobile, you are losing more than 50% of your potential business!
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Images That Could Be Better
As a real estate business that operates online, the images that you use really have to be of the highest possible quality. Maybe you started off small and you took the photos yourself, which is all well and good, but if you are really looking at impacting the market, then the quality of your images must be first class.
People will want to physically look around the property, of course, but that is only after they like what they see online. If the images that you display do not do the property justice, because you don’t have the photographic skills to do it justice, then you are once again potentially losing a large part of your business. It could well be time to bring in a professional real state photographer. Then make sure the images are displayed neatly, are easily navigable, and are uploaded at the right size so as not to impact upon page loading speeds, as previously mentioned. Your business is only as good as the images it displays, so don’t have good images, have great ones!
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