If the answer to this question is a long pause, you aren’t alone. And in case you don’t exactly know what SEO or search engine optimization is, check out our video: here.
Consider looking at your SEO strategy as building a house. First you have to build the house. Make sure it is sturdy, has a roof, plumbing, etc. In other words, you make it function.
The next step is adding value to that house. Possibly adding an addition, improving the curb appeal, you get what I’m saying?
In this article we are first going to review the cracks in your SEO foundation. Then how you can add value to your SEO as a whole.
Part I: Check for Cracks in the Foundation
The foundation of your SEO “house” is built upon a mixture of things. In this guide we are going to focus first on your audience and then on the content fueling your SEO.
Speak to the Right Audience
Have you ever been in the position to speak to a crowd of any size? Whether you have or have not I’m sure you can imagine the unnerving feeling when eyes begin to dart around, phones come out and you see a few people doodling instead of listening. Well now imagine the audience on the other side of the screen. Instead of doodling or playing on their phones, these online users are straight up going to leave your site if they don’t find what speaks to them.
[ Closers Podcast Episode: “Personas, Partnerships, and the Biggest Question in Real Estate” ]
Don’t worry so much about appealing to everyone. Focus more on appealing to a certain audience. Or having the best resources on your website for first-time homebuyers, vacation home buyers, investment buyers, first-time home sellers, just to name a few examples.
And again, we are checking for cracks in the foundation. If you find yourself being spread too thin you either need to grow your team [link to team growth] or narrow down your audience in order to do more with less.
Valuable Content Fights the Battle For You
Always remember, people are searching for value. They are less interested in customer service right off the bat than understanding the immediate valuable service you can provide. With that said, content needs to provide value in order to fight the SEO battle for you.
Several pieces fit into the larger content puzzle, but consider yourself ahead of the game since we’ve already discussed speaking to the right audience! We will review how to use keywords, links, and creating an SEO strategy in this section.
An excellent topic to start a larger contextual conversation on content. Keywords are still important. Now repeat after me, “Keywords are not the only element of SEO.”
Now that we have that out of the way, proper keyword research will help you develop and grow your content and overall SEO strategy. And yes, you do need a strategy now folks. Especially if you are functioning on a smaller team.
How do you find these golden nuggets? Google Trends.
Google Trends will help you narrow down what people are searching for in your area. From these trends or keywords you can build your content. One of our number one rules here at BoomTown when it comes to developing content is: Answer the questions your clients are asking.
This is an easy way to figure out what your potential online clients are asking.
Strategy #2: Links
There are three types of links you need to weave throughout your content: internal, outbound, and inbound links.
Internal links are where you let your content and website shine. These become easier as you build up content such as blog posts and guide pages. Linking internally builds up your SEO clout.
Although it may seem counterintuitive to link outside of your site, this actually does help. And outbound linking, when done strategically will also help the third type of links. Inbound linking is when another website links back to you and the easiest way to promote this type of linking is content creation.
Strategy #3: Setting Your Content Strategy
If you haven’t realized it yet, in order to complete in the online real estate SEO game, your approach needs to be multi-faceted. This strategy puts all of the puzzle pieces together and places it into the context of your reasoning for doing SEO in the first place.
When in doubt, here’s a little tip to curb writer’s block.
To kickstart your content strategy, we suggest starting with an valuable asset. Creating an asset that will appeal to your clientele increases your chances of becoming a thought leader in your market. Consider creating a buyer’s guide, seller’s guide, map of the area, history of your town, new construction guide, to name a few ideas. Once you have a larger asset, such as the ideas above, your blog and social media content can sprout directly from it. Making the rest of your strategy fall into place around this one main asset.
Pro Tip! Make sure to update your out-of-date or expired content such as blog posts about sold listings. If you wrote a post about a listing that has now sold, update the post to reflect its status. If you really want to knock it out of the park, add new content such as a testimonial from the buyers and updated photos. This pro tip is thanks to Moz!
Part II: Build Your Online Clout
Back to the house. After the foundation of your house is built it is time to add the addition, curb appeal and staging. [second image of the house] This is where you add more value to the “house” in order to sell. Once you have a firm foundation and have begun to create content, it is time to add more value through reviews.
Strategy #4: Reviews
Think of reviews as the selling points of your business. Just as more square footage, professional landscaping or staging would help sellers move on a property, these reviews are what push online users to reach out to your business. As in real estate, SEO oftentimes comes down to location, location, location. When online users type in their search queries, the order in which businesses appear on the page is determined by their ranking.
Take a minute to see yourself in the eyes of Google. Do you stack up against the rest?
The way Google displays business search results puts priority on reviews. In order to compete with other businesses, along with your content strategy, a review strategy also will come in handy. Making sure to follow-up with each and every lead is a great place to start. Your reviews come from everyone, not just closed deals.
Part III: Take Action with Your SEO
Begin by establishing your reasoning and goals behind pursuing SEO. If you go blindly into the world of search engine optimization without a goal in mind you efforts will easily be disjointed. Now it’s time to build out your house and up your SEO game. We’ve seen time and time again these steps are proven to set you ahead of the game and stand out among the competition.
“In business, it’s not enough to say you’re a content marketer, you have to make the content do something that makes your business grow.” –Michael Brenner, CEO of Marketing Insider Group