One way to look at your website is as a way to brand yourself – to distinguish yourself from all the other agents in town. A good way to begin to do this is to think about creating value for your clients.
Here are three questions that will help you make sure your website meets your client’s needs and wants:
Clients need to be reassured that you will look after them. They want to be sure you’re on their side in when you represent them in any real estate transaction.
You do this with a dynamite about page. You want a picture of you that shows your real personality. A formal picture is fine as long as you accompany it with a candid shot or two.
Don’t be afraid to include some details that aren’t real estate oriented. A statement that you love cats or you enjoy your sons Little League games for your daughter’s gymnastics or being a volunteer at the library all serve to humanize you and help potential clients identify with you.
When you create useful downloads, like “5 Things to Ask About a New Neighborhood Before Buying,” or “6 Questions to be Sure and Ask Your Real Estate Agent,” etc. put the introduction and the closing in your very own words even if the rest of it comes from some other source. Every website seems to have these now – you want yours to stand out.
Your clients also need to know how to contact you. Your name, the location of your office your phone numbers, your email address and your website need to be repeated over and over and over again in obvious easy to find places.
Make site’s your navigation clear. Consider bumping up the type of pointer two. Be sure to avoid real estate jargon – for example, instead of saying “listings” say “homes” or “property .”
Buyers want easy access to all possible listings in the area. That means your local IDX or multiple listing feed as well as any pocket or office listings that haven’t hit the feed yet.
It makes sense to get really great photos of your own listings and to provide the multiple listing service with the best photos you can. Each of your listings should have complete information – if you leave something out in order to get it up on the feed, that’s fine, as long as you go back and add the missing information.
Doing a great job with your listings on your website and through the feeds is also a way to attract sellers. Sellers will look for listings to see what their property is worth and they notice the agents who seem to be doing an excellent job of posting information. Make sure that’s you.
Buyers want finance information and to be sure you know what you’re doing when you hook them up with a mortgage company. Be upfront about your relationships with financing organizations. It also helps to provide things like mortgage calculators, downloadable sheets explaining mortgages, and what have you.
Again, almost everything you do for potential buyers also helps you find people who want to list their property. Sellers obviously don’t need the same information but they understand the agent who is providing solid and clear and transparent information is a good agent work with.
There are all sorts of extras your website might provide. Links to community pages like City Hall and the library, recommendations if you have them of various kinds suppliers, etc.
If your website is new you won’t of course have all this in the beginning. Keep listening to what your clients and potential clients tell you they’re looking for, then, over time, provide it on your site.
Although the actual items or information varies around the country, the theme is the same. They want to be reassured you’re the right agent for them and that they’re making the right decision about their real estate. Information and links that provide this kind of sense of security make excellent extras for your website.
Have you found something special to add your website that you willing share with us? Put it in comments – thanks.
Before Anne Wayman became a writer she sold real estate in Southern California. She worked with her father who learned the business from his father. Not surprisingly she learned a few things along the way. Since then, she has been freelance writing for over 30 years – she is a grandmother, loves cats and writes about a wide variety of topics including real estate.