- Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is becoming a more crucial strategy for those in the real estate industry.
- Delivering a high quality user experience is on the list of non-negotiables.
- Artificial intelligence is set to shake up the industry as searches are made through AI.
Many real estate agents, property management agencies, and property developers understand that Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) for real estate is an important element in their overall marketing mix, but many don’t fully understand just how vital it is, or how real estate SEO works.
Optimising your website for real estate SEO is quickly becoming the linchpin that delivers you quality leads and clients.
We interviewed real estate SEO experts from Perth SEO Studio to lift the lid on exactly what SEO is, how it can deliver results for your agency, and what the upcoming trends in SEO for real estate agents are.
What is SEO?
In short, SEO is a technique that boosts your website’s ranking when potential clients search for your services, such as “real estate agents” or related terms, like “best property managers near me” on Google and other search engines.
SEO can help to push your website above competitors, with the ultimate aim of being the very first result your future clients see when on the hunt for a company like yours.
Unlike paid ads (such as Google Ads), SEO doesn’t cost money for your website to appear in these search results, rather, companies work with SEO agencies and consultants to perform a series of optimisation strategies to get your website ranking organically for the main search terms that your customers are using to find you and your competitors.
Behind the scenes, it is an intricate tapestry of processes that helps you pip your competitors link by link.
Brenda Ledwith, a real estate SEO expert from award-winning real estate SEO company, Perth SEO Studio, told The Property Tribune that optimising websites has always been a critical component of digital marketing for her real estate clients.
“As a long-term strategy, it is important this is used in conjunction with more short-term lead generation tactics to drive consistent leads and build up the website’s authority over time.”
How does real estate SEO marketing drive success?
Perth SEO Studio’s Paul Ballardin shared with The Property Tribune that SEO for real estate agents is not often front of mind in the residential sphere.
“However, for commercial real estate companies and property managers, SEO for real estate websites is often a top priority,” added Ballardin.
Buyers agents are also among the beneficiaries of real estate SEO marketing, with Ballardin noting the real estate SEO agency has helped them rank strongly for their targeted keywords – many ranked number one.
“For many of our clients, improved SEO directly relates to an increase in enquiries and leads. Secondly, they aren’t just doing well on normal search results, but also rank well for their local listings.”
“We literally put them on the map.”
Paul Ballardin, Perth SEO Studio
Real estate SEO experts reveal 7 top trends to look out for
Perth SEO Studio told The Property Tribune that mobile phones, artificial intelligence, and voice searches are among the trends set to dominate the real estate marketing space, with video marketing also tipped to be key.
1. Local SEO rules
According to real estate SEO consultant, Elliot Woods, being the best in your local area will be key.
“People are increasingly turning to search engines to find properties in specific locations,” said Woods.
“Appearing in local search results can significantly increase visibility and attract potential customers.”
Ledwith added that local listings are gaining more prominence on Google.
“Optimised profiles with accurate information and a high number of positive reviews should be a non-negotiable for all real estate companies who want to attract landlords, sellers, and buyers in their area.”
Brenda Ledwith, Perth SEO Studio
2. Mobile optimisation
Getting your website perfect for mobile devices is also key, according to Perth SEO Studio’s Madalina Didilescu.
“Mobile optimisation is more important than before as Google is indexing mobile sites first. This means, faster loading times, no pop-ups, optimised images, font size, and white space.”
Madalina Didilescu, Perth SEO Studio
Woods added that mobile-perfect websites are essential as more people shift to viewing and researching the Australian property market on their mobile devices.
3. Videos and content marketing
Woods told The Property Tribune that delivering great video content is a win-win. Not only does it work well on social media, but Google also optimises for video content, because it provides a better user experience.
4. Optimising for voice search
Cries of ‘Hey Google!’ and ‘Hey Alexa’ are increasingly ringing out, meaning optimising for voice search could be gaining ground.
Voice search optimisation could be a consideration, going forward, with Woods noting that the use of plain language and structuring content to answer FAQs are important factors for success.
5. Enabling booking via Google Business Listings
Giving clients the chance to make a booking after they finish reading reviews will make the process much smoother, according to Didilescu.
“Enabling bookings in Google Business Listings will streamline the user experience (UX) as most of us look for a local agent and check reviews before contacting.”
6. Delivering a high-quality user experience
Creating great content that everyone wants to read or view is another key to success.
The longer someone stays on the page, and the more they explore your website, the larger the SEO rewards. Didilescu said Google now takes into consideration these two factors when determining a domain’s authority.
Several factors feed into creating the perfect website. Ledwith said these include:
- A fast-loading website,
- Highly relevant and engaging content,
- Responsiveness across all devices,
- Be secure and accessible, and
- Be easy to navigate.
“Having an SEO agency manage your website and ensure it ticks all of the boxes that make the website user, and Google, happy is going to be key in helping real estate companies stand apart from their competitors,” added Ledwith.
7. Artificial intelligence (AI) searching
The introduction and popularisation of ChatGPT, Bard, BingAI, and more, have made AI more accessible, and it can be leveraged to your advantage.
“AI optimisation is going to be a big trend for real estate companies,” said Ledwith.
“Similar to how we’ve optimised websites for search engines, we are now going to need to look at how we can optimise them for AI tools, such as ChatGPT.”
“When your target market asks ChatGPT ‘Who is the best real estate agency in my area?’, how do you make sure your business is the one that it recommends?”
Brenda Ledwith, Perth SEO Studio
“This is a relatively new area though, with countless AI platforms already, so we will need to stay tuned as to the best way that we can take advantage of this magic combination of AI and SEO for real estate,” added Ledwith.
The Microsoft acquisition of OpenAI may play a role in diverting traffic away from Google and towards Bing, according to Ballardin.
He noted that the heightened levels of OpenAI integration with Microsoft Office will likely see assistance and information delivered from its own Bing platform, meaning optimising for both Bing and Google could become a growing trend.