In today’s online world, it is astonishing how many real estate agents still don’t have their own website. Many real estate agents still just view themselves as someone who buys and sells houses, not as a small business owner. Even if you have a profile on your broker’s website, it’s important that you still have a website that’s branded specifically to you. Here are five reasons why every real estate agent needs a personal website.
Create Your Own Brand
If you’re a real estate agent who doesn’t have their own marketing and branding, it’s time to start creating a name for yourself. When someone hires you to represent them in their transaction, they aren’t hiring you because of the brokerage you work for; they’re hiring you for you. You made the impact. Now, don’t get me wrong, you may have access to some great tools because of your brokerage, but no one cares where you hang your license. Your clients care about how you treat them and how you’re going to make their lives easier.
You also need to create your own brand because you might not always be with the same brokerage. While no one ever wants to think about changing brokerages, and there are many reasons why someone may consider moving their license, when you have your own website and branding, the change won’t impact you quite as much.
Increase Your Online Visibility
In the world we live in today, everyone looks online and conducts research before they make their next move or purchase. By not having your own website, you could potentially be losing out on leads or connections. The lack of online visibility could also lead someone to believe you’re not as good or successful an agent, or you don’t take the role as seriously as another real estate agent they’re considering.
Through the use of your real estate website and online visibility, you’re able to demonstrate authority and showcase your expertise. Your website is the perfect platform to share real estate tips, talk mortgage and interest rates, and blog about your community knowledge.
Generate More Real Estate Leads
What many real estate agents don’t realize is that, by not having their own website, they could potentially be losing out on leads.
If your website is properly optimized for search engine optimization (SEO), then it’s always generating leads for you, even when you’re sleeping. When you’ve taken the time to research the right keywords, and you’re always sharing information, you’re setting yourself up to be found organically on search engines, such as Google.
By not having your own real estate website, you could actually be losing leads that you’ve generated without realizing it. I remember having a discussion with an agent who purchased a custom domain using his name, and it went to his profile on his broker’s website. When I questioned if he was able to track how many people used that domain and if he was able to ensure that all leads coming in went directly to him, he was unable to answer.
Here’s the problem.
Let’s say you put the custom domain on your for sale signs, your business cards, and on your social media accounts. Someone comes across the domain and uses it because they want to search for properties. After landing on your profile, they start their home search without marking you as their preferred agent and submit to receive additional information on a property. If that property isn’t yours, can you be guaranteed that lead will come back to you? Probably not, especially if the person found you on social media or came across your business card in their wallet from a past networking event.
Allows You to Educate Consumers
Before a person decides that they want to buy or sell their home, they want to feel as educated as possible about the process. No one wants to feel as though they’re being sold; they want to feel as though they made an educated decision. You need to ensure that your website has updated listings with IDX feeds, community resources and information, FAQ for buyers and sellers, and your contact information. By creating a real estate website full of valuable information that helps guide buyers and sellers through a real estate transaction, a consumer is likelier to put their trust in you, allowing you to earn their business.
It’s the Core of Your Online Presence
Your real estate website should be the core of your entire online presence. When you share a listing to social media, it should link back to your website. Post a blog? Make it link back to your website. The website is the center of all your marketing. Every social media page and local directory should link back to the one place that is all about you and how you can help a consumer with their real estate goals.
When you rely too heavily on social media and your brokerage to create your online presence, you’re relinquishing control. You don’t own your social media pages, which could be shut down at any moment. If your broker decides to close shop, you lost your presence on their website.
By owning your website, you’re able to gather data using analytics that allows you to analyze how consumers are landing on your website, what keywords were used to find your website, if they’re searching from mobile phone, tablet, desktop, or laptop, how much time they’re spending on your website, and where they’re spending the majority of their time. This allows you to customize your marketing budget to ensure that you’re spending your dollars in the right spot. Stop relying on others to help grow your real estate business and showcase the credibility you’ve earned over the years.