A robust job market, rising consumer confidence, and a moderate improvement in the supply of mortgage credit have led to the dramatic recovery of the U.S. housing market. Indeed, many regions across the country are witnessing a building boom in both residential and commercial real estate. Additionally, housing prices are rising in many areas across the country.
While the housing boom is opening up numerous business opportunities for real estate agents, many agents will miss out on the same opportunities if they fail to optimize their online marketing. Just as importantly, real estate agents need to maintain a professional and dynamic online presence if they wish to target home buyers and sellers who are searching for real estate agents online.
THE INTERNET HAS BECOME THE HOME BUYERS’ PREFERRED RESEARCH TOOL
Make no mistake; the Internet has become the definitive research portal for home buyers. According to a report released by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), an overwhelming 92% of home buyers use the Internet in some way during the home search process. For almost half (43%) of home buyers, the first step in the home-buying process is searching online for properties.
According to another study conducted by Google, two in three Google users who search for real estate listings also research prospective real estate agents online prior to working with them. Home buyers are rarely buying right away, and many take the time to research real estate listings as well as agents they feel comfortable working with.
HOME BUYERS ARE USING THEIR MOBILE DEVICES AND TABLETS TO LOOK FOR NEW HOMES
As the housing market heats up, many on-the-go house hunters are relying on their mobile devices and tablets to stay on top of the home buying process.
According to the aforementioned Google study, most house hunters use their mobile devices to do at least one of the following: search for listings, find directions to a home, look for more information on a listing, call or email an agent directly, or watch a video while out looking for a home. Smartphones and tablets are the preferred devices at home as well, with usage peaking at night, after the kids have gone to bed and the workday is done.
It is clear from these and other statistics that mobile is one of the best places to reach prospective home buyers. According to the latest statistics from comScore, 189.7 million people in the United States owned smartphones during the three months ending in May 2015.
REAL ESTATE AGENTS NEED A SOLID DIGITAL MARKETING STRATEGY TO STAY ON TOP OF THEIR GAME
The majority of your prospective clients are searching for listings and looking for reputable real estate agents on Google, Bing, and Yahoo. Is your business website showing up on the SERPs when prospective clients perform local searches? Is your business website getting quality traffic from organic, referral, social, direct, and paid sources?
With the majority of digital consumers in the United States now classified as multi-platform users (i.e. users who use both mobile and desktop devices), real estate agents that lack a mobile-friendly website will not be able to target house hunters who are searching for new homes on an array of devices.
Even if your prospective clients find you, will they find solid reviews about you from your past clients and business associates? Do you have active social media accounts that enable prospects to learn more about your services? Do you offer relevant and informative content on your blog and other publishing platforms?
Do your prospects see you as an authoritative source of information about real estate? Will they feel confident about choosing you over your competitors?
If you want to capture and nurture more leads and convert them into clients, you’ll need to have a solid digital marketing strategy in place. You also need a solid online brand presence to win new clients and grow your business.
Busy real estate professionals like you don’t have the time to create and implement a digital marketing strategy. You need to focus on your business.
Don’t worry—we’re here to help.
Our Brand Optimization Service and other online marketing services can build and expand your brand’s presence online.
Whether you’re offering your clients residential or commercial real estate services, or property management, our online marketing services will help you attract and nurture more leads, convert them into clients, and build a positive online reputation for your brand.