With research showing that 47% of recent homeowners started their property-buying journey online, it’s time to level up your website’s SEO and boost your online presence. In doing so, your website will appear higher up on the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs), attract more clients and increase revenue.

Whether you’re a property developer, estate agent or anything in between, you might be wondering where to start when it comes to unleashing the power of SEO on your website. This is where we come in! We’ve put together our top five advanced SEO techniques to optimise your property website and maximise ROI. Let’s get started…

#1 Optimise Images

There’s no denying that images are one of the most vital parts of any property website. Ultimately, images are fundamental in helping to sell properties, whether they’re of the property itself, a floorplan, the local area or anything else. 

You need to ensure that all the images on your website are properly optimised. If you don’t, you could lose valuable clients. How?

  • Image Size - Google measures every website against a set of metrics known as Core Web Vitals which relate to page speed. One of the key factors affecting page speed is how large image files are. The larger the file, the longer it takes to load which will negatively impact your website’s CWV score. Slow-loading photos can also deter users from wanting to use your website as it can make the user experience clunky and less streamline. With hundreds, maybe even thousands of photos on your property website at any given time, it’s crucial that you optimise images and ensure file sizes are as small as possible. How? Compress images using a tool such as TinyPNG or Image Resizer. It only takes a few seconds and can reduce a file size by over 50%.
  • ALT Text - Another way to optimise your images is by adding ALT text. This is important for both users and Search Engines. ALT text makes images accessible to people who use screen readers or other technology to navigate websites. Without it, many people won’t have access to the information within the images and are more likely to turn to a competitor. Find out more about the importance of web accessibility. In a similar way, ALT text also provides more context for Search Engines, such as Google, about the content on a particular webpage. This can then influence page rankings which, ultimately, impacts conversions.

 

#2 Harness the Power of Local SEO

One of the most valuable techniques you can use as a property business is localising your SEO strategy, which is why ‘local SEO for estate agents’ has seen a 200% in online searches over the last three months alone. What do we mean by this? Conduct your research at a local level, not just an industry level:

  • Competitors - As a business, you will have identified key competitors within your industry that you want to increase your market share over. However, if you are based in a certain area, you must also ensure that you identify local competitors. While local businesses may hold a lower market share overall, they will be fierce competitors as you will be targeting the exact same audience
  • Keywords - When you conduct keyword research, localise your search terms across any areas you operate in. These keywords may have a lower search volume, however, they have a stronger search intent and are more specific so more likely to create conversions. When doing keyword research, don’t forget to look at ‘near me’ terms too, for example, ‘houses for sale near me’. SEMrush and Google Ads Keyword Planner are both useful tools for keyword research.

 

#3 Optimise for mobile

Our third SEO technique is optimising your website to be mobile-friendly. This has never been so important in the property sector, with a recent survey finding 76% of homebuyers using a mobile/tablet device during their house search.

All websites look differently on a mobile device than they do on a desktop, so you need to ensure both versions of your website are clear, easy to access and going to convert users into clients. Optimising your website for mobile is particularly important because Google has moved to mobile-first indexing which means the mobile version of your website is what counts towards rankings.

So, how can you optimise your website for mobile devices? The answer lies in responsive web design. This is where a website is specifically designed to adapt to the environment in which it is viewed (e.g. mobile or desktop). Why is responsive design the way forward for mobile-friendly SEO?

  • You don’t need to create two different layouts or website versions which means you save crucial time and money.
  • As you won’t have two separate versions, everything sits on the same URL no matter whether you view it on mobile or desktop so you will avoid duplicating content.
  • Google only needs to crawl one version of your site rather than wasting resources crawling a mobile and desktop version.

 

#4 Create useful content

Buying or renting a property is a huge financial commitment and is not something people tend to do lightly. As a result, your property business needs to be established as trustworthy, authoritative and industry-leading. If you’re unable to do this, potential buyers will turn to your competitors and you could lose out on significant revenue.

One of the best ways to demonstrate your authority to both users and Search Engines is by creating relevant and useful content that answers search queries and provides value for your target audience. Here are five tips for producing fantastic website content that your audience will love:

1. FAQs - Having FAQs is vital for property websites. Put yourself in the position of someone looking to purchase a home and think about how many questions you’re going to have. You’d want to know about everything, from statistics about the area to information about your business.

FAQs are a really useful way to gain Featured Snippets on Google, which can boost page views and conversions massively as your content will appear at the top of the SERP. Our top tip for creating FAQ content? Use a website such as AlsoAsked which gives you lots of inspiration for relevant questions people are asking on Search Engines.

2. Guides - Guides are another very popular way of creating informative content for property websites. Instead of making 10 different blogs that take users to several different places to find information, you can create a single comprehensive guide that contains all the key information about a particular location or type of housing.

If your key target audience is first-time buyers, guides can be a particularly good way to reach potential customers as they’re likely to be searching for key information about the house-buying process.

3. Visually appealing - Your content needs to be digestible and also stand out on your website. You could be writing and sharing really insightful information but if it’s presented in a block of text, users are unlikely to read it. 

You could create infographics, utilise bullet points, add boxes or break text up with images. Consider using different sizes, colours, fonts or shapes if you want to draw your audience’s eyes to a particular statement. Disrupting the flow of the website to present information is known as the Salience Bias because people are more likely to digest something that grabs their attention.

4. Update regularly - The most important part of writing relevant content is to keep it updated. The second your content becomes outdated, it is no longer useful for users which makes it far less likely to convert them into clients. 

The best thing to do is create evergreen content that doesn’t need updating. However, in cases where this isn’t possible, you should regularly conduct Content Audits across your website to assess how relevant your content is.

5. Localised content - We’ve already spoken about the importance of local SEO, so it comes as no surprise that your content should also be localised too. Of course, there are some pieces of content that can be more generic (such as how-to guides), however, you can really demonstrate your knowledge of certain areas by writing about them. 

For example, if you sell properties in Maidstone, entice users by creating blogs about the best Schools in Maidstone, or an ultimate guide to living in Maidstone (which could include statistics to further demonstrate your expertise).

Find out more about how to create human-first SEO content that resonates with users and ranks well on the SERPs.

 

#5 Use Canonical Tags

Our final technique is all about Technical SEO! You’re likely to have hundreds, perhaps thousands of properties available on your website at any given time. This is why many property businesses have filtering functions to enable users to add their specific requirements, from location to number of bedrooms:

Adding filters makes it a more bespoke experience for users and can stop people endlessly scrolling through irrelevant properties. In many ways, filtering helps to limit the human behaviour principle known as Decision Paralysis, whereby people find it easier to make no decision than pick between too many options.

However, it’s crucial that you take SEO into consideration when adding filtering functions to your website. If you don’t, you could run into problems with page duplication and lose out on important keyword rankings which may ultimately impact your ROI.

What do we mean? As the same property is likely to appear under several different filtered results, there are multiple ways you can find it. Depending on the way you find the property, the parameters in the URL will be slightly different, however, the page will be the exact same from a user perspective. This can be confusing for Search Engines, such as Google because when faced with two versions of the same content, it cannot understand which one to prioritise. As a result, you may find the Search Engines decide to not prioritise either one, which can impact keyword rankings and conversion rates.

So, what can you do to avoid this? Add canonical tags to ensure Search Engines only index one of the URLs.

Canonical tags are lines of HTML code that define to Search Engines the ‘main’ page within a group of duplicated pages and look like this:

<link rel="canonical" href="https://example.com/your-property-url-here/" / >

The best part? Your CMS may have a feature or plugin where you can specify a canonical without needing to input it into the HTML yourself. Adding this small line of code into the HTML of a specific page can prevent any accidental duplication across your website and help you reach potential customers through the SERPs.

 

Key Takeaways

By optimising your property website for SEO, you will establish yourself as relevant, authoritative and trustworthy to both users and Search Engines. As a result, you will be more likely to convert users into buyers and maximise your ROI. To optimise your real estate website for SEO, you should:

  • Ensure your images have ALT tags and compress them to make file sizes as small as possible.
  • Create relevant, authoritative content that adds value for users.
  • Target local keywords as well as industry keywords, for example, “apartments for sale in Greenwich” as well as “apartments for sale”.
  • Ensure your website is mobile-friendly by using Responsive Design.
  • Add canonical tags on filtered URLs and wherever appropriate to avoid duplicate pages.

Do you want to unleash the power of SEO? Our SEO experts are here to support your property business with improving organic rankings, optimising user experience and, ultimately, maximising ROI. Get in touch with us today to find out more about how we can help your website level up its SEO game!
 


 


 

 

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AUTHOR.

MORGAN RODWAY-WING

Wordsmith Morgan joined the Reflect Digital team fresh out of University and is learning about the world of digital marketing while supporting the SEO team with highly engaging content. With a background in website administration and social media, she also brings a broader perspective to her clients. 

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