Despite the push to digital, there are still a lot of agents out there that don’t understand or see the value in having a website.
Some agents still think a website is nothing more than a ‘digital business card’ or they think that you can’t generate high-quality leads online, but that couldn’t be any further from the truth. In fact, with the recent push to digital, having a strong website and online presence is more important than ever.
But by itself, a website is not magic no matter who builds it or what they promise you.
And because a lot of agents believe that their new website might be instantly magic because of what a salesperson might tell them, their websites often fail to deliver the results they’re expecting.
Building a website with a strong digital strategy behind it and an even stronger marketing strategy isn’t easy, but it is extremely effective if done right.
Here are some of the biggest reasons that most real estate websites fail to deliver results:
1. You Haven’t Given it Enough Time
Many of the agents that are successful online have been investing in their digital strategies for many many years; they’re not overnight successes, and you shouldn’t have the expectation that you’ll be one either.
A strong digital strategy takes a lot of time to develop, and it’s work that’s never really done. When you first build a website, a lot of what you’re doing is guesswork (even if it’s educated guesswork based in best practice), so after your website launches you’ll need to adjust your approach periodically to build success. You’ll need to look at what worked and what didn’t work to pivot your strategy accordingly to rebuild and replan.
Over time, you’ll also need to build up a base of content, whether that’s listings, blog posts, neighborhood content, market resources, or anything else that will help attract and bring value to the target audience you want to connect with and build your overall domain authority; and building out a strong, effective content strategy is definitely going to take some time to do.
So just like those agents that have strong digital strategies in place, it’s going to you some time to build out yours as well, and that’s ok. As your digital strategy grows and changes, so will your business, your brand recognition, and your lead pipeline.
2. You’re Trying to Be the Next Zillow or Realtor.com
In all likelihood, your real estate website is not going to be the next Zillow or Realtor.com, but a lot of agents do take that approach by focusing too heavily on the property search aspect of their website.
The fact is, you’re not going to be able to compete with them directly for the best search experience, and a strategy that is focused on doing so is doomed from the start.
The majority of people that are looking for homes are not going to do it through your website; they’re going to use more reputable sources that have all of the bells and whistles that you don’t have on your website. In my opinion, depending on how your real estate business is set up and the type of model you have, a listings search on your website is a nice-to-have and nothing more than that.
If you have a real estate website that’s focused completely on IDX searches, then depending on your business model, you’re likely setting yourself up for failure.
★ If you want to do a deeper dive into why you don’t need IDX on your website and what you should focus on instead, take a look at these 2 articles:
- Does Your Real Estate Website Really Need IDX Integration?
- Why IDX is Antiquated and Shouldn’t Be Part of Your Future Lead Generation Strategy
3. You Have No Strategy
One of the biggest reasons that most real estate websites fail is because they don’t have strong strategies behind them. In most cases, they’re simply approached as being just websites.
A strategy is something different. It’s a deep look into what you’re building, why you’re building it, and who you’re building it for.
A true digital strategy is divided into 2 parts: Your initial digital strategy and your marketing strategy afterwards.
- Your initial digital strategy is all of the work you put into the strategy, planning, and building of your website to make it appealing to your target audience.
- And your marketing strategy is everything you do after your website launches to get it in front of and make it valuable to your target audience.
Without both of those strong, well-thought out strategies in place, you’re likely not going to see the results you’re looking for once your website is online.
4. You’re Not Doing Any Marketing
Regardless of who builds your website, if you don’t have any marketing behind it it’s not going to be successful; it’s not an: if you build it they will come situation.
While a solid initial digital strategy should entail you getting a website that’s planned, designed, and built for a specific target audience, you also need a solid marketing strategy in place to get your website in front of that target audience. Basically, without marketing, no one is going to know that your website exists. It could be:
- Content Strategy
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Paid Advertising
- Print Marketing
- Sponsoring an event
- And a lot more…
Marketing is what you do every single day to promote you, your business, and your brand, to your target audience. A marketing strategy generates better, more measurable results because it allows you to set goals, and measure whether you’re able to meet them or not.
Without a strong marketing strategy in place to get your target audience in front of your website so that they know you exist and that you can help them, your website is isn’t going to be very successful.
★ Want to know more about how to plan and build out a marketing plan? Have a look at this post right here.
5. You Haven’t Defined What Success Means
A lot of agents never really ask themselves why they need or what they want in a website in first place, and that’s key to being able to get the results you want.
To be successful, you need to know how you actually define and measure that success.
Even when it comes to the most common answer reason agents give as to why they want a website: to get leads, they still don’t take the time to define what a lead actually is to them.
Because every agent has a different marketing strategy, a different target audience, and a different business process, each one of them will define a lead differently according to what their needs are and how much work they’re willing to put into them based on their quality. If getting leads is an important part of your website and how you define success, then you need to clearly define what a lead is to you to measure that success.
No matter how you measure the success of your website, your digital strategy, and your marketing efforts, ensure you have a clear way to know that you’ve achieved the results you’re looking for.
With up to date marketing trends relevant to today’s market, our report is a selection of curated content, information, and data that will give you an outline of what’s working right now in real estate marketing.