Most real estate professionals are familiar with the concept of community pages on real estate websites. With a single click into one of these pages, visitors can start exploring listings in a given community. Links to the pages are typically provided in the site navigation menus and/or provided on the home page, often with photos of each community. Community pages are always a good idea because they provide the option for immediate access to listings without requiring the use of a property search form.
Many agents and brokers provide these pages on their sites but they limit the content to just the community listings. While this is certainly better than not having the pages at all, they’re missing out on the significant benefits of custom content that can have a direct impact on their business success.
Differentiate Yourself And Build Trust
You already know it’s crowded online and you’re not the only agent or broker with a property search website. Once a new visitor reaches your site, you need to differentiate yourself and give buyers and sellers a reason to stay and explore. Buyers and sellers also want to work with an agent who demonstrates they know what’s going on in a community. Sharing useful community information in your community pages positions you as a local expert, helping to further build the trust you need to convert unknown visitors into registered leads and eventually to clients.
Be The Ambassador
Even if your IDX service provides some local community information such as schools, local amenities and walkability with each listing, your community pages should supplement this with your own content and flair. This is the spot to put on your mayor’s hat and pitch all that a community has to offer! You can even try searching YouTube for videos related to a community and embed these in your community content.
Don’t assume people are already familiar with the communities you serve. People who are relocating will appreciate the additional information you share and could reward you with their business. If there are communities you don’t know much about in your market, try some searches on the web – you might just find everything you need that way. And you can always ask friends for help – just send them a list of the things you’re looking for and they can fill in the blanks.
For population statistics, try the online American FactFinder provided by the United States Census Bureau.
Boost Your SEO
Everyone wants their web pages to be found on the first page of Google search results. It’s very unlikely your community pages will achieve this if they contain just listings. Where you end up on Google search results is based on a large number of factors, many of which are only known to Google. What is known, however, is that your ranking is influenced by whether or not you have custom, unique content that’s highly relevant to the search keywords you’re targeting. If you do, Google additionally wants to see that people are engaging with that content. Are they spending time there or quickly leaving? Are they clicking on links you provide? Google also pays attention to how many people are linking to your pages from other locations. The more that people share your page links and drive inbound traffic to your pages, the more this will benefit your ranking.
By building your own unique pages for your communities and embedding the relevant listings using the features of your IDX service, you gain the added benefit of controlling all the on-page SEO elements. With the proper attention to these on-page elements, you’ll further boost your search engine ranking and visibility in search engines.
Hopefully, you now realize the potential return this small investment can bring to your business. If you already have your community pages built, it’s never too early to start updating them and adding your custom content to delight your visitors! Why not update your pages one-by-one as your schedule permits. Over time, you’ll have them all done and it makes the task much more manageable. You’ll probably even end up with better content that your visitors will love since you gave each community the time and attention it deserves for research.