Posted Friday, October 22, 2004
Is your web site generating the traffic and/or actual business you originally thought it would?
Many Realtors are realizing that just having a web site is not a panacea to generating sales. Through a very small informal survey, (that I personally conducted with fifty San Diego REALTORS) I've concluded that the average Realtor's web site generates less than 50 unique hits per month. Unique hits are single page views from one URL within a 24hr. period. This is very important because many people confuse hits with unique hits. The problem is that simplistic tracking tools may only track hits. A hit, within this context, usually includes the individual visitors and the total number of graphics that load when that page is visited. So, one visit could show as six hits if the page visited has five graphics!
Worse, the vast majority of agents have not generated any actual sales from their sites in over a year.
However, just having a web presence, will in most cases not pay for your site hosting fees. I have outlined five tips that could improve your web traffic and client generating potential below.
#1. Name your site to be found. Select a URL that incorporates some of your keywords. Consumers search by key words, such as the city or neighborhood they want to live in. Which site do you think would generate more search engine hits: (www.bobschwartz.com) or (www.rancho-santa-fe-real-estate.com)? (Interested in owning this Optimized Rancho Santa Fe URL? Now about one for La Jolla or Coronado? . . . send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org )
Even if you have great name recognition in your local neighborhood, a relocation buyer considering Rancho Santa Fe will most definitely find the second site before the first. Result: Incorporating key words into your URL will increase your chances of being found in a key word search. CLICK HERE to see what url can own thru Network Solutions, the 1st. & largest register of URL's!.
#2. Be wary of placing 'Free' content links on your site. Many site enhancements such as links to weather, maps, newsletters, etc., take your hard won visitors off your site, and in many cases they never return. Worse yet, when viewing off site information, your potential clients have a high probability of being exposed to your competition's ad or banner. All of the 'Free' information links earn revenue from selling ads. The same is true of many banner exchanges. Do you really want to join a banner program where your competitor's banner is exposed on your site?
#3. Hire a professional. Unless you have the time and talent to create a good site, leave it to a professional web designer. Preview their other sites before hiring them. (click here to view a $199 web site design special )
#4. Beware of the mass real estate 'cookie-cutter' web site design packages. Although relatively low cost, many do not give you up-date control. Plus, except for a page or two of individualized pages, the content of these sites are the same for hundreds of your competitors. Your site will never stand out by going this route.
#5. Use the tricks ISPs use. Try this: in your favorite browser, type in your URL domain name e. g., (http://www.websitetrafficbuilders.com) but, omit the (www.) prefix! Could you access your site? If not, you probably received a "404 URL NOT FOUND" error message and this means you are losing potential traffic! Top Internet Service Providers (ISPs) program their servers to access sites without the (www.) prefix. If you could not access your site with the above test, a simple call to your ISP should resolve this immediately. © By Bob Schwartz, CRS, GRI co-owner of (http://www.websitetrafficbuilders.com) For other informative search engine articles, visit: (http://www.websitetrafficbuilders.com)
About the Author
Bob is a Certified Residential Specialist, associate broker with Century 21 Award in San Diego Ca. & co-owner of (http://www.websitetrafficbuilders.com). web site placement specialists and distributors of Epson compatible inkjet cartridges. Bob can be contacted at: email@example.com