It takes little time to establish the dominant players in Real Estate websites in Australia.
REA group, a public company listed on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) is the dominant player with the realestate.com.au website.
REA Group is majority-owned by News Corp Australia, a subsidiary of News Corp. (source https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/REA_Group)
News Corp owns the largest Real Estate website in Australia. Yet News Corp using the News Media Bargaining Code to leverage funds from tech giants Google and Facebook just seems wrong. The ACCC argued the News Media Bargaining Code was supposedly to support journalism. This article is going to suggest some SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) strategies to use on your small to medium Real Estate website.
As a Gold Coast SEO Company I am no stranger to websites, and website marketing. If you are a small real estate firm based in Southport on the Gold Coast how do you compete against a virtual monopoly by a few large players owned by dominant news groups in Australia.
Small and medium Real Estate companies competing for web clicks in Australia have the double whammy of 1 or 2 giant players both connected via their parent companies to dominant media organisations and in this country that means a "close relationship" with the government.
Your website needs to target niches, with local information that a large conglomerate cannot target as well. Look at individual suburbs, streets, parks, clubs and ammenities in detail. No one actually knows the true volumes of search except for Google and they are not always forthcoming with the truth. This means a good SEO can discover valuable longtail keywords that attract traffic.
A large website would require fine categorisation of menus to be discovered. A smaller site can be structured for niches better.
Many Real Estate companies flounder in a state of "learned helplessness" and end up paying the ransoms required to the dominant players.
This creates a zone where top-heavy competition cannot go and the basic small sites are too simple for.
YouTube is where SEO was 15 years ago. It presents opportunities. As a Real Estate agent you have access to video, walk-throughs, drone footage. This material is gold for creating YouTube content.
Develop low budget high impact web videos by learning the basics on -:
Aim at being in the top 5% of videos quality wise, but not necessarily in the top 1% that requires far more budget.
Research your content first. Check the available videos and the numbers of views they are attracting. Pick good keywords and add descriptions to ensure YouTube know what your video is about. Promote the video afterwards including placement on your website.
Choosing to create YouTube content yourself or outsource it needs to be a strategic decision. If you had an SEO company creating YouTube content for you, there would be tangible results. YouTube videos cannot be changed once they are live. That has a benefit unlike blogs that can suffer from Content Decay, YouTube videos are not competing against videos that are updating, they are competing against new videos only.
Social media like Twitter and Facebook are mediums you can leverage to place emphasis on your property listings. There is one main strategy (criteria) with social media, it has to add more value than you put into it.
To leverage social media you need targeted posts that generate interest. Social media will add value to your SEO. I prefer Twitter. With Twitter you can have direct access to people who would never open an email you sent them. An identity posts an item, you can comment or reply depending on the medium.
Many companies get social media wrong. They do not engage. Often just spruik an endless array of self promotion. The key is to engage. Know the important hashtags and communicate. Not every social media exchange has to be a win for you.
If you have an office in a suburb you can gain some advantages in Google My Business.
As a Real Estate agent you are more than likely paying a "kings ransom" to the dominant Real Estate websites. You may also own or rent premises and typically have overheads as all businesses do.
If you overspend on your SEO budget you can add a lot of risk to your business in a downturn.
Hence the final step is to define success. Spending too much on SEO increases risk to your business.
Ask your SEO how to measure the response. How will we know if a Real Estate SEO strategy is working? The data is all there in Google Anaytics, Google Console and your daily positions in searches (using SEO software).
It takes a few minutes at best to keep tabs on the success of an SEO campaign. This does not mean your SEO should be sending you daily reports. These reports are available on demand and require knowledge to interpret success. Success as you define it may be to increase the number of locals wanting to list a property with you.
The SEO will more than likely being using the measurement techniques to check your stats and "observe" your competition.
There is not one way to do SEO - there are also risks in using an SEO company that puts your Google reputation at risk by purchasing fake paid links.
In Real-Estate you are competing against giants, however Real-Estate covers many fields including trades. SEO for tradesmen is about choosing the keywords and locations to get some results even if you do not spend the same budget as competitors. Again choosing the right SEO company is important.