Real Estate Websites: Why You Need One and How to Generate Leads

Real Estate Websites: Why You Need One and How to Generate Leads


Download the Slide Deck  (PDF)   Webinar_RealEstateWebsites


Why you need a real estate website

  • At a minimum it is your online brochure
  • Working with sellers? It is a marketing tool, featured listings
  • Can be a lead generation tool is your actively and effectively market and advertise your site.

5 Essential Elements of Your Blog or Website

1. Site & Content Management

2. IDX Integration

  • Quick search
  • Map search
  • Other search functionality
  • Custom links
  • Property detail view and features
  • Lead capture forms
  • Contact management system
  • Email campaigns
  • Visitor options and usability

3. Listing Management

  • Featured listings (manual or automatic upload)
  • Single property website / property detail view
  • Photo gallery / slideshow
  • Customization options

4. Lead Generation & Contact Management

  • Lead Capture – form integration and customization
  • Contact management features
  • Branded email
  • Email marketing/drip campaigns
  • Text and/or email notification
  • Home values landing page / tool

5. SEO and Analytics

  • Search engine optimization features
  • Marketing or SEO services
  • Social media sharing
  • Site statistics and analytics to tack and measure your marketing efforts

Template vs. Custom Websites

Website Templates


  • Ready for immediate use
  • Low budget and cost
  • Shorter development time
  • Wide selection of pre-made designs
  • Ability to see what you’re getting


  • Web design isn’t unique
  • May be used on many other sites
  • Customization may be limited
  • Most likely not SEO friendly
  • Generic look of design

Custom Website Design


  • Customized and unique web design
  • More adaptable to your specific needs
  • Usually HTML / CSS validated (which helps out substantially with SEO)
  • Unique branding


  • Usually costs more than a template website
  • Longer development time
  • Can not see website until design is finished or a time after development begins
  • You may not have editing capability – content management

Blog vs. Website


  • Search engine friendly – each post has a unique URL
  • Frequently updated content (as long as you actually blog!)
    • Don’t go with a blog unless you are committed to maintain it and writing content (articles) at least 2-3 times per week
  • Interactive and more social then a website (comments)
  • Flexibility and easy to manage content
  • Can easily add IDX solution to a blog
  • Allows your voice and unique personality to come through


  • Static content – usually not updated often
  • Your business brochure plus online
  • Not interactive
  • Will take longer and dedicated effort to show up in search engines (either hiring as SEO expert; using pay-per-click, etc)

Real Estate Agent Template Sites

Top Producer Website

Real Estate Blog Sites

Other IDX Solutions with WordPress Websites

Lead Gen Sites

(Be prepared to spend $1500-2000/month for these solutions)


Steps for Internet Success


1. Create & Maintain a great “destination” Web or Blog site

  • Customer-centric not Agent-Centric
    • People don’t want to be sold, they want to be helped and get information
    • Internet = immediate access and information
    • Offer what the consumer wants
      • Easy & accessible Search for listings (IDX)
      • Photos & virtual tours
      • Reports, local market data
      • Neighborhood, community, school information
      • Foreclosure, short sale, loan modification information
    • Compelling content
      • Most important content above the fold
      • In addition to the list above, consider
        • Buyer/Seller process & tips
        • Relocation info, guides
        • Testimonials
        • Your niche, target markets, specialties
  • What consumer wants on a website…
    • How is your site unique
    • Clear sense of what you offer
    • Contact information, including a phone number and physical location
    • Third party validation – testimonials
    • Ease of Use and Navigation
    • Clear guidance on your process
    • Ability to give feedback
    • Clear calls to action
    • Special Offers and personalization
  • Good domain name (You vs. keyword terms)
    • Older domain name better
    • Your Name if goal is to brand you
    • Niche keywords for better SEO

2. Effective Lead Generation & Lead Capture

  • Clear Calls to Action that lead to capturing prospect info
    • IDX search – allow access to a point and then a sign-up form
    • Property Watch – email alerts – allows the consumer to receive the listing information they want when it becomes available
    • Free, compelling reports – consumer completes a contact form to receive the report or offer
    • Home Market Valuation
  • Offline Marketing Plan
    • Energize Your Database to Search for Homes – Import or add your SOI, past client database and send them the imported VIP welcome letter
    • Add contacts daily – use your website to close prospects for their information and set them up as A VIP on your site for full access
      • Open Houses
      • Ad & Sign Calls
    • Change Your Voice Mail message to include a CTA to visit your site and Search homes for sale
    • Add compelling call to action on everything:
      • Business cards
      • Letterhead
      • Marketing Flyers
      • Email signature
      • Postcards
      • Print advertising
      • Car signs
      • Yard & Open House signs 
  • Online Marketing Plan
    • Direct
      • Build your Profiles on and add link to your website:
        • Trulia
        • (Business page_
      • Paid Advertising on other websites
        • Trulia Pro
        • Zillow
        • Local online magazine & newspapers
        • Your niche market

3. Converting the Lead

  • Connect
    • Immediate response (less than 20 mins) increases your chances of converting that lead – text and email alerts for leads
    • Make the call ASAP when you have a contact number
    • Initial welcome (VIP) letter emailed out
    • Get the prospect searching on your website and off the other sites!
  • Cultivate
    • Automated, drip email campaigns
    • Setup Specific Property Searches (MLS or your site)
    • CTAs in the email (Search properties now!)
    • Phone calls = qualify, build rapport
  • Close
    • Use the visitor search profile information
    • Refine searches – use property watch
    • Close for appointments
  • Build Referrals
    • Client for life email campaigns – Ask for referral CTA
      • eNewsletters
      • Holiday letters
      • Market condition reports

Posted on

January 5, 2016