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The Best Real Estate Agent Websites: What Do They Have in Common?

No matter the reason for visiting real estate agent websites, home buyers are going to click away if it doesn't work properly. Learn how to create a site that generates leads.

Every business nowadays requires a website, even just a simple one. In a world where the internet rules all, an online presence is a necessity. Any business that thrives off communicating with as many people as possible, such as real estate, needs a website so people can browse listings and find information without feeling pressured to jump into a hot real estate market before they're ready.

Real estate agent websites need to be easy to use with quick loading times and frequent updates, as well as having other features that make it simple for the visitor to find both the information they were looking for and the agent's contact information. Without a well-functioning website, your ability to find and retain customers is drastically reduced.

Why do real estate agents need a website?

Yes, there are other methods for realtors to get their names out there—they could make cold calls based off of lead lists, mail out flyers, or walk around neighborhoods, leaving a business card on each and every door.

All of these methods will likely get some potential buyers to reach out, and getting referrals from previous customers and colleagues is still the largest method of lead generation for real estate agents. But now, even those personal referrals are going to want to take a look at what you've got before calling.

Having your own real estate agent website allows you to showcase your best properties and give visitors additional information about subjects like qualifying for a mortgage or ways to afford a down payment on ever-rising home prices. If you want people to stay and read, and then eventually call, you have to present them with good information that shows you know what you're doing.

How does a website help realtors?

When people hear about you, be it through a referral from a family member who used your services or a Google search, they're going to look at whether you appear to be successful in this real estate market. A proper real estate agent website gives them a chance to see what types of properties you usually work with, what your attitude toward real estate is, and how you go about finding homes to show buyers.

Prospective customers can browse the site, taking their time to see what you might be like as a real estate agent helping them buy or sell a home. There's no pressure, and the site gives you a chance to hook them in and influence them to contact you.

Some of the ways you can subtly convince them that you're the right person for the job include having a beautiful site that's a pleasure to look at, and by having a site that's easy to use and fast-loading on both a desktop and on a mobile device. It is frustrating to site visitors to find that pages won't load or that they'll load but with graphics missing.

Sometimes this has to do with the device the person is using to view the site, but a lot of the time, it has to do with how your site is set up to react with the device the person is using. A wonky website can deter potential buyers from taking that next step and reaching out, prioritizing web design elements listed below can ensure that doesn’t happen.

7 Elements every realtor website needs

Merely having a site might be a step in the right direction—but it's only the first step. Potential property buyers come in all forms, from those absolutely sure of what they want to others who know little about the process of buying a home or land and who are only curious. And then you have site visitors who only want to find statistics and see what prices are like now, with no intention of actually buying. No matter how they found your site, it’s critical to optimize the content and layout of your website to continue to nurture the lead and push their curiosity to the point where they contact you.

When creating a real estate website, there are a handful of elements and functionality requirements that are a necessity to keep visitors on your page. Overall, you want a visitor's time on your website to be as seamless as possible, letting them move from one place to another with no chance of a delay that could make them click away to another site.

Smooth Functionality

Everything has got to work well on each page. No errors, no missing pages, no graphics that appear as only a blank box. The page has to scroll smoothly, and if you want a design where new content appears when someone reaches the end of a page, do not make that appearance automatic. You may think that's helpful, but all it does is make it impossible for someone to access any links at the bottom of the page because they keep disappearing.

Fast loading

No one wants to wait for a lagging web page that won't load; it sets off a feeling of impatience and could make someone who's busy decide to go do something else. Their return to your page isn't guaranteed. Instead, ensure everything on the website loads quickly.

Don't weigh the page down with a lot of videos and animations. Think of your prospective buyers who may have been searching for weeks for a good real estate agent. They are going to be so tired of searching for an agent that they won't hang around if the page becomes hung up as it loads.

Optimized for all browsers and devices

So you want that Firefox user to open Chrome instead, and you want that laptop user to take out their phone to access your site? They won't. They'll either muddle through each page using Firefox or their laptop, or they'll look somewhere else.

You never know what devices and browsers your prospective customers will use. Meet their needs, and not the other way around, by ensuring your site works well with all major browsers and both desktop/laptop and mobile devices. Make it easy for those leads to see your site!

Straightforward navigation

Don't hide pages or think that you'll get people to click on more parts of the website by placing important pages behind other links. You know people will want to see sample listings, your history, your contact information, and other items. Yes, it's fine to categorize them and have a main link, such as for listings on the homepage, while links to subsections like houses and condos for sale are on the main listings page. But don't create a maze that makes people take the long way through your website. That's simply frustrating.

Easy-to-find contact information

And speaking of contact information, make it clear where it is. Include it on every page, and if you have an email form that people submit through the website, make it obvious where it is. Don't use email features that open the email program on people's devices; that's not helpful for people who use webmail programs. You can have the option, of course, but label it clearly.

Good lead capture function

Lead capture means to gather information about who visits your site. This is more than a site counter; this is a form, such as a newsletter signup form, that gets the visitor's name and contact information. Do be open about what data will be stored so that anyone signing up knows what is going to happen with their information.

Informative content

Websites for real estate agents need to have informative content. This includes both straightforward information about who you are and what areas you serve, and more general items, such as a blog whose entries take a look at the housing market, current housing news, and tips for buyers and sellers. And, of course, you'll want sample listings and success stories where you got your buyers a great deal or got your sellers the best price possible. Keep the reader interested!

Choose the right website builder

You don't have to create your website from scratch; instead, you'll use a website builder, which is a service that literally helps you build a site without having to know code. Mailchimp offers many services for free, including free hosting, and much of what you can do with a Mailchimp website that is free will often cost you if you go with a competitor.

Even if you've somehow had a busy real estate office without a website so far, you really need one now. You'll likely find your customer list expanding by leaps and bounds if you offer a well-functioning, informative site. Use Mailchimp to create your website now, and give your customers a clear view of how you can help them.

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