Most Realtors while having decent sites will never rank or have much of a presence on search engines like Google or Bing. I think we can agree like buying a property having the right setup on your site is like a walk score as in location, location, location. A majority of Realtors look to cost effective solutions to have their MLS listings for potential buyers on their site to showcase potential properties. In recent years, a number of solution providers across industry have provided comprehensive Realtor websites that gave aestheticly pleasing sites with MLS listings and generic content already defaulted in. Their solutions however have left Realtors in a very bad situation and the numbers are huge.
Unfortunately, most Realtor sites have generic content that is duplicate and will never rank. The problem becomes very evident quite quickly when we look at Click Sold clients SEO problem. All their new sites come prefitted with generic duplicate content across sites which immediately puts you at a disadvantage. While your visitors may benefit from the value of the content in the eyes of Google it’s nothing new and will likely be buried. Spam is after all repeating the same content endlessly. We can see examples of this here with this ClickSold site review.
Working with a REMAX Realtor today on their SEO the problem became very evident. The site sold to them by ClickSold while affordable and a lot of great features most Realtors left the client with a real problem. When first installed for ClickSold clients their sites come with generic duplicate content on every other Realtor’s site. It becomes more evident below when we look at the number of customers that are using the same generic content on their sites.
There are over 21,300 Realtors trying to all rank on Google for their search properties using ClickSold. I’m willing to make a strong bet a majority have kept the typical content on their sites that come with ClickSold on first activation and as a result are being buried in search results. As you may or may not know 33% of search clicks go through to page results in the first position of Google. This means that if you’re not showing up first or in the top few search results you’re not going to see much value from your site.
Basically, if you’re using duplicate content across your site that everyone else is using not only are you likely not to show up in search results but your marketing value of your site is pretty much a waste. I don’t know about you but I certainly don’t like the idea of throwing away $500 a year for nothing. Realtor SEO is competitive enough without starting out by burning your business.
Your Realtor WordPress Site Isn’t Secure
There’s another real problem not addressed here that most Realtor site providers don’t address and that’s their updates. My client’s site they purchased from ClickSold was unmanaged which means they’re completely vulnerable to hacks from WordPress which are quite frequent. ClickSold like most other providers uses WordPress and their plugins on it. As you may or may not know WordPress accounts for 26.4% of web content management systems as of a year ago and likely a lot higher today with increasing popularity.
As of today a staggering 54.3% of all wordpress sites are insecure and are prone to WordPress security exploits which are readily available. People literally run programs that run Google search queries just to find sites running wordpress with older versions. Solution providers like Click Sold, web hosting companies and web designers need to disclose or provide to customers what they will need after the site is built. Simply selling a site that is aesthetically pleasing with gaping security holes weeks later needs to end.
I provide to all my customers with fast web hosting used by Fortune 500 companies, an SSL certificate and security updates all for $300 Canadian a year. When first working with a web marketing provider you should ask them if their service of providing you with a site includes the above. I think we can agree everyone can afford $25 a month CAD or as of today $18.56 USD. Most decent digital marketing providers will provide the same for more or less the same after your site is completed. I don’t recommend using Godaddy for anything other than domains because their hosting just isn’t up to par in comparison to others. Google Page Speed is a factor of ranking and it determines if your site loads slow. Besides the obvious loss to business from site and email outages you’re likely also losing out on search engine presence. The only two I recommend are Liquidweb.com and WPEngine for hosts. However, neither updates your site fully.
The fact is, that Google’s now showing sites as not secure because of how bad it is with companies not updating their sites. As you can see by the above it’s extremely rare you find someone both secure and using original content. There’s a cost to everything and cheaping out on your marketing will definitely cost you big time. If you’re reading this however you’re in luck and are now armed with some valuable information that will help you immensely.
Realtor SEO Strategies
- Write Original Content: Duplicate content on Google is the grave yard of marketing buried deep below. Consult with an SEO provider and check it over with the free site CopyScape.com which will check your content for you to see if it’s original. Doing the same thing every day and expecting different results is insanity! A good SEO will give you ideas of what content you should write and help you connect with people looking for product service offerings. Many agencies claim to offer this but unfortunately offer at best the bare minimum. If you’re not talking about your service offering then your competition likely is for you. You can control the conversation with appropriate reputation management.
- Be clear about your needs to a provider. It doesn’t have to be expensive especially with a consultation. My peers and I as SEO providers have helped companies overtake billion dollar operations on a shoe string budget. A job worth doing, is a job worth doing right. In this case the Realtor wanted to migrate their site properly and have presence on Google after.
- Invest In Quality Security: A good solution provider will fix your vulnerabilities, do preventative security on your wordpress site and insure your site is up to date with updates throughout the year. This means plugin, theme updates, and backups with regularity. Security and service doesn’t end after your site is built just like marketing conversation doesn’t end.
- Get an SSL certificate. If your site isn’t with an SSL certificate then guess what your sites in the eyes of Google aren’t secure and will show like the above image. A majority of sites aren’t secure and if you’re taking any kind of information without one I predict most sites will be buried in search results below everyone else for what is essentially a free add-on with a digital marketing service. If your provider doesn’t offer them then they typically run anywhere from $8-$69. I would avoid an extended validation or EV-SSL certificate as they’re extremely tough to setup and quite unecessary unless you’re pretty much a bank storing financial information on your site. If you’re a Realtor that’s pretty much never the case. There are literally millions of sites with this problem and you taking the steps to get this done will put you ahead of the crowd.
The above issues were resolved today for an Elite REMAX Realtor and definitely I thought it very necessary to write about why most Realtors aren’t found on Google. We need to change the way we look at marketing and security. The negligence in service digital marketing industry wide is just gross. This client thought they were saving with ClickSold.com but unfortunately the solution was incomplete until we gave the above SEO and site security solutions. They’re now on a path to sales leads, and client engagement they wouldn’t of otherwise had.