The internet is the number one place where people search for real estate today. So, having a website is therefore essential for anyone working in the real estate industry.
In order to limit your dependence on large portals and networks and to have an additional advantage in this fight for buyers and tenants, you’ll definitely need to create your own online real estate website.
In this article, you will learn about the real benefits of a personal website and how to create a real estate agent website.
What are the advantages of a real estate agent’s website?
Considering the number and breadth of web portals showcasing real estate of all kinds, many agents wonder whether it is necessary to have their own real estate agent website. They quickly tend to consider only the positive aspects of physical marketing solutions and ignore the advantages of an individual real estate site.
A personal online presence offers the advantage of not having to depend on real estate portals or networks of real estate agents and ideally saves or reduces the costs of such external services.
In summary, a real estate agent website offers the following advantages:
- In the real estate industry, business is done on a personal level. Having your own real estate website could be a decisive element in your success.
- This online presence helps you simplify administrative tasks. Via your website, you can easily communicate new information to potential buyers or current tenants and present basic data and addresses of properties.
- Compared to real estate platforms, a personal real estate website gives you more leeway to showcase your strengths. In this way, you will be able to better present the local and regional peculiarities of a competitive market.
- Marketing also plays a key role in the real estate sector. A real estate agent website can play a central role in planning campaigns and social media actions.
Personal real estate website: an essential tool in times of coronavirus
To say that the real estate sector is heavily impacted by the coronavirus crisis would be a lie. The need and demand for housing remains high. However, delays in construction work, clients failing to meet their financing plans and the complication of visits and paperwork are not without impact on day-to-day business.
Therefore, it is more essential than ever to have a personal real estate agent website on order to provide the latest information and your contact details to your clients, and to communicate with them.
If you currently need to state in your listings that property visits are strictly limited to individual visits, a personal real estate agent website is an ideal platform for communicating this information to your clients and providing them with further details on the current situation.
With regard to visits, a personal website also allows you to offer alternatives: you can thus enhance your offers with even more detailed descriptions and additional photos or make a visit of the property in person.
In this difficult period, we at WEBGIIG wish to support you and be alongside your agency.
Creating a real estate agent’s website: what are the possibilities?
In most cases, the skills and time necessary to develop and personally publish your real estate website won’t be at your reach and you will then need appropriate help. Depending on your needs and your budget, there are different solutions such as using a modular site creator, a CMS or hiring an agency.
In order to help you choose, we’ve presented these different options with their advantages and disadvantages.
Programming your real estate website yourself
Apart from the necessary knowledge in programming and Web design, you will however have to take into account the considerable time factor that goes with this DIY approach.
However, if you are not familiar with web development, it is strongly not recommended that you choose this option to build your own real estate website.
Use a design agency or service.
If you feel that your real estate agent website should reflect your professionalism and personality, hiring a design agency or service is usually the best solution. Entrusting the programming, design, if necessary, content writing and maintenance of your web project to experts, gives you the opportunity to concentrate fully on your daily business.
In this case, and depending on the chosen service pack, the required technical knowledge will be low, or even non-existent.
Nevertheless, in order to rely on an external partner, you must, however, have the necessary budget. Indeed, the costs necessary to create website this way will be significantly higher compared to other options.
Create a real estate agent website using a CMS
Modern content management systems (CMS) offer different features that’ll enable you to design your own website without having considerable programming knowledge.
Like WordPress, these popular solutions today resemble modular website building sites in many ways: for example, website components can be added, organized and removed using drag and drop features. Another advantage of CMS lies in the strict separation of design and content which allows easy independent modifications in these two categories.
The majority of content management systems are available for free and open source, by opting for this solution, you will only have to pay for the hosting of your real estate website.
Real estate website using a modular creation website.
If personally managing a CMS is still too technical for you, then a more traditional modular website building system will be a suitable alternative. Here, too, you have the option of organizing predefined components using drag and drop and automatically converting the content to HTML, CSS or other languages using user-friendly editors.
Unlike a CMS solution, you will get the software needed for this directly from the vendor that hosts the software and your real estate agent website out of the box. As a rule, you have to pay a monthly fee for this which depends on the different packages offered.
Personal, agency, CMS or modular design programming: an overview of the pros and cons
In summary, the most suitable solution for the development and design of your real estate website will depend on your knowledge, the budget available and the time you have to carry out this project.
We have summarized for you the main advantages and disadvantages of the various options in the table below:
|Personal programming||Design agency||CMS||Modular creation site|
|Suitable for||Professionals||Amateurs||People with basic knowledge||Beginners|
|Cost factor||very cheap||expensive||cheap||cheap|
|Time factor||Very high||Weak||Raised||Average|
|Advantages||Maximum freedom||Professional enables you to focus on your day-to-day business.||Work with open-source software; good basis for long-term maintenance||Strong friendliness; the technical part is entirely the responsibility of the service provider.|
|Disadvantages||A considerable challenge; huge time cost||strong dependence on partner||Need for regular CMS updates (mainly circumstantial)||Limited website customization due to the limited number of templates available to all users of the modular system|
What content should you put on your real estate website?
For a real estate agent’s website to meet the expected success, it is essential to associate it with an effective and thought-out concept in terms of content. If your website is informative and has your contact details, then you have already taken the first steps towards a successful transaction.
The following pages are essential on a good real estate agent’s website:
- Home page
- About page
- Real estate offers
- “Sellers” area
- “Donors” area
- Contact page.
Since the home page is the first page viewed by visitors to your website, it plays a significant role in the success of your real estate website. It aims to inform visitors about the subject and the various contents of your website and to place the latest news in the spotlight.
In this context, it is essential to place striking images and texts in order to attract the attention of visitors.
The home page also includes the main menu which is the central navigation element of your website and shows users the full scope of your online offer while allowing easy and convenient access to the various sub-pages.
In the real estate industry, sympathy, trust and a personal exchange generally plays an essential role. By presenting yourself or your team (with text and possibly photos) on your own real estate website, you can therefore score some valuable confidence points.
On this page, you can also present the history and philosophy of your agency as well as indicate references to the properties that you have successfully sold.
On a well-structured real estate agent’s website, visitors should be able to quickly determine what services you offer. A detailed list of your services is therefore recommended, especially if you want to stand out from the usual offerings in the market.
You can thus optimally present your additional services, for example home staging, moving assistance, carrying out administrative formalities or investment and financing offers.
Real estate offers
Showcasing the real estate you offer is the number one reason you can start a real estate agent website and get people to visit your site. Being able to display your assets exactly the way you want them is a big advantage.
You have carte blanche in the choice and number of photos as well as in the description of apartments, houses, etc.
Depending on the real estate market, it may be more or less important to you that owners of real estate wanting to sell these properties can contact you directly.
Having a real estate website with a section dedicated to sellers is a good basis for achieving this. In this way, interested parties can not only get in touch with you in a simple and practical way, but also inform themselves beforehand about your services and your approach as a real estate agent.
What is true for sellers of real estate is also true for lessors. Inform your potential partners on the terms of a possible collaboration in a separate area of your real estate website and thus increase your chances of managing new properties on the market.
We have already talked about placing your contact credentials at strategic points, for example on the pages of the properties offered or on the information pages intended for sellers and lessors.
However, it is just as essential to put together the main contact credentials in a separate page of your real estate agent website which will be accessible through the main menu or the home page of your site.
Some website operators present this information directly on the home page. If you opt for this solution, visibility is however a key criterion.
This section must include the operator of the website, his contact details as well as information concerning his registration in the trade register and his tax identification number.
Step-by-step guide: the guide to your own real estate website
Whichever solution you choose to create your real estate agent website, there are of course a host of other steps required to fulfill your dream of having your own business card online. We present below the main steps, from choosing your domain name to publishing your project, including the design and content.
Step 1: choose a domain name and register it
At the start of your project, choosing your domain is a point that should, in principle, be quick and easy to accomplish. In practice, however, it could turn out to be more complex than expected. This is part of a name short and punchy that will match your own company name. On the other hand, the desired domain name and address must be available.
As soon as you have found a suitable domain, you must register this address. To do this, find a suitable domain provider who will allow you to activate the desired domain and offer you a corresponding plan.
Step 2: programming and design of the real estate website
Once the domain is registered, you can now get started with the technical and artistic design of your real estate agent website. We have already covered the programming possibilities extensively in this article. However, this step obviously involves more than just writing the code or having it written by a service provider.
Before you start creating the pages, you’ll need a well-thought-out concept of how you want your online presence to function along with the design.
On one hand, you must ensure that you offer your site visitors the best user experience possible. The fluidity of navigation is of paramount importance here. In addition to the user experience, on the other hand, you need to create visual hooks in the overall interface design to attract users to your website.
Step 3: integrate the content into the real estate website
With the technical framework in place, you can now turn to the core element of your online presence: At the start of this article, I told you what content your real estate agent website must contain.
The design of the various pages – such as the home page, the property presentation page, the spaces reserved for sellers or lessors or the contact page – is left to your entire discretion. You can for example use individual contact forms to reach different target groups (tenants, buyers, lessors, sellers, etc.) in the same way or add value to your website with a personalized blog on the real estate sector.
Another useful option could be a separate area for connecting existing customers.
However, the main content of a real estate agent’s website is and remains the presentation of the properties you offer. Professional photos are as indispensable as informative. The use of videos, slideshows and interactive elements, which make it possible for example to visualize the plan of the property, can also promote the success of your activity as a real estate agent.
Step 4: publish, promote and optimize your real estate agent website
Once your real estate agent website is created and the contents written, you can finally publish your new business card on the web. However, check beforehand that you are satisfied with the final product and that all the elements (navigation, buttons, links, forms, etc.) work as desired.
You can of course make changes to your website at any time once online, but major lapses in user guidance will have a negative effect on visitor satisfaction and the search engine rating of your site.
Lastly, a real estate agent website will also permit you to: add your domain address to your flyers, business cards and official emails and promote your website on social media like Facebook, Instagram or Twitter if you have a page on these media.