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keyword development, realtor keywords, real estate keywords, oregon real estate

Keywords for Realtors:

How to Make It to the First Page

Making it to the first page of search engines involves two things; keywords and links. I previously discussed link-building and how the interconnectedness of websites is developed through linking related content to others, and therefore, digitally constructing the web that we actually surf through for entertainment or information. If you haven’t read Link-Building for Realtors then please open it up in another tab and read it afterwards. Making your sites appear amongst the first few websites on search engines; like Google and Bing, is practically impossible without the development of both keywords and links. Keywords and Links are two sides of the same coin called Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and if you want to succeed online you will need to plan and execute both.

Why Are Keywords Important?

For people using search engines to find homes for sale, Realtors in their areas of interest, or information from mortgage lenders keywords are the the means to find them. Links are what build the web, but the web is massive and search engines have to start somewhere. By using keywords, search engines pull lists of websites that are both tailored specifically to the search inquiry (keywords) and have strong domain authority (inbound links). Keywords are vital in drawing your desired clientele to your website, because without them the search engines wouldn't be able to differentiate between your realty brokerage or home listings, and that of a pizza parlor.

So, to cut to the chase, there are a few things that you need to know about keywords in order to develop your online presence.

Keywords are Case Sensitive

When it comes to search engines you must realize that synonyms aren’t understood. While we may say things like real estate agent and Realtor somewhat interchangeably these two things aren’t the same in search engine algorithms. This means that you will get different results from the use of different search terms. When you write about your business, your biography, or landing pages for clients when they are searching for an agent, if you have a preference to using the term Realtor then you will lose out on clientele that searching real estate agent.

Note: In reality, unless you put quotes around “real estate agent” it may well treat real estate agent as three separate words or a combination of words; i.e. real estate, estate agent, or real agent.

Keywords Need to Be Localized

Most agents, brokerages, property developers, real estate investors, property managers, etc. in the United States have to keyword real estate on their websites. A much smaller percentage have Oregon real estate. Even smaller; Salem, Oregon real estate. The more specific you get in your keywords the more targeted your website is to marketing towards a specific audience; which is what you want. A seller looking to list their home or a buyer trying to find one will seek the services of a Realtor specific to their area. They will either input the location themselves or the search engine will geolocate the user’s position and display web pages accordingly.

Keywords Need to Target A Niche Audience

Clients aren’t looking for generalists. They don’t need well rounded Realtors that can handle all types of real estate problems. They only want the one that is best suited for their specific problem. If they don’t they know how to solve a problem they will search for people who can. If they know the solution, they will search for an expert that can deliver on that solution. Regardless, they will search for specifics. As a result, those handful of Realtors who narrowly define their expertise to certain real estate problems and solutions; e.g. foreclosures and short sales, will appear first on search engines prior to those that talk in general terms.

They are asking about foreclosures, they are asking about VA home loans, they are asking about Section 8, and they are asking about property management. They want a service from a​ subject matter expert that specializes in that area, and not necessarily one that dabbles in everything. Just like a patient with a brain tumor wants a brain surgeon to operate on them over a general practitioner, a client wants a specialized agent over a well rounded one.

You Need Keyword Dense Pages

We know that you need to focus on keywords in the development of your pages, but how exactly does know that certain words are keywords? Density is the answer. The search engines analyze the density of words within a site in its texts and image titles. They assess the frequency of words and phrases and use that to determine the relevance of web pages when people search those terms. For example, many articles and blogs that discuss President Donald Trump mention his history with real estate, but only those that focus heavily on his relationship with the industry appear in search results for “Donald Trump real estate.”

Knowing what your keywords should be, you then need to make your pages dense with them. Based on Google algorithms you should focus on maintaining pages with 1-2% keyword density. In other words, if one of your keywords is Realtor then, for every 100 words, you need to have Realtor mentioned once or twice. Make sure that what you write isn’t just spam, and is actually content worth your potential client’s time to read. This is because Google knows whether or not you are gaming the system, and will penalize your websites ranking if your content is excessive in keywords and not structured for humans to read; i.e. grammar and syntax. Write naturally for humans, but be cognizant to increase your keywords up to at least 1-2% of the body of your pages.

A great example of people using keyword density correctly is Progressive Insurance. For example, I typed boat insurance into Google and Progressive’s landing page for boat insurance was the first result after all the advertisements; this means that they have both great keyword density and strong domain authority. When you click on that page you will see the Progressive has laden that page with the keyword boat and its subsequent phrase boat insurance. Needless to say, this is why they come up first.

Progressive Boat Insurance

Progressive "Boat" Insurance

As you can see in the highlights that boat alone appears numerous times; in fact 49 instances on this page.  This means that even when people are looking up general information on boats that this landing page has a higher likelihood of appearing in search results since it is dense with the keyword boat.

Progressive Boat Insurance

Progressive "Boat Insurance"

The more specific keyword phrase boat insurance has less instances; only 19, but as a result when people are specifically searching for boat insurance on Google then this becomes the first non-paid result to appear.  It is the most dense, yet naturally written, page about boat insurance on the web.  Additionally, the number of sites linking back to this page; such as this article, increase its domain authority.

Tips to Effective Keyword Development

  1. Map out all the keywords that apply to you, as well as potential alternatives that could be possibly used by search engine users.
  2. Ensure not only that your business is locally listed, but that the locations that you service are mentioned on your webpages.
  3. Ensure that your keywords are geared toward a targeted audience. They need to be both localized and satisfy the problems they are looking to solve.
  4. Maintain your keyword density to around 1-2% on your pages while still keeping your content appealing to human beings to avoid “angering” the Google algorithm.
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