I like to start off my Real Estate Marketing Classes with asking the agents…”Who has a Real Estate website…that they OWN?” I get a weird look on their face as several of the agents raise their hands slowly. They say…
“I have a Real Estate website.”
That you own? Its a stand alone website personally branded to you?
“My company gave it to me, but is has my name and information on it.”
So you don’t own it? Your company does. What would happen to your online presence if you left that company?
That is when I start to see the wheels turn. If you have spent any length of time on my website ( I hope you have) you know that I talk about Real Estate and technology quite a bit. Today I want to talk about company Real Estate websites vs WordPress websites. Two different platforms with a lot of differences for YOU the Realtor. These are differences you need to know going forward in your business. If you have always used a company Real Estate websites this blog is for you. There are Pro’s and Con’s to both company websites and WordPress, so lets go over them and break it down.
1. Its a free website that is given to you and allows you to have an online presence. Anytime you get a website set up at no cost its usually a good thing. These company sites are getting better and they allow you to post listings, information, and some even support videos.
2. Company Real Estate websites also support and IDX feature( in most cases) and allows consumers to search for homes on them which is good because consumers want information and see homes without having to talk to a Realtor up front.
3. These website are also branded to the company you work and also can post the entire brokerages listings. It also allows you to link your blog (in most cases) to the company Real Estate websites. That allows the consumer to move back and forth between your blog and main site.
1. You don’t own the site. You might own the URL…but not the site. Having ownership in your Real Estate business is important. Own your website.
2. Little to no SEO (Search Engine Optimization). You can have content on your site but if the website pages and content is not “optimized” it means very little and people who are looking for that information on Google won’t be able to find it. That is bad.
3. Very limited capabilities. Company Real Estate websites are template sites. Their capability levels to expand the site’s performance or enhancement is small. If you wanted to add other widgets or “add-on’s” to the site you can’t and if you could, you would need permission first from your company.
1. There is a learning curve to know HOW to use this tool correctly. Many Realtors don’t want to take the time to learn how to use WordPress when they already have busy Real Estate careers.
2. It costs money to have a professional site built. Of course there is a free version of WordPress but most people who go that route don’t know how to finish building it out to the professional level. Custom WP sites can run you $1000-$3000.
3. You need to manage and update it. I think this is a positive but many Realtors who are busy and don’t have an admin don’t have the time to manage their site as it should be.
1. You own the site…and it is branded to you. Its a one time fee to have it built and that’s it (other than hosting). If you ever made a move to another company nothing changes in your online presence
2. WordPress has a lot of SEO and it helps regular “non-techy” people use “Plugins” for you site that does SEO for you. In essence, WordPress will help your content get found and ranked online.
3. Plugins!! Plugins on WordPress are like apps on your iPhone. You can add, install, and make changes to your site 24/7 and allow it to do new things. Many plugins are SEO plugins while others allow your videos to pull over on you site (see right). There are thousands to choose from that will make your site visible to Google.
4. Google Loves WordPress. If Google loves something and your goal is to get found online by buyers and sellers…then you should embrace it. WordPress also is constantly updating itself just like iPhones update to a new IOS. The new versions give WordPress more capabilities.
5. VIDEO! WordPress supports video very well and it is easy to embed videos into your website…Check it out!
Company Real Estate websites or WordPress? You can see the positives and negatives to both but I think if your long term goal is to build an online presence and brand…WordPress is the best platform. If you are a Real Estate agent or Mortgage Lender and you need help with your WordPress site or any other facet of your Real Estate business please fill out the form below and tell me HOW I can help you. At Stewart Title…we would like to earn your business by growing it!
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