With last year’s loss of real estate listing integration within Google Maps, proper search engine optimization is an increasingly vital part of online success. While WordPress offers a simple way for any Realtor to establish their online presence and provide easy access to the latest listings, there are many areas of SEO in which WordPress is often lacking. These four tips will help your real estate blog or website climb the search engine rankings and achieve increased success.
Real Estate SEO Tip #1: Optimize Your Site for Your Market
A large component of SEO is keyword placement. By analyzing where and how you use key terms, search engines can establish what your site is about and how relevant your page will be to those searching for specific keywords. One of the biggest website mistakes that Realtors can make is to underestimate the power of local SEO.
Including your city, state or region throughout your listings will help to ensure that Google, or other search engines, will place you higher on the results page for those searching in your area. If you deal with a broad geographical area, consider making sub-pages or domains for each region for increased SEO results.
Real Estate SEO Tip #2: Harness the Power of Plug-ins
Best SEO practices change often. Keeping up with these changes while managing your business can be a daunting task. Plug-ins offer a simple way to add features and flexibility to any WordPress-based website. While there are plenty of options available, one of the best ways to make improving your site’s SEO simple is to install WordPress SEO by Yoast.
This plug-in will analyze your pages and posts to ensure that you are doing everything needed to position your page as high as possible. Easy to understand prompts, post editor integration and batch editing make the plug-in simple to use. For an in-depth guide to everything the plug-in has to offer, check out Yoast’s WordPress SEO tutorial.
Real Estate SEO Tip #3: Optimize Your Images for SEO
While pictures of a property are essential for marketing to clients, most search engines cannot analyze images to improve your SEO. Be sure to provide alternate text and descriptions for all images on your site. Doing so allows search engines and most popular accessibility tools to understand what images are conveying and how they relate to your site or post.
If you are unsure how to do this, the previously mentioned WordPress SEO plug-in makes the process simple. For websites including picture galleries or other image-heavy elements, try to include them under the text listings for the sites. This will prevent search engines from misinterpreting your gallery as spam or advertising.
Real Estate SEO Tip #4: Utilize Pings and Site Maps
Search engines cannot possibly keep up with website listings in real time. This means your latest listing might not show up in search engine results for weeks. To help reduce the amount of time it takes search engines to discover new content on your site, enable pings and site maps. Pings send a quick notice to the search engines each time you create a new post or listing. This allows the site to adapt to your typical publishing schedule and often results in quicker detection of new posts.
Site maps create a virtual map of your entire site. By providing a site map, you can emphasize important parts of your site while ensuring that the search engines can easily detect and index your content. While pings can be enabled through the WordPress dashboard, site maps require coding. Fortunately, the WordPress SEO plug-in has you covered there as well.
About the author: Marty Reardon is a longtime writer with years of experience covering the tech industry. When he’s not writing, you can find him reviewing self storage facilities in Illinois or training for his upcoming marathon.