From Google to Facebook, there are many campaigns to invest in to boost brand exposure generate leads. All aim to bring the prospecting client to the agent’s website, aiming to convert them from a visitor to a lead. If your website is not planned and structured with your goal in mind (for example, more valuation requests or buyer registrations), the chances are you will not get conversions and your marketing investment will go to waste.
To help you assess if your website is not fit for marketing, use this check list:
POOR OR NO CALL-TO-ACTIONS
This is the most common oversight we see when assessing websites. Eight out of 10 estate agents’ websites we come across lack properly executed call-to-actions. There is a simple rule: if you don’t ask, you don’t get. Take a look at your website from a vendor’s or landlord’s point of view. For example, how easy is it for them to book a valuation? Do you have a prominent button or a banner asking them to do so? Is this banner or button placed on all the relevant pages? By placing clear and prominent calls-to-action on a website, we typically see a 30 per cent increase in enquiries. If you don’t clearly ask for the business, the chances are you are not converting as much as you could.
POOR OR NO TRACKING
If you plan to invest in a marketing campaign to bring new prospects to your website, you must track the results. Digital marketing, unlike traditional marketing, can be properly tracked. You can track the number of clicks to a specific page or button, the number of submitted form enquiries, or the number of calls from each campaign you run – and from each channel. This data can then help you decide if your campaign is successful and what improvements you need to make. If you find a campaign brings you a lot of leads, you can then invest more into it. The same applies if the campaign doesn’t work at all – you can quickly stop it. Without the tracking in place, investing in a marketing campaign can be seen as a cost and discontinued even if it’s performing well.
NO LANDING PAGES
Each campaign you run should be aimed at a selected, pre-defined audience. For example, if you want to attract more local vendors to your website by running a campaign on Facebook, it’s no good taking them to your homepage which is designed to appeal to everyone. You must have a dedicated landing page, planned and designed to appeal to vendors, with clear call-to-actions and properly tracked. In most cases, these are not your standard pages. A landing page which generates results is planned with the campaign message in mind – it should ask for the business and make it easy for the prospect to take action, without clicking on other pages.
NOT MOBILE RESPONSIVE
One in every three websites we assess has a limited mobile version (for example, m.yourdomain.co.uk) of the website instead of a mobile responsive design (i.e. resizes according to the device used). This may be a cheaper solution to a mobile site. However, it is a big no-no when it comes to running a marketing campaign because typically these mobile sites are only showing properties for sale and rent and do not have any other pages needed for marketing purposes. So, if you run a campaign on Facebook or Google and do not have a mobile responsive website, you have nowhere to take your prospects but your homepage, which only offers a search facility. If a vendor or a landlord visits your website via a mobile phone as a result of clicking on a Google search results ad or a Facebook ad, they will not be taken to a dedicated landing page and therefore not be shown the correct call-to-action, resulting in a loss of opportunity and wasted investment. In this case, it’s better to exclude any visitors from mobile devices, which means you will reduce your potential target audience by half.
SLOW LOADING TIME
We’ve all been there, waiting for a site to load, clicking refresh and feeling frustrated. This applies especially to prospects using mobile devices with 3G or 4G connections. If your website takes longer than 10 seconds to load, the chances are the visitor will leave your website, having just cost you money and, possibly, business. Make sure your website loads quickly before you invest in any marketing campaigns.