Internet Marketing has undeniably swept the real estate industry and quickly. In hindsight agents should have invested in real estate internet marketing in 1995 when only 2% of home buyers used the internet in their home search and it was easy to get high ranking in search engines. Internet users and advertiser competition has grown exponentially since then. National Association of Realtors® statistics show 88% of people who were able to sell their homes in 2007 had internet marketing.
As a buying agent, or a selling agent it is clear that internet marketing is obligatory with such a large number of people looking online. So we know it is a necessary part of Real Estate Business, but where should you start?
Real Estate Search Engine marketing and Search Engine Optimization are two internet marketing strategies that have their unique benefits and weaknesses.
Real Estate SEM, or search engine marketing, is a broad term that covers multiple methods of online marketing. Real Estate SEM can include paid internet advertising (pay per click), banner ads, blog postings, paid listings, and natural (or organic) search engine optimization. Benefits of using SEM as your Real Estate Internet Marketing strategy are immediate results, control of your visitors' landing pages, and no minimum entry cost. The downsides are paid internet marketing is more expensive in the long run, the results are perishable, and internet users are cautious of paid ads.
Real Estate SEO, or search engine optimization, is a more specific term for the process of driving website ranking up in search engine's natural (or organic) results. This form of real estate marketing yields no immediate results and is a more costly approach. The negatives can be out weighed by being cheaper in the long run, non perishable results, long term benefits, and better long term ROI.
When defining your real estate internet marketing strategy the greatest benefits can be generated from a combination of SEM and SEO. They both have their strengths and weaknesses which when balanced can bring in the optimum amount of traffic, leads, and sales.