I took a look at the competition I have for my Yucaipa Real Estate site, and started to really look at what it is about a real estate site that really drives business and actually converts visitors into customers.
Here's my take for two crucial items you must have on your real estate website:
The search engines cannot see pretty pretty pictures. You could have the looking homepage in the world, but if all your text is in pictures, it will never rank in the search engines. Why? Because the people looking in Google for information and looking for homes are searching via text. They want to see content relevant to their search, so if you provide that, then they have a reason to visit and stay when they come from the search engines.
Call To Action
Even if you have the most informative site out on the net, it still will not provide you clients...why? because you never asked them to be your clients! Include requests to call you for help, offer MLS searching in exchange for contact info, offer to give them a professional evaluation of their home's value. "Knock and the door shall open, ask and ye shall receive".