Does your website have this strange hole?

By
Services for Real Estate Pros with Marte Cliff Copywriting

Does Your Website Have This Strange Hole?

You probably know what your website needs, at a minimum.pothole

  • The home page, with search capabilities.
  • A buyer page
  • A seller page
  • An "about me" page – and please not a blank page or a page that contains the exact same words as sixteen other agents in your company. (Yes, I have seen that.)

In my opinion, the site also needs community pages and a number of informational pages flowing from the buyer and seller pages. The more informational pages you have, the better. I also think it's wise to link to outside pages about the community – just as long as you create the links so they open a new browser window.  Sites like citydata.com and areavibes.com offer demographic information that you aren't even allowed to mention, due to Fair Housing regulations. (And you know that some of your clients do want that information.)

In addition to these, if you serve a niche market your site should include pages geared solely toward the buyers and sellers in that niche.

For instance:

  • If you specialize in short sales, you should have plenty of information about short sales.
  • If you specialize in selling waterfront homes, you should offer specialized information regarding building regulations, flood plains, etc.
  • If you serve primarily first time buyers you should offer information about qualifying for a loan, things to look for in a first home, etc.

Filling your site with useful information and adding more over time via your blog causes search engines to notice you while it keeps visitors on your site longer and makes you stand out as "the" expert in your marketplace.

What about a testimonials page?

If you don't have one, I think it's a very strange and very noticeable "hole" in your website. Visitors have to wonder why. Does it mean that NO ONE has ever given you a testimonial or written you a note of thanks for your service?

The problem is compounded if you have a template site with space for testimonials and it looks like a couple of sites I've visited lately. Their testimonials sections said this: "Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua… "

Now your visitors know it wasn't an oversight – it must be that you really have No testimonials.

But… what if you're new?

What if you're so new that you haven't yet closed a sale? There's nothing wrong with using a testimonial from a client or supervisor in a previous job, or even one from a co-worker who can attest to your level of service, your dedication to helping clients, your negotiating skills, your patience and listening skills, or the fact that you always return calls promptly.

 

Comments (69)

Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Happily Retired - Franklin, MA
Previously Affiliated with The Todaro Team

I'm guilty of being void with community info...but I am going to add a page for testimonials.... that's most powerful...I have them in our listing binder for presentations...

Nov 07, 2015 08:22 PM
Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI
HomeSmart Realty West - Carlsbad, CA
Presence, Persistence & Perseverance

Marte Cliff Excellent post and I wonder if it is not just the agents themselves responsible for this oversight, but rather the webmasters. It could also be a lag between setting up a site and content entry. I just can;t believe the competition would leave a site in this condition, but glad they do!

Nov 07, 2015 08:36 PM
Dorie Dillard Austin TX
Coldwell Banker Realty ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
NW Austin ~ Canyon Creek and Spicewood/Balcones

Good morning Marte Cliff ,

Not sure how I missed this post this week! So glad I caught it in Kathy Streibs "Ah-ha" moments for the week. Great analogy. Websites are just like our homes..always a work in progress

Nov 07, 2015 09:05 PM
Gayle Rich-Boxman Fishhawk Lake Real Estate
John L Scott Market Center - Birkenfeld, OR
"Your Local Expert!" 503-755-2905

Marte, most of these I DO have on my website. I don't have a Testimonials page. OOps! Found this thanks to Kathy Streib our wonderwoman of Aha Moments.

Nov 07, 2015 09:07 PM
Lottie Kendall
Compass - San Francisco, CA
Helping make your real estate dreams a reality

Testimonials are king, Marte. No reason they shouldn't be part of our web sites.

Nov 07, 2015 09:16 PM
Sheila Anderson
Referral Group Incorporated - East Brunswick, NJ
The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133

Good morning Marte. You are thorough and thoughtful. Good post.

Nov 07, 2015 09:19 PM
Toni Weidman
Sailwinds Realty - Trinity, FL
20+ Years Selling Homes in New Port Richey, FL

Lots of helpful info, Marte. I will have to redo some pages and add a couple. Thanks.

Nov 07, 2015 10:19 PM
Kevin J. May
Florida Supreme Realty - Hobe Sound, FL
Serving the Treasure & Paradise Coasts of Florida

Marte, I have received three testimonials in the past few weeks. The hole will be utilized with those and others but is there a limit or other guide for its volume of content? Here via Kathy!

Nov 08, 2015 12:25 AM
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

Kathy Streib Thank you so much. I feel honored to be chosen for your weekly list. 

Barbara Todaro Since you're primarily listing agents, I expect your prospects already know about the community!

Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI Webmasters do impose some strange restrictions, which is why agents should choose carefully. I had one client who wanted unique content for her buyer and seller advice articles and we had to keep the same headline and word count as their originals. Crazy!

 

Nov 08, 2015 01:41 AM
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

Dorie Dillard Ah yes, these houses! It never stops.

Gayle Rich-Boxman Fishhawk Lake Realtor (503)755-2905 And I'll bet that you have a wealth of testimonials to share, so do it!

Lottie Kendall They say more about you than most agents are willing to say about themselves (for fear of sounding like braggarts).

 

Nov 08, 2015 01:43 AM
Gayle Rich-Boxman Fishhawk Lake Real Estate

I'm not very comfortable asking people to expound on my serivce...that's something out of my comfort zone. I need to try and work through that...thank you. 

Nov 09, 2015 12:37 AM
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

Sheila Anderson Thank you!

Toni Weidman I just love giving people more things to do. (Overload loves company?)

Kevin J. May I've never read or heard anything that said there was a limit on how many testimonials you should display. However, if you feel the list is getting too long, edit and keep only the best and most detailed. 

Nov 08, 2015 01:45 AM
Rebecca Gaujot, Realtor®
Lewisburg, WV
Lewisburg WV, the go to agent for all real estate

Good points about our websites and fixing any holes. YOu mentioned some good points here. Thanks,

Nov 08, 2015 11:36 AM
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

Thanks Rebecca Gaujot, the Go To Realtor® 

Nov 08, 2015 02:12 PM
Georgie Hunter R(S) 58089
Hawai'i Life Real Estate Brokers - Haiku, HI
Maui Real Estate sales and lifestyle info

I guess I am guilty of that black hole too. It seems so self serving but I guess it's necessary in this day and age.

Nov 08, 2015 05:34 PM
Marte Cliff

Georgie Hunter R(S) 58089 Yes, it is necessary. For some of us, it's difficult to toot our own horns - and even difficult to accept gracefully when others want to do it for us. But... we gotta!

Dec 14, 2016 03:10 PM
Beth Atalay
Cam Realty and Property Management - Clermont, FL
Cam Realty of Clermont FL

Marte, I don't have a testimonial page on my website, thanks for the reminder!

Nov 08, 2015 10:21 PM
Will Nesbitt
Nesbitt Realty at Condo Alexandria - Alexandria, VA
Nesbitt Realty is a family-run brokerage.

Kudos on the published Active Rain content, Marte Cliff at (208) 448-1479.

Nov 09, 2015 05:37 AM
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

Georgie Hunter R(S) Yes, I believe it is. People want to know that someone else was happy with your service. 

Beth Atalay You're welcome. Giving others more things to do is one of my best talents. 

Will Nesbitt Thank you! 

Nov 09, 2015 05:56 AM
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
The right Charlotte REALTOR!

Hi Marte Cliff!  I can't see any holes in mine RIGHT NOW (LOL) but, am always looking for them - you know, sometimes we can't see the forest for the trees!  These are some very important holes that are often overlooked...and I totally agree with you that the message one conveys by not having a testimonials page is not a good one!

Dec 12, 2016 07:47 PM
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

Debe Maxwell - I think too many of us (like me) dislike asking for testimonials, so we don't get it done. I don't even like writing to someone after they've sent a nice note and asking if I can use it on my site...

It's one of those things that some of us have to FORCE ourselves to do.

Dec 12, 2016 08:03 PM
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
The right Charlotte REALTOR!

Marte Cliff - I have a very difficult time asking too!  I have learned that when they thank me at the Closing table, it's the perfect time to say something about sending them a link in a week or two (after they get settled in) so they can write a testimonial.  Most of the time, though, I just share in THEIR excitement and don't mention it!

Dec 12, 2016 08:23 PM
Marte Cliff

Debe Maxwell I blame my Mom for my reluctance. One of her favorite things to say was "Fools names and fools faces are often seen in public places." She didn't want me to be a braggart.


Now, when it's necessary to promote myself, it's hard!

Dec 14, 2016 03:13 PM