"Dwell Time" Keeping People on Your Site

Services for Real Estate Pros with Personal SEO - Website SEO and Real Estate Marketing

People click and then instantly hit the back button. How can you keep more people on your site and the RIGHT people? 

Google looks at "Time on Site" or "Dwell Time" and the average dwell time for a high-ranking website is 3 minutes according to Google but we only have 2 seconds to catch their attention! So how can we do that?

How to Keep More People on Your Site Longer


You can write 5,000 words that clearly declares you know what you're talking about but if people click away because they're bored Google will slowly devalue your page until you're nowhere to be seen. That's not what you want.


You have to not only KNOW what you're talking about but present it in a way that keeps people on your site


You know those Buzzfeed and similar sites where you are clicking 100 pages just to see the next snippet of whatever you originally clicked on? Then the "click-bait" articles that shock and awe you? Well, how long do you end up being on those sites? IF you're like me, I stay to the end as long as there is not too much advertising getting in the way and the page loads fast. Before I know it, I've stayed 5 minutes on a site to learn what kind of Disney Princess I am.


So how can you implement that in a real estate or mortgage site?


I'm not just talking about long articles or posts. Anyone can add fluff to pages. People get bored and they click away. That's not what you want, obviously. So how can you get them to stay?

I would say take a look at your analytics and find the pages that ARE keeping people on the site and see what's working for those and then branch off from there. If all of your pages are not holding people's interest, start here:


#1. Multiple pages

Are you writing long articles all on one page? Try breaking it up. Have a great image, then if they want the second option, have them click to another page - like this > "4 Signs You Shouldn't Buy the House" There's a nice image, a little text, then links to other tips. And always have links in the text or at the end so people know what to do when they reach the end. But in this short post, we have people clicking on 4 pages, hopefully increasing the time on site to over a minute. Sliders don't convey this as easily so it's important that you give people a reason to click to the next tip, page, or whatever.


#2. Subheadings, Subheadings, Subheadings.

Use them. Everywhere. Make them benefit-driven. People skim but most people are not going to skim 5,000 words. Even if you break it up, they may not have the brain power to sit through it all. Break it up, lead them from one place to another and before you know it, they are 6 pages from where they started reading about something completely different.


#3. Images rule.

I look at recipes A LOT! And I noticed something interesting, I want the recipe, but I have to scroll through about 8 images and 1,000 words of content ABOUT The recipe before I actually GET to the recipe itself. Google seems to LOVE this and ranks these recipe pages really high. Why?


Content - Images - TIME ON SITE. I AM just there for the recipe, but in the meantime, I might stop, stare at an image of the finished dish or a couple words about the ingredients that caught my eye. Maybe there's a technique that I have to use and I'll miss it if I scroll too fast. By the time I get to the bottom where the recipe actually is, I've been on the site a minute or two. THAT'S What you want.


So I created a few real estate pages like that. "How Much Are Homes in Frisco?" The good stuff is at the bottom, which keeps revolving and updating but by the time the reader gets there, I hope they have paused a couple times to look at homes that could be in their price range or whatever.


#4. One More - SNAG THEM!

Backlinko.com uses the term "Bucket Brigade" and that's a phrase he says keeps people reading. At any point in your content when you feel you may be losing people, put in a catchphrase to keep them such as:

  • Bottom Line
  • That's Not All
  • Here's the Point
  • The Best Part...
  • What Does This Matter?

And make it a subheading. Keep them there just a little longer.


Take Away - Whatever keeps people on your site longer for your keyword or phrase is what you should be doing.

Make every page important for that keyword. Use keywords like "Near Me" because Alexa and Google are being asked this all the time. Clearly make every title exactly what the page is about so the people that search for it, find it and find value in it. 


Give them more of a reason to stick around

  • Give them an idea or concept they agree with
  • Give them a glimpse into a better world 
  • Give them a taste of what you're going to do for them

ALWAYS, ALWAYS provide a lead capture throughout the process and at the end.

Make great content and keep them engaged....!


More Great Stuff:


What to Use Instead of "Contact Me"

What Do Real Estate Agents and Yoda Have in Common?

Ranking Means Nothing if Your Conversion Rate is Low

Online Marketing Tips that Actually Work

Why You Should Update Old Posts and Pages


Need SEO? Content Written? Maybe a Whole New Optimized Website? That's What We Do! From Design and Logo to CRM and IDX, we don't just sell you a website, we guide you through a marketing strategy that fits your budget and business goals.

Posted by

Personal SEO Tim and Tammy Emineth

Personal SEO Facebook Page Personal SEO Instagram Page Tammy Emineth Pinterest Page Personal SEO Linkedin Page Linkedin Page


Tim and Tammy Emineth have owned Personal SEO since 2004. We focus on SEO first whether it's blogging, images, website design, IDX solutions and calls to action. We operate with a Storybrand philosophy to encourage more traffic to your site, more eyes on your content and more leads to your business. Call us or email us for a free website audit.

Tim: 425-443-8372  Tammy: 425-344-0677

Comments (23)

Anna Banana Kruchten Phoenix Broker
HomeSmart Real Estate - Phoenix, AZ

Tammy all excellent ideas and tips. Now it's a matter of having time to accomplish that as well.

Jul 24, 2018 03:56 PM
Tammy Emineth


Jul 24, 2018 04:15 PM
Kathy Streib
Cypress, TX
Home Stager/Redesign

Hi Tammy- love these tips. And, if we look at how long we stay on pages and why it can help us.

Jul 24, 2018 05:24 PM
Tammy Emineth

Exactly! What makes YOU stay on a site?

Aug 01, 2018 02:49 PM
John Henry, Florida Architect
John Henry Masterworks Design International, Inc. - Orlando, FL
Residential Architect, Luxury Custom Home Design

WOW Fantastic article Tammy. SUPER good info for all of us who have no idea!!  ha ha ha.

Everything you said is extremely important and should be applied to our own blogs and webs.  I like your formatting, font, etc. as well.  One of the best articles I have read on AR -- at least for me it is very timely.  Thanks very much!

Jul 24, 2018 06:09 PM
Tammy Emineth

Wow! Thanks John! Really appreciate the comments!!

Aug 01, 2018 02:49 PM
Lindsay Reagan, Realtor
Bowen Realty - Wellington, FL

Thanks for the good ideas...I will be checking out your "More great stuff" and following you.  Need to get my website content spruced up...

Jul 24, 2018 06:14 PM
Tammy Emineth

There's so much to do! It's a full time job to keep up with marketing your own business.

Aug 01, 2018 02:48 PM
Carol Williams
Although I'm retired, I love sharing my knowledge and learning from other real estate industry professionals. - Wenatchee, WA
Retired Agent / Broker / Property Manager

Hi Tammy,
Lots of great tips here.  Thanks!!!   If this doesn't get Featured, it's certainly going to be Featured in Second Chance Saturday.

Jul 25, 2018 04:15 AM
Tammy Emineth

Both, it looks like! YAY!

Aug 01, 2018 02:48 PM
Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORS® in Clark County, WA

Glad Carol Williams featured this one today, Tammy. You always have such solid advice - and this is particularily timely for many of us. Thanks for sharing your knowledge. D 

Jul 28, 2018 07:54 AM
Tammy Emineth

Thanks Debb!!

Aug 01, 2018 02:48 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

This is such great information, Tammy. Lots to think about...and change. Bookmarked so I don't forget.


Jul 28, 2018 12:32 PM
Tammy Emineth

Good deal Jeff!

Aug 01, 2018 02:48 PM
Beth Atalay
Cam Realty and Property Management - Clermont, FL
Cam Realty of Clermont FL

Hi Tammy Emineth, glad to see Carol Williams featured this post, great information for all of us. 

Jul 28, 2018 01:07 PM
Tammy Emineth

Keeping up with it for all of us ;-)

Aug 01, 2018 02:47 PM
Pat Starnes-Front Gate Realty
Front Gate Real Estate - Brandon, MS
601-991-2900 Office; 601-278-4513 Cell

That's great information, Tammy. It's the stickiness to keep people around. I like it!

Jul 29, 2018 03:26 PM
Tammy Emineth

What keeps YOU on a site? Do that. ;-) 

Aug 01, 2018 02:47 PM
Dorie Dillard Austin TX
Coldwell Banker Realty ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
NW Austin ~ Canyon Creek and Spicewood/Balcones

Hi Tammy Emineth,

Wow!! So glad to see this post featured. Some very valuable tips! Bookmarked to read later and digest.

Jul 30, 2018 07:01 PM
Tammy Emineth

One bite at a time!

Aug 01, 2018 02:47 PM
Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

I need to check my Google Analytics and my page back end.  Lately I've been too busy to do much of that, yet you really can't afford to not stay on top of it.

Jul 30, 2018 08:44 PM
Tammy Emineth

You really can't! I hear ya!! Keeping up with it is a full time job!

Aug 01, 2018 02:47 PM
Lynn B. Friedman CRS Atlanta, GA 404-939-2727

Tammy Lankford, 
Hmmm - a new little one can do that -- "too busy" -
All the best - Lynn

Aug 01, 2018 07:52 PM
Tammy Lankford,

Lynn B. Friedman yes, I'm proudly wearing my Grammy hat as much as I can.

Aug 01, 2018 08:10 PM
Lynn B. Friedman CRS Atlanta, GA 404-939-2727
Atlanta Homes ODAT Realty - Love our Great City - Love our Clients! Buckhead - Midtown - Westside - Atlanta, GA
Concierge Service for Our Atlanta Sellers & Buyers

Tammy Emineth 
Thanks for another clear and thorough set of explanations and instructions. All the best - Lynn

Jul 30, 2018 09:23 PM
Tammy Emineth

And now, to do it, right? LOL! So much!!

Aug 01, 2018 02:46 PM
Peter Spain
Cancasa - Punta Cana, DR

Thanks for the tips Tammy

Jul 31, 2018 01:01 AM
Lynn B. Friedman CRS Atlanta, GA 404-939-2727

Peter Spain 
Nice to see you here in the 'Rain!  Lots to be learned here from experienced Bloggers giving their professional advice GRATIS to the community! All the best - Lynn

Aug 01, 2018 07:47 PM
Wayne Zuhl
Remax First Realty II - Cranford, NJ
The Last Name You'll Ever Need in Real Estate

Great suggestions. I personally hate the recipe sites with all the pictures because they take so long to load, but I totally get why it's important!

Jul 31, 2018 05:05 AM
Tammy Emineth

They do, don't they! Good CDN's can help load time because that's important too, but sometimes those pictures help me know what it's suppose to look like. I just hate when they show me 3 of the same photo!

Aug 01, 2018 02:46 PM
Steven Nickens
Hawaii Life Real Estate Brokers - Wailea, HI
R(S)GRI ABR, Maui Real Estate Hawaii

Tammy, thank you for all the great information.  I need to consider all the tips that you shared thank you.

Jul 31, 2018 07:06 AM
Tammy Emineth

It's a lot but break it down into manageable tasks.

Aug 01, 2018 02:45 PM
Margaret Goss
@Properties - Winnetka, IL
Chicago's North Shore & Winnetka Real Estate

Love love love your suggestions - not too hard to put into use. I also like the blog post you helped create because I understand about those recipe pages. They drive me crazy too but ultimately, if they work, we should be doing it.

Jul 31, 2018 01:30 PM
Tammy Emineth

Yes! find out what's working and do that. ha!

Aug 01, 2018 02:45 PM
Julie A. Black
KAUAI DREAMS REALTY Kauai Real Property Specialist - Kapaa, HI
CLHMS, CRS, GRI, Realtor, Broker

So what Disney Princess are you? As I always I enjoyed and learned a little from your blog.

Jul 31, 2018 03:34 PM
Tammy Emineth

"You’re stubborn, energetic, and compassionate. You want to see the world and be allowed to make your own choices. And, may we just say, that choosing to wear those harem pants was a pretty great start. " - Apparently I'm Jasmine! HA!

Aug 01, 2018 02:45 PM
Jan Green - Scottsdale, AZ
Value Added Service, 602-620-2699 - Scottsdale, AZ
HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN

Thank you, thank you!  I appreciate this advice and will put it into action on my next posts! 

Aug 01, 2018 01:11 PM
Tammy Emineth

There's always something, eh?

Aug 01, 2018 02:37 PM
Kevin Mackessy
Blue Olive Properties, LLC - Highlands Ranch, CO
Dedicated. Qualified. Local.

We had to redesign an area of our website for the subheadings, because there was just a wall of text that would greet the viewer.  Not conducive to finding what someone needs.  

Aug 03, 2018 11:31 AM
John Mosier
Realty ONE Group Mountain Desert - Prescott, AZ
Prescott's Patriot Agent 928 533-8142

Thanks for this very informative post, Tammy Emineth.

I want to hire you if I can afford to do that. I sent you an email today.

Oct 05, 2018 03:57 PM