Realtor - St. Louis optimizes their website

By
Mortgage and Lending with Bank of England (NMLS#418481) NMLS# 1046286

 

 Old computers Photo by Leif K-Brooks

 

 

Recently I started working on getting my website geared up to be more than just an electronic brochure.  In that process I started reading a lot about website optimization.  That is, getting your website to turn up higher in the results when people search for it on the web using a search engine such as yahoo.com, MSN or Google. 

The one thing that I can tell you is that it's damn confusing.  Nobody truely seems to know what the rules are and every once in while, the search engines change the rules without telling anybody.

Anyway, there are other sources on the web that can do a better job than I can explaining to you the ends and outs of SEO, Search Engine Optimization, but I wanted to bring to your attention the importance of it.  With more and more people utilizing the web to make purchases and to find merchants, having an effective website is becoming more and more important.

What makes a website effective?  Well, if you're good, lucky or rich turning up on the first page or two of the search engines is one sign.  For the rest of us, it's being able to be found when people bounce around the web.  This means being listed and linked to in as many different places as possible.  For one, the more and the bigger the websites that link to your site, the more relevant the search engines view your site and the higher in the results that you'll be.

And even if you haven't made it to being on page one or two of the results yet, the more places that you are at, the more likely someone searching for your good or service is going to find you.

Another way of accomplishing this feat is to BLOG.  I saw someone who said that BLOG stands for "Be Listed On Google".  I'm not sure if that is 100% the truth, but I can tell you that since I started blogging here and two other sites, that the volume of people emailing me about my service has gone up dramatically.  I'm still not on the first two pages with St. Louis real estate being the keyword (St. Louis real estate is the most popular seach term for people looking to hire a real estate agent), but I'm rising and apparently people are bumping into me on the web.  If you're reading this, I guess that I"ve made my point.

So, I hope that you enjoyed this post.  If you have any questions about what all I've found out so far, please feel free to drop me a line or to call me.  Also, if you know anyone who is looking to buy, sell or refinance real estate in St. Louis, definately give me a call!

R. B. "Bob" Mitchell
ValueList Real Estate Services, Inc.
314-231-5478 

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Tags:
search engine optimization
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st louis real estate
valuelist real estate services
st louis real estate thoughts

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Rainer
2,774
Pete Tsakiris
Countrywide Home Loans a Division of Countrywide Bank, FSB - Saint Charles, IL
I love the link to your site. Great job.
Apr 08, 2007 03:03 PM #1
Rainer
14,287
Margie Kaplan
MK Luxury Homes & Condos, Houston Luxury Homes - Houston, TX
Broker, CRS, CIPS, CLHMS, CNHS, TRC

Hello Bob,

Sounds like you are on the right track and it won't be long that you will be found on the pages where you want.

Apr 08, 2007 03:04 PM #2
Rainer
17,012
Amy Laws
HL4LIFE - Blacklick, OH
Great info, thanks for sharing, let us know how your SEO continues to do!
Apr 08, 2007 03:27 PM #3
Rainer
54,515
Dave Cheatham
INC Financial - Bartlett, IL
I agree it is not easy.  It can be hard and the search engines change what they look for at times.  I really think you need a good number of links on your site.  get some good link exchange partners and it will get you higher too.
Apr 08, 2007 03:48 PM #4
Rainer
2,197
Paul Hill
the Property Owner's Network & IREBCO - Boulder, CO

I believe SEO is something of a racket.  When one enters "St. Louis RE" or "Boulder, CO. RE" sure, you want to be on the 1st page of about 11 listings.  But if you look at the top you see there are well over a million sites listed!  Yes, SEO can help, but let me ask you this:  if only 1% of those million are actively trying to improve their ranking via SEO, that's 10,000 websites.  If each one is doing SEO, including you and me, what's the liklihood either one of us is going to end up on Page 1, no matter what we do?

I've had better luck with pay per click.  Its not free, but at least I know I'll appear on the first search page as a Sponsored Listing, and buyers will click on it to get to my website.  With an organic search, no matter how much I optimized, I've never been able to get to page 1.  There are simply too many brokers in any given market area all trying to do the same thing.

Apr 08, 2007 04:59 PM #5
Rainmaker
422,066
Greg Cremia
Shore Realty of the Outer Banks - Nags Head, NC
There are 1,250,000 results for my main search term and I am #4 organically. I looked at my competition, learned from them and googled my questions.
Apr 09, 2007 01:48 AM #6
Rainer
2,197
Paul Hill
the Property Owner's Network & IREBCO - Boulder, CO

Greg,

That's terrific!  But can I ask you, how much time and money did you invest in getting to be #4?

Apr 09, 2007 04:34 AM #7
Rainer
2,067
Jennifer Castle
Republic State Mortgage Company - Lexington, KY
I couldn't agree with you more Bob. Feeling left behind may be only one area today for lending, but your point reaches the masses. Looks like to me from just this site you are doing quite well despite the adversity with the big bad web. My mother's side of the family is all in St. Louis, so good luck to you out there and if any of them plan on making a real estate change I will refer you. See one more way this site has helped you. Take care.
Apr 09, 2007 05:55 AM #8
Rainer
78,225
Mike Stankewich, MBA, e-PRO - ZipRealty, Inc.
ZipRealty, Inc. - Huntington Beach, CA

I agree it is hard to get to the top of a large city or area.  I pick certain neighborhoods and work on optimizing the website for those neighborhoods.  It has worked very well.

Localism.com is ranking near the top for cities and neighborhoods.  If you have not done so add your neighborhoods for your city and add photographs.  Make sure you have cross links from your website to Localism.  If you add your website link to your blogs such as About your City on Localism that creates the link back to your website.

Apr 09, 2007 06:21 AM #9
Rainmaker
422,066
Greg Cremia
Shore Realty of the Outer Banks - Nags Head, NC

Paul,

A lot of time and less than $1,000 buying ads (links) in real estate directories. "St Lois real estate" and "boulder co real estate" both have directories on the first page, including homegain. These sites are easy to beat because they do not have much local content. Forget page rank it is all about content and links.

Apr 09, 2007 07:25 AM #10
Rainer
2,197
Paul Hill
the Property Owner's Network & IREBCO - Boulder, CO
I guess I'm the A/R skeptic.  I'm not always right of course, and wrong as often as anybody, but my take on things is to be somewhat adversarial (in a good natured way, I hope).  If everyone is always agreeing with everyone else, the trap is to be led down the garden path.  I'm not saying this is the case with SEO, but there is an alternative (pay/click) which always gets you top billing as a Sponsored Listing, will take me a long time to bill out $1000, and hardly takes any of my time.  Besides, if we all were just a mutual admiration society, what fun would A/R be?
Apr 09, 2007 07:52 AM #11
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R. B. "Bob" Mitchell - Loan Officer Raleigh/Durham

Bob Mitchell (NMLS#1046286)
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