Brokers are always searching for ways to help their agents be more successful. In terms of gaining more clients, it would be hard to argue that a strong online presence isn’t a top priority. After all, consumers’ first impulse is to turn to the internet to research every important decision, including finding their next home, and selecting a real estate professional to help them purchase or sell one.
Fortunately, one of the best ways to boost your agents’ online presence also happens to be free. Every member of the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) automatically receives a free profile on realtor.com®. The question is, are your agents taking full advantage of this asset?
A Knife That Cuts Two Ways
Increasingly, consumers are using realtor.com to gather intelligence on agents. Is he/she actively listing and selling in our market? What do other buyers and sellers say about him/her? These questions, and others, are top of mind for both buyers and sellers.
Agents who have taken the time to provide complete, robust profiles on realtor.com report that they are much more likely to receive buyer and seller leads. It’s a great way for relatively new agents to put their best foot forward and earn new business. On the flip side, a seasoned, experienced agent may actually lose business if they ignore their profile.
The Strength of Realtor.com
When surveyed, both agents and brokers agree that realtor.com does the best job of delivering leads for serious buyers and sellers. According to the spring 2017 realtor.com brand tracker study, more professionals said realtor.com provides the best value for leads vs. other real estate portals. Additionally, more consumers indicate they found the agent they actually purchased their home from on realtor.com, compared with the other national real estate portal sites, according to addendum questions asked in the most recent National Association of REALTORS® Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers survey.
Part of the site’s success stems from strong consumer awareness, which reached 87 percent in 2017, an all-time high. In terms of engaging consumers, realtor.com ranks third among the largest consumer brands for time spent on the site, outpaced only behind YouTube and Facebook.
Coaching Your Agents
When a broker claims their office profile on realtor.com, they gain access to a dashboard that displays each of their agents’ profiles. It’s an easy way to identify areas that would benefit from more attention. Some of the things you’ll want to check:
- Photo – Has everyone added one? Ideally, agents should use the same photo on your brokerage site, on their business cards, yard signs, etc. Consistency is an important part of a successful branding strategy, partly because consumers need to see an image several times before it “sticks.” Agents without a photo will not appear in any searches, other than a search for their name.
- Bio – Is their bio written in helpful, consumer-friendly language? Does it include important keywords that will help their profile appear in search results (e.g., areas served, types of properties and/or clients, etc.)?
- Contact Details – Does their profile include a current, working phone number and email address?
- Testimonials – Have these been solicited from verified clients (ratings/reviews) and other sources (recommendations)? Recent research has found that 84 percent of people trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation.
For more tips on creating a business-building profile, visit hub.realtor.com/profiles. You’ll find short videos from industry-leading agents and brokers, as well as articles on creating a great headshot, writing a strong bio, and much more.
Encourage your agents to take full advantage of the business-building benefits of a complete realtor.com profile. It’s free, and it delivers a lot of value. To get started, visit hub.realtor.com/profiles.
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