Real estate agents are starting to realize that owning their website is important. They are also figuring out that having a self-hosted WordPress website is the way to go. The functionality and SEO (search engine optimization) features make it a dream for agents looking to obtain ranking on search engines, such as Google, Yahoo and Bing.
As real estate agents are making this transition to WordPress, they have many questions, from “How do I navigate my website?” to “What is a plug-in, and which ones should I install to enhance my site?”
What is a plug-in?
When I say plug-in, think of an application from Apple’s App Store. Each application does something different that adds to what your phone can do. WordPress plug-ins function in a similar way for your website. As you download and install plug-ins, they create additional functionality features for your website.
Most plug-ins are free, though some do come at a cost if you wish to upgrade to the “pro” versions. And remember: Don’t try to install too many WordPress plug-ins, as doing so will cause your site to run slowly or even crash. If that happens, you will have to call your developer to fix it, and that is never a fun conversation.
If you are new to WordPress or are looking for some additional plug-ins to install, here are some good ones to check out:
This is one of the “must have” WordPress plug-ins for getting your online content ranked in an organic search. The difficult part of blogging or creating content is knowing whether you will be found by the search engines — Google above all others.
This plug-in serves as a guide and lets you know when your content is “optimized” and ready to be published. The “page analysis” tab within this plug-in allows you to take your content optimization to the next level. If you are new to SEO, this plug-in will help shorten your learning curve. Content is good … optimized content is great!
Want to get your site found online? Download this plug-in immediately.
This WordPress plug-in is probably not on the radar of most users, but what it does is pretty important. Most real estate websites have links on them to other websites or pages. Many times when agents are blogging, they create backlinks that take the reader somewhere else for more information. The issue is you are telling the reader to leave your website, and you are at the mercy of that link remaining alive. If that link ever goes away, is changed or dies, then you are notified immediately so it can be unlinked or fixed. A fast way to send a prospect away from your website forever is to send them to a broken link with a 404 error message. This simple plug-in will prevent that from ever occurring.
This plug-in is just what it sounds like. As real estate agents are using social media more and more, they need a strategy that allows them to be in front of that audience without constantly being on social media. This plug-in takes care of that. It allows you to take your past content and blast it to Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
For example, you can set up parameters within this plug-in that every 48 hours a blog or other piece of content published in the last 365 days will be sent to those social networks. The publishing intervals and dates can be altered at any time to fit your needs. If you want to keep your online content in front of your social networks and drive them back to your website, you will love this WordPress plug-in.
These are a few of the many plug-ins that WordPress has to offer. The plug-ins I mentioned both help your content get ranked in Google searches or drive people to your real estate website (and keep them there). Your website is the place where consumers go to educate themselves about your services and value before they reach out to do business.
Take a moment and download these plug-ins; they will surely add value to your WordPress website.
Wade Vander Molen is the director of sales/marketing for Stewart Title and has been in the title industry since 2005.