Listing Tech month at Inman is all about the listing as an entity and its rise to the epicenter of the industry around which endless terabytes of data and iterations of technology revolve. And so many of those satellites are launched from marketing platforms that offer an array of methods for using the web to showcase properties for sale, such as landing pages and single-property websites.
Don’t worry if you don’t know the differences between the two — they can be subtle. That wasn’t always the case, however.
The line has become blurred in the last few years as more listing technology providers have entered the fold, and website self-management is pretty much commonplace.
They are unique concepts, however, and should be treated as such. Knowing how to best leverage each can make you that much smarter a marketer and your seller that much more satisfied with your effort.
Landing pages came into being as a byproduct of online advertising. Advertisers needed a way to better measure interest, and sending people directly to a full company website when trying to sell a single product risked diluting the message.
Landing pages became a clever way to communicate more than a single ad could but not weigh down an audience with superfluous messaging.
Landing pages evolved naturally into lead capture tools typically with a single call to action. They’re hyper-specific. The copy, images and design center on the goal, which is to get a buyer to ask about a listing and preferably, provide an email address or phone number.
Landing pages give away more of the store but not all of it. The intent is to deliver on the promise made in the original ad, email campaign or social media post. That promise might be provide more pictures of a property or to get a whitepaper on up and coming neighborhoods.
Single-property websites, on the other hand, don’t have a singular campaign mission in the same way a landing page might. In fact, they’re often the reason a person ended up at a landing page.
Single-property websites are exactly that, a domain dedicated to a listing that if designed correctly, serves as the hub for all information on the listing.
Portals, multiple listing services and IDX feeds have their own iteration of your listing, but those aren’t designed around your brand. Third-party representations of your listing may lack the visual assets, prominent contact information and follow-up tactics that you prefer or that link directly to your CRM or email lists.
Breaking down landing pages vs. single-property websites
- Specific purpose
- Connected to campaign
- Limited content
- Fulfills ad promise
- Lead-capture driven
- Hub for all listing information
- Helps quantify marketing
- Under agent control
- Can use custom domains
- Leverages dynamic content
Also, many MLS agreements have odd, antiquated content branding rules. Naturally though, a single-listing site is all about your brand and your ability to market your clients’ homes.
Because the majority of home search is being done in the mobile environment, the only sure way to know that your listing is being displayed correctly is to publish it yourself. Assuming your domain is mobile-first (as it should be), you and your seller can be confident prospective buyers are seeing it as it’s meant to be.
Single-property websites will often have a domain that uses the address or that in some way showcases a sought-after feature, such as “4545EastRidgeLane.com” or “SmithLakeCabin.com.”
Any investment in dynamic or supporting listing content, such as aerial photography, virtually staged rooms, walkthrough and 3D tours, environmental data or neighborhood amenity data, are all best displayed on a single-property website. In fact, there is no better place for them.
Lastly, a critical reason to use single-property websites is for page traffic and user metrics. These sites can be used to capture additional information about who is intrigued by your seller’s home.
It serves as the source for retargeting campaigns, traffic origination data and also helps Google know your site is a reliable, up-to-date source for real estate listings. Measuring how online home shoppers use your listing pages is critical to making better marketing decisions.
Ultimately, there are all kinds of ways to leverage a single-property website, but in summary, the most fundamental reason to use them is to ensure your seller’s home is being marketed as you promised them it would be. You can’t control what happens on portals or other agents’ IDX-fed web pages.
While the home itself may not be your data, the brand around which that data gets communicated is very much yours, and you should very much want to own every last one and zero.
Have a technology product you would like to discuss? Email Craig Rowe
Craig C. Rowe started in commercial real estate at the dawn of the dot-com boom, helping an array of commercial real estate companies fortify their online presence and analyze internal software decisions. He now helps agents with technology decisions and marketing through reviewing software and tech for Inman.