Residential and commercial buyers and sellers, tenants looking for rental properties, and landlords looking for property management services all turn to the web for research. A helpful, user-friendly real estate website goes a long way toward establishing a trusting relationship with prospective clients. In fact, along with referrals from existing clients, your agency or brokerage’s website is one of the most effective ways to win new clients. And following web design best practices for real estate websites is crucial to accomplishing this.
There are lots of general web design best practices for professional websites that your real estate site should adhere to. But then there are smart strategies specific to your industry that really make the difference when it comes to crafting a compelling, trustworthy site.
So, here’s a quick look at some web design best practices for real estate websites that are sure to help your agency or brokerage attract and win over new clients.
Tips for Designing a Great Real Estate Website
- Create intuitive top-level navigation that lets visitors immediately find what they’re looking for, whether it’s home listings, available rentals, or information about other services like selling or property management through your agency.
- Provide a number of ways to search for and sort homes for sale by common criteria like location, number of bedrooms, ascending and descending listing price, square footage, and age.
- Include search parameters that let property buyers narrow down results by other in-demand features and amenities like garage size, pool, master bath, walk-in closets, stainless steel appliances, fireplace, etc.
- Showcase properties with plenty of high-resolution professional photography that makes expert use of lighting, camera angles, and other factors. Consider adding high-quality video tours or 360 degree imaging.
- Place relevant interactive features on your website to keep visitors engaged, exploring, and coming back. For example, logical internal linking, mortgage calculators, area maps, and features for finding local places of interest (e.g., schools, restaurants, grocery stores, malls, museums, parks, golf courses) are good for these purposes.
- Maintain a blog with original content showcasing local lifestyle and offering valuable information for property buyers and sellers about the processes, maximizing sale price, getting the best possible deal, the regional market, and so on.
- Build in lead-capture capabilities to collect email addresses and understand what each user is looking for. Requesting information about a property, using certain interactive features, subscribing to your blog or newsletter, and downloading content like a local guide are just some of the opportunities.
- Have prominent trust signals displayed on your website. These could include trade or local business associations, testimonials from buyers and sellers, links to social media accounts where you have a large following and high engagement rates, and other things that help visitors see that you’re a trustworthy and successful real estate agent.
- Use optimized testimonials from clients as one of the trust signals on your site. Consider matching different types of clients (buyers, sellers, property management clients, etc.) to those particular pages on your website.
- Make sure the About page really sells you. Show yourself and your fellow real estate agents with professional head shots or even photos of the team enjoying the local community. Show your passion for the area and for delighting your clients. Show that you’re the local expert.
- Keep it quick and easy for prospective clients to reach out to you. Have a dedicated Contact page in the top-level navigation that has a phone number, email address, and online contact form with minimal fields.
- Spotlight any specialties or areas of focus with content and imagery. Do you work a lot with buyers and sellers in active-adult communities? Do you sell more commercial properties than the competition? Do you prioritize families? Do you have extensive experience managing large apartment complexes?