Self-Managed SEO – Going Nowhere Slowly

Given the state of the economy, it’s not surprising that a lot of small business people would consider doing search engine optimization on their site, themselves. You may have tried yourself or had someone unqualified attempt to building a presence in Google. Perhaps you’ve hired someone cheap and discovered what happens when you do that.

Doing SEO yourself or hiring someone with poor knowledge and techniques can leave your real estate site in a perrenial state of mediocrity. Those Indian link builders ended up establishing links from content farms and spammy sites, and then the links disappeared. Ah, the games of the fly by night SEO crowd. Then there’s the content writers whose material becomes an online embarrassment that you can’t get rid of. Ouch!

Just because you have your real estate site hosted with them, doesn’t mean you should give them the reins of your most important marketing tool.

You know how important location is whether it’s your sign out in the neighborhood you’re so desperate to get exposure in, or in newspaper classifieds, or Google’s front page. Your online marketing goal must be establish top location on as many pages of Google search results as possible. That’s where buyers and sellers are and you need to be there. Amateur providers aren’t going to get you that coveted location.

Some agents would even apply the corollary of FSBO sales. Does a homeowner really need an agent to sell their home? They would doubt the value of their own work, hence suggesting that real estate brokering is nothing but scalping unsuspecting homeowners.

Of course, we know that’s ridiculous. If I was selling my house, I wouldn’t want the job of selling it. I would stick the job of making that home appear as valuable as possible to buyers and ask my broker to get a bidding war going. I’d want him/her to show me all the ways she/he is building a shockwave mass of buyers to my front door. That’s when that agent is really credible to me.

The field of SEO is more complex so I would suggest that do it yourself SEO is a very bad idea. Some other bad ideas: painting your own car, reroofing your house, pulling your own teeth (yes some kids have pulled their own loose teeth), building your own swimming pool and hot tub, and cutting your own hair.

With search engine optimization and other online marketing activities, it’s the end result that’s critical, not saving a few thousand bucks. In a competitive world, mediocre performance just isn’t good enough. You’d actually be wasting your time and getting poor results. On top of that, SEO is not your forte and wouldn’t be even if you attended an SEO conference to hear all sorts of “valuable tips.”

Those agents and brokers who hire professional SEO services providers hire specialists to focus on their business. That’s a smart thing to do. To be top dog, you need to focus on your prospecting, showings, and sales closings. That’s the key part of your business. If you diminish the time you spend prospecting and then selling a house or condo, you’ll get hit in the pocketbook in due time.

What’s the safest way to surivive a recession and get a running start on competitors once the recession eases? It’s to build your SEO effort now. Google’s ranking algorithm does have an site and page age factor. That’s why you can’t just turn it on at the last minute and expect to capture those top rankings for phrases such as Vancouver real estate, Edmonton MLS, Seattle Homes for Sale, or Miami condos. It’s a battle ground and your site needs a solid history. Google’s a very stable search engine that is very similar from one month to the next and over years. The algorithm protects against fast rising sites looking to get rich quick. Google’s the only one who gets rich quick (Adwords advertising).

It’s better to forget the myths you may have heard about SEO and its value and how high rankings are won. They’re created and built through strategic content development, link acquisition, and persistent effort.  Unless your site has specific components intertwined among a good overall optimization, your site just won’t rise. There is strategy in how content is developed. Variety is important but that variety serves are targeted purpose. If you don’t know how to orchestrate and focus your content and linking in a way Google finds believable and consistent with their ranking criteria, your end traffic will be disappointing. And quality of leads is key too, just like it is in real estate prospecting.

The value of SEO services is competitiveness, better leads and a dominant presence in your market. Add that to the other elements of your marketing mix, and you’re on your way to becoming a top Vancouver real estate, Edmonton real estate, Seattle real estate, San Diego Real estate or Miami real estate agent. It’s your career, so please go first class and be the top sales agent in your city. You’ll thank me later.

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