Five Steps To Choosing A Great Website Provider

 By: Cheryl Allin
As a real estate professional, you already know that close to 95% of internet empowered consumers start their home search online. This means that it's vital that you have a fantastic website with tons of amazing content and the lead generation tools to land those hot new prospects.

So - tell the truth - Just how much have you invested in - The Most Vital Tool - to your real estate business? How much time have you invested to add relevant content to your website? Does your website look just like thousands of other real estate websites?

If it does, you're making a critical mistake that could cost you thousands and thousands of dollars in lost business.

1. How much is it going to cost?

Having a website that can function well, generate the leads you need and captivate your audience is vital to your real estate business. Why would you pay $50 to $500 per month for a website you don't own - that looks and functions just like thousands of other agents around the country?

2. Can my prospects even find me?

The old adage "If you build it, they will come," just does NOT work. You have to have a website that the search engines can find. You have to have a website that the search engines can READ! Many real estate website providers offer sites that still use archaic frames and dynamic URLs so the search engines will NEVER see your content - thus you will have great difficulty getting prospects to find it.

3. Can I add my own content?

Sure, most template providers will allow you to customize some of your real estate content. Out of the box, they provide some basic articles and lead generation forms - but you're going to look just like a thousand other agents if you don't get in there and customize it! But, does your template provider let you add a blog? Can you add forums? Can you easily add a gallery? Featured Listings? If you can't quickly and easily get into your site and tweak it without having to wait around for a web designer (or pay huge hourly fees to the provider) then you're missing out!

4. Will I stand out from the crowd?

You have a target audience - a profile of the perfect customer. Your website has to have a look and feel that will evoke an emotional response from that dream prospect once they get to your website. If they've already been online hunting for an agent - they may have seen countless other real estate sites. How will yours stand out if it looks like every other site your website provider offers. Sure, your colors may be a bit different - but the layout and much of the content is identical.

That just tells your dream client that you don't care enough about their business (or yours) to put much effort into your website. What does that tell them about how you do business?

5. How can I beat my competition?

You're up against hundreds of other agents - all in your market and they're spending time and effort on their website marketing. How can you beat them? You have to choose a website provider on the cutting edge - a provider that can give you the personal attention you deserve and whom can consult with you to target and laser in on your marketing goals. Someone with experience - who knows what works and can make it happen for you. You need a provider who knows how get the results you need and has the most current tools available. What you don't need is a big company whose sole purpose is to generate cash flow by selling you a mediocre website.

Obviously, the ideal solution would be getting the best of both worlds - personalized service and a website that you OWN and could edit yourself but without all the huge monthly fees.

Enter your Real Estate Website Design specialist - a consultant who will work with you to determine exactly what your needs are, create a detailed plan for how to reach them and create a dynamic and amazing website that you own outright. But the best part is your ability to edit this site on your own, add content, links, blogs, anything at all! The search engines love it - you pay nothing for hosting or monthly fees - and you start getting those amazing hot new leads.

Why pay $600 *each* year for something you'll never own when you could pay just once and own your website forever? Plus, you get the added bonus of having a personal marketing guru as your new partner - who can let you in on all the hottest marketing secrets and help you to implement them and beat your competition.

A terrific website is vital to your business - don't trust it to just anybody.
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