A big question among new real estate agents is whether or not real estate listing websites are worth the time or effort -- or, for that matter, what they even are? With all of the different advertising and marketing options out there for real estate agents, it’s normal to feel overwhelmed or confused as to how to proceed.

Fortunately, we did our research so you don’t have to.

What Is a Real Estate Listing Website?

A real estate listing website is essentially an online marketplace for homes or other properties. Realtors will post their listings on the website and may even pay to advertise their listings through the website’s promotional tools. The goal or objective of these websites is to help the everyday individual find their next home and to help realtors make sales faster.

Some common real estate listing websites are:

Many of these real estate listing websites will have memberships you can subscribe to and receive premium features of the platform through.

Are They Worth Your Time and Money?

With real estate listing websites providing a platform for realtors to connect directly with leads, there is no doubt that putting your listings up on them could be a lucrative opportunity. Some of the websites have millions -- yes, millions -- of monthly users. In fact, Zillow receives 195 million visits every month, and, in fact, Zillow logged 7 billion visits in 2018 alone.

But how many visits one of these websites gets isn’t the best thing to focus on. You should do your research on the platform of your choice to make sure the listing you're selling is the type of listing that gains traction. You should also look at the types of people that use the real estate listing website and make sure your target leads are among those monthly visitors.

Overall, however, real estate listing sites are worth your time and money.

How to Create a Listing That Sells

When you find a real estate listing website that works for you and your budget, it is time to create your first listing. There are several elements that go into creating a listing that will actually sell, especially if you are trying to reach a specific group of leads. Today, we want to focus on two that are sure to help your listing be seen.

Understand What It Means to Optimize

The best thing you can do for your real estate listing is to learn how to properly optimize it for your real estate listing website. While there are search engine optimization (SEO) professionals that can help you do so, it’s always a good idea to understand it yourself for when you need to have a conversation about your listings.

The foundation of SEO is using keywords or keyword phrases within your real estate listing that will help the “algorithm” or search engine of your real estate listing website see your listing as relevant. For example, if you are trying to sell a house in Louisville, Kentucky, then it would be wise to include “homes for sale in Louisville” as one of your targeted keyword phrases. That way, when a user of the real estate listing website searches for “homes for sale in Louisville”, they will stumble upon your listing.

Coming up with keywords can be tricky, that’s why we recommend partnering with a real estate marketing agency that has a solution for SEO. Keyword research can be extremely time consuming, and it will always likely fall to the bottom of your list of priorities (even if it is immensely helpful to your business). It’s a good idea to contact professionals that can help you, ones that have the time to make SEO a priority.

Provide Irresistible Imagery

Let’s be frank -- photos really do say a thousand words, probably more, and videos say a million. In this day in age, you should invest in a professional photographer or videographer to take photos and videos of your listings. Having that visual imagery will entice people to click on your listing, and it will ensure the leads you gather are leads that are actually interested in what you’re selling.

Real estate agents who use professional real estate photographs sell listed homes 32 percent faster than all other listings, according to a 2018 study of Chicago-area real estate sales by VHT Studios, the nation's largest real estate photography network for homes and businesses.

As for video?  51% of marketing professionals worldwide name video as the type of content with the best ROI (return on investment). And, while a branded product may sound far off from selling a home, it shouldn’t be. With the right marketing team by your side, your real estate listing videos will be branded to you, your agency, and everything you offer as a seller. Tubular Insights, a company that produces regular research on video marketing insights, shared that 64% of consumers purchase after watching branded social video content.

While a real estate listing website isn’t nearly as personal as social media networking, it is a good idea to treat it as so. Update your listings often, just like you would a social media status or feed, and target specific buyers just as you would target them on social media with specific imagery and content. With everyone so ingrained into social media marketing, using this strategic approach to your real estate listings will be relatable and familiar, especially if you are targeting millennials.

Work With Professionals

Your real estate listings shouldn’t be bland, boring or irrelevant to you as an agent and salesperson. Instead, they should be directly related to your brand and business goals. Today, there are several real estate marketing companies that can help you not only with your listings but also with the entirety of your brand, companies just like us.

At GrowthSuite, we provide you with the aid you need with unique solutions tailored specifically to real estate agents. That’s what makes us unique. Instead of servicing entrepreneurs from all over, we put a prime focus on the real estate industry, working with agents at every level of their career. From reputation management to website design, we offer a full scope of services to our clients that exceed expectations. For more information, you can contact us here.