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  • Online Marketing

How real estate agents can win business in the moments that matter

Reading Time: 7 min read
Published: July 15, 2018 by Siteloft

People don’t consume large chunks of info any more.

Instead, they check their phones hundreds of times a day for an average of one minute, to get the small snippet of information they need. The average person picks up their phone more than 157 times a day. No wonder Google processes over 40,000 search queries every second!

Google has boiled down these billions of searches that occur every day to just four types of “micromoments” – windows of opportunity when your website visitor wants to know or do something. These are the moments when decisions are being made and preferences shaped. And now that we all carry handheld computers with us wherever we go, they can happen any time.

We’re paying attention (and you should too), because if anyone knows anything about searching on the web – it’s Google.

So, without further ado, here are Google’s four micromoments:

  1. I want to know moments (when someone is exploring or researching, but not necessarily in purchase mode)
  2. I want to go moments (when someone looking for a local business or considering buying a product at a nearby store)
  3. I want to do moments (when someone wants help completing a task or trying something new)
  4. I want to buy moments (when someone is ready to make a purchase and may need help deciding what to buy or how to buy it)

When you think about it, the concept of micromoments makes perfect sense. Homeowners don’t just waltz in to your agency off the street and announce they’d like to sell (or, at least, most of them don’t). They’ve probably been thinking about selling for some time, done some research online, and followed a trail of digital breadcrumbs all the way to your agency’s bricks and mortar office.

We know it all sounds rather complex, but don’t worry – we’ve got you covered. We’ve put together some steps to get you thinking about how you can communicate within these micromoments to get more business, just to get you started.

Step 1. Work out what your potential leads need during a micromoment

The goal of your online presence is to attract and engage your potential leads at some point during one of these micromoments – or, as Google says: “be there, be useful, be quick”.

Here are some questions to get you started:

  • When will homeowners need you?
  • What will they want to know?
  • Where will they start browsing?
  • Which platform will they search when they’re looking for specific answers?
  • How will they find you when they’re ready to sell?


For example, potential sellers need quick, easy to find appraisal enquiry forms in the ‘I want to do’ micromoment. They’ve already done their own research, they’ve found your agency, and now they want your help to work out how much they could sell their house for.

Buyers in the ‘I want to know’ micromoment, on the other hand, will probably want an intuitive home search that doesn’t require multiple search fields, and generates an easy-to-engage-with map.

Let’s walk through some examples of how a buyer and seller might use Google to start their home search, and how you can position useful content for them at each point of the search.

Buyer

Let’s say our leads are first time buyers relocating from Sydney to Brisbane. Their first Google searches (in the ‘I want to know’ micromoment) are more than likely going to be about the big picture – i.e. to learn something new. For example, they might search something like “best suburbs in Brisbane” or perhaps something like “best public schools in Brisbane”. Well-written blog posts about the areas you sell in, and containing keywords relevant to those suburbs, are a good start.

As they continue to narrow down where they want to live (in the ‘I want to go’ micromoment), their searches will get more specific. Now they’re looking to to use Google to help them make a decision – “Northside price growth” or “Average price for Paddington Queenslander”. Buyers are probably looking for historical data, so including this on your website will help get you noticed in this micromoment.

Then, they’re going to start getting serious with their searches in order to get something accomplished – in other words, find their dream home (in the ‘I want to do’ micromoment). They could be searching for things like “paddington queenslander with garden”.  This is where you need to really think about your ad text.

Finally, they’re going to need help with the actual purchase. This is where you need to make sure your contact information is easily accessible.

Seller

A homeowner thinking about selling would likely start with a search about recent house prices in their area. Up-to-date market reports are a great way to attract potential sellers to your website in this micromoment.

Once they’ve made the decision to sell their house, they may be curious about the different types of sale – like the auction process. There’s plenty blog posts on this topic already, so why not film a video and stand out from the crowd? Make it short and sharp, but informative. It needs to be able to be consumed in a micromoment, remember.

Then, they’d be looking to connect with a real estate agent – “best real estate agent in Paddington” or something even more specific like “Queenslander agent Paddington”. This is where it really pays to have optimised the content on your website, so you show up in a Google search.

Step 2. Be there in that micromoment

So, you’ve worked out what your potential leads need – but how do you make sure they get it from you, and not the agency down the street?

You get found on Google, that’s how.

  • Understand SEO

There’s a lot of content on Google, but there’s a few things you can do to give yours a better chance of getting found by potential buyers and sellers. Of course, you’ve got to use the keywords your potential leads will be searching for – but there’s more to it than that. You can check your site structure for a start, and devise a strategy for gaining backlinks from high-authority sites.

  • Get in the Google Local Pack

When potential leads are ready to reach out to an agent, chances are they’re using Google to find local agencies. If Google recognises that a search query is about something localised, it will return a group of relevant local business along with a map of their respective locations. If you’ve ever searched Google for a local cafe, hairdresser, or anything really, you would’ve noticed the Google Local Pack.

This is what we see when we Google “software company”:

Local software company

The Local Pack shows up after any paid ads, but before the organic search results. The best way to get into the Local Pack is to make sure you’re listed on Google My Business and other directories, including Google+ and Facebook. However, in the end, whether or not you show up in the pack depends on the searcher’s IP address – so you need to make sure your information is entered correctly (and consistently) everywhere it appears online.

  • Show them you’re there to meet their needs

We’ve written about the importance of testimonials a million times. (Ok, not quite.. But we have written about it a truckload.) There’s a reason for that – they are an incredibly important part of getting new business. However, you also need to get at least a few positive reviews on Google. Once you’ve successfully sold a client’s house, send an email campaign with a direct link to your Google My Business page.

  1. Go to the Google Places API
  2. Type your business name in the location field
  3. Select your agency’s name in the list that appears
  4. Your Place ID will appear on the map, beneath your business name
  5. Add your Place ID to this URL after the equals sign to create your link: https://search.google.com/local/writereview?placeid=place_id_goes_here


When someone clicks that link, it will take them to a Google search result page for your agency and open the review window. Easy peasy!