AdWords for Real Estate and Realtors

Google AdWords for Real Estate

After our recent article on AdWords for Lawyers, We have been requested by a lot of people to demystify AdWords for Real Estate. So here is our A to Z on AdWords for Real estate.

First of all, We often come across this question, Is it necessary to invest in AdWords for real estate? Is there any ROI w.r.t. the effort?.

The answer lies in the thousands of realtors spending substantial share of their marketing budget in Google AdWords. It is safe to assume that these advertisers care about their returns and are seeing them. Why would someone continue spending money otherwise?.

Is investing in AdWords a good choice for Real estate?

Before answering this, I’d like to share with you a few facts about real estate industry and how the user behavior has changed over the last few years.

Few facts about AdWords for Real Estate:

  • Internet usage based on buyer age groups:

  • internet usage for real estate buyers

    Once cannot ignore the shift of internet usage by age. This is the future generation who are going to buy real estate. They like to research online and verify before making a decision.

  • Real Estate - Customer Purchase Cycle
    • Customers look for property online. Making themselves more educated about the land value, property value, etc
    • Contact Realtor for next steps and property visit
    • They take an average of 10 house visits over a period of 10 weeks before finalizing
  • Few statistics for real estate in US Market are as mentioned:
    • Average CPA (Cost per customer acquisition) is $40
    • Average CPC(Cost per click) is $1.5 -$2
    • Avg. Click through rate is 2 percent
    • Average conversion for search is 4.5 percent
    • Average buyer median age for Real-estate is 44 years with an income of USD 88,500 and no kids. Age wise distribution of buyers is as below:

    age wise distribution of buyers

Most expensive keywords for Real-estate:

  • Office:
    1. Greenwich office space  $40.85
    2. NYC office space for rent  $34.46
    3. office space Chicago  $27.57
    4. charlotte office space for rent  $27.43
    5. office space Miami  $26.47
  • Retail:
    1. retail space in manhattan  $11.82
    2. retail space for lease San Francisco  $9.69
    3. commercial retail space for rent NYC  $9.32
    4. Seattle retail space  $8.43
    5. Boston retail space  $8.24
  • General commercial
    1. commercial real estate basics  $71.16
    2. Conor commercial real estate  $59.04
    3. summit commercial real estate  $55.37
    4. commercial real estate newsletter  $32.60
    5. commercial real estate contact management software  $30.53

Moving to the next most frequently asked question, whether AdWords is profitable to real estate?  

Well, if you ask me, the possibility of a realtor of failing at PPC marketing is as much as anyone from any other domain, the thing to keep in mind is that you follow all the proven AdWords best practices for real estate, hence ensuring you are always ahead of the game. From here I’m going touch each aspect of AdWords and what you should focus on, being a realtor.

Right keywords for Real Estate AdWords

Sometimes it is really intimidating to select the right keywords for a good AdWords campaign. The truth of the matter comes down to researching your keywords wisely. Take the time to learn the distinct set of choice available between selecting long tail keywords(to approach limited but highly targeted audience) and mainstream keywords  (to get more and more traffic)

It comes with a confusing question like, should you go for long tail keywords which are hard to manage manually? or more mainstream keywords with high visibility?

How about weighing a balance between the two? Maintaining a tradeoff between the two will essentially give you an exposed view of your customer base, which can only be considered a big plus. There are 4 major practices for realtors to keep in mind:

  • Use Keywords which are relevant to your Business offerings:.For Example, your company specialization is “Residential properties” in California. Then the kind of keywords you should use are:
    • Buy Home
    • Buy House
    • Sell house
    • Sell home
    • real estate
  • Note: Avoid using one-word keywords which are highly searched, but these search terms are least informative about your prospect. For example, if you use ‘home’ as a keyword. It can trigger your ad for search terms like, “home repair”, “home improvement”, “way to home”, etc. which are not even close to what you want to target for. Therefore choosing these keywords carefully is very important.
  • Although bidding on the popular keywords can give you an easy headway in getting found at the top of search results, long tail key phrases are likely just as useful for a successful Adwords Campaign. Since there is going to be the least competition while bidding on long tail phrases, it is likely possible to get a good bang for your buck- meaning you will have a higher conversion rate at a lower cost.
  • For example, considering the above cases, long tail key terms for ‘Buy home’ are as follows:
    • Buy home in California
    • Buy houses near me
    • Buy luxury homes in California
    • Buy beautiful homes in California
    • How to buy home in California
  • Above are a few examples of long tail keywords. As We mentioned, it can be tiresome to work with long tail keywords as it takes a long time to research and accumulate such data for your campaign. However, AdNabu can help you automatically create all the relevant long tails keywords using the basic keywords we defined earlier within minutes.
  • Another thing to keep in mind is that which keyword match type are you targeting for the keyword.

Most of the big real estate companies gobble up the most popular terms, thereby driving the prices through the roof. There’s a big say that “exact match” type is worth considering as the statistics show that it gives maximum conversion at minimum cost. While some swear by such views, others swore them off completely. Perhaps, a wise way to structure your campaign is to consider using all kinds of match types, including the ones other agents are neglecting. Because, this way you won’t end up paying a huge amount, even if some of your keywords end up flopping.

Adnabu takes care of this from the very beginning itself. It creates the structure of the campaign such that each keyword type has 3 different Adgroup (one for each match type) ensuring that you target the right keyword for the right search term.

  • Advantage of using “Broad Match Modifier” over “Broad match” : “Broad match modifier” (a.k.a BMM) is a variation of “Broad match”. As Broad match triggers ads for all searches around the keyword, keyword idea, synonyms, grammatical forms as well as related words, etc. BMM gives you much more control over the search terms for which your ads will be the trigger. It excludes ‘synonyms’ but allows ‘variations’ For Example,  If you target ‘Broad’ match-type for keyword “Buy home”, it might trigger for a search term like ‘home ’ which is not relevant for you. Instead, BMM will ensure that the word ‘Buy’ and ‘home’ are present in the search. Adnabu automatically creates campaigns which use BMM instead of Broad match. Know more about it
  • One of the mistakes very often committed by realtors is that when they use location specific keywords only. They end up losing a lot of relevant searches.
    • For example, if you are a real estate firm based out of California and targeting for keyword “Buy home in California”, you will miss out on potential clients searching for term “buy home”. It is hence highly recommended to use main keywords like “buy home”, “buy house” in your campaigns. You can add location specific keywords to your campaign but they should not be the only one

Right negative keywords for Real Estate AdWords

Many professionals already use research tools to incorporate negative keywords into their campaign. Although, it is a forever going, ceaseless process to gather resources, especially for a sector like real estate. Unfortunately, the negative keyword research tools which are offered is far from unique. Especially when it comes to Adwords- where each click costs a fortune. Overwhelming for novices, indeed!

  • Negate all the services which you do not offer.
    • For example, if your firm specializes in “commercial properties”, put all other specialization like ‘Residential, ‘industrial, “farm-lands”, etc in the negative list.
    • Also, if under commercial properties, you only sell ‘office building’ and ‘Apartment buildings’, then add other sub-specializations like ‘Hotels’, ‘Restaurant’ under the negative list
  • Negate all the keywords which are not giving you conversions or has the cost per conversion too high to be profitable for a long time. You have to keep an eye on such keywords during reporting and assessment or you can use AdNabu, as it automatically recommends you to pause such ineffective keywords

Perfect AdWords Landing page for Real estate

Landing Pages are used to drive highly-targeted advertising based on selected keywords. Each page contains various elements like result-oriented headlines, trust badges, partners information, explainer videos, guides, testimonials etc. Considering high cost per click rate in real estate sector, the risk at hand is quite enormous, especially for newbies. Therefore, analyzing the statistics for one’s ad campaigns is a made-easy task while testing over landing pages.

Things to consider while creating landing pages:-

Do’s:

Background of the landing page should be a relevant image of the property type. For example, if you are selling residential apartments, it should be an image of the same
  • Use headlines to clearly mention your property specialization and with words of authority like “award-winning” to inspire trust in the potential customer
  • Also, catchy phrases like “10 apartments available”, “Home starting @ $80,000”, “lowest mortgage rate”, etc also tend to work
  • In your headline, add the location you are catering to. It will immediately add to the confidence of the prospect that they are at the right place.
  • Statistics show that despite movement of customers online, 92% still close the deal through Real estate agents, therefore ‘click to call’  button on the top makes reaching you easy
  • Limited fields to fill on lead form (not more than five) makes it highly likely for customer to fill and leave an inquiry with you
  • Have your call-to-action button at the bottom of the form Tailored to the offer and with a pop out color to grab attention(for example, see the image below)

  • call to action in landing pages for real estate
  • To create a sense of urgency or FOMO, you can add baits like “only 3 units remaining”, etc(as in the image above)
  • For content, have 2-3 bullet points- showcase your establishment year, award achievements, properties, etc or other data that helps customer build trust in you
  • For a deeper impact, add a video educating the customer about what are they entitled to, the location, the view, etc of the property.
  • In a technology dominant time, statistics show that 42% of customers are interested in Smart home devices. Do mention some bullet points stating the facilities of the property -  Smart homes, security, IoT technology, etc

Dont’s (Pitfalls):

  • Avoid using Logo with a clickable link to move to home page easily
  • Do not design ‘Disappearing label’ for field name (for example, see the image below) instead simply name the fields as it can confuse people

  • things not to do for landing pages for real estate
  • Do not have text heavy landing pages. It is very unlikely that it would be read
  • Avoid numerous outbound links or multiple CTA on the same page as it can distract the customers.

Structuring Best Adwords Ad copies for Real estate

Creating a good Ad copy is the first touchpoint where the consumer interacts with the business, compelling the former to click on the Ad while ignoring other Ads from competitors.

Looks at these best practices to guide your way through making Ad copies for your real estate enterprise.

  • Headline 1

    • Your Ad contains 4 sections. Firstly the Headline 1(character limit 30),  you should make sure that your headline is tailored as per the prospect’s search. Ideally, the Ad Title should include exactly what they were searching for For example, “Thinking of buying new home?” or “California luxury homes”, etc
  • Headline 2

    • The next part of the Ad is Headline 2(character limit 30). It is separated with headline 1 by a hyphen(-), the best way to utilize this section is by encouraging the prospect to click on the Ad. a clear call to action should be included here For example,  “Explore homes in California”‎, “Get a free quote today”, "California homes for sale", etc
  • Display URL

    • Followed by the two headlines is the Display URL which is automatically fetched by Google, which then gives you an option to customize it with 2 Path fields - Path1 and Path2(Up to 15 characters each). Make sure the subdomain of the URL is relatable to the type of property the prospect is seeking for. For example, www.RealEstateUrl.com/homes/california, www.RealEstateUrl.com/residential/villas, etc. [Note: Display Url is just for display purposes and need not be a valid Url]
  • Description

    • The final field of the Ad is Description(Character limit 80). It gives you immense space for your ad’s messaging. Here, clearly define the value proposition and specialty of your practice that distinguishes you from others in the market. For example, “Buy, Sell, & Rent Real Estate in California. View home details, photos & more!” or “Safe, Healthy & Affordable Homes for Success” or “New Communities in Top Locations. Browse Easily By County, Style, Price & More!”, etc
  • Final URL

    • Finally, Final URL is the first page the prospect reaches after clicking on the Ad. Instead of using home page as a final URL, ensure that the prospect lands on the specific property section that relates to his initial search
  • An effective sample ad:


    sample ad for real estate

Appropriate AdWords Budget and Cost-per-click for Real estate

Budget and CPC varies within Real estate depending on what niche you are targeting. To begin with, you can consider spending $1k which may increase exponentially depending on location, demand, market, property type, and average CPC can be anywhere near $0.75 to $1 per click.

To know Budget and CPC for your domain use Adnabu. It automatically suggests you budget and CPC in real time, considering multiple parameters.

Advice on PPC Ad-extensions to use for Real estate

Your real estate branding can also receive an upturn with good, professional looking Ad-extensions. Idea is to get plenty of additional impressions by sharing a better visible Ad than your competitors. First rule here is to make your estate easily approachable. Below are a few extensions to consider for real estate:

Location Extension:

Besides adding the information about physical location, this extension is essential in numerous ways:

  • Having a physical address adds to the authenticity of the firm and reassures your customers against fraudulent firms
  • Encourages customers who live closer to your location to contact you
  • Also making it easier for people to navigate their way easily to your office
  • For example,

  • location extension for real estate

Sitelink Extension:

This extension allows realtors to showcase their achievements as well as provide a space to link additional service offerings available to the customers, which is always a plus while conducting an online business.

  • This makes easy for the customer to relate their problem and highly likely for them to click on your ad.
  • Without further ado, it helps the customer to land directly to the most relevant page that encourages them to take a step further
  • For example:
    sitelink extension for real estate

Callout Extension:

This particular extension provides an additional 25 character space to specify robust, beyond basic and specific nature of information of the business, such selling/leasing residential or commercial properties, video walk-through etc.

  • Some examples for Real estate firms are “#1 home builder”, “free quote”, “Quick Move-Ins Available”, “Open house in your city ”, “20+ years of experience”, “Millions of home listings” etc.

  • callout extension for real estate

Call Extension:

Call extension provides the crucial information like contact details. It is particularly usable for mobile Ad versions as the clickable call button allows the customer to call the realtor instantly. For example:


call extension for real estate

Structured snippet extension:

Structured snippets are different from call out extensions. Although, both provides a space to describe brief and specific features of the business. Structured snippets directs the handle of information towards the variety of the offerings, service catalogs, suggestions for the call-out offers etc.


structured snippet extension for real estate

Methods of Conversion Tracking for Real estate

Tracking, recording, analyzing the conversion data is clearly the last and an important step to optimize the performance for each ad type, on a regular basis. Therefore, depending on the business type, different conversion types are tracked. It mainly works in two ways:

Conversion Pixel

It helps track which keyword resulted in a lead, that can later help you optimize your campaigns. Setting up conversion pixel requires some amount of technical effort (You would need the person handling your lead page). Having said that, benefits of results from it overpowers the hassle. Here is a guide to help you setup conversion pixel.

Call conversion Tracking

In addition to tracking the conversion pixel, tracking calls can possibly give a better analytics. Call tracking will help if you are allowing customers to make a business call directly through their smartphones. Calls are extremely beneficial for a real estate firm and luckily Google makes tracking calls even from a website easy. Check out how to setup call conversion tracking.  

Conclusion:

In conclusion, while automation of most business practices is at its rise, you cannot just sit back and relax while the machines do their work. Learning from the mistakes is still very “humane-activity” for machines. Therefore optimizing your performance to every last advantage is going to take you to levels where you competitors can only dream to be.

Furthermore, most real estate players tend to calculate the absolutes, strengths and weaknesses of their campaigns and use tools to benchmark their performance on industry standards. Well, that’s not enough. We have spared you with the know-hows and guesswork to run better ad campaigns. And guess what, all your competitors will read these jargons at one place or another. There’s a pretty good chance that digital advertising can change the course of business for you, mostly for good- if rightly executed.

We understand it’s hard to take a call on what to execute and what to discard. Here at Adnabu, we help you automate the complete process, along with a chance enjoy the freedom to choose and optimize your campaign with real-life data that might just inspire you to the core of your success.