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How Realtors Can Confidently Navigate Paid Local Search

By Ben Shepardson | April 6, 2017

As a realtor, you deal with the local market. Local searches are exploding. Almost a third of mobile searches have local intent.

Here are some tips to get the most out of your paid local search budget.

Location Targeting

This is the crux of local search. Google allows you to target by location. If you live in Los Angeles, you don't want people in Cleveland to see your real estate ads. Every time they click, you're wasting money.

Timing Is Everything

Google allows you to show ads during certain days of the week. You can also show your ads during certain hours of the day. This all comes back to your data. If your weekend leads are less profitable, increase your weekday spend. If nighttime clicks don't convert well, then shut off your campaign during nighttime hours.

Complete Your Profile

If your ads don't show up, you're out of the game. And the person with the highest bid doesn't necessarily show up. Your quality score directly impacts Google's calculation. Google wants to show consumers ads that are relevant.

Your quality score is dependent on many factors. For instance, the design of your landing page and your copy is essential. Likewise, your account history and your closeness to the searcher matter too.

Yet, there are other ways to boost up your quality score. Many listings are not 100% complete. They are only partially completed, a situation that Google that doesn't look on with favor. Also, there are other issues too. For instance, Google is more likely to show your ads when your business is open for operation. In other words, you can get a higher quality score when your business is open. Since Google allows you to run ads when you want to, consider concentrating your ads when your business is open.

Reviews Help Conversions

84% of Americans say that reviews influence their purchasing decisions. Getting someone on your page isn't enough. You want them to take the next step, to request more info, to schedule a viewing of the house, to call you on the telephone. Reviews turn clicks into conversions.

How can you get reviews? It's definitely a tricky situation. Only 28% of Americans have written a review. Moreover, many of those people had a negative experience, not a positive one. Here are some things you can do to improve your lot.

  1. Address Positive Reviewers- A lot of businesses are quick to reply to a negative review. That's not a bad thing. You need to defend yourself in the digital world. There are two sides to every story, and customers should hear your side. That being said, positive reviewers often hear crickets. This shouldn't be. If someone leaves you a glowing review, you should thank them. Also, considering leaving them a positive review, telling others they were a pleasure to work with. This is a natural way to respond to reviews if you're not quite sure what to say back.
  2. Solicit Reviews In Your Workflow- The squeaky wheel gets the grease. This is true in life, and with reviews as well. At the very least, you should ask for a review at the end of the job. Yet, you can do more than that. You can give someone a card, leaving a request for a review. You can offer a discount for a review. Additionally, you could leave a Yelp sticker. Solicit reviews from satisfied customers, and you'll do well.
  3. Push Through Good Reviews- Yelp has a strict review filter. They do whatever they can to weed out fake and paid reviews. Occasionally, honest reviews are collateral damage. This usually happens to accounts that are new or untested. Reviewers can push past Yelp filters by adding a picture, syncing their account with Facebook, or becoming a more active contributor on Yelp. If you have positive reviews that are hidden, let the account holder know these tips. This gives their review a better chance of being seen.

The Future of Local Searches

Local searches are getting bigger. Glide past other realtors now. Get the most out your paid local searches by following the tips above.

Ben Shepardson is a Realty Biz News Contributing Writer and has a long track record of success in online marketing and web development. While pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Computer Information Systems, he worked doing enterprise-level SEO and started an online business offering web development services to small business customers.
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