5 Ways to Prep Your Website Before 2015

2015 is only a few weeks away. Crazy, right? While you’re putting your list of new year resolutions together, don’t forget to think about your real estate website. We’ve put together a list of tips to prep your website so that you’re ready to hit the ground running as soon as January 1 shows up.

1. Review your site analytics.

If you want to improve your site, you’ve got to figure out where you stand. Take a look at the analytics of your site to observe trends that will help you improve your web presence.

How many visitors come to your website on a monthly basis? How many of those visitors are brand new? How high is the bounce rate for your site? These questions are all important to ask yourself as you begin to vet the performance of your site. Once you find these data points, they will help guide you in the right direction as you improve your site for the new year. Want to keep it simple? We’ve got a post on how to simplify your analytics data here.

Here’s some things you can do:

  1. Login to your Google Analytics account and take a look at the numbers.

  2. Determine if the number of visits this year has increased or decreased since last year.

  3. Identify the pages that have a high bounce rate.

  4. Think of ways to improve your page performance.

  5. Implement strategies.

If you’re one of our clients that engages in an Internet Marketing package, then check out your quarterly reports to find important analytics information in a concise presentation.

2. Create or update new Recommended Search pages.

The real estate world is constantly evolving. As a real estate agent, you get a front row seat to the action – which means that you know your local market better than anyone else. As we approach 2015, revisit your Recommended Search pages and see if they are up to date.

Maybe there’s a new segment in your local real estate market. Maybe a brand new neighborhood was built in your town in the past several months. You’ll want to highlight these changes on your website and help guide prospective buyers through these new options. Keeping your Recommended Search pages up to date shows site visitors that you’re on the top of your game; it creates trust around your company.

Here’s some things you can do:

  1. Create town pages (if they don’t already exist).

  2. Break down your listings by the correct pricing brackets.

  3. Observe search criteria and identify new recommended search categories.

If you’re a Union Street Media client, take a look at the reporting tab in the Admin system. The analytics reveal the search criteria used by visitors. Use this information to figure out if you should add a specific recommended search to your list.

3. Think about your content strategy.

Since you’ll have considerably more down time as you approach the new year, take the time to think about how you’ll prepare for a new content strategy. If you don’t have a current content strategy, consider putting one in place for the new year. After all, the vast majority of marketers now heavily rely on content marketing and see it as their top priority for the future of their business.

If you have a blog, review which posts performed particularly well and which posts fell by the wayside. Use this information to refine your future approach. If you don’t have a blog, strongly consider implementing an on-domain blog for your website. Not sure how to get a blog up and running? Check out some tips on how to blog for your real estate business here.

Here’s some things you can do:

  1. Start a blog (if you haven’t already).

  2. Write posts about information that your clients will value.

  3. Set up a regular content schedule.

  4. Create content across different media types – text, infographics, video, etc.

4. Review optimization of your site.

No matter how much time you put into your website, you have to think about search engine optimization (SEO) strategies to get your site seen in places like Google and Bing. Take this break in your busy schedule to make sure that each of your pages has a well-crafted meta description and content that is focused on one of your targeted keywords.

If you’re a Union Street Media client that engages in an Internet Marketing package, then your Internet Marketing Specialist can help you figure out how to optimize your site.

Here’s some things you can do:

  1. Define major keywords relevant to your target audience.

  2. Optimize your site around these keywords by creating relevant content.

  3. Optimize your blog by drafting posts around your keywords.

  4. Complete alt text fields for images on your site.

5. Set goals for 2015.

No matter how you bring in the new year, make sure to set attainable goals for your website over the next twelve months. Maybe you want to start ranking on the first page of Google for terms like “waterfront properties in New Hampshire” or “real estate in Portland, Maine.” Or maybe you just want to start blogging once every two weeks. That’s great! Well-defined goals help guide your company to a successful online presence; setting small, pre-defined steps toward a goal makes it easier to complete that goal.

Here’s some things you can do:

  1. Write down five goals you have for your website in 2015.

  2. Write down which steps you need to take to achieve those goals.

  3. Create deadlines for each of these steps throughout the year.

Got any more tips on how to enhance your site for the new year? Let me know in the comments.