The Guide to Real Estate SEO

Expand to reveal each step in ranking a real estate website

The first step in ranking your real estate website is getting the local Map Pack nailed down.  It has been said a million times…”real estate is local”. That has never been more true then in the word of online real estate marketing.  The first step in establishing your local SEO for real estate is creating and claiming your Google My Business listing. This will officially tell Google about your brand, your business name, business address and business phone number.  

Real Estate marketing experts call that your NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number). A super important aspect of this process is ensuring that your NAP is consistent with your Google My Business account and your other online mentions such as Facebook ,Twitter and of course, your website.

Verifying your GMB account will usually require a postcard being mailed to the business address claimed.  The postcard will contain a PIN – which you enter into GMB for verification. Once your Google My Business account is created and verified, you will want to create/update citation accounts. Citation accounts are websites that reference your business online such as Facebook, Yelp, Yellow-pages and Foursquare.  There are literally thousands of potential citation websites that you can create.  Because of it’s importance, we have created the full guide to Local SEO for Real Estate. We can not stress enough how important it is to insure that all citations have the identical NAP as you Google My Business listing.

For many SEO agencies, the keyword research completed for real estate SEO does not go deep enough.  The obvious key-phrases are simply *your city* real estate or *your city* homes for sale.  In many instances, these can be the most searched key phrases, but are not necessarily what keywords you should be going after.  True Real Estate SEO experts will look for the best keywords to convert and even use latent semantic keywords. Keyword research for real estate should include not only the obvious, but every deviation of those keywords included.  For instance, *your city* homes for sale should also include:

  • *your city + state abr* homes for sale
  • homes for sale in *your city*
  • homes for sale in *your city + state abr*
  • *your city* real estate
  • *your city + state abr* real estate
  • *your city* real estate for sale
  • *your city + state abr* for sale
  • real estate *your city*
  • real estate in *your city*
  • real estate for sale *your city*
  • all of the above with the state abbreviation
  • similar search phrases with subdivisions
  • similar search phrases with counties

Each of these search phrases will have a different number of monthly searches, different levels of competition and ultimately the user (the person doing the search) will have a different intent.  With Google’s algorithm learning at lighting speed, today the correlation between keyword research and user intent is more important than ever.  Is there a  different user intent if the search is *city* real estate vs waterfront condos for sale in *subdivision*?  Of course there is.  The “real estate” search may be wanting statistics on the local market, or other generic information on the real estate in the respective city.  Where the “condos for sale” search is expecting to see active listings in the respective subdivision.  Coming up with your specific set of real estate keywords takes time and a methodical approach. 

Now that your local SEO is in place and you have a good idea of what keywords you would like to be found for, the next step is completing an SEO website audit.  For may REALTORS that did not build your own website, this may seem like a daunting task.

For most of you, your best best in the website audit process is to either use a free, website audit tool like the one One Click SEO provides, you could also use a tool like Screaming Frog or you could hire a professional to manually go through your site.  We feel that One Click SEO has the Best SEO Audit Tool.

Once you have the audit results, you now at least know where your website stands from the technical perspective.  Its important to remember, there is no silver bullet for SEO – to effectively rank any website, there are many parts that must all work in concert.

Notwithstanding the structure of your real estate website, the meta titles and headers are the most important aspect of the on-page SEO.  Your meta title for each page should be the main keywords your would like to rank. When you boil all of the content on the page down – you should end up with your meta title.

Your “Meta Title” can be looked at as the question that the individual web page answers.

Your meta title should stay somewhere between 10 and 70 characters long. The next step is reviewing your meta headers on each page.  Headers are looked at as the structure of the web page. Similar to how you would structure an outline when writing in school. Your H1 header should be the same (or very close to) your meta title. As a general rule, you should only have one H1 Header.  You should also try to have a couple H2 and H3 headers in each page also. These would be the second most important. Under each header would be a paragraph or two that defines what the header stated.

It is 2018 – by this time anyone who is even remotely serious about their website has already made it mobile friendly.  In addition, this should be caught in your website audit too — but it is so important, we felt it still deserved its own section.  

With more than half of the internet traffic in the world being from mobile devices, we even recommend building your real estate website Mobile First.  A mobile first website is one that is built to be displayed on a mobile device and then adapted afterward to display on a desktop computer.  This may seem like a minor difference, but from the web design perspective it changes the entire process. 

Another no-brainer is assuring that your website is as fast as possible. These two factors somewhat go together as the speed in which your website loads is even more critical for mobile devices.  In addition to how the site is built, the hosting that is utilized for your website will play a large role in it’s speed.  We have done extensive work to come up with the best WordPress hosting for SEO purposes.  

Another new technology that can be leveraged to speed up your real estate website is AMP. Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP for short) is a process in which you create a stripped down version of your web page or blog to make it AMP compatible.  AMP pages are then delivered straight from Google’s servers for lightning fast results.  

Anyone in real estate understands one of the main reasons that home buyers and home sellers use the internet in the real estate sales process is to search for listings.  The act of having real estate listings, from other brokers displayed on an agents site is through the implementation of IDX. Most people working on real estate website marketing  already have IDX in place, but is it implemented best for IDX purposes?

When you display an IDX listing on your website you are pushing out the same information as every other local real estate site with a RETS feed from the MLS. Ultimately, that has everyone displaying IDX on their site is displaying duplicate content.  

For the last 5 years, Google has been moving from a quantity of content to a quality of content algorithm for ranking.  Throwing out thousands of mostly duplicate content pages, dilutes your QUALITY CONTENT that you should be pushing out of your site.   You should be pushing custom blog content from your site and sharing that on social media. All of that work is substantially diluted when you push out hundreds of new “crap” pages (AKA IDX listings) every week.

The quality and quantity of back links that point to your real estate website is what shows Google that you are an authoritative source of information.  Their are different ways to acquire back links, but it is very important to remember that all back links are not created equal. The more authoritative and relevant the site linking to you, the more powerful the back link.  If you have many spammy back links pointing to your website, that can actually be detrimental to your SEO.

Here are a couple ways that you can create and sculpt your back link profile.

  • Guest Posting
  • Study Your Competitors Back Link Profile
  • Content Marketing
  • Social Media Syndication of Original Content
  • Creating Citations for Local SEO 
  • Finding Broken Back Links From Sites You Want a Link From
  • Web 2.0 Sites

Back creation  is the single most important, and most challenging task of an SEO Agency or individual. Much of what is done in the content marketing process is done to have other websites link to that content.  So not only do you need content worth linking to, you need the process for getting that content in front of enough people to have them link to it.

With back links being the single most important factor for ranking on Google – it is also the single most abused process by many SEO agencies.  In the past, simply a higher number of backlinks increased the authority and visibility of your website.  Today, mostly because of the abuse from SEO companies, Google looks very closely at every back link.  Although in the past, many found success with the creation of tons of back-links from just about anywhere, today too many backlinks from the wrong websites can hurt your search engine optimization efforts and even get you banned or de-indexed from Google. 

You can not be a successful REALTOR today without a strong social media presence.  Your social media accounts should post all of the commuinity pages and blog posts from your real estate website.  Most real estate agents post articles from real estate websites like ActiveRain, Innman or Realty Times to their social media accounts.  Wouldn’t it make more sense to be pushing your own real estate content where they end up on your website?

All agents and brokers should have the following social media accounts:

  • Facebook Business Page
  • Twitter Page
  • LinkedIn Profile
  • Google+ Publishing (looks to be going away sometime in 2019)

There are many products that will assist you in socially syndicating your original content from your website.  Hootsuite is a very popular content sharing application as is Buffer.  

Schema structured data is what tells Google and other web giants what your business is about.  The schema on your real estate website should reflect if you are a real estate agency, real estate broker, real estate agent and so on.  The schema on your real estate site should also contain your exact Name, Address and Phone Number also known as NAP.  Other tags schema include your hours of operation and what real estate markets you serve.

Implementing schema can be a little overwhelming for the novice webmaster.  Most of the basic schema apps or plugins only implement the bare minimum (which of course is better than nothing). To get all of the appropriate tags set on your real estate website requires some programming knowledge.   

Most real estate agents, brokers and teams are well aware of the power of the online review.  Whether you get your reviews on Zillow, Yelp, Google or your own real estate website, you should maximize every testimonial.  For Google to recognize the copy as a review, all of your reviews should have the proper schema and an aggregate rating.  Be careful, if you tag the reviews on your site incorrectly, it may look to Google as if you are copying an existing review and trying to get credit for two. 

SEO for Real Estate by REALTORS

One Click SEO, formally DEAN Knows, just doesn’t to pretend to understand real estate marketing.  Dean Cacioppo was a licensed real estate instructor for 8 years and has been a REALTOR for over 17 years.  With decades of experience in all aspects of real estate technment company owners. We understand that having your real estate website show up for a major real estate search term shows market dominance.

Ranking for a search term that gets thousands of searches per month is the best advertising you can get for growing a brokerage and recruiting agents. The name recognition for your real estate brand is elevated when squeezed between Zillow, Trulia and Ranking for either major real estate terms or thousands of real estate keywords is a game changer from not only a lead generation aspect, but a branding perspective.

If you are looking for fully managed real estate internet marketing – by true real estate experts, fill out the form below.

Managed SEO Request

The Difference in Real Estate SEO

SEO for real estate is substantially more challenging than in most industries. The challenge in good SEO for Real Estate is that it is dominated by the big, nation-wide companies such as Zillow,, Trulia and  After those authoritative websites, you are fighting the large real estate brokers. You even have to fight with the Real Estate Franchises such as Keller Williams, Remax and Coldwell Banker.


Although real estate Search Engine Optimization is more competitive and has some unique challenges, many of the steps involved in ranking a real estate website are the same as traditional website search engine marketing.  Below is the step by step process that real estate agents can use to get the search results they require for traffic and lead generation, in the order it should be done. Below is not a list of SEO tips but the process from beginning to end to rank a real estate website.


Our Real Estate SEO Pricing Packages are only achievable because of our fine tuned processes which have been developed over years of serving real estate agents, brokers and large teams.  This revolutionary pricing model lets you start building your real estate brad immediately by implementing specific strategies without the cost of Managed Real Estate SEO implemented by real estate gurus.  

This style of pricing also is attractive to the REALTOR who wants to be in control and wants to attempt to implement their own SEO.  Our packaged real estate SEO services are also great for the newly licensed agent who understands that their long term success is dependent on their ability to generate consistent buyer and seller leads over time.

We have worked hard to insure that every à la carte service we provide includes REAL value and REAL results.  These are the same exact services we provide to our full Managed SEO clients in the real estate industry, but you choose what you want and the price you pay. 

Real Estate Blogging

  • Two 800+ Word, Real Estate Blogs Professional Written
  • Blogs Posted to Your Website
  • Licensed High Quality Photos
  • .

Real Estate Schema

$$300Plus $100 Per Page
  • Implement Real Estate Industry Tags
  • Implement Advanced Real Estate Schema
  • Testing of Every Page

On Page SEO

$500+ $100 per page
  • Full Site Audit
  • Proven Real Estate URL Structure – Silo
  • Internal & External Linking
  • IDX Meta Data

Content Marketing SEO for Real Estate

  • Two 800+ Word, Real Estate Blogs Professional Written
  • Blogs Posted to Your Website
  • Licensed High Quality Photo
  • Photo Customized With REALTOR Overlay
  • Blogs Social Shared to Your Accounts
  • Blogs Socially Syndicated via Our Network of Real Estate Social Media Accounts
  • Community Page, Internal Linking
  • Authority, Outbound Links
  • On Page SEO

Local SEO for Real Estate

$600for 6 months then $300/month
  • Creation/Optimization of GMB Account for Real Estate
  • Full Citation Audit
  • Creation of Primary Citations
  • Creation of Secondary Citations
  • 250 Google Map Embeds to Your Real Estate Office
  • 2 Press Releases on Top Realtor in Your City
  • 10-20 Google Posts on Real Estate
  • Local Authority Links
  • Claim Apple Maps
  • Claim Bing Maps
  • More Proprietary Tactics!

Digital Marketing Add-Ons

  • Google AdWords Management $300/month
  • Facebook Ad Management $250/month
  • Tier 1 Real Estate Back-Link $75
  • Tier 2 Real Estate Back-Link $35
  • Social Syndication on Real Estate Profiles $99
  • Full Reporting $65/month
  • Happy Home-Buyer/Seller Reviews $45
  • *Other Options Available
  • *Each Ad-on has specific requirements

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Get A FREE SEO Report, using the best SEO audit tool,  On Your Real Estate Website 

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