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  • Website Maintenance for Real Estate Websites

    Maintaining your website is a lot like maintaining your car. If you don't know where to start then it can be frustrating, expensive, and time-consuming. On the other hand, if you set it and forget it, then it can be costly, frustrating, and time-consuming and we can add detrimental to your business to that list.

    The only difference is that setting and forgetting website maintenance for real estate websites can cause problems down the road. Problems like website downtime and malware injections can be avoided with a bit of attention each month. If you're reading this then you're being proactive, so that's a good thing. Understanding what maintenance needs to be done to your website to keep it running smoothly is important. That's why we're going to break down what you need to do, not just yearly, but monthly to keep your website, fast, secure, and visible!

    A Well Maintained Website Gets Noticed

    website maintenance for real estate 2022

    Websites today mean a lot to consumers. They are the first place to validate who you are, and what you do. Consumers will ultimately decide whether or not to do business with you based on this first impression alone.

    Here are a few things that will turn away visitors from your website:

    No SSL = No Love from customers

    Recommended Maintenance Schedule - Annually

    If you don't have an SSL on your real estate website today then you're doing it all wrong. If you don't plan on getting an SSL then you should plan on canceling your website altogether because it is of no value to you.

    Bold statement? Not when you consider that an SSL is a consumer's one and only first impression of how you value their cyber-security. 

    SSL is an industry-standard, used by millions of websites to protect their online interactions and transactions with customers. It protects everything from credit card data, to information collected in your contact forms. SSL also shows web browsers like Google that you are to be trusted. This gives your website a boost in rankings because it recognizes that your website is secure for consumers. As a result, it will rank a website with an SSL higher than one without.

    SSLs became mandatory to rank in Google mid-year in 2018.

    Your SSL is a yearly maintenance commitment. It requires the purchase of a certificate from a trusted SSL company. The certificate is then installed on your domain URL. The easiest way for you to verify if there is an SSL on a website is to look for the closed lock in the address bar.

    A website without an SSL is shown below. Customers who arrive at your website and see this message will bounce.

    real estate website maintenance

    A website with an SSL is shown below. An SSL tells the customer that their privacy is valued. 

    real estate website maintenance ssl

     

    Whether you are focused on marketing your business with SEO or not, you still need an SSL in 2022. The SSL is proof that you are taking customer security and privacy seriously with your online business. Everyone wants a safer Internet. An SSL is a small way to participate in this change.

    Too Slow to Load

    Recommended Maintenance Schedule - Monthly

    There's no place that values instant gratification more than the Internet. In fact, other than the advent of the digital photo, the Internet could be considered the Grandfather of instant digital causing endorphins. This has not changed in the eyes or browsing habits of customers. Speed is also a key factor in Google's last Core Vitals algorithm update. Fast websites get rewarded with higher rankings and more eyeballs.

    How do you keep your website running like a cheetah? We have a very small checklist, for reference below. Each of these points represents more than meets the eye, but it's a good place to start to ensure you have a healthy speed score.

    First, check what score your website gets before you make any improvements. Go here to check your website speed on both mobile and desktop: https://pagespeed.web.dev/ 

    • Reduce redirects
    • Delete unused plugins
    • Consider a CDN for images
    • Compress images as small as possible
    • Enable browser caching
    • Remove unnecessary CSS and minify

    This list should be revisited monthly, and more frequently if you are making regular changes to your website.

    Speed is a heavily weighted factor in user experience and SEO because it's what customers have demonstrated is important to them. 

    Don't get left in the dust by faster competitors.

    Broken Images

    Recommended Maintenance Schedule - Monthly

    maintenance ssl

    Just as showing a house with a broken front door and a high price point would be bad for business the same goes for your website. Scan your online presence regularly for broken images.  Whether we are talking about broken real estate listing images coming from an interrupted data feed or an agent's bio photo in the portfolio, broken images are negative.

    Customers grow increasingly frustrated especially when they are trying to look at something that they want to buy. In the case of real estate photos, when they find the one, the house that they are excited about. They want to view it. A lot. And they want to send it to their friends and family to view. Not to mention their mortgage broker, banker, and lawyer. Put your best foot forward when it comes to showing property images. Always ensure that your website is error-free.

    Outdated

    Recommended Maintenance Schedule - Monthly

    Outdated what? Outdated anything and everything. When I look at a website there are a few key places I check to make sure the website is being maintained. The first is the SSL obviously, and the next is the copyright date in the footer. After I've checked those two boxes I start to zero in on content. When was the last blog post written? Is the home page advertising old dates, events, and developments? Are the listings and sold listings being maintained?

    The thing to understand about the Internet and customers of real estate is that they are getting pickier. Especially when it comes to hiring a real estate agent to sell their home in a hot market. Customers are checking out your website before calling. The list above is only a few of the things that they're looking for.

    Showing customers that your website is consistently up to date, quite literally demonstrates the control and discipline that you have in your business.

    If you think this is a lot of work or costs a lot of money then you should get in touch with us. An investment each month into your website is an investment into your customers that will result in new business.

    Check out what our MWP and SEO customers are up to this month below!

    Brooks Lancaster is predicting a cooling-off in the Penticton real estate market!

    RE/MAX Vanderhoof is getting sellers ready to move with a great moving checklist for recently sold Vanderhoof Homes for sale.

    Neufeld Jones Real Estate Team is providing advice for real estate during divorce in Kelowna. 

    Corinne O'Neil is shedding a light on St. Albert homes for sale near transit!

    The Current has a few tips on what to know before buying Whitehorse condos for sale.

    Big White Property Group has real estate news for the neighbourhood of Black Forest!

    RE/MAX Elite is discussing the recent foreign buyers ban prohibiting foreign buyers from purchasing Edmonton homes for sale.

    Janice Leffler has details on the advantages of living in Comox Townhomes for sale!

    Kevin Moist and Associates is sharing what makes North End Real Estate a fantastic option.

    MYLIE is giving all the reasons to buy Ontario Luxury real estate!

    Royal LePage in the Comox Valley has a great article about summer activities near homes for sale in Comox.

    Josh Miko has a great overview of the West Kelowna gated community, Leisure Village. 

    Hilbert&Crick are talking about windows and how to renovate homes for sale in Kelowna for a better sale price.

    Miranda Moser is giving all the tips on preparing to move to houses for sale in Calgary!

    John Mattiello of RE/MAX Elite is sharing how the prices of Edmonton houses for sale are causing anxiety among Albertans.