Real estate companies that perform well in search results should earn unique links from trusted sources that set them apart from the competition.
But the real estate industry faces unique challenges when it comes to making connections.
An effective link building strategy for this industry requires a creative approach that considers:
- The semi-local nature of the subject.
- The quirks of the target audiences in question.
- The difficulties of avoiding “similarity” around the subject treated.
In this article, we will:
- Discuss how to approach outreach in this space.
- Recommend specific link building tactics to help increase your search engine visibility.
How to approach awareness in the real estate sector
Real estate companies occupy a somewhat unique space in the online marketplace.
The geocentric nature of business means that the tactics developed for online businesses do not necessarily apply.
At the same time, standard local SEO tactics aren’t necessarily the best for the industry either. This is because the locations in question are constantly on the move and you are primarily marketing to promote a specific region without focusing your efforts on a specific address.
In your outreach and promotion efforts, you will need to earn links from a wide variety of sources.
- Regional links will help your pages show up for local queries from landlords and those looking to buy or rent.
- National and global links from topical sites will help build your brand authority around real estate topics and any subtopics important to your target audience.
Successful outreach in the real estate industry should largely rely on long-term business partnerships.
Most of the authoritative links you will earn will come from customers and business partners who naturally link to you as part of larger cross-promotion campaigns.
Typically, the focus will be less on collecting links from a cold-blooded approach and more on ensuring that your business name is associated with as many projects and campaigns as possible. You want to be listed as a partner or sponsor who has helped make things possible in your area.
That’s not to say content can’t or shouldn’t still play a big role in your link building strategy. However, your content strategy should be very carefully crafted to target a unique, regional audience in a way that sets you apart from other real estate companies.
Focus on developing a unique and strong selling proposition for your content strategy to earn links and get followed.
1. Original research
Publishing original research is a powerful way to earn links. This is as true for the real estate industry as it is for most others.
Consider, for example, this original research published by OnCarrot. The SaaS real estate company conducted research on its customers and used it to make marketing recommendations to its audience of real estate agents:
As a real estate company, copying this strategy too directly would generally not be a good solution, as your goal should be to cultivate an audience of buyers and sellers, not other real estate agents.
Nonetheless, it serves as an example of the power of original research to capture links and grab attention.
When approaching your own original research, you will need to consider:
- What proprietary data you have access to as a real estate company.
- Which data provides interesting information that others would find interesting enough to link to.
- What target audiences would fit both the data and your brand.
Keep in mind that the data you have access to isn’t necessarily going to appeal to your lowest-funnel target audience. It is acceptable.
The goal of publishing original research is not to target those who are ready to buy and sell right away, but to build brand exposure and grab the attention of people who have their own audience. .
Simply put, the primary target audience for your original research should be a group of bloggers, webmasters, and other influencers with the power to send you links and traffic.
The precise nature of this target audience will depend heavily on your brand’s USP and how you hope to differentiate yourself from other real estate agents.
To maximize the impact of your original research, be sure to reach out to influencers who would find the data interesting and likely to use it in their own content.
Be sure to provide unique context and personalization in your outreach efforts so your recipients know you’re speaking specifically to them and why you chose them.
2. Real Estate Blogs (and more)
Guest editorials have long been a mainstay of SEO. As long as you’re focusing on high-profile blogs with real audiences and the potential for brand exposure, writing guest posts will help your rankings in the long run.
We recommend you start by checking out HubSpot’s 29 recommended real estate blogs, especially blogs that target homeowners and buyers.
You should also search for queries related to selling, buying, and renting homes and identify any other sites that publish content on the subject, even if that is not the primary focus of the whole blog.
To avoid cultivating an audience of other real estate agencies:
- Be selective about the topics you choose to cover in your guest posts.
- Focus on topics that will attract sellers, buyers, and renters, and those that are likely to reach those audiences soon.
Some topics to consider aside from the obvious include:
- House and garden.
- Moving related topics.
- Things to do in the area where your real estate agency operates.
- Personal finance.
It’s a good idea to get creative with the types of blogs you plan to work with.
The number of blogs that deal specifically with real estate topics is limited, many of them are run by other real estate companies, and the topic often relates to real estate agents more than your actual target audience.
3. Rental Listings and Directories
Rental listing sites like Trulia often allow you to link back to your site. Trulia, in particular, allows you to do this with a follow link.
Rental ads are an important part of your promotional strategy, so be sure to include a link back to your site from any rental ads you post.
In addition to rental listings, take advantage of directories and various other listings that people use in your area, such as:
- Yellow Pages
- Chamber of Commerce
- Angie’s List
- Google Maps listings
- Google My Business
- The next door
What’s important is that the lists you use for link building are also used by real people for reasons that make sense to your business. An approach that aims for variety is particularly useful here.
The real estate industry presents unique challenges when it comes to making connections, due to:
- A mix of online and local attributes that most SEO approaches aren’t designed to handle.
- And an industry that tends to repeat the same topics ad nauseam for an audience that mostly includes other real estate agents.
With the right awareness mindset, business partnerships, creative content strategy, smart editorial placement, and skillful use of listings, you’ll be able to capture links your competitors won’t and place them more. near the top of the search results.
Screenshot taken by author, March 2019