In Google, real estate is one of the most competitive when it comes to SEO. It can be difficult to establish Google rankings, and you may not like the ones you’re getting when you finally do get them.
This article covers the topic of how to find the right keywords to use to gain traffic.
Choosing the right keywords is one of the most important factors in SEO. They allow you to place yourself in search engine results page (SERPs) in meaningful and profitable places.
However, finding the “right” keywords is not choosing those with the most traffic volume. In fact, those are the last you should choose as you’re optimizing a newish website.
What you want to find are relevant keywords that have:
- higher organic click-through rates,
- low to medium difficulty(“competition”), and
- the optimum amount of traffic volume.
Why does this matter?
Because, especially at the beginning, SEO is about making decisions about which search results pages you can compete in at the time you want to optimize. Otherwise, why optimize?
Google’s trust is won with time and hard work, so choosing SERPs that you can compete is the first step. Don’t worry, with time and hard work (which gives you more domain authority) you choose others down-the-road.
Step #1: Find Out How Many and What Kind of Keywords You Need So You Can Find Your Seed Keywords
The best time to find your real estate keywords for search engine optimization is before you even have a website. That way you can make your website with those keywords in mind – in terms of both the short- and long game.
However, that often does not happen because you may not have had the foresight to know to learn about SEO.
Whatever the case, before or after the website is created, write down a numbered list of the pages you have on your menu bar.
Make sure to write down all the pages that are on your menus, both in the head and footer of the page.
Once you’re finished with that list, continue building it by adding notes about what each page is intended to do for the reader.
From these notes, think of ways you would search for each page on your website. What would you type into Google to find each one of your pages?
Document them alongside the adjoining list(s). I recommend keeping real-time notes through software like Google Docs to communicate easily with your team. These seed keywords can be long-tail, like “commercial real estate keywords,” or broad terms, like “restaurants.”
(TIP: Real estate listing keywords should be location-modified keywords, called “Geo-targeted” keywords, so make sure to add location names in your seed keywords.)
Step #2: Use a Keyword Research Tool to Find the Right Real Estate Keywords for Your Website
For the purpose of ease, I will use Moz’s Keyword Explorer as the explanatory model for this step. Similar tools like SEMrush, Google’s Keyword Planner, and many more have the same filtering and keyword generation capabilities.
Moz will allow you to use up to 10 inquiries for span of a month, but you can also try the pro version, which I recommend. If you sign up for the free trial, you have up to 5,000 inquiries to use, you can build multiple keyword lists, and you have access to most of the other tools Moz provides.
In fact, the internal list-building capability that the 30 day trial lets you use is crucial to implementing the following instructions, so make sure to sign up. 30 days is more than enough time to do the keyword research for a small- to medium-sized websites.
Anyway, use each of the seed keywords you thought of to find the right keyword for each page of your site. You will be making a list of possible keyword variations for each seed keyword.
As you can see from the “Keyword Overview” section, you have a visual representation of the 3 items I outlined at the beginning of this post. The monthly volume for keywords is presented first, followed by difficulty, and then you see the organic “CTR” (i.e. click through rate).
Again, you want a high CTR (80%+), lower difficulty (0 – 50), and the optimum amount of monthly traffic volume.
However, for the next part, all you will get to see is the traffic volume.
Next, click on one of two places to see the keyword suggestions Moz generated for you. Note: Keyword Overview is a handy tool itself. Make sure to consult with it when you are iffy of whether a keyword is too difficult to rank for. The SERP Analysis is a great tool for making individual, well thought-out decisions about keyword difficulty.
As you can see, the only metrics available here are monthly volume and relevancy. Go through the keyword suggestions and check the boxes for any keyword that you could see as useful to the page you’re researching for.
Personally, I check any boxes that are both relevant and have 11-50 monthly volume. This way I cut out possible keywords that do not seem worth it to me.
Next, make sure to add your checked boxes to a list. Make a list for each keyword before going onto step #3.
As you proceed through your own keyword research, you might start to form your own strategies to arrive at other useful keywords. That is good, so don’t feel like you’re off track if you do this. Just make sure to keep building your lists.
Step #3: Narrow Down the Possible Keywords by Filtering Out Keywords that Are Not Worth Your Time (Yet!)
Now that you have your lists, it’s time to filter out all the not-so-smart keyword targets.
You may have inclinations, hopes, and biases about what keywords you want to use. Hang those up for the moment. You may want to write them down and consider them again on another SEO campaign (for example, when you have more authority in Google’s eyes).
For now, just click on the “Keyword Explorer” link in the breadcrumbs at the top of the page to arrive at the Keyword Explorer interface, where your lists are stored.
Once there, click on the list that you’d like to start with first. I recommend approaches it systematically. Do it in order of the original seed real estate keywords list so that you’re not missing a page you could have optimized but didn’t.
As you can see, you’re prompted to a page brim full of visually stimulating, responsive graphs for some pretty important insights about your keyword research. However, bypass all those thoughts for now and use the tried and true filtering feature.
Toggle difficulty and Organic CTR to find the real estate keywords I’ve been saying you’ll find.
Now, here’s where it gets messy. Every one of you has different measures of trust in Google’s eyes (domain authority), so difficult for you might not be difficult for another.
(For example: a real estate agent that has had a website for 3 years might rank better for terms than, say, a person that is just getting his or her website off the ground.)
If you’re just starting, try to find the lowest difficulty there is in your list. These are the low hanging fruit.
Use difficulty as your main filtering tool. Filter down to “10 or less,” first. Than see what you get by scrolling below the filtering tool. Is there something that might work?
Do the same for the next bracket, the “20 or less.” Do this again with the “30 or less” if you still didn’t find anything.
BONUS: USE THIS SAME PROCESS TO FIND TOPICS FOR YOUR BLOG
What’s amazing about these instructions is how you can reiterate it over and over. A way to gain more authority in Google’s eyes is to gain links. And a great way to build links is by creating content that people can find and appreciate and link to.
That’s the part I want you to get: people have to see your blog post to link to it. Therefore, you can use this same process to find blog post people will see.
Featured area: Culver, Oregon.