Build A Real Estate WordPress Website In Minutes
This article is helpful for anyone looking to create a simple, quick, and on a budget blog or website. REDigitalUnicorn is an affiliate marketing blog and freelance services website and I used all of the below mentioned resources to build it.
THIS PAGE MAY CONTAIN AFFILIATE LINKS which means I may earn a commission if you use them. I only recommend tools and products that I personally use and trust.
Now, you will learn all about easily creating a website DIY and how to create a blog in WordPress, step by step, for real estate and mortgage professionals. Your first website is just that, your first website. It most likely will evolve 3-6 times over the next decade, and that’s ok!
Real Estate Digital Marketing
Stop relying on third parties with big promises, pricing increases, and lots of wasted money. As a top producer for the last 7 years, I have created an online lead generation system and I’ll show you how! Maybe you have a lead source that is delivering? Here’s the thing if you don’t own it, you can’t control the future.
I began my digital marketing journey in San Diego on a DIY WordPress site. My real estate website is now hosted with Real Estate Webmasters. REW is the Ferrari of real estate website, but super expensive for a new agent or loan officer starting out.
Digital marketing has been one of my greatest business accomplishments. In April 2018 I sold my fourth oceanfront in three years from blogging-related content marketing and SEO efforts. I have grossed near $2.5M from online leads over the past 7 years and anticipate 2018 being our best year ever.
There are many lead resellers out there: zillow, realtor.com, homes.com, and more. You can build an amazing business in many markets using lead resellers. Having said that, I believe in owning your own lead infrastructure. Having ownership over your own website allows you the control to invest your own time and money when you can, and pull back when business slows. You are building equity in yourself with your own website.
I do not recommend blogger/blogspot or brokerage company free websites, or subdomain websites. You will not rank in the SERPS in 2018 moving forward with a solution like this. Blogger/blogspot does not have a professional image and is more for hobby blogging.
Siteground Hosting For WordPress
If you’re looking to start a WordPress blog on a budget, then choosing Siteground for your hosting needs may be the best solution for you. Siteground is a great affordable web host and I personally use them on this website, REDigitalUnicorn. I selected for this site, and recommend SiteGround hosting over other options because of their server uptime, customer service, and strong security. SiteGround is RECOMMENDED by WordPress.org as a tool that make managing WordPress sites easy: one-click install, managed updates, WP-Cli, WordPress staging and git integration.
This is the most affordable route, keeping in mind the importance of security, speed, and professionalism. Click here to start a blog on WordPress, then use the tutorial below for the easy directions.
Selecting a host for your real estate website is the first and most important decision you will make when starting a blog. It’s like when a new prospect is relocating into your area and they want to explore communities, schools, and area amenities. If your prospect is considering townhomes or condos they are looking for at HOA that is reliable, flexible, and ready to help at all times.
It’s important that your web host:
- Has a secure network
- Has very little downtime
- Is affordable
- Great customer service
- Different plans to meet your needs as your business grows
SiteGround SSL HTTPS
Many real estate agent and mortgage blogs do not yet have SSL, (https). SSL is imperative for your business! See the difference below in the screenshots with and without SSL. Your users will get a warning on different browsers that your website is not secure or safe. Some don’t understand what that means and could interpret it to mean you have spyware that could infect their computer. SSL comes with all three SiteGround hosting plans.
Back in 2014-2016 I was with a very well known custom wordpress developer that is a partner with IDXbroker. I experienced a nefarious SEO attack, therefore website security is my number one priority. I had worked for five years building up my DA to a 34 and had to spend the next 18 months and $10,000+ recovering after my site was punished by Google and I plummeted to a DA 14.
I spent the next 12 months learning everything about SEO, content marketing, link building, and guest posting. I also learned about tools to check your backlink profile to see if you have spam links. Spam links can punish a site to it’s death.
It was through this journey that I discovered my site had been hacked. /gucci and /ugg were two pages that were built without my knowledge. These two pages were then dropped into THOUSANDS of porn, spam, trash websites primarily in the comments.
This attack is called a nefarious SEO attack or negative SEO. A competitor could hire a company to do it against you or someone that is your sworn enemy.
Technically it’s stupid for a competitor to do this becuase negative SEO is just as time consuming as positive SEO. Therefore it would make the most logical sense to just build your own site’s SEO the right way.
In a Facebook poll taken by the official WordPress Hosting Facebook Group, Siteground was rated the #1 WordPress host. (Siteground was #1 in last year’s poll too) and got me <2s load times with a PageSpeed Score of (94%) in GTmetrix.
Let’s face it, on a DIY solution you must have expedient SERVICE! I tried customer service myself twice, once to get the gogeek plan SuperCacher dynamic enabled and in less than 12 minutes via chat it was completed. And a second time a photo wasn’t uploading into a blog post that should have. Both times they asked for my wordpress username/password and did it for me instantly! Incredibly impressive.
3 Step Process To Begin On SiteGround
Siteground is one of the top web hosting companies in 2018 and you can start your own blog with them for as low as $3.95 a month (this special price for 60% off their shared hosting is through my link on REDigitalUnicorn only)!
There are several types of hosting plans offered by Siteground: shared hosting, cloud hosting, and dedicated hosting, with different features based on how much traffic your website receives. If you are just starting out the shared hosting is adequate. Once you buy a hosting plan you can upgrade yourself inside your c-panel.
Basically with a shared hosting plan, your website shares a server with many other websites. That’s why shared hosting is more affordable when you are just starting out. Once your traffic exceeds 100,000 visitors a month you will want to look at cloud hosting.
StartUp Plan Siteground
The StartUp plan is ok for people with one website that are starting now and on a tight budget with less than 10,000 web visitors a month. The StartUp plan includes
- Free WordPress Installation
- 24/7 Support
- Free Cloudflare CDN
- Free Automatic Daily Backups
The StartUp plan is $3.95 a month.
GrowBig Plan Siteground
The GrowBig plan is a great value for money offer with the SuperCacher that greatly improves a WordPress and Joomla website speed. (recommend at a minimum for a real estate or mortgage website). The GrowBig plan includes everything in the StartUp plan PLUS:
- Host multiple sites in one account at no additional cost.
- Make your WordPress, Joomla or other site fly with our SuperCacher.
- Peace of mind with 30 system backups and 1-click Restore Tool.
- Get an expert migration of one existing site quickly, seamlessly and for free.
This is the lowest level plan that includes a free site migration from another host. (I recommend the GrowBig at a minimum for a real estate or mortgage website because of the speed component the SuperCacher). The GrowBig plan is $5.95 a month.
GoGeek Plan Siteground
The GoGeek plan is perfect for people with e-commerce and larger sites. The GoGeek plan includes everything in the GrowBig and StartUp plan PLUS:
- Resources are shared among fewer users and is a “semi-dedicated solution,” which is why I chose this plan for REDigitalUnicorn
- You can create instant backups whenever you need them.
- With pre-installed Git you have one-click staging for WordPress and Joomla
The GoGeek plan is $11.95 a month (60% off their normal price).
Step 2 Your Domain Name
You can either buy a new domain, or sign up with an existing domain that you already own. SiteGround has a free website transfer that is included in the GrowBig and GoGeek hosting service! This means if you are currently live somewhere else Siteground will manage your transfer that is typically $50-$100.
Unlike many of the other hosting providers the SiteGround advertised discount applies to any of the initial periods chosen during the sign up process.
Real Estate WordPress Theme
Once you have your hosting secure, I recommend a professional theme on Genesis Framework for your site which is a theme library that is WordPress-based. REDigitalUnicorn is on the GalleryPro theme. However there are many more to choose from.
Real Estate WordPress Installation Services
Once you have selected your desired theme, your next step is to get affordable WordPress Installation Services. WordPress installation services include:
- WordPress Installation and set up
- Genesis Framework installation and set up
- Desired Genesis theme installation
- Necessary plugin installation
- Theme set-up
Real Estate Semi-Custom Website Design
If you’d like a semi-custom site with extensive customization that includes IDX installation I have found Sitealacarte is a fantastic option for affordable design work. I used them to finish the bottom 2/3 of my homepage for a very reasonable price. I was able to complete the footer, side-bar, and the first section of the home page on my own, which is sufficient to launch. Sitealacarte also has the most affordable semi-custom design that I’ve seen.
Real Estate Branding Kit
If your’e looking for new personal branding options, custom social media buttons, or a custom logo for a great price check out Macarons and Mimosas. I’ve used Lindsay with Macarons and Mimosas for multiple projects, facebook covers, the rose gold social media buttons on this website, luxury real estate logo, and my REDigitalUnicorn logo.
You are now ready to start writing EPIC content. Be sure to check out our real estate freelance copywriting services for SEO optimized epic content that converts!
Real Estate Agent Stock Photography
Real Estate SEO: How to Get First Page Google Rankings
SEO is an important part of anyone’s digital marketing strategy, and it is continuously evolving.
There are much to learn about it and everyone’s on the same playing ground, whether they are in the real estate, tech, or any other industry.
A strong SEO strategy will drive up traffic to a website, which will then increase the possibility of converting a visit into a sale.
So, how do we make sure our website has the best real estate SEO? Consider the basics below.
Real Estate SEO Keywords Research
Keywords are the terms that a website would like to rank for. Many factors determine the ranking, one of which is how a website uses that keyword.
As a general rule, a webpage should have the keywords on:
- the URL
- the title
- the body with 1-2% keyword density
- the title of images
- Image Alt Tag
With these, we let Google know that the webpage is about that keyword. It will then deem the webpage as relevant to that keyword, showing it at the top of the search results when people search for that keyword.
This is after we’ve determined the proper keyword to use, which is where research comes in.
Sometimes, the keywords are as simple as *city* + “homes for sale,” but these are usually the ones with the most competition. Because many people use this term, many websites also use it as a keyword.
Using a methodical approach will help real estate website owners to come up with their own set of keywords, but it will take time.
Correct Local Listings and Citations
The goals are to let Google know of a business’ information and to not confuse it. According to a survey, about 49% of businesses never updated their listings online, which they don’t know is hurting their SEO.
When a person searches for a business, Google pulls up the information available on the web to show its details, such as the address and contact information. When these are inconsistent across different directories, this confuses Google.
The search also assumes that a good real estate business has consistent data across the internet, which is why it is also important to update a business’ information on directories, including Localeze, Expressupdate, Acxiom, and Factual.
Website SEO for Real Estate
Getting the perfect keywords still don’t mean anything if the website isn’t good enough for visitors to stay on. It should be responsive and easy to navigate, and it should be so, too, on mobile.
The site speed is also a factor, as well as other technical aspects of the site. There is also what we call internal linking, which is what we call putting links within a webpage that direct to another page of the same website.
The key here as well is consistency – only have one page to link to for certain keywords, like “San Diego luxury homes,” to avoid confusing Google.
Get an Expert
Anybody can learn real estate SEO, but it takes a real estate SEO expert to produce results. Check out the HOTH below who I have used for the past two years. Their pricing is affordable, service is excellent, and they deliver consistent results. They also have packages that don’t tie you in for a monthly commitment.
Bonus Social Media Buttons
You can upload custom social media buttons. This code took me forever to align correctly so I thought I’d share:
<div style=”text-align: center;”><a title=”Follow me on Facebook” href=”https://facebook.com/yourfacebook”><img style=”display: inline;” src=”https://redigitalunicorn.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/social_icon_facebook.png” width=”50″ height=”50″ /></a><a title=”Follow me on Twitter” href=”https://twitter.com/yourtwitter”><img style=”display: inline;” src=”https://redigitalunicorn.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/social_icon_twitter.png” width=”50″ height=”50″ /></a><a title=”Follow me on Instagram” href=”https://instagram.com/yourinstagram”><img style=”display: inline;” src=”https://redigitalunicorn.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/social_icon_insta.png” width=”50″ height=”50″ /></a><a title=”Follow me on Pinterest” href=”https://www.pinterest.com/yourpinterest”><img style=”display: inline;” src=”https://redigitalunicorn.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/social_icon_pin.png” width=”50″ height=”50″ /></a><a title=”Follow me on YouTube” href=”https://www.youtube.com/yourchannel”><img style=”display: inline;” src=”https://redigitalunicorn.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/social_icon_youtube.png” width=”50″ height=”50″ /></a></div>
You can align your buttons from a centered vertical strip by reverting the widget into visual mode and deleting the space which will drag each button up one by one.
Need More Information on Real Estate Leads?
You may find a couple of our other articles helpful:
- Instagram Tips For Real Estate Agents
- Pinterest For Real Estate
- How to Break Into the Luxury Real Estate Market
- How To Transition Into A Career in Real Estate
- Internet Lead Conversion Strategies
- My Real Estate SEO Strategy
- Real Estate Marketing Unicorn
- Best Way To Setup Google Adwords
- How To Attract High End Real Estate Clients
Would you like to learn more digital marketing, SEO, search engine marketing for real estate, and how I use this method to close high-end buyers and sellers? Request to join my new Facebook Group Luxury Real Estate Sales – Breaking Into The High End
Do you need more information about real estate Google Page One Rankings? Looking for professional real estate SEO services to get started? Reach out to me today for real estate link building, real estate content marketing and real estate guest blogging.