This is my first guest post I’ve had on the blog and I’d like to thank the author Patric Herber from Real Estate License Direct for writing this post while I’ve been quite sick with the flu. Patric has been link building in the real estate niche for quite some time and knows what it takes to stand out in a really tough niche.
Quick, if you can’t handle the truth cover your ears for this first bit. Are you ready? Real estate is one of the most difficult niches to build links in, period. Why? Because the industry has a bad name! Ninety percent of all real estate websites are little more than spam infested hubs for low-life wanna be webmasters that can’t compete in niches with more tech savvy competition.
So what does this bad reputation mean for a professional real estate website? Well, it means:
- There is less “natural linking” among real estate webmasters due to a lack of trust within the niche itself.
- There are fewer authority links available because a lot of authority websites have closed their doors to anything real estate related. I have seen a lot of segregation here for our industry, it is quite unfortunate.
- There will be more work involved in obtaining enough links to rank for anything competitive.
- That basically you can expect less links, less love and a whole lot more work but the end result is truly a wonderful thing, because online, the real estate industry gets a great deal of quality traffic that can easily convert to quality clients.
So now that you know what problems you’re likely to face, you can begin to create a solution that will separate you from the rest of the real estate industry. You should know that I am not going to preach about writing great content and networking within the industry, chances are you probably already know and do that(hint, hint). But rather I want to direct your thoughts towards the real muscle behind a successful real estate website, quality inbound links from related websites.
Let me give you some methods that I use to build real estate links, but first I want you to remember one thing, “Anyone can build a million low quality backlinks from un-related websites, but how well do you think those links will make you rank?” So here are some link building methods I use, in no specific order:
- Guest Writing – In any niche, but especially real estate, we find that the best quality links come from providing quality content. Now I know that sounds a little cliche’ but it works. I have seen sites with a hundred backlinks out rank older websites with thousands of links using this method, I highly recommend you try it out. Finding guest writing opportunities is really pretty easy, try a few of these searches:
“real estate” +”write for us”
“real estate” +”our contributors”
“real estate” +”submit an article”
“real estate” +”guest bloggers”
inurl:real estate “guest bloggers”
inurl:real estate “write for us”
“real estate” +”guest posts”
- Visit news websites – What I really like about news websites are that they are often considered authority sites and they can just about go with any niche. In the past, I have found a lot of news services such as CNN and similar sites that offer community services where you can strategically place links to your site. For instance, MSN has community forums with dofollow signature links, some other services allow you to create profiles, profile pages are often great places to place links. Just do a search for news, and start running through each service one by one, you will be amazed at how many opportunities you can find.
- Utilize the Industry Leaders – Some times to find the best opportunities(ie. the best links) you need to visit the authorities within the industry. But don’t stop there, there is much more to real estate than just real estate, it is a business which means that you can combine the two for valuable links. Here are a few of the websites on my routine, all of which allow for dofollow links in one form or another:
Active Rain – Real estate community that allows you to publish blog posts with links in them.
Work.com – One of the leading business resource sites, you can publish how-to guides on virtually any subject with links to your site.
Inman News – Popular real estate news site that has dofollow comments.
BizJournals – Another business resource that will allow you to setup an account and write business articles and news stories.
- Build out your website – Some of the best links come from within your own website. A website that is inner-linked very well and has a lot of rich pages will naturally have more link authority. I was able to drastically increase my rankings using this very method, so I know it works well. Give it a shot and see for yourself.
So when it comes to marketing a real estate website, you really need to change your mind set from link builder to opportunist, because as you can see above, great real estate links are all about hard work and opportunity. In fact, when I am building links for our real estate projects, I never “look for links”, I look for opportunities to provide value and build back the reputation that has been lost among the community.