Real Estate Webmasters get the Google Slapdown?

Apparently Google discovered Real Estate Webmasters “contextual linking” program and decided that it was not within the Spirit” of their Search Criteria. Frankly I am a bit surprised. Real Estate Webmaster got a pretty large boost of biz when Advanced Access got an IP level penalty from Yahoo for blatant reciprocal linking. Why would they take the same chances? Google makes it pretty darn clear that ANY linking practices that are designed to “game the system”are open for penalty assessment or worse. REWs linking practices seem to serve no other purpose. Months ago there was the “cross-linked” directory scandal… and now this? Lets put away our self-serving, over analytical SEO hats, step back and look at why Google would feel justified in assessing such a penalty.

What does Google do for a living? They offer a service. Simply put, Google offers the best case results for any search term you choose to enter in the Google search box. How do they do it? By creating a complex algorithm that measures MANY different aspects of a site and returns the best results. ( I know…highly oversimplified) What happens when you game the system? Google’s value is diminished. Would you stand for that if you were Google? of course not. and neither will they.

Real Estate SEO and PR Rank

I read a lot of blogs. It is where I get most of my info, these days. And, unfortunately when reading 100s of posts a day (almost strictly on Real Estate Marketing) I skim until; I find a MUST READ, and then read. Si Fishkin, Rand Fishkin of SEOmoz’s grandfather (how cool) wrote this article on Page Rank and the passing of Link Juice that is a must read. Most of these types of articles are only interesting to SEO geeks, but I think this article has merit for my Realtor readers, and clients. Read it and share your thoughts. I will post a follow-up in a couple of days…

The 7 best reasons for Realtors to Blog

1) It makes you think- It becomes really easy, as a Realtor to become an information “lemming.” You hear something about the market at a meeting and next thing you know, you are parroting it to your clients. Investing the time to actually WRITE about the market encourages new thought. You gather the data, and You create the information.

2) It makes you different, and different = better- One of the marketing theories I have been espousing over many years is how important differentiation is to Realtors. Realtors do what Realtors do. Do you? Don’t. Create your own marketing that is different than other Realtors and writing your own original blog sets you apart as well. YOu need to stand out in a crowd. Blogging will help.

3) Blogs get Read by other Realtors- and they comment. This gives you feedback, often valuable constructive feed back on your ideas. It allows you to wash your ideas through others so by the time you give your VALUED opinion to your clients. it is well thought out, and VALUABLE.

4) Traffic is good….for traffic.- A well read blog will bring more traffic to a Realtor than any “business card” type web site. You know the one. This is who I am (or was when the site was written) and this is why I am the greatest. A well written blog will receive traffic from competitors, clients, co-workers, and prospects. Traffic creates Traffic.

5) It PROVES you are an authority- What is a Realtor? An authority on Real Estate. How do I (as a prospect) know you are an authority? Well, pages and pages of posts and comments on the current market and what is going on in my neighborhood certainly helps show you are an authority… A canned listing presentation that is pretty much the same as other Realtors? Not so much.

6) It provides third party validation- Prospects are constantly faced with Realtors telling them how good THEY are. But how often does a prospect hear from a third-party how good you are as a Realtor? I well thought out, well written blog post will receive positive comments. These comments give your prospect the “right” to decide you are a great Realtor and he/she should choose you…. because others before him have agreed.

7) It is INSTANT, when your Prospects need it- Real Estate Buyers and Sellers (read: prospects) Love up to the minute information. This type of information is not available on most Realtor (business card) type websites. A blog allows them to subscribe and receive your up to the minute, valuable information. This makes you a valuable resource to your prospects and clients.

The Seattle Real Estate Podcast (sample)

Jim Reppond and the Reppond Team, Coldwell Banker’s number one team in Seattle, host this informative blog on Seattle Real Estate. Whether your a seasoned investor or a first time home buyer, Jim’s vast knowledge of the Seattle Real Estate Market will captivate and educate…[display_podcast]

Read The Transcript

Jim Marks: Hello and welcome to the first episode of the Seattle Real Estate Podcast. I am your host, Jim Marks of Virtual Results, and my guest for this episode is the founder and namesake of the Reppond team, the number one producing Coldwell Banker Bain team in all of Seattle, Jim Reppond. Jim, welcome.

Jim Reppond: Hi, thanks Jim.

Jim Marks: I’d like to open this inaugural podcast by telling our listeners a little bit about yourself, your team and your experience in the Seattle real estate market.

Jim Reppond: Well, I got started in real estate way back in 1976. It started with me when I first got out of college of purchasing 55 acres down in Eugene, Oregon, to open a organic winery. I was young and rather naïve and didn’t really know what I was doing and realized pretty quick into it that I was a little in over my head a bit, and it was probably a good idea to sell the property. At that stage, I was thinking that probably the best would be to sub-divide it and I again didn’t really know what I was doing, so that’s when I went and got my real estate license. From there, I did sub-divide it and fortunately did make a little money and moved on into more real estate sales work. Continue reading The Seattle Real Estate Podcast (sample)