Finding a reliable and respectable tenant who will look after your client’s property is imperative to being a successful Property Manager. And these days, one of the best ways to find quality tenants is by having a top-notch website to attract them.
In the real estate world, we know that a rundown, uncared for property will attract the same kind of attention from its tenants, while a well-maintained, loved property attracts tenants who treat the property as if it were their own. You can apply this like-attracts-like theory to a real estate website too – a good quality website will help you attract good quality tenants, because it will showcase your properties in the best light possible, it will be a source of valuable content for your clients and tenants and it will tell the story of your brand.
WHAT MAKES A WEBSITE ‘GOOD’?
There are lots of things that can make a website a “good website”, but the main features include:
- Professional design
- Good quality images and video
- Clear and easy to read
- High quality content that is relevant
- Content showcases your expertise
- Everything needs to work – links should go somewhere, contact forms should work
- Error-free copy
- Easy to navigate
- Pages load quickly
- Works on mobile, desktop and tablet
If you already have a website, review it with these in mind – perhaps your website is not as good as you think it might be and could use a freshening up?
HOW WILL IT ATTRACT QUALITY TENANTS?
If your website ticks all of the boxes above, then you have a solid foundation to work from in making your website work harder for you to attract quality tenants. But you need more than just a solid foundation – you need to make it good in the real estate world. It needs to appeal to the right audience (in this case, prospective tenants), and tick all of their boxes too.
Here are some things you can focus on to take your website from being a good website, to a good real estate website:
#1. WRITE COMPELLING LISTINGS
A listing on your website could be the first introduction a tenant has to the property, so use it as best you can to really showcase the property and entice the largest pool of people possible to attend an inspection.
Include a hook in your headline, make the listing descriptive and informative, and include as much information as you can about the property – besides including the standard property information, also include any ‘special’ features, like air conditioning, a pool, an entertaining area, how close it is to public transport, shops and restaurants, and what schools are in the area. Focus on selling the lifestyle associated with the property and not just the property itself, as this will help your listing build a fuller picture.
The more information the better – prospective tenants will use this information to shortlist what inspections they want to attend, so you know from the get-go that they are serious and not time-wasters.
#2. PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHY
No listing is complete without great images of the property – it creates a visual impact and allows prospective tenants to picture themselves living in the space. 95% of prospective tenants* have said that they use photos to shortlist whether they want to attend an Open for Inspection, so professional photos are really vital to a quality listing.
You want your listings to draw in as many people as possible to put your property on their inspection shortlist. The more people that attend, the greater the pool you have to choose from in selecting the right tenant for that property.
#3. VIDEO CONTENT
Video has become a popular tool for properties for sale, but it can also help a rental property stand out in a competitive market. It takes that visual impact to the next level, and really helps tell a story about the property. Video also has the added benefit of helping your website rank better in search traffic because it is highly regarded content. This will help more people find your listing over someone else’s who doesn’t use video.
#4. ADDED EXTRAS
Your website shouldn’t be just a portfolio of listings – even though it is a vitally important aspect. But, it should also showcase your expertise in real estate and in the area, so consider what extra content you could add to the website that would be of interest or of use to prospective tenants – like neighbourhood guides, reviews or blog articles.
This content will help boost your search rankings, so more people can find you, and will help you build a digital relationship with prospective tenants and clients.
#5. BE CONTACTABLE
Your website is a great way to passively acquire leads, so make sure each listing has a contact form and a phone number on it so that prospective tenants can easily get in touch. People that actively get in touch with you through your website can be considered “warm leads” as you know they are interested enough to email or call you and set up an appointment.
To have a good quality website, you need to ensure that you have the fundamentals right – from the layout to the functionality. But to take it to the next level and ensure you have a good quality website, a focus on creating compelling listings and relevant content for your audience is important. If you can get this right, your website will work hard for you to attract good quality tenants – ones that have taken the time to do online research before they attend inspections, ones that can see themselves living in the space, and ones that are serious about renting it.
Having quality tenants in place means you maintain a stronger tenant retention with fewer vacancies in your properties. As a result, your financials will be happier (because good tenants pay on time), and your landlords will be happy.
*Residential Consumer Omnibus, July 2017
If you feel that your website isn’t up to the job, you can find out more about Console’s experience in developing high-quality websites for the real estate industry. Just visit www.websites.console.com.au or get in touch today.