On an almost weekly basis, I get asked, “How can I get more visitors to my website?” In response, my answer is always, “How often do you update your website?” The greatest thing about having your own, personal website is that you have complete control over everything that goes on it; having that control and being responsible for the content can also be the biggest pitfall. Today’s website visitors can smell the stench of a stale site from a mile away.
In order to keep your own site free from the mold and mildew that have grown on many other real estate websites, you need to keep it updated. I’ve gathered a few tips that you can use to keep your website from getting stale.
Keep your content both original and fresh
This point is very simple — the more content you have on your site, the more visitors you will get. This does not mean that you can or should just copy someone else’s content and then slap it on your own site. Your content needs to be original, and it needs to be changed on a regular basis. Keep in mind that people would like to see something new each time they visit. Even simple color or layout changes can make a big difference in how your site is perceived.
Review your site on a regular basis
If you saw a car on the street with a cracked windshield, missing headlight, bald tires, and a fading paint job, your first assumption would be that the owner doesn’t maintain the car properly. The same idea is true with a website. Broken links, bad typesetting, and distorted pictures are the result of bad website maintenance, and it reflects badly on you, the webmaster.
I suggest reviewing your website at least once per month for these types of issues. You need to go through every page of your site to make sure these kinds of things aren’t occurring. You will want to check for things such as general functionality, working contact forms, a working home search / IDX application (try ours!), and properly working home evaluation and mortgage tools.
Track your results
The best advice I can give you for tracking your results is to add enough contact forms and statistical tracking code to your website so that you’re always getting both direct and indirect feedback. Visitors are almost always the best source of ideas and suggestions on what you can do to improve your marketing efforts. However, since not everyone will fill out a feedback form, you’ll want to use Google Analytics (or something similar) to track how successful your website is on an objective, number-driven basis.
Good websites are never finished. With proper maintenance, good websites will become great websites!