If I were a gambling man (and I am), I would venture to guess that just about everyone on the planet knows of WordPress. What most people don’t know though is the power harnessed in this amazing CMS (Content Mangement System).
Today my friends, we are going to share with you a few key reasons that EVERY Real Estate agent should consider switching their website from it’s current state, into a WordPress website.
DISCLAIMER: There is a difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org. For the purposes of this article, I’m ONLY talking about WordPress.org sites. While WordPress.com is a great option for people that want a quick, down and dirty blog, it is not the best option for someone that wants to host their own custom website, with tons of features.
So now that we have that out of the way, here are some reasons I feel you should HIGHLY consider changing your website to a WordPress based platform:
The platform is free
As I’m sure any of you in the Real Estate Industry can attest, it’s hard to argue with free. After all, you work hard for your money and have to pay for everything on your own when marketing yourself. If there is a viable (translation: One that “actually” works, and not simply something that is free) option that is free, then why not go for it?
Now before you go calling me on a technicality, I understand that WordPress based sites are not entirely free. You are going to need a custom theme set up for your site, and the rest of the site programmed. Unless you have a technical background, this is probably something you are going to want to leave to a web design firm.
There are “pre-packaged” themes out there, some of which look quite nice. My favor of course has always been doing custom theme design, based around your brand identity, further solidifying your brand and showing the unique, individual you are. Custom themes and websites are where we generally always advise our clients to start.
Once you have the theme set up, you own your own site (i.e. YOUR brand and intellectual property). Of course you have to pay web hosting fees from your ISP, and fees for an MLS IDX search, but again, I repeat: YOU OWN YOUR OWN WEBSITE.
What do I mean by that? If you pay a monthly fee to a website provider that lets you select a template, hosts your site for you and charges you something like $99 per month, you do not own your website. You are “renting” a website.
What happens if you decide you want to part ways with that web company, and get a new site? What happens to all the search engine links that have been built up for you, over all those years? The answer is easy:
a) Your site gets shut off
b) All those search engine links will still show up in search results, BUT the links will be dead links
Clearly you can see the value of being “Master of Your Own Domain” (quite literally actually). Do not rent your website. It’s simply not worth it.
WordPress based sites are adored by search engines
Why you ask? Well, without getting “techie” on you, one of the biggest reasons search engines love WordPress so much is because of the way your URL’s show up, when you post new content in WordPress. If you set up your site correctly, the entire title of your blog will show up in the URL, or page title of the post. This is obviously a HUGE bonus for anyone generating content, in the hopes of getting more web traffic and “SEO Juice”.
Simply put, WordPress takes much of the effort, work, and even “guess work” out of making sure your website is a search engine friendly, lean, mean, fighting machine. You can set things up such that the WordPress engine simply does this for you.
The WordPress CMS puts the power of updating a site in the hands of the Realtor®
Have you ever wanted a change on your website, asked your web company to take care of it, and it takes FOREVER for it to get done? That is frustrating. What is also frustrating is the bill that comes along with that change.
Obviously the web company has to charge for these changes, otherwise they could not stay in business. Why do you have to rely on them to make these “easy” changes? The answer is simple. You don’t.
The WordPress content management makes it easy for even the most novice computer user to update a website. Basically, if you can use Microsoft Word, you can use the WordPress CMS engine.
Your web developer will set up your site such that all the pages can be editable, giving you the flexibility and control to change whatever needs changed, whenever you need to do it.
With a WordPress website, you have thousands of developers, constantly working to make YOUR site better
Newer is always better right? Never has a saying been so true, than when it relates to technology. Do you want new social sharing buttons on your site? Are you looking for new SEO tools that help get your site more noticed by search engines? Are you just looking for a new photo gallery you can use to showcase your listing photos? There is a plug-in for that.
At the time I am writing this article, WordPress offers it’s users almost 22,000 plugins. Many are free. Granted, not all the plugins are great, and some of them are buggy, but if you take time to search and test, there is definitely something that will suit your need.
Yet another way you can save money, by not having to pay a programmer to custom engineer something you need.
“Regular” websites can pretty easily be converted to WordPress custom themed websites
This is again something you’ll want to leave to someone with technical experience, but for very little money, you can re-purpose your existing website (most sites) and turn it into a pretty awesome site, all housed inside the WordPress CMS.
For a free tool, WordPress is truly one of the best content management systems and business marketing tools you can use.
Are you working on a custom WordPress theme and have hit a wall that you need help with? Are you looking for a development path on how to convert your “normal” website into a powerful “WordPress” website? Are you “renting” a website and want advice on how to get out from under that heavy weight? Contact me anytime, and I would be happy to give you guidance and help you in any way I can.