Posts Tagged as craigslist

How Facebook is Cornering the Property Market

Facebook has more than 1.31 billion active users. According to NAR (the National Association of Realtors), 90.5% of real estate agents and brokers use social media to some extent. In a study of traffic sources conducted by Properties Online, using Google Analytics, single property websites received the most referrals (50%!) from Facebook.

Changes to Craigslist in late 2013 mean that referral traffic from the site can no longer be measured. This gives Facebook a boost in ratings, so to speak. And the social networking giant is doing all it can to maintain its place at the top.

Twitter has been growing, but hasn’t had the impact on real estate professionals that Facebook has. Still, at more than 645 million users, the social media site is a significant force, with a lot of potential. One problem for real estate listings is that Twitter is home to A LOT of information. Tweets can easily get lost and end up unseen. But there is something to the platform – something that has had Facebook on alert for a long time.

You may have noticed the subtle integration of some of Twitter’s features into Facebook this year. Actually, just before the New Year, Facebook began by renaming its ‘subscribe’ and ‘hide all’ options with ‘follow’ and ‘unfollow.’ Facebook is using an algorithm—based on your usage—that then controls the content that appears in your newsfeed.

Another Twitter-ish update was the move to ranking link posts from publishers higher in the newsfeed. This seemingly small change led to big things for Facebook, with publisher content referral traffic from Facebook rising 50%, to account for over 15% of all social referrals. At the same time, mind you, Twitter referrals decreased four percent.

Now, as we know, Facebook is great for sharing photos and videos (and this is great for real estate professionals). But Facebook saw Twitter’s edge when it came to user-generated content and changed its algorithm to rank text-only status updates from users higher in the newsfeed. Their research showed them that users respond positively to these types of updates, and that they prompt more of the same. So, that that and run with it – share your thoughts about a listing, the market, anything of interest, with your Facebook followers.

Facebook may never replace Twitter when it comes to real-time news, but it doesn’t need to. And while a full-blown social media presence is great, if you can pull it off, you don’t need that, either. Facebook is a fantastic option for busy real estate professionals, and it’s gotten even better in 2014.

 

craigslist

New Craigslist Changes Affect Real Estate Ads

UPDATE (1/29/14): Back in November, Craigslist began rolling out changes to its HTML posting guidelines. These changes had the immediate result of impacting ad response and upsetting a whole lot of real estate agents …

The team at Properties Online acted quickly, as you no doubt noticed, to get a new version of our handy HTML Flyer Builder up and running, one that met all of Craigslist’s new guidelines and restrictions. I wanted to take this opportunity to update you, make sure you’re aware of the new version and that you’re using it to quickly and easily promote your listings. Because its use and benefits don’t stop at Craigslist posting – you can use the handy Flyer Builder to add listing data to emails, blogs, other online classified sites and more.

Craigslist’s guidelines mean you can no longer include image or formatting tags in your HTML. Our new text only flyer is the answer – and the same time saver it was before. The Flyer Builder works by generating a snippet of HTML code that then dynamically pulls all your listing details, property photos and your contact information. You can then easily cut and paste your data into Craigslist, or other online classified sites, such as Backpage or Ebay.

Please let us know if you have any questions about our HTML Flyer Builder! We’d love to help.

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ORIGINAL POST:

Craigslist has recently made changes to its posting guidelines, specifically around what HTML tags are allowed in their sales categories. These new rules, while not yet rolled out nationally, appear to be headed that way. The Craigslist changes are having a dramatic effect on the real estate industry, because images and links posted using HTML code or the use of images to link to external pages do not work post-change.

Craigslist’s new guidelines say: “Please note IMG, FONT, TABLE, DIV, and SPAN tags are no longer supported in the for sale categories. Please use CL image upload for images.”

What does this mean for you?

It means that the beautifully designed flyer templates, rich in graphic content, will no longer work on Craigslist. However, the team at Properties Online has worked quickly to formulate a solution. Though photos and the formatting have had to be removed as a result of Craigslist’s new guidelines, the new system is still a time saver for you as an agent. For now, we recommend uploading only one photo to encourage more clicks to the property site.

It’s been said that Craigslist has made this move that inconveniences so many in an effort to level the playing field for sellers. Although these changes many cause some some headaches as everyone adjusts, there is an upside. This is an opportunity to encourage quality. Having a professional landing page or individual property site to drive traffic to is more important than ever.

For now, the ability to add full links to your Craigslist ads remains, so making sure you have a strong web presence where you can send viewers is critical. It’s important to note that Craigslist appears to be phasing out hyperlinks. But, as long as you include a full URL, links are still accepted under the new guidelines. So while you can’t say: “See more of 555 Main Street here,” you can say: “Find out more about 555 Main Street by visiting the property’s website at http://www.555MainStreet.com.” Having a property address domain name is more important than ever.

Please note, however, as of November 7th there have been reports of all outbound links being stripped. We will continue to monitor this situation and make timely updates.

Another negative consequence caused by the recent changes will affect the flyer statistics that were provided by Properties Online. These stats were collected by using an image tag to show how many times the flyer was viewed and clicked. With the removal of the image tags, this feature will no longer work. This is very unfortunate, and we think it will ultimately hurt Craigslist’s usage and credibility. Not being able to track results could lead to less ad posting on Craigslist, which has already had its share of controversy surrounding the real estate industry.

Most agents can tell you first hand about a property that was originally listed for sale and then reposted as a rental by someone hoping to take advantage of an unsuspecting tenant. Despite the number of scam artists that post fake ads to Craigslist on a daily basis, traffic to the site remains strong.

Removing the ability to control how your ad appears on Craigslist is a business decision that has us wondering what they are thinking over there in Craigslistville. Do you agree?

Let us know what you think about this new move by Craigslist — better yet, let them know: Craigslist Phone: 800-664-0633, Email: help@craigslist.org.

5 Marketing Ideas for Your Real Estate Business

Sometimes you just need a shove in the right direction, a little motivation, or an idea seed planted. That’s what this post is all about: 5 Simple Marketing Ideas for Your Real Estate Business.

Invest in your website. Make sure your brand is working for you, where the majority of your clients will find you – online. Your real estate agent website is your business card, your face and your online hub. Make it count.

Use Craigslist. Easy and automatic posting to Craigslist is the way to go, with Craigslist flyers. Market each of your listings on Craigslist right from your agent website or single property website. Craigslist is one of the most popular websites in the world, with millions of daily visitors, and it can be a powerful tool for generating free traffic to your property website.

Use custom domain sign riders. Yard signs will always be a huge marketing force in real estate. Make sure yours drive traffic back to your website, by using DOMAIN RIDER signs.

Create a Facebook page. If you haven’t already, put your real estate business on Facebook, by creating a Facebook Business Page. In the U.S., 80% of social network users choose Facebook as their preferred social network through which to connect with businesses and brands. It also provides you with a fantastic platform to promote your websites and blog.

List your business on Google Places. Set up a Google+ account to boost your search engine rankings and promote your business and listings. Then list your business with Google Places. These actions will help you to better connect with the Google Network, which extends to over 80% of internet users in the United States.

I’m on a roll, so I’m adding a bonus 6th marketing idea.

Start an email campaign. Email marketing can be automated and easy, turning every email address you receive into a viable, potential lead. Write your own email campaigns or use pre-built content. Create listing announcements and send out “virtual flyers.” Email campaigns are a great way to support your other marketing initiatives.

We’ll revisit this idea next month, with another 5 marketing ideas to boost your real estate listings, sales, contacts and revenue. In the meantime, have fun and good luck!

Craigslist Real Estate For Sale

Why Craigslist is Your Ticket to Home Sale Leads

For all the attention given to Zillow and Trulia, the fact of the matter is that even if you combine their power, Craigslist still drives more traffic to single property websites. Craigslist’s sheer size, volume and community offer a landmine to real estate agents online. This is why Craigslist is your ticket to home sale leads.

Seasoned agents know the truth – when you place a listing on Craigslist, it gets you more traffic and leads than any other real estate portal.

Craigslist was started in 1995 by Craig Newmark with the modest goal of helping people find affordable housing in San Francisco. It is now the most popular online classifieds website in the world, with over 10 million monthly visitors.

“Agents can take advantage of this huge traffic by posting free ads and by scanning ads seeking homes and answering them,” says Amanda Cornelius, cofounder and CEO of Properties Online.

Craigslist is free to use in most locations, making it a valuable, affordable lead generating machine. Create single ads for specific properties, or an ad listing all your available properties for an area, with no coding design or HTML knowledge necessary.

Furthermore, Craigslist is targeted. The real estate section goes a step beyond cities, localities and topics, allowing the agent to select from categories such as apartments/houses for rent, office & commercial, real estate for sale, vacation rentals and more.

Make the most of Craigslist and your single property websites by:

Including images in your ad – pictures prompt responses.

  • Choose your title carefully – be descriptive, catchy and consider words that buyers will use when searching for a property like the one you’re listing/selling.
  • Take advantage of Craigslist Flyers, through the flyer builder program offered by Properties Online. These will generate a snippet of HTML code that will dynamically pull all your listing details, property photos and your contact information. This HTML snippet enables you to easily cut and paste your data into online classified sites such as the very popular Craigslist, Backpage or Ebay. And it’s free with your subscription!
  • Regularly post relevant Craigslist classifieds that point to your listings and include a link to your single property page to drive significant amounts of highly targeted traffic to your property websites.
  • Track your results with ad campaign statistics to see exactly how many views your classified ad received, and how many people clicked through to your listing domain website*.

*You can expect anywhere from 5% to 10% of people viewing an effective ad on Craigslist to click-through to your website. The Properties Online system achieves a 15.9% average click-through rate.

Easy Posting to Craigslist with RealEstateSites.com

At RealEstateSites.com, we are very aware of how busy you are. In order to make the important task of marketing your listing significantly easier, we have made it our goal to include as many useful tools and features as possible in our agent websites.

One of the best features we have included in our agent websites is the ability to create beautiful craigslist flyers. Our flyer builder will generate a snippet of html code that that will dynamically pull all your listing details, photos and your contact information. This html snippet enables you to easily cut and paste your data into online classified sites such as the very popular Craigslist, Backpage or Ebay.

We Maximize Your Clicks!

There are literally hundreds of ads every day for real estate. You need to get your message across quickly and effectively. The ads we create for you fit the bill perfectly because we use HTML to format them. Your property will stand hand and shoulders above the competition.

You can expect anywhere from 5% to 10% of people viewing an effective ad on Craigslist to click-through to your website. This is considerabily higher than the adverage click thru banner advertisement rate of just 1.9%.*

Tracking Your Results

Another fantastic tool related to our craigslist flyer campaigns is the ability to track your results. With our ad campaign stats you can see exactly how many views your classified ad received, and how many people clicked thru to your website.

Don’t forget to take advantage of this free service. Craigslist can be a powerful tool for generating free traffic to your property website. It is one of the most popular websites in the world, with millions of daily visitors.

Regularly posting relevant Craigslist classifieds that point to your listings and include a link to your single property page have the potential of driving significant amounts of highly targeted traffic to your property websites. Get in the habit of using our handy html snippet for each listing and you can see a real difference in the amount of traffic your site receives.

*Average accross all Properties Online users in 2009. According to a study of more than 10 billion banner inquiries across Europe from ADTECH the average click-through rate fluctuates between 0.11% and 0.19%