When it comes to getting your website as high up the search engine results as possible, aka SEO (search engine optimisation), there is effectively two avenues to consider, organic and paid. Paid SEO refers to those search results that appear as paid ad’s, usually in a yellow box at the top or on the right hand side if you are using the Google search engine. Organic results are all the other results.
This is not to say that you can ONLY do one and not the other, but which is best when it comes to property websites?
If your questioning whether SEO is even necessary in property marketing, then read our article here. If you want the short version, yes, stop being old, accept technology.
Here, we look at the factors to consider when we question which is the best for property marketing.
The trust people place in organic search results is extremely high (the same cannot be said for Disney apples). Search engines are very sophisticated these days and produce very reliable results. The vast majority of people will click on one of the first three results that appear, and only 10% go beyond the first page. The effectiveness therefore of being on the first page of these organic results is obvious.
Paid ads run into a bit of trouble here. Personally, we tend to ignore paid search results when carrying out our own searches as we don’t trust they are really there to answer our specific search. This will obviously come down to personal preferences, and if you have no qualms clicking paid ads then it is easy to argue they are more effective seeing as they appear first. But in our experience for property marketing in general, the paid ads tend to be favoured heavily by job hunters in the industrial world and not often trusted by genuine potential occupiers in the general property world.
Paid ads go live the second you click that launch button, and as long as you are bidding enough to appear at the top, you will be up at the top of your desired results within 48 hours.
Organic is much longer process however, the articles, social media, link building and general new content a web presence take a while to take hold and have effect. A first page result usually takes 3 to 4 months and being at the top of that page may never happen
In our extensive experience, whilst paid ads have a much higher click rate, that also goes hand in hand with a much higher bounce rate (especially on industrial schemes). Organic campaigns end up with fewer overall visitors but also a much lower bounce rate. As a result it is very common for the amount of visitors who are actually engaging with the site and not immediately leaving it to be very similar when comparing the two.
Paid campaign can easily get quite expensive. The massive problem in industrial property marketing, as we have mentioned, is that the website is often favoured by job seekers. For paid ads, you are having a piece of your budget eaten up by every unwanted and dissinterested visitor (you pay everytime your ad is clicked), and when we say a piece, we can be talking up to 85%!! With Organic campaigns, the costs are not related to the amount of visitors, and so these bouncing visits are not a problem. To ensure the paid ads will appear throughout the month (they are removed when your self set monthly limit is reached), it is very common to see them requiring double the amount that our organic SEO strategy costs. Baring in mind that the two return similar results in terms of relevant visitors (due to trust issues), the winner is obvious here.
Our organic SEO package includes building a social media presence, and providing new weekly content on your site that not only keeps the brand and the scheme breathing, but can also be used to create email campaigns and run competitions. It helps to keep the project alive in the modern technological age, create an online presence, and allows you to cast a much bigger net across the search engine world. This net is aided by the fact that our basic SEO package allows you to target 20 key search phrases, where as a paid campaign would only realistically allow you to target two or three phrases for the same amount, and NONE of the other benefits organic has.
It may take longer to get onto page one, and you might not get to the very top, but our experience has taught us that people trust you to be relevant to them a lot more then somebody who has clearly just paid to be there. And when you take into consideration that you can get just as many, if not more, relevant visitors to your site as well as many other additional benefits, for LESS money then a paid campaign, the answer seems obvious when it comes to property marketing!