Search Marketing: Optimizing Your Real Estate Listings To Google’s Rich Snippets

First introduced to the Google Webmaster Blog on May 12th 2009, Rich Snippets provides a small sample of a website’s content on Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs) on search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing. By enhancing your search listing, this function allows you to attract more users to your site and increase the traffic directed to your page.

In this way, rich snippets become a practical marketing tool for displaying the listings of real estate and other types of business. Here are a few essential steps telling you how to use rich snippets to optimize your real estate listings and earn the holy click.

Choose a Markup Format

Google prefers microdata. If you are a real estate agent, your website could benefit from using microdata on your listings. Different from the regular snippet, which includes the title, URL and a brief description, the microdata of rich snippets allows search engines to better understand the page content so that only the most important and valuable information, such as the location of a real estate, facilities and services provided will be presented to the users.

Simplify with is a markup based on the microdata specification. It provides a collection of schemas, such as HTML tags that webmasters can use to mark up the web pages in ways that can be recognized by major search providers. With schema, you can provide rich snippets for different contents, including places, local businesses, organizations and events.

Improve your Metadata

Your metadata usually decides a user’s first impression of your site. You may have already optimized your metadata while implementing your SEO strategy, but it is highly recommended that you revisit the description tags. Many sites let Google draw texts from their pages to automatically create a description, but this is sometimes not so helpful for both the users and the businesses. So, work out punchy description tags for your site. You will find you can increase the click-through rates more effectively.

Optimize for site links

Having the site links under your listings is an efficient way to direct users to your most popular pages. However, site links are an automated feature, which means you cannot generate them by adding a code to your site. But if your site is well arranged and optimized, there is a greater likelihood that Google will display them.

Every property is unique

Whether you are involved in real estate as an owner, broker, leasing agent, tenant rep or property manager, by using rich snippets, you can secretly notify the search engines about different types of additional information, including company description, location, building type, maps, photos and contact information.

The huge benefit of rich snippets is that if users get an idea of what’s on your page from the SERPs, they can decide if your page is relevant to what they need before they actually click on it. It can effectively increase your click-through rate and decreases your bounce rate.

Test before running your site

Always test your markup to ensure search engines can read the rich snippets. You can use Google’s rich snippets testing tool to do this.

[author ]Yuan Liu is a freelancer who is looking for a quiet place where she can concentrate on writing, while enjoying convenient access to public facilities at the same time.[/author]

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