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So, how do you build credibility as a real estate investor on your website?
Real estate investing is one of those professions where the barriers of entry for new investors is so low… there are lots of unethical investment companies out there giving real estate investors a bad name.
So, how do you stand out above the crowd… and make it so when a motivated seller, cash buyer, or private lender finds your website… they feel compelled to work with you?
Importance Of Building Credibility (and how to do it with your website)
It goes without saying… that today consumers have more options than ever. If you’re a motivated seller going in foreclosure… or a private lender who is doing your research… one of the first things you’ll look at after you hear of a company is THEIR WEBSITE to see if they are real.
Our society is an internet society now. Just look at the phone book and newspapers… those businesses are in decline… while internet news sources and internet directories are on the rise. People go to the internet to do research on companies they’re getting ready to work with.
So, what will a private lender prospect or motivated seller see when they search you online? Will they even see a website? If not, people immediately think, “They don’t have a site… are they a real company?”.
If you have a website but it doesn’t have the 9 elements below... that could be even worse. Is your website actually harming your credibility (if I had to guess, I’d say probably 60%+ are).
If people don’t feel comfortable that they want to work with you within the first 2 minutes of being on your website… odds are you’ll lose that business.
So, here are 9 ways to build credibility on your real estate investor website.
9 Ways To Build Credibility In Real Estate Investing
Stanford University did a study called the “Web Credibility Research” project. Stanford compiled 10 elements that your website should address that can either make or break your credibility as an investor… we’ve consolidated them into 9 elements that without them… your credibility (and profits) are likely suffering. See how many of these your real estate investing company website is doing well:
- Show that you’re real people behind your company – Most investors we work with to help them build their online presence for their real estate business are hesitant to put too much of their personal information on their site. They don’t want their name, picture, bio… nothing… on the site. If this is you too… it’s hurting your credibility and results. Ask yourself this… do you like it when you’re on a website and you can see the actual faces of the people behind the company? Yes, we all do. It increases conversions and leads.
- Show that honest and trustworthy people stand behind your site – A lot like #1, your website visitors land on your website with their scam detector running in full force. They want to know that they can trust you to help them solve their problem (save them from foreclosure or get better returns, etc.). How do you do that? A short bio on your site, again… a picture of you and your team (we teach our REItheme members ways to build credibility even if you have’t done deals or don’t have a team), testimonials are a biggie, etc.
- Highlight the expertise your company has – Well over half of the investors we work with feel that they don’t have enough “experience” in real estate to put on their site. But, once we dig… they usually have a lot more experience that makes them qualified to provide great solutions to buyers, sellers, and investors than they think. Anything that you feel helps you in your real estate business qualifies. One gal had never done a real estate deal herself… but she was an executive assistant to a mega investor in New York for years, was a certified Draftsman, and had managed rehabs for another investor for a couple years… thats experience that should be on your website. Or, heck… even if you’re just getting started… leverage the experience you’ve gained in your education or your mentors experience for now. Bottom line… if you don’t feel you have enough experience related to being able to help your clients reach their goals… then you should rethink your decision to be an investor (or go out and get that experience).
- Make it easy for people to contact you – Simple. Obvious. But overlooked. Have the “BIG THREE”. Phone number, email, and mailing address on your site. It gives people a feeling that you’re not a fly by night operation… and easy to get in touch with if they have a question or problem. You can get a free phone number from Google Voice and a professional mailing address from your local mailboxes store if you don’t have one.
- Design your site so it looks professional and clean – Who likes to land on a website that looks like a 12 year old made it in 1998? Find a nice clean design with lots of whitespace on the site… with crisp clean graphics. It doesn’t have to be fancy… or flashy. In fact, flashy isn’t a good thing.
- Make your site easy to use and useful – Easy to use = not too many links on your site. Give people a few options… don’t confuse them. Useful = providing great content on your website that helps your visitor solve their problem? Your motivated seller site targeted to helping people stop foreclosure could have FAQ on the foreclosure process, free guides on helping them stop foreclosure, information on how your company works with homeowners, etc. Give them great information… it builds massive trust.
- Update your sites content often – Have you ever went to a website and saw somewhere on the site where it said the last blog post was done 10 months ago? Or when you read the site and it references old outdated information? This is a credibility killer. Update your site on a regular basis. We teach our InvestorCarrot members our process for creating great blog posts, optimizing those posts for Google rankings, and making it so easy that you never have to think about what to write about next. It’s simple when you have the right process and system in place for your content. But, aim for a new blog post every week if you can… once a month minimum (not only does this help for credibility but it helps for your search rankings and leads too!)
- Avoid typos and errors – Enough said.
- Borrow credibility from other sources – A great way to build credibility on your site is to borrow it from other credible sources. Have you been on a website and it said “As Seen On TV” or “As Seen On Google”… or a site that has a quote from a famous and respected person? That’s all “borrowed credibility”. If you work with a real estate agent from lets say… Century 21… get a testimonial from them and ask permission to put the Century 21 logo on the site as a “company we’ve worked with”. Can you imagine the credibility that’ll give you in a website visitors eyes when they see the symbols of companies they know and respect on your site?
So, how many of those 9 credibility builders for your real estate investing website are you doing on your website?
If you’re doing 5 or more… you’re ahead of the curve.
7 or more… you’re doing better than 90% of your competitors.
All 9? You’re crushing it and should be teaching this lesson alongside us :-)
Action Plan To Help You Build Credibility This Week
Real estate investors websites can be a huge tool in building credibility or it can harm your credibility. If you have a website, this week pick 3 of the 9 elements above and implement them on your website.
If you don’t have a website but now see the value in it just from a credibility standpoint… get a site this week. You can work with us or find another solution… either way is cool w/ us because not everyone is ready to work with us (since we push our members a bit harder than a “web guy” or “template site” company does). But if you are ready to work hard and leverage a great system that works (that has a lot of these 9 elements above already injected in the websites)… go here to learn more about InvestorCarrot and what it can do for you.