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9 Backlink Strategies to Grow Your Real Estate SEO

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Ultimate Guide to real estate backlinks

Having good real estate backlinks can provide a huge boost in your organic rankings. However, if you do them wrong, the effect can devastate your rankings, sending them into the Google abyss. That is why educating yourself before starting a link-building strategy is critical.

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In the world of real estate websites, backlinks are like gold. They’re essentially links from other websites that point back to yours. Search engines see these backlinks as a vote of confidence in your content and expertise.

The more high-quality backlinks you have from relevant real estate websites, news outlets, or local directories, the higher your website will rank in search results for local homebuyers and sellers. This translates to increased online visibility, attracting more qualified leads and ultimately growing your real estate business.

Backlinks are a major piece of the SEO (search engine optimization) puzzle.

They go together like peanut butter and jelly. You need one to make the other better.

High-level, here are four quick reasons why it’s important to have a good backlink strategy:

  • Backlinks are how Google (and other search engines) find your pages.
  • Backlinks are a way to show Google that you have a solid reputation. Search engines will push searchers to websites they can trust.
  • Relevant backlinks can boost your authority.
  • Backlinks drive more traffic to your website.

Here’s an example. When someone types “sell my house in [market city]” or “real estate agent in [market city]” into Google, you want your website to come up on the first page.

top Google search rankings

If it doesn’t, you’re missing out on a lot of website traffic, leads, and, more importantly, deals.

Some 93% of internet experiences start with a search engine, including the real estate industry. When people — your target market — are looking for help, they go to Google.

And if you show up on the first page, that’s good for business.

Two of the most powerful factors for ranking in Google are website traffic and backlink portfolio.

most powerful search rankings

In other words, the more traffic and backlinks a page on your website receives, the better that page will rank for your target keyword phrases.

Unfortunately, getting traffic and backlinks is one of the most difficult things. This article will give you practical tips for promoting your content and building links to your website.

Related Content: How Many Backlinks Does it Take to Start Ranking Your Real Estate Website in Google?

Here are nine real estate backlinks strategies to help improve a website’s authority and credibility in the eyes of search engines.

1. Consistent Content Creation

This is your first step on the way to building your SEO rankings. Without consistently creating blog content for your website, you might rank for a few keyword phrases on your homepage. Still, you won’t rank for any longtail keyword phrases (like “how to deal with foreclosure” or “how to sell my how during a divorce”).

Think of every piece of content like a door to your website. The more doors you have, the more people can visit your website, and the more opportunities you have to rank in Google. A good rule of thumb, though, is to create only one piece of content for each keyword phrase you’re targeting.

While consistently creating content can be time-consuming, our Grow plans at Carrot include done-for-you blog content. You just need to customize about 25% of each post and publish it!

Many of our members, like Ryan Dossey, consistently get SEO leads from those done-for-you blog posts!

real estate website traffic every month through SEO

But maybe you want to create your own unique content—no problem! We’ve created VideoPost, which you can use to transcribe video content into a blog post with the click of a button—learn more here.

2. Building Backlinks with Local Citations

Getting listed in relevant directories isn’t just about backlinks, it’s about building your online presence and local SEO. Here’s why citations are crucial and how to find the best ones for your real estate website:

What are Citations?

Citations are online mentions of your real estate business, including your name, address, and phone number (NAP). These mentions can appear on various online platforms like:

  • Local Business Directories: Yelp, Google My Business, Bing Places for Business, Angie’s List, HomeAdvisor, etc.
  • Industry-Specific Directories: Realtor.com, Zillow, Trulia, LoopNet (commercial real estate), etc.
  • Local Government Websites: City or county government websites often list licensed real estate agents.
  • Chamber of Commerce Listings: Joining your local chamber can provide valuable directory listings.

Benefits of Citations:

  • Improved Local Search Ranking: Search engines like Google rely on consistent NAP citations across the web to verify your business legitimacy and location. The more accurate and consistent your citations are, the higher your website will rank in local search results for relevant real estate keywords.
  • Increased Online Visibility: Citations help potential clients discover your business when searching for real estate agents online. These listings often display basic contact information, reviews, and sometimes even links to your website, directing more traffic your way.
  • Backlink Potential: Many high-quality directories provide backlinks to your website, further boosting your SEO.

Finding the Right Directories:

  • Focus on Relevance: Don’t just submit your website to every directory you find. Prioritize directories relevant to your location, the real estate niche you serve, and those trusted by potential clients.
  • Local Directories First: Start with local business directories and industry-specific real estate platforms.
  • Use Online Tools: Several online tools like Moz Local or Yext can help you find high-quality directories and manage your citations across different platforms.

Maintaining Accuracy:

Once you’ve claimed your listings on relevant directories, ensure your NAP information is consistent across all platforms. Any inconsistencies can negatively impact your local SEO. Regularly monitor and update your listings as needed.

By building a strong citation profile through local directories, you establish your real estate business online, improve your local search rankings, and potentially earn valuable backlinks to your website. This comprehensive approach strengthens your online presence and attracts more qualified leads.

3. HARO

HARO (for Help A Reporter Out) is a great way to build backlinks and market authority simultaneously. Journalists sign up for HARO to get quotes and contributions from market experts. You can sign up for HARO (for free) to become a source of expertise for journalists.

Oftentimes, if they choose to quote you, they’ll also give you a backlink.

Heck, you could even outsource this to a VA if you want. You can learn more about using HARO to build backlinks.

4. #Journorequest

The hashtag #JournoRequest is another direct line to journalists writing online articles and seeking expert contributions.

By searching the hashtag on Twitter, your page will populate with many different online writers looking for specific types of contributions. They’ll have no problem providing a backlink in return most of the time.

#Journorequest for real estate backlinking

Again, this is so simple that you could pay a VA to scour Twitter for you and look for backlink-building contribution opportunities. You’ll have to provide them with expert quotes when they find one.

5. Establishing Yourself as the Local Real Estate Expert: Building Trust and Backlinks

Becoming a local resource in the real estate market isn’t just about generating leads; it’s about building trust, establishing expertise, and attracting backlinks through valuable community engagement. Here are some strategic ways to position yourself as the go-to expert:

1. Offer Free Consultations and Resources:

  • Free Consultations: Provide potential clients with free consultations to discuss their buying or selling needs. This allows you to showcase your knowledge, build rapport, and demonstrate your commitment to their success.
  • Host Educational Seminars: Organize workshops or seminars on topics relevant to your target audience, such as “First-Time Homebuyer Tips” or “The Benefits of Selling Your Home in Today’s Market.” This establishes you as a thought leader and positions your website as a resource for valuable information.
  • Create Free Downloadable Resources: Develop downloadable guides, checklists, or market reports that provide valuable insights for buyers and sellers. Make these resources freely available on your website with clear calls to action encouraging visitors to explore your services.

2. Participate in Local Events:

  • Industry Events: Network with other professionals at real estate conferences, workshops, or association meetings. These events provide opportunities to build relationships, exchange knowledge, and potentially collaborate on future projects.
  • Community Events: Actively participate in local community events like charity fundraisers, neighborhood clean-up initiatives, or local festivals. This demonstrates your commitment to the community and fosters positive brand recognition. Sponsor local events to gain further visibility and establish your brand as a trusted local partner.

3. Partner with Local Businesses:

  • Strategic Collaborations: Partner with businesses that complement your real estate services, such as mortgage lenders, title companies, or home inspectors. Cross-promote each other’s services and leverage each other’s audience reach.
  • Local Publications: Connect with local newspapers, online publications, or radio stations. Offer your expertise as a guest speaker or interviewee on topics related to the real estate market. This provides valuable exposure and potential backlinks when your website is mentioned as a resource.
  • Offer Free Content to Local Websites: Contribute informative articles or blog posts to local publications or neighborhood websites. These guest posts establish you as an expert and can include backlinks to your website for further information.

By actively engaging with your local community, offering valuable resources, and demonstrating your expertise, you build trust and brand recognition. This can lead to local publications featuring you as a resource, potentially including backlinks to your website, further boosting your local SEO and attracting organic traffic. Remember, becoming a local resource is a long-term strategy that pays off with increased brand loyalty, trust, and ultimately, more qualified leads.

6. QuuuPromote

QuuuPromote is a service where you can pay to get Twitter shares for your content. Here’s how it works…

There are two sides to Quuu’s business model. The first side comprises “influencers” who want to post quality content on their Twitter feed automatically — they pay Quuu to do just that.

The second side of Quuu’s business model is made of people (like you!) who have good content and want to get that content shared on Twitter — Quuu then posts that content on the “influencer’s” Twitter feeds.

So yeah… from a business model perspective, Quuu is having their cake and eating it, too. But it’s relatively inexpensive and worth trying if you want more shares and clicks (inside your Quuu dashboard, you can see how many clicks your promotions get).

7. Leveraging Social Media Promotion for Backlinks:

Social media platforms offer a powerful tool to promote your real estate content and attract backlinks. Here’s how to maximize your efforts:

1. Identify Your Target Audience:

  • Platforms: Not all social media platforms are created equal. Focus on platforms where your target audience spends their time (e.g., Facebook groups for local residents, LinkedIn for industry professionals).
  • Communities: Join relevant Facebook groups, online forums, and subreddits focused on real estate in your area or niche.

2. Content Strategy for Backlinks:

  • Post Consistently: Regularly share valuable content like blog posts, local market updates, home buying tips, or visually appealing property listings.
  • Optimize for Sharing: Include clear calls to action, encouraging viewers to share your content. Use relevant hashtags and engaging visuals to increase shareability.

3. Engage and Build Relationships:

  • Be a Valuable Contributor: Don’t just post your content and disappear. Participate in discussions, answer questions, and offer helpful advice. Establish yourself as a trusted resource within the community.
  • Collaborate with Others: Look for opportunities to collaborate with other real estate agents, lenders, or local businesses on social media campaigns. Cross-promotion can expand your reach and attract backlinks from their audience.

8. Turn Dead Ends into Backlink Opportunities

Broken link building is an effective strategy for acquiring backlinks by identifying and replacing outdated or non-functional links on relevant real estate websites. Here’s how to refine this tactic and maximize your chances of success:

1. Finding Broken Links:

  • Free and Paid Tools: Utilize free tools like Check My Links or Broken Link Check. Consider premium tools like Ahrefs or SEMrush for more advanced features and website crawling capabilities.
  • Focus on Local Relevance: Prioritize websites related to real estate in your local market. Look for local news outlets, neighborhood association websites, or even competitor websites (avoid anything malicious).
  • Target Relevant Pages: Focus on pages that discuss topics relevant to your content. For example, if you have a blog post on “The Best Schools in [Your Neighborhood],” target websites with broken links on pages about local schools or family-friendly neighborhoods.

2. Crafting Your Outreach Message:

  • Personalize Your Approach: Avoid generic templates. Research the website owner or editor and personalize your email with their name and a brief mention of their website.
  • Highlight the Issue: Concisely explain that you discovered a broken link on one of their pages (mention the specific page and URL).
  • Offer a Valuable Solution: Present your website and a relevant blog post or resource that offers valuable content as a perfect replacement for the broken link. Briefly explain why your content aligns with their website’s theme and audience needs.
  • Focus on Mutual Benefit: Frame your message as a win-win situation. You’re helping them improve their website while potentially earning a valuable backlink for your own.
  • Include Call to Action (CTA): End your email with a clear call to action, politely requesting them to consider your suggestion and replace the broken link with your content.

3. Increase Your Success Rate:

  • Quality Over Quantity: Focus on reaching out to high-quality websites with relevant traffic and domain authority. A few backlinks from high-authority sites are more valuable than many from low-quality sources.
  • Track Your Efforts: Use a spreadsheet or CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tool to track the websites you contacted, the broken links you reported, and the responses you receive. This helps monitor your progress and identify areas for improvement.
  • Follow Up, But Don’t Be Pushy: Send a polite follow-up email a few days after your initial contact if you haven’t heard back. However, avoid being overly persistent.

By implementing these steps, broken link building can become a valuable strategy for acquiring backlinks from relevant websites. Remember, focus on providing a genuine solution and building relationships with website owners. This approach leads to higher success rates and strengthens your online presence in the real estate market.

9. Mastering Guest Blogging for Real Estate Backlinks: Attract New Clients and Boost SEO

Guest blogging on relevant websites is a powerful strategy for building backlinks, establishing yourself as an expert, and attracting potential clients in a new market segment. Here’s how to maximize your guest blogging efforts for real estate:

1. Identify High-Impact Websites:

  • Go Beyond the Obvious: While local news outlets and mortgage lenders are good starting points, delve deeper. Consider websites like:
    • Local Business Associations: Chambers of Commerce, neighborhood associations, or niche-specific business groups often have publications or blogs.
    • Community Websites: Look for websites catering to your target audience, like local parenting blogs, neighborhood guides, or relocation resources.
    • Industry Blogs: Target real estate blogs with a national reach that allow guest contributions, focusing on topics relevant to your niche (e.g., luxury properties, first-time homebuyers, investment real estate).

2. Craft Compelling Guest Post Ideas:

  • Focus on Value, Not Sales: Your primary goal is to provide valuable information to the target audience of the host website. Research their readership and tailor your content to their needs.
  • Address Local and Regional Trends: Offer insights specific to your market. This can be anything from “The Benefits of Owning in [Your Neighborhood]” to “Local Market Update: Rising Interest Rates in [Your City].”
  • Target Buyer Personas: Craft content geared towards specific buyer personas, such as “First-Time Homebuyer Mistakes to Avoid” or “[Your City]’s Best Neighborhoods for Growing Families.”
  • Showcase Your Expertise: While offering valuable information, subtly weave in your expertise. Briefly mention relevant past experiences or successful transactions to establish your credibility.

3. The Art of the Pitch:

  • Research the Editor: Don’t send generic emails. Identify the editor responsible for the blog section and personalize your outreach.
  • Highlight Your Value Proposition: In a concise email, explain who you are, your area of expertise, and how your guest post aligns with the website’s audience and content strategy.
  • Provide Content Samples: Include links to your best blog posts or published articles showcasing your writing style and expertise.
  • Negotiate Backlinks: While not always possible, politely negotiate the inclusion of a backlink to your website within the guest post or author bio section.

4. Building Relationships:

  • Go Beyond the Single Post: Don’t treat guest blogging as a one-time transaction. Engage with the website after your post is published. Respond to comments, participate in discussions, and build rapport with the editor and audience.
  • Reciprocal Opportunities: If the website allows it, explore collaborative opportunities. You could offer to host a guest post from their editor on your website, further expanding your reach and promoting valuable content exchange.

Here are a couple of cold outreach templates to get you started.

For podcasts…

Subject: Quick idea…

Hey [name of person or business]!

My name is [name] and I’m a real estate [investor/agent] in [location]. My business has [build credibility with revenue numbers, media mentions, or a testimonial from a past customer]. And I’d LOVE to be a guest on your podcast to discuss [pitch a relevant topic you’d be comfortable discussing].

What do you think? Is that something we could set up?

Let me know! I’d be happy to get it on the calendar. :-)

Cheers,

[Name]

For blog posts…

Subject: Quick idea…

Hey [name of person or business]!

My name is [name] and I’m a real estate [investor/agent] in [location]. My business has [build credibility with revenue numbers, media mentions, or a testimonial from a past customer]. And I’d LOVE to write an article for your website. Here’s my idea: [pitch a relevant topic you’d be comfortable writing about].

What do you think?

Let me know! I’d be happy to get started on it right away. :-)

Cheers,

[Name]

By implementing these strategies, guest blogging becomes a powerful tool for building backlinks, attracting new clients, and establishing yourself as a trusted real estate expert within your local and potentially broader online communities. Remember, guest blogging is a long-term strategy focused on building relationships and providing value, ultimately leading to increased brand awareness and website traffic that converts to qualified leads.

Regarding SEO, it’s not just important to use the right strategies. It’s also important that you don’t use the wrong strategies.

Shady link-building tactics- often called “black-hat SEO”- can penalize your website by Google and completely destroy your rankings.

For that reason, we recommend avoiding the following link-building tactics…

1. PBNs

Look, building backlinks is difficult. It’s time-consuming, expensive, and soul-crushing.

We all know it.

Which is exactly why PBNs are so darn tempting…

These services promise to build backlinks to your website at a remarkably low cost and get your website ranking quickly. They won’t say much about how they will build those backlinks, but the promise of seeing your website on the first page of Google’s results is enough to persuade most of us to enter our credit card information.

Since they won’t tell you how they build your website backlinks, I will…

In a nutshell, they purchase hundreds or thousands of expired/unused domains with a bit of SEO juice built from the previous owners. Then, they go to all these domains and plug a backlink to your website.

After a bit, your website starts to rank, and you’re thinking, “Wow! These guys are awesome!”

PBNs

Here’s the problem: PBNs cheat the system. Google explicitly says that using a PBN won’t only get the PBN company in trouble but also penalize your website.

It’ll all be good and fine until Google finds out. And they almost always find out.

Once they do, your website will take a massive dive in the rankings (or get banned from indexing altogether) – and recovering from that loss will be harder than trying to get a new website ranking (because you’ve lost Google’s trust).

SEO Private Blog Networks (PBN's): The Pros and Cons

2. Paying for Backlinks

Paying for backlinks can be a bad idea for a few reasons:

It can hurt your SEO: Search engines like Google frown upon unnatural link building practices. If they catch you buying backlinks, they might penalize your website, causing it to rank lower in search results instead of higher.

Low-quality links can be worse than no links: Not all backlinks are created equal. Buying backlinks often means getting links from irrelevant or low-quality websites. These links won’t help your SEO and might even hurt your reputation.

Wasted money: There’s no guarantee that the backlinks you buy will improve your rankings. You might be throwing money away on ineffective strategies.

Unsustainable: Building backlinks naturally takes time and effort, but it’s a more sustainable strategy. Paid backlinks are often temporary, requiring constant reinvestment to maintain any SEO benefit.

Risk of getting flagged: Google has sophisticated algorithms to detect unnatural link building practices. Getting caught can lead to serious penalties, harming your website’s visibility for a long time.

Google explicitly says it doesn’t want people paying for backlinks, but this no-no has a caveat.

If you’re going to pay for backlinks, pay for good white-hat backlinks — ones that come from real sites with real domain authority in Google’s eyes. And be very careful about buying cheap links from sites that promise quick and fast results.

You can check the SEO spam score of a website over here for free

website authority score

Ideally, your real estate backlinks should come from sites with low spam scores. Ask any SE firm you’re considering hiring how they build backlinks and where those links come from. That will tell you a lot about whether those links are high-quality.

1. Backlink Analysis Tools:

  • Help you discover backlinks pointing to your website and competitor websites.
  • Analyze the quality and source of backlinks (authority, relevance).
  • Track the number of backlinks over time and identify any lost backlinks.

Examples: Ahrefs, Moz Link Explorer, SEMrush Backlink Tool, Majestic

2. Link Building Tools:

  • Help you identify link building opportunities.
  • Suggest relevant websites where you can potentially acquire backlinks.
  • May offer features like outreach management or content creation suggestions.

Examples: Ahrefs, SEMrush Link Building Tool, BuzzSumo, BuzzStream

3. Broken Link Building Tools:

  • Help you find broken links on relevant websites.
  • Allow you to suggest your own content as a valuable replacement for the broken link.
  • This can be a great way to acquire backlinks while helping the website owner improve their content.

Examples: Check My Links, Broken Link Checker, Ahrefs Broken Backlinks report (part of their Backlink Analysis Tool)

4. SEO Suite Tools:

  • Offer a comprehensive suite of SEO tools, including backlink analysis, keyword research, on-page optimization tools, and website crawling capabilities.

Examples: SEMrush, Ahrefs, Moz Pro

Important Note:

  • Some of these tools are free, with limited features, while others require a paid subscription.
  • The best tool for you will depend on your specific needs and budget.

Additional Tips:

  • Focus on building high-quality, natural backlinks from relevant websites.
  • Avoid buying backlinks or participating in link schemes, as this can hurt your SEO in the long run.
  • Combine backlink building with other SEO strategies like creating high-quality content and optimizing your website for relevant keywords.

How to Track Your Rankings (Pay Attention to These 3 KPIs!)

You can build real estate backlinks and drive traffic to your website until you’re blue in the face, but if you don’t track your progress and the results of those actions… then, well, it’s hard to know if all that hard work has been worth it.

So here are the primary KPIs you’ll want to pay attention to and exactly how you can track those KPIs…

  • Target Keyword Rankings — When discussing SEO, this is the first thing you should pay attention to. Is the page you created ranking for the phrase you want it to rank for? Is it fluctuating up or down the rankings? As a Carrot member, you get access to our easy-to-use keyword ranking tracker that will alert you to any recent fluctuations in position.
real estate keyword tracking tools
  • Page Traffic Volume — Page traffic is an important element of SEO progress because 1) more traffic typically means better rankings, and 2) well… more traffic is an excellent thing for lead generation. The easiest way to watch website traffic as a Carrot member is right inside your dashboard’s “Stats” tab…
real estate keyword stats

Scroll down to see how much traffic each page of your website gets and even where all that traffic is coming from.

real estate keyword traffic sources
  • Page Conversion Rate — This is the end goal, right? If you build backlinks and promote content, even if you drive traffic to your website, but those visitors don’t convert into leads, what’s the point? You should expect at least a 2% conversion rate from your blog posts and 10% from your homepage. If your conversion rate is lower than that, check out this article. To check your conversion rate as a Carrot member, go to your “Stats” dashboard, scroll down, and look at the “Conv. Rate” column.
real estate website conversion rates

Now that you understand what KPIs to monitor for your SEO efforts let’s discuss how to promote your content and get backlinks!

Conclusion

There you have it!

You should now understand how to build your SEO rankings with real estate backlinks and content promotion.

If you have any more questions, feel free to ask them in the comments, and we’ll help you out however we can! Good luck!

Mike Blankenship

Michael is a freelance copywriter who helps startups build bigger, more sustainable businesses. He’s been mentioned on Forbes and Entrepreneur for his expertise as a writer, and he's written articles for SUCCESS, SmartBlogger, GetResponse, AdWeek, Jeff Bullas, and a whole slew of other publications. You can learn more about him at mikeblankenship.org or connect with him on Facebook.

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