The importance of property management SEO cannot be overstated. SEO is a strategic channel that can help property management companies acquire new customers. It can get your foot in the door and allow your brand to be considered by a potential client as they are actively researching property management solutions.
Table of Contents
- The key to property management SEO is to not just optimize for search engine bots, but actually optimize your content for your audience.
- The first step to SEO is to do a series of audits and research processes that can uncover your biggest opportunity areas.
- Then on a monthly basis the most effective tactics are going to be on-page optimization, new content creation, acquiring new backlinks, and local SEO efforts like getting more reviews and building citations.
- The decision to either hire an agency or try to build out an in-house team comes down to whether you want to leverage a proven process from an expert and get results quicker or if you want to invest in building your own process.
Understanding SEO: A Brief Overview
What is SEO?
Search Engine Optimization is the process of enhancing your website to improve its visibility in search engine results like Google, Yahoo, and Bing. This process involves adding relevant information to your website so search engine algorithms can better understand your site and put it in front of the right audience.
Google bots scan the headings of your content first, then the body text to understand what your pages are about. Your goal is to make your website’s content as clear and relevant as possible.
The key is to not just optimize for search engine bots, but actually optimize your content for your audience. You want your content to be better than the competitors who are currently ranking on the first page of Google if you want to get traffic and rank well long term. There is no point in ranking high on Google if your content isn’t good and your audience immediately leaves your website.
The goal of SEO is to drive leads and business results, not just vanity metrics like rankings.
Why is SEO Crucial for Property Management?
The importance of SEO for property management can’t be overstated. Even if you provide the best service and have the best property management company, if no one can find you online your business will never grow as fast as it could. SEO is a key channel that can help your business be found by potential clients as they are actively in the market for property management.
When someone is looking for property management services in a specific location, like “property management in San Francisco,” the search engine aims to list the most qualified, reputable, and relevant companies first. SEO helps your website send the right signals to search engines to show that your property management company is a worthy contender for those top spots.
SEO can include factors like the relevance of your website content to the searcher’s keywords, your overall topical authority based on your content, the speed of your page, the number of other websites linking to your site, your online reviews, and whether your company has an active brand.
With local SEO, property management companies can target potential clients in specific geographical areas. This is particularly useful to maximize your online visibility in the key markets that you service.
Key SEO Ranking Factors & Tactics for Property Management
As a property management company, your SEO strategy should be focused on optimizing various factors to improve your search engine rankings. These factors include content creation, on-page SEO elements, backlinks, overall brand presence, and online reputation. Let’s break down each of these important elements.
The Role of Keywords in SEO
For your property management website to rank higher on search engines, it’s vital to focus on the right keywords. As our founder, John Reinesch, explains, “Understanding the keywords that your potential tenants are searching for is the first step in building a successful SEO strategy.”
Start by conducting keyword research to identify the search terms potential customers use when looking for property management services in your local area. You can use a free tool like Google Keyword Planner or a paid tool like SEMrush to help you with this research.
After you have an initial list of potential keywords identified it is important to analyze those keywords for both impact and difficulty levels and then prioritize the keywords so you have a plan to follow.
Once you’ve identified these keywords, create a content strategy that outlines the new content you should develop and which pages on your existing website that you can leverage and improve to boost your rankings for these keywords.
The Importance of On-Page SEO
On-page SEO refers to all the elements on your website that you have control over. This includes your website content, page speed, meta description, header tags, and images. It’s essential to optimize these factors for your target keywords to improve your ranking on search engine results pages.
The most important part of this is objectively having better content that what Google is already ranking. If you only focus on tricks and tips, and don’t actually try and make better content than your competitors, than you won’t have long term lasting results.
Once you are sure your content is as good as it can be and valuable to your audience, then the next step is to go through a traditional on-page optimization process.
Title Tag and Meta Description
The most important aspects are the title tag and meta description. This is the copy that shows up directly on Google and is essentially your ad copy. The goal of this text is to write it in a way that it is compelling and gets users to click on your listing instead of all of the competitors. Using your target keyword in your title tag is critical but make sure your write the title tag in a way that is focused on users and not just search engines.
Optimizing your URL is another factor to spend some time on for each page you are optimizing. Our main best practices are:
- Try and include your target keyword in the URL
- Make the URL short and concise (less than 5 words ideally)
- Use hyphens to separate words and not underscores
Internal links are another important aspect of on-page SEO. The concept to remember is that the more you link to a page on your website, the more important you saying that the page is. These internal links also help users discover your content that might be deeper in your website architecture. Any time you optimize a page, a deep analysis of internal links should be done and you should add new internal links as needed.
The next nuance to internal link optimization is the anchor text that you select. This is the text a user can click on to use the internal link and visit the next page. Incorporating keywords into the anchor text is a good way to signal what the new page someone is about to visit is going to be about.
Headings and Body Copy
For your heading tags and body copy it is important to focus more on users and making the best content, instead of older SEO strategies like jamming keywords into the content over and over.
In our content brief process video, we talk about the value of “semantic keywords” which is a more modern approach to keyword optimization. Using a tool like Market Muse or Clearscope you can find all of the related words that you will want to talk about in your content. This will give you more variations to the words you can use in your article instead of just using those same 2-3 target keywords over and over.
You can check out the full content brief video here:
The Power of Backlinks
Backlinks are links from other websites to your website, while internal links are links from one page on your website to another. Both types of links are important for SEO. Backlinks can improve your site’s authority, while internal links can help search engines understand the structure of your website, improving your site’s SEO.
I like to think about backlinks as endorsements or votes of confidence from a 3rd party website to your website and brand. The more backlinks from trusted sources that you can acquire, the more search engines are going to trust your website and content over the long term.
A great place to start is by analyzing your own websites backlink profile. You can utilize Google Analytics 4 and Google Search Console to check your backlinks. Both platforms provide different data that can be helpful in auditing your own backlink profile.
With Google Search Console, you can quickly understand who’s linking to your site and with what anchor text. You can drill down and see the exact pages those websites are linking to.
With Google Analytics 4, you can see which backlinks are directing traffic to your site and also which backlinks drive the most engagement and conversions. We often make a custom report inside of GA4 so we can easily access this data. This approach means understanding not just the quantity and which websites are linking to your site, but the traffic and conversions each backlink provides.
You can also analyze your competitor’s backlink profiles using a tool like SEMrush or Ahrefs which will give you some ideas on potential websites you can try to get featured on and close the gap on those competitors.
Backlink Tactics To Focus On
Any time you do any co-marketing with other brands like going on their podcast or webinars, you can typically get a link from that brand as well. This can be a good way to capitalize on branding and co-marketing that you may already be doing and then get the side effect of boosting your SEO efforts.
Guest blogging has been a tried and true method of backlink building for a long time. I would be careful of working with backlink vendors that you can pay for guest posts and instead focus on building real relationships with brands in your industry and then collaborating on guest content and blog posts that way. Real relationships are much harder for competitors to replicate and hire a vendor to do. Typically backlink vendors are all going to have the same website inventory that tons of companies are paying to be featured on which devalues the impact of it.
The Impact of Social Media & Your Brand Presence
Your social media presence can also indirectly impact your website’s SEO. Having an active brand on social media is another sign that shows search engines that you are a real brand and business. It is also a great way to establish yourself as a thought leader in the industry which has tons of benefits in the long term.
I wouldn’t solely create social media content in hopes that it will improve your SEO efforts, but rather utilize a social media strategy to get in front of your target audience and then have the indirect benefit of helping SEO as your brand awareness grows.
Local SEO Factors
With local SEO your main focus areas should be the following:
- Setting up a Google Business Profile & filling out all of the information.
- Auditing your citations and directory profile listings and correcting any issues with your name, address, and phone number.
- Building new citations that are industry-specific or locally-relevant.
- Driving as many positive online reviews as possible.
- Building local backlinks from businesses in your local markets.
The Significance of Reviews and Online Reputation
Online reviews and your online reputation can significantly impact your website’s SEO, particularly in local search results like the map pack listings. Positive reviews can improve your website’s authority and credibility, which can enhance your ranking on search engines. It is important to have a plan to proactively get new reviews each month from your happiest clients.
There are lots of tools that can help with the review generation process like Bright Local, but the main thing to remember is to try and reach out to customers after you have had a positive interaction with them and ask for the review. Most happy customers won’t leave a review without being reminded to do so.
Developing a Profitable Property Management SEO Strategy
Now that you know which ranking factors to focus on it is important to have a strategy in place so you are not just randomly making changes in hopes that your organic traffic and leads go up. But how do you develop an effective strategy? It starts with up front audits and content strategies and then shifts to monthly optimization and content creation work.
Up Front Strategy & Audits
The first step is to do a series of audits and research processes that can uncover your biggest opportunity areas. These audits are:
- Keyword Research
- Content Strategy
- Competitor Analysis
- Technical Audit
- Backlink Audit
- Local SEO Audit
Using the data you gather from these audits, you can build out a custom SEO strategy that is based on your own SEO data and what will give you the most impact rather than cookie-cutter audits from generic SEO tools.
Monthly SEO Tactics
Each month you should focus on a few core tactics to get the most results. There’s a ton of things you can do to stay busy with SEO each month, but it is important to think about the 80/20 of where you can spend your efforts to get the most results. At the end of the day having “perfect SEO” doesn’t matter, but driving leads and business results does. Resources are always going to be limited so it’s important to focus on the most effective monthly tactics which are:
- On-page optimization
- New content creation
- Acquiring new backlinks
- Local SEO efforts like getting more reviews and building new citations as needed.
How much you should do of each tactic will depend on your resources and identifying where the most opportunity is when you make your SEO strategy but these are the core 4 things to do each month.
Monitoring and Reporting on Your SEO Results
After deploying your property management SEO strategies and implementing it each month, the next crucial step is to monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of these efforts. This step is essential to understand how well your strategies are working and where adjustments may be necessary. SEO is not a one-time set-it-and-forget-it activity. It requires consistent adjustments in order to drive the best results.
Understanding and Tracking Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
The first thing we at Asset Growth recommend tracking is leads and closed deals being driven from organic search. You can track leads in a tool like Google Analytics by setting up conversion events for your lead forms or calendar booking tools.
The next layer of tracking and KPIs would be your organic website traffic. Organic traffiic data can provide insights into how many people are visiting your site, where they’re coming from, and what they’re doing once they get there. This data can help you understand if your SEO strategies are not only driving traffic to your site but also engaging visitors once they arrive.
After traffic, we then shift our focus to content and keyword performance. Tracking organic keywords can be done using tools like SEMrush, or a free tool like Google Search Console. We prefer starting with Google Search Console as you can get data on not only how well you are ranking, but how many clicks each keyword is actually driving. If you really want to take your keyword tracking to the next level, using a paid tool like Keyword Hero can actually show you which keyword are driving leads and revenue which you can’t typically get form Google Analytics or Search Console out of the box.
Setting Up a Report and Dashboard to Analyze Performance
We recommend using a free tool like Looker Studio to build out your SEO reports and dashboards. This requires some investment and work up front to build the report but after the report is built it will saver tons of time manually looking for data each month.
Looker Studio allows you to create much better visuals that will help you understand what is working and what is not working at a much faster pace. You can learn more about our full SEO reporting process here:
Should you Hire a Marketing Agency or Build an In-House SEO Team?
Deciding between hiring a marketing agency or building an in-house SEO team for property management is a crucial decision that hinges on several factors, including your business goals, budget, and the specific needs and competitiveness of your market.
Advantages of a Marketing Agency
Hiring a marketing agency offers several advantages. Agencies come with a breadth of experience and expertise and are typically up-to-date with the latest SEO trends and have high quality processes in place to get repeatable results. This can be particularly beneficial for property management companies looking to gain a competitive edge quickly. Agencies have diverse teams that can provide a wide range of services, from keyword research and content creation to technical SEO and analytics. Additionally, working with an agency means you can scale your efforts up or down based on your current needs and budget, providing flexibility.
Advantages of Building Your Own Team
On the other hand, building an in-house SEO team allows for more direct control over your strategies and a deeper integration with your business’s unique culture and needs. An in-house team can typically react faster to changes in your business. This approach fosters a dedicated focus on your company’s long-term goals, potentially leading to more consistent and sustainable growth in your online presence. However, it requires a significant investment in hiring and training SEO professionals, as well as ongoing costs associated with maintaining a skilled team. the big. challenge with building your own SEO team is not having the systems and processes in place to get repeatable results. Your time is typically going to be better spend running the business rather than trying to build SEO processes.
Which Option is Right for You?
Both options have their merits, and the choice often depends on your company’s size, resources, and long-term digital marketing objectives. For companies seeking a more hands-on approach and with the resources to invest, an in-house team might be the way forward. For those looking for flexibility, diverse expertise, and immediate impact without the overhead of hiring full-time employees, an agency could be the ideal choice.
It’s also worth considering a hybrid approach, where you might have a small in-house team that collaborates with an agency to get the best of both worlds.
Recapping The Long-Term Benefits of SEO for Property Management
SEO can seem like a daunting task. However, the benefits of a well-executed property management SEO strategy far outweigh the initial challenge of establishing it.
Long-Term Visibility and Increased Organic Traffic
One of the most significant benefits of SEO is the long-term visibility it provides. Unlike paid advertisements that stop showing up as soon as you stop paying, a good SEO strategy can keep your website ranking high on search engine results pages for a long time. This increased visibility on platforms like Google translates to more organic traffic to your website over time.
Cost-Effectiveness and High ROI
It doesn’t require the same monthly cash flow that other strategies like pay-per-click (PPC) advertising do. Although SEO requires an upfront investment, its long-term returns can be impressive. Once your website starts ranking high on search results, you’ll see a steady flow of free organic traffic.
Better User Experience and Trust
SEO isn’t just about pleasing search engines. It’s about delivering a better user experience. A well-optimized site is easy to navigate, which satisfies your website visitors and can lead to higher conversion rates. Additionally, people trust Google. If your site is ranking high on search results, it indirectly builds trust and credibility with your audience.
Understanding Your Audience
SEO gives you invaluable insights into your audience and their behavior. You can understand what keywords your potential customers are using, what type of content they’re engaging with, and much more. This understanding can help you refine your marketing and sales strategies.
Staying Ahead of the Competition
Finally, SEO keeps you competitive. The property management field is crowded, and without an effective SEO strategy, your website can get lost in the sea of competitors. By investing in SEO, you can stay ahead of the game and ensure your business is the one that potential customers find first.
Get Started With Your Own SEO Strategy
While SEO for property management can seem complex, the long-term benefits make it worth the effort. As we at Asset Growth have seen, with patience, consistency, and a strategic approach, your property management business can achieve significant growth through SEO.
Partnering with a professional SEO agency, like Asset Growth, that understands the unique needs of the property management industry can make all the difference. Contact us if you want a free SEO strategy that you can take and implement.