Meta-tags aren’t often a conversation topic anymore, but in the earlier days of the Internet, especially prior to the domination of the search engine market by Google, meta-tags were one of the most important tasks an SEO copywriter performed.
Nowadays, there is some conflicting advice about whether or not meta-tags should be used.
There are some people that say to ignore them because Google may not use them anymore when indexing your site.
My SEO copywriting firm still writes them for clients and doesn’t bother debating their relevance. Here are three reasons your copywriting shouldn’t both debating, either, and should just get to the ranking business!
3 Reasons SEO for Real Estate Should Include Meta-Tag Copywriting
1. Search engines other than Google exist, and are used, by prospective home buyers. I know, hard to imagine someone might still use Dogpile, or Yahoo or even whatever Microsoft calls their search engine this month. But they do, and if you simply ignore the entire rest of the search engine market in every way but one way, let meta-tag copywriting be that one way.
2. Google, and other search engines, no longer reveal their exact practices regarding indexing and ranking. Anyone claiming to know exactly what “the big G” or any other search engine specifically uses to determine your place in SERPs (search engine ranking pages) shouldn’t be trusted. That information is no longer shared because of rampant ranking manipulation. The search engines are trying to keep ranking honest by letting the cream rise to the top.
3. Meta-tag copywriting is part of a larger overall strategy of SEO for real estate. It isn’t just about adding some HTML code, it is about having some focus. You want to be certain that you’re targeting the correct keywords and that you’re properly focusing on them. Using meta-tags means that you’re clarifying that focus.
Beyond SEO, meta-tags also dictate the title of a page in a user’s browser and any print-outs of your pages.
Now you know why meta-tag copywriting is important for real estate SEO, so let’s get down to the details on how to write meta-tags.
5 Steps to Writing Your Meta-Tags to perform SEO for Real Estate Websites
1. Do keyword research to find geo-targeted keywords that represent your target market, ie, people who would actually list or buy a home with your professional services as a real estate agent. Real estate is local, local, local. Why wouldn’t your keywords be local as well? Geo-targeting your keywords means finding the keywords that represent the local buyers and sellers that can and should be finding you in search engine results.
2. Whenever you create a new page on your website or a new post on your blog, define one goal and one one call-to-action for that page or post. Every website page and blog post is an individual page on your site. For the clearest writing and the highest conversion rate, this means focusing on one goal and one call to action.
3. Determine where in your sales process and sales funnel the page or post fits and create relevant links with anchor text. As a real estate agent, you are probably trying to grab newsletter subscribers with your pages and blog subscribers with your posts. As you write a blog post or a webpage, ask where that page or post fits into your overall scheme of getting them to your subscriber list. Create a clear path to that conversion.
4. Optimize your copy with your chosen keyword. However, do not keyword stuff your copy. A good way to check your keyword density and to ensure you aren’t creating keyword-stuffed drivel is to use a keyword density tool. My favorite tool is offered by colleague Jennifer Mattern on her blog All Freelance Writing. It shows keyword density and highlights your selected keywords throughout your copy so you can see if you have used too many keywords and stuffed your copy. SEO for real estate should always use “white hat” techniques. That means following and not manipulating the rules of search engines. “Black hat” manipulative could remove your site from search engine results and greatly damage your business.
5. Write your meta-tags and place them in the
section of your HTML code. If you aren’t comfortable working with HTML, you can search for “meta-tag generator” and find some great, free tools to code your meta-tags. If you are using WordPress, you can use the All-in-One SEO plug-in to insert your meta-tags.
Meta-tags may or may not be relevant to Google, but they are part of good SEO for real estate websites. Try using geo-targeted, relevant keywords you optimize each page and post for, and you’ll see the benefits of meta-tag copywriting when your website traffic is high-quality leads that convert to commissions.
If meta-tag copywriting is clearly relevant to your SEO for real estate but still feels like Greek, consider hiring an SEO firm that specializes in the real estate industry