One of the first resources people turn to when looking for a new dwelling is definitely the global network. That’s why, having a website is not a whim, but a must for each real estate agent, who aims at attracting new clients. The best way to create a real estate website today is to use website builders. This is a surefire solution to increase your chances to withstand niche competition that is quite tough nowadays.
Comparing Best Real Estate Website Builders
|Website Builder||Wix (review)||uKit (review)|
|Best for:||Property Agencies||Real Estate Agents|
|Easiness||Need several hours to learn||Best for newbies|
|Real Estate Templates:||Pre-designed templates for real estate agencies||Mostly templates for real estate agent|
|Technical Support:||Email support, forum answers, live chat||24/7 real time Live-chat Support|
|Blogging Options||Built-in blogging engine||Could be integrated via News widget|
|SEO Options:||SEO Wizard||Promotion widget|
|Pricing Options:||Free to $24.50/mo||$4 to $12/mo|
A well-designed real estate website is like a billboard showcasing the services of a company. Here are some of the benefits a real estate agent may avail when getting a website to represent the business:
- Company branding and reputation enhancement. Most people believe that companies, which have professionally looking websites, are more trustworthy and credible. Thus, they give preference to such agencies over those that don’t have their websites yet. Having addressed you once, most clients will hardly have the desire to look for another company, if they are satisfied with your offers and quality of servicing, of course.
- Important information source. A website is a valuable source of company-related information. This is where all current and potential clients get to know important business info and updates.
- Expansion of business geography. Having a website makes it possible to reach people, who live in locations found far from the town you work in. As a result, you get more clients, grow your business reputation and generate profit. You can even deal with clients, who live in other countries of the world and are looking for real estate property in your location. It is impossible to achieve that without a website.
- 24/7 accessibility. A website is accessible any time of the day, which is a huge benefit for local and foreign clients. It’s also an advantage for you, because you don’t have to be present in the office all the day long. Instead, you can invest this time into your current business and home tasks.
- Independence. When having a website of your own, you are not dependent on other real estate agencies and focus on your client base only. This makes it simpler to withstand niche competition without losing clients.
There is a variety of website builders you can use to launch your real estate website. All of them come with their features, pros and cons, but there are still common requirements each service should meet to let you create a quality and appealing property website, namely:
- Ease of use. As a rule, real estate agents don’t have web design skills and experience. This means that a website builder should be simple and easy to use to prevent the necessity to spend days and nights struggling with complicated coding nuances.
- Affordability. Real estate agents are not interested in building multi-functional and large-scale projects. What they need is a simple website providing information about their business, contact details and showcasing the available offers. Website builders are affordable enough to adhere to these goals.
- Availability of thematic templates. Most website builders have thematic templates, but not all of them offer real estate themes. Instead, owners of real estate agencies give preference to thematic templates as they require less customization. What’s more, these templates should be mobile responsive to enable users to browse through the websites on any mobile device.
- Portfolio presentation. It’s a must for a real estate website to provide portfolio presentation option. How else can a real estate agent showcase the available objects meant for rent, sale or buying? Actually, this is one of the most decisive factors for lots of real estate agents and their clients.
There are different website builders that meet the requirements mentioned above and can be chosen as a major real estate website building tool, but Wix and uKit still remain the leaders on this list. Let’s have a look now at the features that make them stand out from the crowd.
Wix – The Best Website Builder for Real Estate Agents (Realtors)
Wix s meant for beginners who have nothing to do with web development. It’s a completely code-free site builder. The system works best for real estate agencies. Offering a variety of contemporary niche-specific templates, a wide range of design customization tools, image galleries and features that contribute to the website efficacy, Wix really deserves the title of the best website builder for real estate agencies.
Wix Features for Realtors
- Wix ADI. Wix ADI (Artificial Design Intelligence) is an intuitive system wizard, which makes it possible to create awesome websites in the automatic mode. The feature is available on all the themes the system offers. What you need is just to select the niche you specialize in, point your social profiles and the tool will automatically design the template for you. This is a unique feature, which is not provided by other credible website builders yet.
- IDX/MLS Integration. Wix allows embedding IDX listings to your real estate website by making use of HTML code adding option. As a result, you get a chance to display up-to-date real estate listing data at your website. Those users, who are involved in the real estate business, realize the importance of accessing the IDX as well as the ability to close real estate deals via the MLS.
- Real Estate Apps. Simple Real Estate is the application offered by the Wix AppMarket to all those users aiming at the development of simple real estate websites. The app makes it possible for visitors to view the available real estate listings reflected on a well-structured and organized web page. This is the online management system used by small real estate agencies and agents. Due to the application, which is compatible with various devices, your clients will be able to view the inventory even on the go, while you will also be able to manage it any time of the day. The app is absolutely free.
- Thematic Templates. To come up to you web design needs, Wix offers a variety of real estate templates that can be customized as you need. Thus, you can currently choose between the templates for real estate agencies, general niche themes, landing pages, architecture companies, real estate agents, portfolios, landscape design, interior design and what not. The templates are mobile-ready and imply the possibility of editing your mobile website version.
- SEO Wiz. Wix comes with a functional SEO Wix feature, which contributes to the efficacy of website search optimization. The feature is available in the “Management” section and makes it possible for users with any expertise level to set up SEO parameters by means of following simple step-by-step guidelines. This is what makes the process intuitive and simple. To improve your website promotion results, you can additionally download and install applications from the AppMarket to track statistics and other SEO parameters.
Pricing ranges from $4.50/mo to $24.50/mo with annual subscription. The first paid plan, called ‘Connect Domain’, allows connecting of own domain to Wix website, but ad-banner is still on it. To remove that annoying advert, you should upgrade your subscription plan to at lest ‘Combo’, which costs $8.50/mo. If you want to organize online store with real estate ready for sale, than you have to choose ‘eCommerce’ plan for $16.50/mo.
You may also try to see how your website will look like, using Wix free plan. There is no trial period here, but the most part of features will be unavailable. Besides, until you upgrade to one of premium plans, the web-address of your site will look like username.wix.com/yoursite.
Wix Website Examples – You may also check out of what real Wix-based sites look like.
uKit – The Website Builder with High-Quality Templates for Real Estate
uKit is a completely code-free site builder that’s being targeted at small businesses. Its drag-and-drop interface provides stunning WYSIWYG experience, making it possible to design and publish a professional-looking site in 30 minutes. The website builder is a great solution for designing websites for real estate agents willing to establish reliable online presence.
uKit Features for Real Estate Websites
- Intuitive Interface. uKit comes with an intuitive interface, which is understandable even for people with no web design experience at all. It’s easy to find the options you need here – just be attentive and follow simple tips and guidelines the system offers. Easy, fast and effective – what else can you expect from a website builder?
- Convenient User Interaction Options. uKit is also known for its convenient user interaction options. Thus, you can make use of the live chat and callback features, which allow connecting with your customers any time of the day to help them find answers to all the questions they might have. A user can additionally leave a callback request, specifying the most suitable time to communicate with the tech support team. This allows reducing the amount of web design mistakes inexperienced users can make and contributes to the efficacy of the web development process in general.
- Responsive Thematic Templates. uKit distinguishes itself due to the rich collection of responsive thematic templates. If you are planning to design your real estate website from scratch, you will be excited to choose between office building templates, countryside and foreign real estate themes, apartment templates, commercial and residential themes, real estate templates etc. All the themes are responsive by default and can be easily customized by making use of powerful system-integrated tools.
- CRM Integration. Due to the convenient CRM Integration feature, each user, who is going to launch a real estate website with the system, gets a chance to simplify the process of order/client management. To do that, you’ll just need your own CRM account to be able to import the data to the website. The feature will be a must have for those users, who have rich experience in the real estate business and the growing amount of orders that require simple and effective management.
- IDX Integration. IDX integration by means of code adding widget is also available at uKit. It is provided only in terms of the Pro Plan and is meant for web design pros, who wish to enhance their skills and know how to use them to their advantage. By making use of the tool, you will be able to integrate the required real estate database at your website.
uKit has four opportunities of subscription: Premium, Premium+, eCommerce and Pro plans. They only differs by the number of extra features you will receive.
- Premium: for $4/mo you receive a full-featured set of tools, which include all needed functional for creating a real-estate website too.
- Premium+: for $8/mo in addition to Premium features you gain Live Chat support, access to premium designs and goals in Google Analytics.
- eCommerce: for $9.6/mo in addition to Premium+ features you gain very easy and convenient Shopping Cart option.
- Pro: for $12/mo in addition Premium+ you can insert or change a source code of your website. This could be useful when you decide to include IDX listing to your website.
Being a serious business solution, uKit has no free plan. But you can test all of its main functions during 7-days trial period and than make a choice. To see what real websites can be made with uKit, take a look at my handpicked collection of uKit website examples. Some of them are of near-to real estate topic.
How to Create a Real Estate Website
It’s super easy to create a real estate website with one of the website builders reviewed above. Just follow the 5 steps mentioned below to get the expected result:
- Sign Up for the Service. Prior to starting building your website, you need to sign up for the system. This will grant you access to the dashboard and all the tools you will need to develop a project. The registration procedure is quick and won’t take you longer than a couple of minutes.
- Select a Template. Take your time to look through all the templates the system offers, especially those that are thematic. Choose the one, the design of which comes up to your needs and preferences most of all.
- Fill the Template with Content. Replace the demo content with that of your own. You can remove the blocks that come with the template and add those sections that are important for your business.
- Connect the domain name. Most systems offer subdomains of their own, but they are not good when it comes to SEO promotion and usability. By upgrading your account, you will get a chance to choose and connect the domain name of your own – the one your clients will easily memorize.
- Publish it! Having completed simple steps mentioned above, it’s high time to publish the website. If you need to make any changes, you can easily do that as often as you wish without any extra assistance. This is simple, convenient, quick and hassle-free – right what a busy real estate agent needs!
How a Real Estate Website Should Look
To become effective and come up to your requirements, a real estate website should include several must-have elements. There are general requirements that will help you create a functional real estate website, irrespective of its type:
- Simple and appealing design, devoid of abundance of bright colors. It’s desirable to use your company brands style here, including colors, emblems, logo, fonts etc.
- Convenient and understandable structure, which should allow users find the required information with no problems and waste of time. Browse the websites of your niche competitors to watch their structure and use it as the basis for your own project.
- Contacts. The availability of this section does not require any explanations. Your clients should have your business contacts at hand to be able to get in touch with you when necessary.
- Online consultants. The thing is that most clients are not aware of all the nuances of real estate operations and may need qualified assistance. Add a feedback form, a live chat and other elements to enable them get online help any time of the day. The quicker a consultant will answer the questions, the higher the chances are that a user will become your client.
- Portfolio. A real estate website is unthinkable without a portfolio, which should include the photos and detailed descriptions of all the objects available for rent, sale or purchase. Most users look for this very information and your website should present it in the most favorable light.
- Information about a real estate agent. Just like the clients are interested in portfolio, they would like to find out more about a real estate agent. Make sure to include this information into a website. It should provide the facts about certification, participation in professional associations, courses and what not.
Having a website is a priority to any real estate agent, who is seriously interested in business promotion and client base growth. Such website will be a valuable tool to attract new users, making them aware of all the required company info. There are different ways to build a website today, but using website builders is the most reasonable solution. These services are easy to use, convenient, affordable and intuitive.
Website builders come with all those features inexperienced users need to create functional and visually appealing websites. These include a rich choice of pre-designed thematic templates that are mobile optimized, powerful website customization tools, editing options etc. The availability of these features ensures excellent result.