May 21, 2015

Custom Searches and Searching Properties on Your Website

Your website is a valuable tool in helping you with your business.  Are you the expert in a particular market area?  Does your website advertise that you are the 'expert' for a particular area?  CompuAgent's Content Management System provides some easy ways to feature your special market area on your website.

In this blog entry, we discuss Custom Searches for your website’s home page and will highlight the following in an upcoming post:

 ·         Using Custom Searches with the Featured Listing Component

 Using a Custom Search as a filter to the Search Properties Page
Just to reiterate, CompuAgent's Custom Search feature is used to promote the areas you want to service and they are ‘preprogrammed’ property searches that allow you to become the ‘expert’ for a particular market area.  Please refer to our last two blog entries for instructions on creating custom searches.

What if you would like to allow a customer the ability to search for properties in only a given market area that you service or search only within a particular property type, i.e., search only Cobb County or search only properties that are new construction, respectively.  When creating a Custom Search as previously discussed, define the criterion you wish to use as a filter that will be applied to your Search Properties Screen.  Instead of using CompuAgent’s various system pages for searching properties, you will now be using the Search With Filter command in a content page that you create.  Create a content page under Person…Content Gallery (don’t forget to name it!) and then after you have added any content / graphics / etc. to your page, use [[SearchWithFilter: CustomSearchName]] which is used to take your Custom Search as a filter and apply it to the Search Properties Screen.  For example, you could create a custom search called Cobb County Search (that selected Cobb County as the only county to search) and then use [[SearchWithFilter: Cobb County Search]] and the Search Property Screen would not allow different geographic criteria to be selected, but all other options would be visible.  Use CompuAgent’s menu editor to then attach the new Search page (your content page) to your website.

In the next post, we will discuss some more uses of CompuAgent custom searches.  Remember to make your website a natural extension of your business and of your valuable services and market area.  You can find full details about how to implement these CompuAgent Custom Search features by logging into CompuAgent.com and downloading the Agent Training Manual OR using our 24/7 online video training under the Help menu.

REEVEsoft
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As always, we welcome your feedback on enhancements that are released as well as ideas for future enhancements to CompuAgent that will help you save time and money in running your real estate business. Please send correspondence to support@reevesoft.com or log a Support Ticket under the Help menu at CompuAgent.com if you are a current CompuAgent Website User.

 

 

Apr 20, 2015

Custom Searches and Organizing the Home Page of Your Website


Custom Searches Organizing the Home Page of Your Website

Your website is a valuable tool in helping you with your business.  Are you the expert in a particular market area?  Does your website advertise that you are the 'expert' for a particular area?  CompuAgent's Content Management System provides some easy ways to feature your special market area on your website.

In this blog entry, we discuss Custom Searches for your website’s home page and will highlight the following in upcoming posts:

·         Using Custom Searches as filters to the Search Properties Page
·         Using Custom Searches with the Featured Listing Component


Using a Custom Search to Organize Your Website’s Home Page
CompuAgent's Custom Search feature is used to promote the areas you want to service.  Custom Searches are ‘preprogrammed’ property searches that allow you to become the ‘expert’ for a particular market area.  Remember, to create a Custom Search, choose Person...Custom Search from CompuAgent's top level menu.  Choose criterion such as Property Type, Cities, Counties, Schools, Zip Codes, Partial Addresses, Price Ranges or specific MLS numbers under the Search Options tabbed section.  Choose the Restrictions as to how to display your Custom Search Results on the Restrictions tabbed section.  Choose your Sort Option for the Custom Search results on the Sort Options tabbed section.  Be sure to give your Custom Search a name and then save it with a click of the Save/Update button. 

If you are using CompuAgent’s default website settings, then you have your listings and/or your office listings automatically updating on your home page beneath content that you have written.  By default, when an agent site is set up, agent listings are presented first, then office listings by most recently listed, up to 12 listings.  Even if you have no listings currently, you have a listing inventory for customers to see right away.  Use CompuAgent’s Custom Search to highlight only featured listings you choose for a particular market area to be displayed on your home page.  When creating a Custom Search as previously discussed, name the search ‘Home Page’ and define the criterion you wish to use as a filter that will be applied to your and/or office’s featured listings that are displayed on your home page.  For example, if you work for a large real estate company or virtual office and find that many of the office listings on your home page do not reflect the area or price range you service, then you can change what listings appear on your home page.  If you want to show only high end listings on your Home Page, then your featured properties and current inventory would only contain high end listings using this feature.   The Custom Search for your Home Page applies to both your featured listings and the office listings.  If you have a featured listing that does not meet the criterion in your Custom Search, then it will not appear on your Home Page.  If later you add a featured listing that does not fit your criterion, you will need to come back to you Custom Search and update the criterion to include your new listing.

In the next couple of posts, we will discuss some more uses of CompuAgent custom searches.  Remember to make your website a natural extension of your business and of your valuable services and market area.  You can find full details about how to implement these CompuAgent Custom Search features by logging into CompuAgent.com and downloading the Agent Training Manual OR using our 24/7 online video training under the Help menu.
 
REEVEsoft
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As always, we welcome your feedback on enhancements that are released as well as ideas for future enhancements to CompuAgent that will help you save time and money in running your real estate business. Please send correspondence to support@reevesoft.com or log a Support Ticket under the Help menu at CompuAgent.com if you are a current CompuAgent Website User.

 

 

Apr 13, 2015

More on Custom Searches and Your Website


More on Custom Searches and Your Website

We are consistently asked about how to promote a website on the internet.  Your website is a valuable tool in helping you with your business.  Are you the expert in a particular market area?  Does your website advertise that you are the 'expert' for a particular area?  CompuAgent's Content Management System provides some easy ways to feature your special market area on your website.

In this blog entry, we discuss Custom Searches in more detail and will highlight the following in upcoming posts:

·         Custom Searches and Your Home Page
·         Using Custom Searches as filters to the Search Properties Page
·         Using Custom Searches with the Featured Listing Component

 
Custom Searches

We have briefly mentioned CompuAgent's Custom Search feature in the past and how it is used to promote the areas you want to service.  Custom Searches are ‘preprogrammed’ property searches that allow you to become the ‘expert’ for a particular market area.  To create a Custom Search, choose Person...Custom Search from CompuAgent's top level menu.  Choose criterion such as Property Type, Cities, Counties, Schools, Zip Codes, Partial Addresses, Price Ranges or specific MLS numbers under the Search Options tabbed section.  Choose the Restrictions as to how to display your Custom Search Results on the Restrictions tabbed section.  Choose your Sort Option for the Custom Search results on the Sort Options tabbed section.  Be sure to give your Custom Search a name and then save it with a click of the Save/Update button.  After you create your Custom Search, you can easily attach it to your menu via CompuAgent's 'Menu Editor' feature, under Person ... Edit Menu.  Just choose/click where you want the Custom Search to appear in your menu on the left menu display, define the Menu Text for the menu item and then for the Menu Link, choose Custom Search and then choose the Custom Search you created from the drop down list and then Add (or update if this be the case) the menu item.

An even better alternative, is to create a content page in your content gallery, with information about your market area and then use CompuAgent's '[[PropertyList]]' command to pull in the results of a Custom Search you created for your market area.  To access existing pages for your website or to create a new content page, chose Person...Content Gallery to view the list of content pages.  Edit the an existing page or chose CompuAgent's blank page ( Template - Blank (CompuAgent) ).  Click on the page where you want the Custom Search Results to be displayed then type [[PropertyList: MaxNumListings, Width, CustomSearch]] where MaxNumListings is the Maximum Number of Listings to display (default is 12), Width is the width of the component (best to pick the page width), and CustomSearch is the custom search you have created to pull your property list from and be sure to save your page.  Use CompuAgent's menu editor as above to easily add the content page to your website.

In upcoming posts, we will discuss broader uses of custom searches in detail.  Remember to make your website a natural extension of your business and of your valuable services and market area.  You can find full details about how to implement these CompuAgent Custom Search features by logging into CompuAgent.com and downloading the Agent Training Manual OR using our 24/7 online video training under the Help menu.
 

REEVEsoft

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As always, we welcome your feedback on enhancements that are released as well as ideas for future enhancements to CompuAgent that will help you save time and money in running your real estate business. Please send correspondence to support@reevesoft.com or log a Support Ticket under the Help menu at CompuAgent.com if you are a current CompuAgent Website User.

 

 

Dec 9, 2014

A New Year ... A New Look


Start the New Year with a New Website Look from $99

Does your website need a facelift?  Take advantage of our $99 holiday promotion to personalize your website.  The personalized design includes a banner picture of your choosing*, horizontal menu with additional Search Options, adding your photo into the banner picture, a template color scheme and a background gradient color choice. 

We will also review your site to provide menu and/or custom content recommendations that might improve your website presence.

*Royalty free picture purchase not included

Please contact us for a design example by emailing us at support@reevesoft.com by the end of this year 2014.  We enjoying helping you make your website a natural extension of your business and of your valuable services and market area.  Remember, you can always find full details about how to customize and manage your CompuAgent website by logging into CompuAgent.com and downloading the Agent Training Manual OR using our 24/7 online video training under the Help menu.

REEVEsoft

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As always, we welcome your feedback on enhancements that are released as well as ideas for future enhancements to CompuAgent that will help you save time and money in running your real estate business.  Please send correspondence to support@reevesoft.com or log a Support Ticket under the Help menu at CompuAgent.com if you are a current CompuAgent Website User.

Oct 30, 2014

Custom Searches and Your Website


Custom Searches and Your Website

We are consistently asked about how to promote a website on the internet.  Your website is a valuable tool in helping you with your business.  Are you the expert in a particular market area?  Does your website advertise that you are the 'expert' for a particular area?  CompuAgent's Content Management System provides some easy ways to feature your special market area on your website.

In this blog entry, we highlight:

·         Default Cities/Counties

·         Custom Searches

·         Using Custom Searches as filters to the Search Properties Page

·         Custom Searches and Your Home Page

Default Cities/Counties
If your Multiple Listing Service covers a large area geographically and you do not service all of this area, why not narrow down the cities and counties that your customers search for on your  website?  CompuAgent's  ‘Edit Default Cities/Counties'  feature allows you to change what will be represented in the Search Properties page on your website, giving you the ability to choose a subset of cities/counties to be displayed to your customer.  Customers can still search ALL cities/counties on your website by checking ‘show all’ on the Search Properties page.

Custom Searches
Use CompuAgent's 'Custom Search' feature to promote the areas you want to service.  These are ‘preprogrammed’ property searches that allow you to become the ‘expert’ for a particular market area.  After you define the criterion for your Custom Search and save the search, you can easily attach it to your menu via CompuAgent's 'Menu Editor' feature.  An even better alternative, is to create a content page in your content gallery, with information about your market area and then use CompuAgent's '[[PropertyList]]' command to pull in the results of a Custom Search you created for your market area.

Using Custom Searches as Filters to the Search Properties Page
CompuAgent allows you to apply a Custom Search as a filter to the Search Properties Screen, allowing your customers to search a selection of listings for only your market area.  While editing a content page in CompuAgent's Content Gallery, use CompuAgent's '[[SearchWithFilter]]' command  to take your Custom Search as a filter and apply it to the Search Properties Screen.  For example, you could create a Custom Search called Cobb County Search (that selects Cobb County as the only county to search) and then use [[SearchWithFilter: Cobb County Search]] command in your content page, attaching this page to your menu.  When your customer views this special Search Property page they will only be able to search Cobb County listings, but all other search options would still be visible.

Custom Searches and Your Home Page
CompuAgent allows you to decide on the listings that show up on your home page.  By default, when an agent site is set up, agent Llstings are presented first, then office listings by most recently listed, up to 12 listings.  Even if you have no listings currently, you have a listing inventory for customers to see right away.  If you work for a large real estate company or virtual office and find that many of the office listings on your home page do not reflect the area or price range you service, then you can change what listings appear on your home page.  In CompuAgent, in the Person...Edit Options menu, you can decide whether to show only your listings, your listings and office listings, etc.  Compuagent even allows you to apply a Custom Search that you have created for your market area (as above) for your Home Page.   This special Custom Search acts as a filter on top of your current Home Page (if you have chosen to display listings on your Home Page).  For example, if you want to show only high end listings on your Home Page, then your featured properties and current inventory would only contain high end listings using this feature.   The Custom Search for your Home Page applies to both your featured listings and the office listings.  If you have a featured listing that does not meet the criterion in your Custom Search, then it will not appear on your Home Page.  If later you add a featured listing that does not fit your criterion, you will need to come back to you Custom Search and update the criterion to include your new listing.

Remember to make your website a natural extension of your business and of your valuable services and market area.  You can find full details about how to implement these CompuAgent Custom Search features by logging into CompuAgent.com and downloading the Agent Training Manual OR using our 24/7 online video training under the Help menu.

REEVEsoft

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As always, we welcome your feedback on enhancements that are released as well as ideas for future enhancements to CompuAgent that will help you save time and money in running your real estate business. Please send correspondence to support@reevesoft.com or log a Support Ticket under the Help menu at CompuAgent.com if you are a current CompuAgent Website User.

Oct 17, 2014

How Are You at Converting Customers to Clients?


How Are You at Converting Customers to Clients?

We are consistently asked about how to promote a website on the internet.  Your website is a valuable tool in helping you with your business.  We hope to make it easier for you to manage your CompuAgent real estate website and your real estate business. 

In this blog entry, we highlight:

·         Client Conversion

·         Agent-Centric Versus Customer-Centric
 
·         Your Website’s Main Purpose

 
Client Conversion

Traffic to your website is important, but are you effective at converting your customers into clients?  Maybe you have worked on natural search engine results, pay per click advertising and even regular print advertising and word of mouth and are experiencing website traffic, but still are not getting leads.  Ask yourself, "What is the point of my website?" or "How is this website going to help me?" Websites obviously provide information.  What type of information would you want if you were your own customer?  In other words, is your website agent-centric or customer-centric?

Agent-Centric Versus Customer-Centric

An agent-centric website is basically a bill board for an agent.  Fancy intro pages that use flash animations do not usually provide useful information to a customer, even though they may look fancy and impressive.  Sometimes, the fancier a website is the more difficult it is to find information.  Is there copious detail about YOU on your home page, the first thing your customer sees?  What does a customer really want when looking at a real estate website?

A customer-centric website presents information from the perspective of what the customer wants to see.  Identify and attract your target customers and then make it convenient for them to find information they need.  Easy to use property searches (Quick Searches, Search by Map, Saving Searches/Notifications) and community information resources should draw customers into your site.  Attracting customers with information and tools they can use will encourage them to dwell at your website longer.  Again, if you are the customer using your website, what would you want to see?

Your Website’s Main Purpose

That said, every aspect of your website should work toward the main purpose of your website, providing specific real estate information to your customer.  Differentiate yourself from the competition.  Don't have a 'one size fits all' real estate website.  Do customers see you as an expert on a particular market?  Do you use custom searches to feature listings from specific areas or subdivisions you wish to promote?  Additionally, choose the pictures on your website as well as written content (community resources/schools/news/media) to highlight your focused market area.  And, by all means, it is acceptable to promote yourself on your website.  Have an About Me page highlighting your expertise in your market area and give an easy way to contact you using a contact form to draw the customer in and capture them as a lead.  Consider also including offers of free services or added value items (How To's, checklists, etc.) on your website to solicit customers to fill out your contact forms.  Try also adding a 'Testimonials' page, but try to use testimonials that are specific ... using past client feedback on your services in the market area in which you are expert.

Make your website a natural extension of your business and of your valuable services.  Focus on being customer-centric and not agent-centric as well as creating a positive customer experience.  Let the customer's needs drive your website design.

REEVEsoft

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As always, we welcome your feedback on enhancements that are released as well as ideas for future enhancements to CompuAgent that will help you save time and money in running your real estate business. Please send correspondence to support@reevesoft.com or log a Support Ticket under the Help menu at CompuAgent.com if you are a current CompuAgent Website User.

Oct 2, 2014

Don’t Underestimate Traditional Website Promotion Techniques!


Don’t Underestimate Traditional Website Promotion Techniques!

We are consistently asked about how to promote a website on the internet.  Marketing to Search Engines takes time and money and sometimes we may even put the cart before the horse.  Even before delving into the world of Search Engines and Website Optimization, take a step back and ask yourself, “do people (not search engines) even know about my website / business?”  Your website is a valuable tool in helping you with your business. Promote your website address wherever possible! The internet makes it easier for your customers to find and work with you. Make it easy for them to find YOU.   We hope to make it easier for you to manage your CompuAgent real estate website and your business. 

In this blog entry, the examples include:

·         Business Cards/Car Magnets

·         Voice Mail Messages

·         Listing Brochures and Sign Riders

·         Paper Advertising

·         Newsletter and Mailings

Business Cards / Car Magnets

Look at your business card that you hand out to your potential customers.  Does it have your website domain name listed on it?  Do you have your email address in addition to your contact phone numbers?  Think about ‘branding’ yourself, potentially making your website and business card have a similar catchy theme, slogan or even color scheme.  Even consider using car magnets that prominently display your website domain name on them as another way to brand yourself.

Voice Mail Messages

Think about your voice mail message you have set up either on your mobile phone or business phone.   You know that potential customers are going to get a jump on looking at properties before you even get that face to face meeting.  Letting your customers know they can search the entire MLS at www.yourdomainname.com as part of your voicemail, keeps them on your site instead of perusing competitor sites.

Listing Brochures and Sign Riders

Use your Listing Brochures for flyer boxes, etc., to get customers to your online website, by providing enough property information to attract a customer, but then encourage them to visit www.yourdomainname.com to see all the details and interior color pictures of the property.  Another marketing idea is to purchase sign riders with your domain name.  Some agents even get creative by leaving space before the domain name on a sign rider … adding the MLSID# pertaining to the listing … advertising the actual webpage of the listing (MLSid Vanity Domain Names).

Paper Advertising

Continue to use print advertising that you have found effective.   But be sure to include your domain name in any ads you purchase in trade journals, newspapers, yellow pages, subdivision newsletters, etc.  Use your ads to capture the reader’s attention and then suggest they visit your website for even more information.

Newsletter and Mailings

E-mail newsletters and mailing lists can be another great way of keeping  both new and past clients current with your business.  Sending monthly newsletters and the latest property deals are both excellent examples of how to continually market to both past website visitors and new clients of your site.  Be sure to allow for a way to unsubscribe to your email list or campaign.  Be sure to check out CompuAgent’s Lead Management and Email Marketing features if you are interested in taking this next step in traditional website marketing.

Remember,  you have nothing to lose by doing some of these traditional marketing suggestions and  everything to gain.

REEVEsoft

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As always, we welcome your feedback on enhancements that are released as well as ideas for future enhancements to CompuAgent that will help you save time and money in running your real estate business. Please send correspondence to support@reevesoft.com or log a Support Ticket under the Help menu at CompuAgent.com. Please do not reply to this email as this account is used for broadcasts only and is not checked for responses.