In real estate, your unique value proposition is a key part of a successful online presence.
Being a Realtor® in 2017 is very different from being a Realtor® in 1987, 1997, or even 2012. Search engines like Google and Yahoo and social media like Facebook and Twitter have completely changed the way the real estate business works. In the age of the Internet, your unique value proposition (UVP) is one of the most important aspects of your online presence.
90% of real estate searches begin online
Consider that 90% of real estate searches begin online, and more than half of all Google searches happen from a mobile device. These numbers mean that most of your potential clients will first encounter your website on a smaller screen, where they’ll be looking for information quickly—in fact, your website will have an average of only eight seconds to get your visitor’s attention. This short timeframe is what makes a unique value proposition so important.
What exactly is a unique value proposition, and how can you craft one that will help attract clients to your real estate business? According to Unbounce, your unique value proposition “is a clear statement that describes the benefit of your offer, how you solve your customer’s needs and what distinguishes you from the competition.” A prominent and engaging UVP is the best tool to catch a potential client’s interest during that critical eight-second window.
Standing out from the competition
In spite of the importance of a unique value proposition in real estate, I can tell you from experience that UVPs do not get the attention they deserve on Realtor® websites. I have looked at hundreds of these websites, only to find that very little focus has gone into crafting a compelling UVP. I’m not just referring to low-quality websites, either—I’ve seen many custom and “high end” real estate websites that show evidence of a great deal of time, effort, and creativity, but where the UVP doesn’t seem to have been a priority.
Your unique value proposition is therefore a great opportunity for you to distinguish yourself from the competition. And let’s face it—as a Realtor®, you’re working in an industry with significant competition, where anyone can set up a basic website for free. That’s why crafting a strong UVP will help you to stand out from the crowd.
A successful formula
The secret to a captivating unique value proposition is to communicate quickly and concisely about why your service in particular is the right choice. In other words, you need to communicate what you can offer that makes you different from the competition. You want to avoid saying the same bland things about yourself that other Realtors® are saying—in fact, you should find the UVPs on other real estate websites in order to learn what others have already said. This will give you ideas about what to say yourself, and, more importantly, what not to say.
Begin your unique value proposition with a headline. The headline should be a short, attention-grabbing sentence that states what service you’re offering. You can also mention the product or the customer.
Next, have a short follow-up that provides a more specific explanation of what you offer, why it’s useful, and who can benefit from it. This part can be a sub-headline or a short paragraph—three sentences at most. Focus on what you can do for your client.
Third, you want to list the key benefits or features of your service. You might want to follow the formula of listing three bullet points. This section is the most detailed part of your unique value proposition, but remember that you want people to still be able to read it in less than eight seconds.
Finally, don’t forget to include a picture in your unique value proposition. Images capture attention much more successfully than words, so make sure to have a prominent picture, generally a hero shot or an image reinforcing your main message.
Once you have a draft of your unique value proposition, you can evaluate it by checking whether it answers the following questions:
What product or service is your company selling?
What is the end-benefit of using it?
Who is your target customer for this product or service?
What makes your offering unique and different?
If you find that one of these details is missing, rewrite your unique value proposition to make sure that it includes all of the information it needs.
The centerpiece of your Website
As a Realtor®, your unique value proposition will be the quickest way to engage the growing number of potential clients who will glimpse at your real estate website on their phones after a quick online search. Make sure to place your UVP front and centre on your website. Once you’ve gotten your client’s attention, follow up your UVP with strong website design and usability to make sure your client can learn more about what you have to offer.