Optimizing Google Search Campaign for Real Estate
Google can be your business driver if implemented the right way. How so? Well, once people decide that they want to buy a house, they automatically become your audience pool. Seldom it happens that people see your ad and decide to buy a house. But in most cases, a purchase decision is already made by the interested party, which implies that the person was already looking for a house on the internet with relevant keywords, comparisons, and shortlisting properties.
A marketeer’s job is to be present in the result of these searches with convincing message to choose your project over others and reach out via other media to make them choose your product.
How can you ensure your google search campaigns are optimized correctly to achieve this?
Search campaign set-up
Typically, when the buyer types in a keyword to search, Google identifies that person in the ‘Homebuying Audience’ category. Now it is your turn to ensure that you are PRESENT for every relevant keyword they might be searching for. That should include –
Brand keywordA brand keyword covers all permutations, combinations of your brand and project name-related keywords, wrong spelling, etc. It is ideally recommended that you are present in the top 3 results for this category of keywords, which means you have an impression share of more than 95%. You should capitalize on this bucket the most as you are running outbound campaigns using push strategies. once people are intrigued by your display ads, they will come and search for your brand directly.
Primary keywordsA set of keywords that highlight your project, configuration, locality and price and other related keywords, which intended buyers tend to search. Recommended impression share 80%+
Secondary keywordsKeywords that are related to your project but go beyond just your locality and configurations are secondary keywords. For e.g., if you are selling 2 BHKs in Worli, in secondary bucket, you should target keywords like premium / luxury 2 BHKs in Mumbai and homes in South Mumbai, etc. This gets you recommended impression share of 70%-80%. Once you figure out which keywords from the bucket are actually resulting in conversions, split this campaign and bid for the keywords that were yielding good results.
Competitor keywordsThis is where it will get tricky, you may be thinking of shortlisting 3-4 projects that are in the vicinity and are offering similar products as yours and will consider your competitors’ keywords to bid on and it will get easier. But it does not stop there, for a home buyer, there would be multiple localities in his mind for shortlisting., So, extend your horizons, get into the buyer’s shoes by understanding their psychography based on their demography, and shortlist the choices they would make. Target those keywords and start by targeting an impression share of 50-60% and optimize it based on the conversions you get.
Primarily, there are 4 categories to split your campaign into. But by observing closely, you can further bifurcate them into:
- Top converting keywords
- Keywords for highest impression share
- Top click bait keywords
- Location specific keywords
Hour-of the day and day of the week
- Google dashboard shows when maximum impressions, clicks and conversions are happening.
- Keep an eye on this, spend money during that time and this will save at least 10% of your money on bidding.
Mostly Real Estate searches happen during late evenings, and during the weekends when they visit projects and research further to compare.
Besides this, basic tactics like negative keywords, Keyword-based copies, ad rank, experiments are going to play a very important role in your set-up
PRO TIP: When you launch a project in the market, buyers are present, searching, shortlisting, comparing and making decisions. So, if you know you will be launching in a market that is liquid, put a word out so buyers know they have a choice coming – Teaser / Pre-launch campaign with specific keywords work brilliantly in this regard. Then ensure you give them an incentive that a project that they are looking for is coming soon so register and stay tuned to get priority offers. Then carry forward that keyword, build a recall which will get you the buyer, target that in your branded keyword bucket for top impressions.
Search ad copies:
A successful search campaign does not happen just with the right setup, it needs to capture the entire path to purchase. Right from ‘what you show’, ‘how you make them feel’ to ‘where you lead’ and ‘how you convince’.
You need to ensure the headlines 1 & 2 of your copies have your product, price, brand and location of the project followed your RTB – e.g., offers, USP, etc. To support this, your domain name will also play an important role. The description has extra space to add more features of the project that complement the feature you have used in the headline. For example, your search ad could be something as follows:Luxury 2 BHKs in Worli | Starting 5.66 Cr | By ABC Brand www.abc.com/luxury2-bhk-worli Description: With xy premium amenities and premium specifications, just 5 minutes from Palladium Mall
Ensure you are adding call-outs and extensions like
- Premium features
- About ABC’s legacy
- Location Advantages
Understanding what homebuyers search for and showing them exactly what they are looking for is the key. For e.g.: if someone is searching for 2 BHKs in Worli, there are going to be multiple brands bidding on this keyword., What will make your ad stand out?
- Highlight the benefits, and not just the features: How is the community where your property is located like? Is it premium, luxury or affordable? You could highlight its property in your ad to make it stand out from the rest (competitors).
- Use numbers in the copy: Using numbers instead of text means your ad can quickly draw people’s attention. Make sure you use numbers in your ad headline and expertise as well as how many properties have you sold so far.
- Create an eye-catching headline that matches the search query: Remember that users are always excited and drawn to click on an ad that clearly ‘speaks’ to them in person, addresses their situation, and promises to help them out.
TIP: Your search campaign setup does not stop here. PRESENCE is of utmost importance. Get the top 15 searches for your brand and primary set of keywords. Identify what Google is showing apart from the ads and which web pages and domains are in the top results. Target those web pages through your Google Display Network., Make sure you are present there; this will not just increase the recall, but you are also reaching out to the intended buyers in multiple ways leveraging both Search and Display campaigns.
Your landing page experience is going to not just play an important role in making the home buyer register their interest but also for Google to show your ad rank.. With a bad landing page experience, you will lose ad rank, the impression shares and eventually burn your campaign budget.
Ensuring your landing page has all relevant information with the right CTAs (call to action) is very important in any ad campaign. For Real Estate, we have tried, tested and formulated the best performing landing page flows which today makes it easy for us to ensure this hygiene is taken care of.
- Eye-catching, well-written banner copy
- Strong contextual media
- Multiple, action oriented strong CTAs like “Register Your Interest”, “Schedule A Visit”, “Get A Call Back”, “Get Directions To Site” and “Didn’t Find What You Are Looking For? Tell Us What You Need”.
- Clear features and benefits of the offer from your ad
- Testimonials or other proof points to support your claims
- Multiple ad account and landing pages strategy
We recently experimented with multiple landing pages for multiple ad campaigns. The objective was that we wanted to capture the market during our project launch.
We ran 3 different campaigns through 3 ad accounts with 3 different domains (landing pages) which ensured we had:
- Maximum impression share with us
- Probability of choices being narrowed down to our project increased
This spiked our Cost Per Lead slightly but then our Cost Per Booking was in line as we captured most of homebuyers and with convincing sales strategy ensured they booked with our brand.
We did this only for first month during the launch then switched to single account.
These are tested ways to make your Real Estate Google search campaigns successful.
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