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Google Analytics for Real Estate Marketers – 4 Steps to Get Started

Google Analytics for Real Estate Marketers – 4 Steps to Get Started

Google Analytics is an extremely effective tool for real estate marketers to gain insights and shape strategy. These four tips will help get you started.


  • Start by choosing what metrics to track. 
  • Figure out what works and what doesn’t. 
  • Paint a picture of your audience using hard data.

When it comes to gaining insights into real estate leads, Google Analytics is one of the most powerful tools out there right now. This robust, comprehensive, analytical tool determines how web users are interacting with your digital assets, including social media. The data that Google Analytics for real estate provides gives you invaluable insights into how your audience is interacting with your content, as well as how your content is performing over time.

Because this tool is extremely comprehensive, the options can be overwhelming at first glance. Understanding how to properly deploy this resource, and the metrics it provides, is your best bet for delivering value to your target audience, and effectively nurturing leads.

Here are four steps to get your marketing efforts started using Google Analytics for real estate.

1. Decide which metrics to track and identify key metrics

When you first start using Google Analytics, it’s easy to be overwhelmed by the sheer number of choices available to you for analyzing your real estate website visitors’ activity. It can seem tempting to track every available metric, gaining huge amounts of data. But your time and resources are much better spent if you take a step back and identify the right marketing reports for your real estate business.

As a benchmark, Phase 3 Enterprises suggests that real estate marketers track these six reports:

  • Channel Report
  • Source and Medium Reports
  • Users Flow Report
  • Frequency and Regency Reports
  • Location Report
  • Age and Gender Reports

Once you’ve chosen which metrics your real estate business should be tracking, it’s time to identify two or three metrics that will be your touchstones. These are the metrics that are critically important to the performance of your website and should monitored and analyzed regularly.

2. Start with the big things

Is there a page on your website that gets a large amount of traffic? That’s where you should be concentrating. Use key metrics to determine why that content is specifically intriguing to your users, and what led visitors to click and spend time there. For example, if one piece of content on your site outperforms another, ask yourself questions like:

  • Does a higher click-through rate correlate with timing of emails sharing the content, social media posts, etc.?
  • What are the top traffic sources for high performing content?
  • How long are users spending on your content?

You get the picture. In short, if you identify the right questions to ask, Google Analytics for real estate will offer you the data to answer them—in turn giving you the tools to optimize your digital assets.

3. Find out where your website traffic is coming from

In a perfect world, users are visiting your site from multiple sources, instead of a single or just a few traffic streams. Gaining an understanding of where your traffic is coming from lets you devote resources to top-performing sources and adjust your efforts where they aren’t gaining optimal results.

Select “Overview” under the “Acquisition” menu to determine how much of your traffic is organic, social, from referrals, etc. The Channel Report will give you further details on where your visitors are coming from, as well as information about how traffic from various sources engages with your site.

4. Build an audience profile

Ultimately, one of the most important things Google Analytics can capture for you is a picture of your audience. This includes where they’re located, how they engage with your website, demographic data like age, and other buyer preferences. Some key audience characteristics to be on the lookout for:

  • How much of your audience is new visitors vs. returning visitors?
  • What devices is your audience using to access your digital assets?
  • Where are your visitors geographically located?

The more you use the data to understand your audience, the more you’ll be able to optimize your digital assets to meet their needs and build and expand your audience base.

The bottom line

Google Analytics is your superpower when it comes to real estate marketing. No other tool gives you more comprehensive insights into your audience behavior, content performance, overall site performance, and more. Start using this tool today, and let data drive your real estate marketing efforts.

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Archive for the "Data & Analytics" Category

The Metrics You Should Be Measuring in Real Estate Marketing (Hint: Not Vanity Metrics)

The Metrics You Should Be Measuring in Real Estate Marketing (Hint: Not Vanity Metrics)

Don’t waste your time reporting on vanity metrics, which won’t tell you whether you’ve achieved your ROI.

We all want to see the fruits of our labors. Whether renting a new property or launching a social media campaign, we look for instantaneous numbers that will affirm we made the right choices. But here’s the problem: not all metrics are created equal.

So-called vanity metrics are measurements that have no bearing on your bottom line but can give you an inflated sense of success. Generally, they are easy to calculate but are influenced by too many factors — and are too vulnerable to random external events — to be reliable.

Website visits and number of subscribers are two classic examples. A spike in homepage hits may be the result of your marketing efforts, or it may be because of ghost spam. (Or both.) Regardless, more visits do not necessarily correlate to increased revenue — just more visits. In the same vein, having 100,000 email subscribers means nothing if only 1% are opening them. You actually could be losing money in terms of resources allocated if the emails aren’t helping drive sales.

Investment vs. vanity metrics

That’s why it’s crucial to focus on return on investment instead of vanity metrics. You could waste hours reviewing a hundred different analytics that tell you nothing about how revenue was affected by a particular effort. Or, worse, you could use vanity metrics to justify decisions that don’t achieve their ROI.

As a simplified example: say you spend $1,000 on a display ad for a new apartment complex targeting established professionals on a local news website, and your analytics report that 100 people clicked through. This sounds like success! But don’t celebrate just yet. When you dig past the vanity metric, you find an extremely high bounce rate. That means most of those click-throughs left your site immediately, neither engaging with your property nor moving any closer to becoming a tenant. In fact, you find that only one click-through converts. Was it worth paying $1,000 for this one potential tenant? Probably not.

But say you ran another $1,000 display ad, one that targets a younger audience than you think your property fits. Only 20 visitors clicked through, which sounds less successful than the other ad. But when you follow those 20 click-throughs, you find that 5 ended up renting units, meaning the ad pays for itself many times over. You’ve also learned that perhaps a younger audience is more suited than you thought to your property. The ROI proves that the vanity metric was quite misleading in this case.

Metrics that help you make decisions

Lean-startup pioneer Eric Reis, who coined the term vanity metrics, said, “The only metrics that entrepreneurs should invest energy in collecting are those that help them make decisions.” In other words, measure the things that will tell you if an effort was profitable so you know where to put your time and money.

While vanity metrics tell you nothing about your bottom line, ROI can help you determine whether it was worth spending your resources in a particular way. This is extremely useful on platforms like blogs and social media, where things are constantly changing. Using ROI as a litmus test, you can keep experimenting and making sure you’re using these tools effectively. Tracking a vanity metric like number of followers, which is likely to build over time regardless, gives you no indication of which experiments were successful and which weren’t.

Your resources are limited, so it’s crucial to evaluate your efforts with meaningful numbers that illustrate their effect on your bottom line. Calculating ROI might take some time — both in the few extra minutes to do the math and the amount of time that needs to pass before all the data is available — but that number will be infinitely more valuable to you than any vanity metric on your Google Analytics report.

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