Do Community Guides Improve SEO?

The answer is YES, for two main reasons: Engagement and secondary keywords.

1. Engagement… Our lifestyle city guides are interesting, so visitors will stay on the page longer and interact with your site more. “Bounce rate” is one of the most important criteria in page ranking. If a visitor quickly navigates away from a page, Google will downgrade its’ ranking.

2. Secondary Keywords… Every new page you add to your website provides an opportunity to focus on additional keywords groups that can help your website earn higher ratings.

We’ll get into more detail below, but the solution is to add content above and below our social media feed to create a fully optimized page. The diagram to the left is divided into 4 sections. Each area should be created with Google in mind.

This tutorial is designed to help you setup your Lifestyle City Guide with Search Engine Optimization. But first, here’s a quick review of the basics…

 

Google It

Google’s objective is to provide users with the most relevant search results, based on their search query. Your Google page ranking determines where your webpage appears in the search results. Of course, your ultimate goal is to show up at the top of page one, for your most important keywords. If your webpage does not appear in the first few pages of Google’s search results, your chance of being seen diminishes greatly.

Google has a complex algorithm that ranks every webpage using a variety of criteria, including domain name, keywords, meta tags, unique and up-to-date copy, images, social media, bounce rate, backlinks (popularity), responsive design (mobile friendly), and load time, among other things.

Search Engine Optimization

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) refers to the underlying code, content, design, and configuration you use to setup your website so that it ranks high on Google’s search results.

For the purpose of this tutorial, we’re going to focus on Real Estate community guides and SEO, but if you need an in depth understanding, check out SEObook.com, SearchEngineLand.com or Google’s own SEO Starter Guide.

SEO For Real Estate

SEO for Real Estate is a tough task, because there’s a lot of competition, plus most websites have similar features and content, and there are only a few primary keywords available:

• Real Estate
• Real Estate Agents
• Realtors
• Homes For Sale
• Houses For Sale
• Property For Sale

If you want to improve your Google ranking, you’ll need to become proficient at SEO and continually update and tweak your website. In addition, you should consider adding new pages that use secondary and tertiary keywords that others have overlooked. This is where we can help.

Adding a community guide to your website provides an opportunity to focus on additional keywords that can earn high rankings. Remember, Google rewards websites that have unique, engaging content. So, adding a community guide to your Real Estate website will help you stand out from the crowd.

Advantages:

  1. Our community guides contain unique content that’s engaging.
  2. We create the guide for you, and keep it fresh and up-to-date.
  3. A community guide contains a group of secondary keywords.
  4. Our social media feeds, with images and hashtags, are indexed by Googlebot.

Community Guide Setup

Page Title & Description

With Google’s search results, you see a list containing thousands of webpages, each with a title and description. That information usually comes from what is written in the Page Title and Description. Your job is to write compelling copy while incorporating the most relevant keywords. You want Google to give your page a high ranking based on search terms, and you need to make it interesting enough so users will want to visit your site.

Page Title – Short accurate page title with the most important keywords. Maximum of 71 characters.
Description – Write a keyword focused description. This used to be limited to 160 characters, but in 2016 Google increased the length to a maximum of 278 characters, when displayed on a desktop computer. On a tablet the length drops to about 200 characters and on a phone the character count is reduced to about 135 characters.

Examples:

Page Title – Community guide for Old Greenwood with photos and fun activities
Page Description –
Old Greenwood is a Jack Nicklaus designed golf course and resort community located in Truckee, CA. Our stylish community guide gives you the inside scoop about all the great amenities and fun activities including golf, pool, tennis, spa and fitness center.

Section 1. Featured Image SEO

Image File Name – Googlebot checks the file name, so it’s important you give it a thoughtful name.
Alt Tag – Should use natural sentence structure to accurately describe what the image is about.
Title Tag – this is where you’ll add your specific keywords.
Caption – Most agree that the caption is a tiny factor in SEO, but a few extra keywords certainly won’t hurt.

Examples:

File Name: Old_Greenwood_Golf_Community.jpg
Alt Tag: View of Old Greenwood Golf Course and homesites
Title Tag: Old Greenwood lifestyle community guide and relocation guide
Caption: Old Greenwood is a Jack Nicklaus designed golf community offering a variety of Real Estate opportunities.

Section 2. Headline & Body Copy

Google likes copy, especially introductory paragraphs near the top of the page. This is an important section where you will insert your target keywords and variations of those words. Don’t over-stuff the copy with keywords or it can become a negative. When it comes to document size, using more words means more ranking opportunities. Most SEO experts suggest using at least 500 words per page. The story should sound natural even though you are integrating 5 to 10 keywords.

<h1>, <h2> and <h3> Headlines are not as important as they once were, but we still make sure the most important keywords are emphasized by inserting them in the headlines and subheads.

Section 3. Social Media Feed

The main component in your new Real Estate community page is our social feed. We create lifestyle city guides by aggregating the best local photos and reviews from social media, so you can add it to your website instantly with an embed code. Not only do we provide the feed, we automatically update the content on a regular basis, which is great for SEO. In addition, all the images, copy and hashtags are indexed by Googlebot.

As mentioned above, our community guides are compelling, so visitors will stay on the page longer and have more interaction with your site. Bounce rate is one of the key engagement metrics in Google’s ranking algorithm. If enough users quickly click the browser back button to return to the search engine, your page ranking will be downgraded. Engagement is one of the key SEO advantages of our content.

Section 4. Google Map

The overall consensus from SEO experts is that embedding a Google map has limited to no effect on SEO, but if you think visitors would find it useful, it might be a good idea. The only SEO value would come from adding more copy above the map.