Last week’s post was a more general discussion of process content for all types of buyers. This week we’ll focus on the first-time home buyer and their specific needs. If you’re just placing content of interest or value to first-time buyers throughout your other buyer relevant content, you could be losing business.
We all know that first-time home buyers need more hand-holding, but that can and should begin when they’re on your real estate website and haven’t yet met you. In fact, they will be far more likely to work with you if they find your website content valuable.
Create an area of your real estate website just for first-time buyers. Put it into your top level navigation. Make it prominently visible and easy to access. This area of the site should be tightly focused on the needs of the first-time home buyer, both for education and services.
Plan Your Content
Don’t just start creating content without a plan. You may be able to use your current buyer-relevant content as a start, with a rewrite of certain topics to target them to the first-time buyer.
Break the content plan into sub-topics, and you probably should make those your dropdown navigation items.
You know what topics you want to cover, and making the high-level navigation easy will help your site visitors to find the content they want.
Keeping the content in the order that they’ll encounter it is a good idea as well. Some first-time home buyers will be complete novices and need a lot of education, and they’ll appreciate being able to work their way through buying a home through your online material from front to back.
You may even want to make it a journey, with steps that lead the first-time home buyer through the process in a friendly way, but educating them all the way. You can start at a very basic level and position yourself as the expert by explaining the IDX to them in the context of showing the value of searching for homes on your website.
Great Detail - Fast Access
Not every new buyer will want or need the same level of detail, but you need it all there for those who do. There is a way to provide deep detail with ease of access, and you’ll gain some SEO value as well.
Using the topic and navigation structure suggested above, for each major navigation topic section, have a top-level summary article linking to each detailed explanation. An example for the section on The Transaction Process, you could have an introductory page at that nav link that had a short paragraph or sentence or two about linking to each detail article, such as:
- The Title Binder – Here you’ll learn about what a title binder is for and the importance of the documents it will bring to your attention.
- Your Inspector’s Report – An example of a home inspection report with noted defects and how you may want to handle them.
- The Repairs Negotiation – An example of how repairs mentioned in the inspection report may be negotiated with the seller.
- etc., etc.
The bold titles would be linked to the detailed articles. This way the first-time home buyer visitor can quickly see the big picture and choose where they want to focus their learning first.
You’ll also never know just how many, but there will be home buyers who have purchased before arriving at these articles through search, and they’ll find information they didn’t know before.