Buying or selling a home has traditionally been a lengthy and complicated process. But today’s technologies have greatly reduced the cycle of buying and selling, and made the entire process much smoother for customers and real estate agents alike.
There are some downsides, however, and mistakes people have made with technologies that have recently become common. Here are four things you’ll want to keep in mind as you embark on your real estate buying adventure.
Ad results at the top of Google may be purchased
When you search Google to find information on the neighborhood or real estate agency you’re considering, keep in mind that there are two kinds of results you may get: paid and organic.
Google is a company that earns the bulk of its money by serving advertisements that are closely related to what you’re looking for. If you search for “New York City real estate,” Google’s first three results at the top will be pay-per-click advertisements that claim to be experts in New York City real estate.
Perhaps they are indeed experts, but you should stay aware that they paid good money to advertise themselves as such.
Organic results matter
The second type of search engine listing, which appears below the three ads at the top, is called an organic (or natural) search result. Companies have to work very hard to win a high position here, and the way they’re ranked depends on a variety of factors, from social media popularity to how long their website has been in business.
The number of ranking factors for Google’s algorithm has more than 200 elements to it, and that means the sites that finish at the top of the organic listing (that is, below the paid ads) are quite likely your best choices, and can be regarded as trusted providers of the information you’re looking for.
Don’t automatically say no based on photos alone
Have you ever taken a photo of yourself that was definitely not a good representation of you? For most of us, the answer is yes. Homes are no different, and seeing a home in person might change your opinion, compared to the pictures of it that are posted online.
You can micro-target now
Thanks in part to the aforementioned 200-part search engine ranking systems, it’s now possible to find experts and information with a sharper focus. Instead of searching for New York City real estate agents, or even Harlem resources, you can now expect to find experts in more local areas.
They can be defined as specifically as West Harlem Manhattan in New York, or Upper Redondo Beach in Los Angeles!