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5 Compelling Design Elements for Real Estate Websites


Real estate websites have a lot of competition. Well-established directories like Zillow or Trulia cannibalize much consumer traffic, but that doesn’t mean you can’t make a great impression or attract significant traffic to your own site. In fact, with the right design choices, you can turn your real estate website into an impressive, powerful converting machine.


Your goal here is to get as many contacts and sales as possible, so include these design elements to captivate your audience and maximize your chances of success.


  1. Concise summaries for listings. When people peruse for real estate listings, they form impressions quickly. You only get time for a headline and maybe a handful of features before a user has made a decision to leave or continue exploring. At the same time, you want to include as many listings as possible on your website, attracting the most possible attention for all your current properties. This presents a conundrum; you want to present lots of information, but users have limited attention spans. The key is to design an area of the site that offers compartmentalized listings (including important points like a headline, prominent photo, and property specs), either in a grid layout or an infinite-scroll style page. This will give you the best of both worlds, offering high-level summaries of each listing while maximizing the number of listings you can present.
  2. Emphasis on high-quality photos. Words can be deceiving, and home buyers know this. If you focus too much on the verbal descriptions of your properties, users may become suspicious. Obviously, you need tons of high-quality photos of your properties if you want them to sell, but you also need a way to prominently and easily display these on your site. There are a few options here, including hosting a small gallery for each property or rotating them out in a carousel-style design. Whatever you choose, make sure you describe your images accurately and format them to load on any device or browser.
  3. Personal background and agent/landlord information. Real estate should be all about property value, but there’s a lot to be said about the personality of an agent. Your site could offer some of the hottest properties in the neighborhood, with full details and beautiful pictures, but if your star agents seem distant or impersonal, you’ll probably get fewer queries. Accordingly, you’ll want to show off the personalities of your agents (including yourself, if relevant). Add a page that highlights your personnel’s expertise and careers, and introduce your users to who they’ll be working with. It will increase onsite conversions and make your design more personable and welcoming.
  4. Social integration. Social integration is an indispensable quality for modern-day websites, and it can help you in a number of areas. First, your site will appear more modern and more approachable automatically thanks to the ubiquity of “share” buttons. Second, you’ll have a new way to connect potential buyers with real estate agents—direct social media connections. Third, you’ll have an outlet to publish and syndicate some of your most important site features, such as your listing photos and blogs. The key is to make your social share buttons prominent enough to spark action (and follow-up with a solid social media strategy).
  5. Easy-to-find contact information. Don’t miss out on any potential opportunity to earn a conversion; design your site in a way that maximizes potential user communication. Start with obvious calls-to-action, such as a “contact” page with phone numbers and email addresses, or a “get more info” button on individual property listings. But don’t stop there; consider offering a live chat window to help people who want more information but don’t want to go out of their way to make a phone call. Include a popup that prompts an email signup, and enter those users into a weekly newsletter list.


With these design elements, your real estate site will attract more people, compel more prospective buyers, and ultimately earn you more leads and sales. In combination with a sufficient traffic generation strategy like SEO or social media marketing, a good web design can ensure the online portion of your real estate business remains profitable and modernized.


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