When formulating a marketing plan to brand your commercial real estate business, don’t forget about your website. Some companies ignore this critical component, and it can have consequences for your business. Commercial real estate is a competitive business that’s built on customer experiences. You need to make sure you have a cohesive and responsive website that includes a consistent branding strategy to stay ahead of your competitors.
Commercial Real Estate Website Gets Just 50 milliseconds
For years, marketers have followed the 50-millisecond rule when it comes to website experiences. In short, you have just that sliver of time to impress a potential client that finds your site.
Let’s use a real-world example. Suppose you have a beautiful Twitter feed with great property pictures. However, when a potential client clicks on your website, he or she has to wait for it to load. Once they can see your site, it’s a mishmash of colors and typefaces which probably doesn’t portray the image of your brand that you would like. You may have a logo you used in the 90s on some pages. Your menu may be confusing or, the site may be unreadable on a mobile device. Now, if you were a potential client, would you think this company had their act together?
HubSpot compiled some statistics to reinforce this.
- About 38% of people will click off a website if they think it’s unattractive.
- If it takes too long to load, about 39% will go elsewhere.
- People would rather view content on a well-designed website than an unattractive one.
Elements Of A Cohesive Commercial Real Estate Website
- A cohesive website must work as well on a mobile device as it does on a computer. This is known as responsive design. A lot has changed since the late 90s when you could just buy a domain name and slap some content on it. Mobile phones were still used mostly for making calls back then, but today most web browsing is done on a mobile device. According to Statista, nearly half of all website views worldwide are from a mobile phone. If your customer can’t navigate your site well from a cell, they may look for another site.
- Looks are everything. Orange and purple may be your favorite color combination but can you make it work on your website? Unless you are selling children’s clothes or psychedelic collectibles, probably not. If you are struggling with a color scheme, think about the message you want to relay. Overall, muted palettes are the best for establishing credibility.
- Don’t be font crazy. Some people are obsessed with fonts and can tell you the difference between Calibri and Times New Roman and Lucinda as easily as they can tell you what they had for lunch. However, even those who are not members of the Font Club will be distracted if you use too many. Be careful not to choose differing fonts and try to keep your designs in the same “font family.” A good rule of thumb: If your logo has wording, use the same or similar fonts on your website.
- Make sure your website is consistent with your other branding. For example, if you send out an email or an offering memorandum in a blue and beige color scheme your website should reflect the same scheme. If a potential client goes to your website that has a black and gray color scheme which don’t reflect the same tones as your marketing pieces, he or she may be confused or may be put off by the inconsistency. Social media, direct mail pieces, and other marketing efforts should reflect your brand.
A well-done, commercial real estate website with responsive web design that reflects your brand is not an option if you want to remain competitive with your commercial real estate marketing. It’s a necessity.