Internet Marketing Questions From Mortgage Web Site Owners
Over the past month we received numerous emails with regards to internet marketing for mortgage web sites. Here are a few of the questions from our readers:
How Can I Search My Competitors?
We are often asked how to conduct competitive intelligence on competitors. We use a free service from Google to monitor certain phrases and competitors. It is their “alert” system < http://www.google.com/alerts >. Simply add your keywords and Google will send you an email update with new listings on that phrase.
More Important Than Searching Your Competitors Is Searching…
We suggest that you use the Google alert program to research your own company.
Be sure to use multiple versions of your company name to match the various ways a customer may write your name. In example, if your company is the Greater San Diego Loan Corporation. Be sure to enter alerts for other likely permutations of your name; San Diego Loan Corporation, Greater SD Loan or GSDLC. We also recommend that you use this service for your own personal name to see if there are any positive or negative postings about you or your organization.
I Use AdWords But I Am Not Receiving Clicks. Do Pay Per Click Ads Really Work?
Most often the answer to this question is one of two things: not buying enough keywords or not bidding high enough on a keyword to get found. May companies only buy 20-30 keywords – this is not enough. Buy also the communities around your city. In example, San Diego is surrounded by Del Mar, La Jolla, Chula Vista, La Costa, Encinitas etc. Each of these cities should have, at a minimum, “home loan”, “mortgage loan” and “mortgage” associated with the keywords. In example, “Encinitas home loan”, “Encinitas mortgage loan” and “Encinitas mortgage” should all be keywords that you buy.
Other mortgage owners simply bid a small amount in a competitive category. If you are listed at the bottom of a series of keywords all saying “Miami home loans” you will not receive many clicks.
And sometimes we asked the corollary to the above question…
I Use AdWords And I Am Receiving Too Many Clicks… Do Pay Per Click (PPC) Ads Really Work?
Many companies make the mistake of buying words that are only tangentially related to a mortgage. In example, the search term Seattle houses may be bought to try and attract home buyers to your site for a home loan. In reality it is probably an OK idea, but it is probably not an OK PPC idea. The information you provide can be helpful, but in a PPC strategy it is not the best choice of words to buy.
Another problem is sometimes buying too broad of a keyword phrase. You might supply northern Illinois with loan especially in the Chicago are so you buy the terms Illinois home loans and Illinois home montages. Then you find you have a number of people in southern Illinois clicking on your ads; but you can not service them. That can increase your costs dramatically.
Google’s AdWords allows you target regional and local areas, so you can reach the prospects who are most appropriate for your mortgage business. Additionally, you can write ads that highlight special promotions or pricing based on geography.
Gosh, Didn’t This Used To Be Called Red-Lining?
Google’s site states, “You can select customized targeting if you want to define your own target area. Indicate your area by choosing a point and a surrounding radius or by picking points to define a border. The AdWords system may analyze a searcher’s query (for example “London florist”) to establish what location that person is searching for. The system may also take note of the person’s Internet Protocol (IP) address to see where he or she is searching from.”
It seems at one time this practice was referred to as red-lining.
Right Click, Wrong Page.
Another problem that can cause receiving click, but not many sales, is by delivering your PPC visitor to your home page not to the page specifically on what the customer wants. In example, if you offer farm land loans yet send the visitor to the main page so that visitor has to search your page to find the link to farm land; that can frustrate the user and cause them to click away instead of clicking further into your site. Make the PPC click advertisement link directly to the page about that PPC word. It takes a little longer; but the results are worth it.
Still other issues that can lead to a high number of visitors and few customers are your content ad appearance. If someone clicks on your PPC ad and they arrive at a “crummy” designed web site, they will leave. If the content you offer is uninformative they will leave.
How Can I Make My Pay Per Click Ad Better?
Create straightforward ads targeting your desired customer. In example, your add subject line might read: “Dallas home loan”
Here are the first five ads from Google’s results of a search on “Dallas home loan”.
Dallas Home Loan Company
Leading Mortgage Broker in Texas,
Pre-Apply Online & Get Free Info!
Dallas Home Loan
Get a Low Home Loan Rate from
Texas Lending and Save Today!
100% Home Loan Financing
for Good to Excellent Credit.
No PMI. No Lender Fees
Dallas Home Loans
Refinance today to consolidate
debt, lower payments & get cash out
Mortgages – Current Rates
Low mortgage loan rates from
lenders nationwide. Updated daily.
You can see the third and fifth ads don’t mention Dallas, while the first, second and fourth specifically say “Dallas”. As a customer, which ad are you most likely to select?
Test Multiple PPC Ads
One of the excellent features of the Yahoo and Google PPC programs is that you can change/add/delete PPC ads on the fly. You can experiment with different offers and utilize different keyword phrases to see what’s most effective in attracting your potential customers. Once you find the right sequence of keywords; continue to monitor the number of customers generated.
Be sure to send us an email with any additional questions.
MortgagePromote.com is a leading Internet marketing web site that provides hundreds of articles & information tips on web site promotion, search engine marketing and search engine optimization; to help loan officers & mortgage companies increase their online sales. Aries and Farris has been providing nationwide mortgage leads & Internet marketing services since 1998.
Web site: MortgagePromote.com
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