Newest WordPress Real Estate Website – EveryHomeOnline.com

It has become well accepted by Real Estate marketing experts that WordPress is a great way for Real Estate professionals to communicate and interact and network on line with buyers, sellers and others. So you can think of what will happen when WordPress becomes the basis for a complete Real Estate website.

A website that is the best way to showcase your real estate listings as well as your expertise, the community and personal information. Why bother having two separate real estate sites, when you can have a powerful, amazing, easy to use site with “best-of-class” search engine results? A site that has your listings, an IDX if you wish, your blog and even integrated with Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin.

Please take a look at one of my latest Real Estate websites – EveryHomeOnline.com

EveryHomeOnline.com website main page screen capture

The site owner wanted a similar color palette to the well known Trulia.com real estate site, but with more style and landmark localization. All the graphic design was made just for him. He also required the listing display to have a photo gallery with more potential images and Google map integration, but have it be something that could be done easily and nicely displayed.

Over the last two months I have completely revised the working of my Real Estate websites. They are now even easier and quicker to add listings complete with maps and unlimited photo galleries. Now you (or your assistant) can upload and create a display gallery of up to 80 additional images in just 5 minutes!

Being WordPress and being SEO optimized from the ground up means that your sellers will see that you present their home high in Google’s search results with the side benefit that buyers are more likely to also see your listing first on your site. My father was a real estate broker, I have been too. I try to make sure my sites will perform better than any, in terms of online marketing for Real Estate brokers without being compromised by also being easy to use. Plus they are very affordable with no need for ongoing maintenance and support costs. Send me an email, Let me know what I might do for you?

Maximize Cyber Monday and all of December – Use Twitter

Last December Dell reported over $1 million in sales for their Dell Outlet through using Twitter. They don’t have anything in the way of amazing programming and functions for this, they just announce deals and respond to potential customers.

Twitter has been so successful for Dell, that recently it was estimated that Dell has somewhere around 40 employees worldwide involved in Tweeting and responding to Twitter communication.

To a lot of small business owners, Twitter does not make sense or seems trivial.  I can understand those feelings, but it doesn’t really matter … because Twitter works for small business.  Twitter can produce revenue for you!

Anything that Dell does, any small business owner can do. You don’t have to understand it, just do it.  Want to know what Dell Outlet does on Twitter? Just follow their Tweets – http://twitter.com/delloutlet.  And adapt their actions to your own business.

I set up all my clients’ websites so that Tweets are made automatically with out any additional steps and are linked to their website using their own domain name. This gives maximum results for the little additional time they have to Tweet.  But it doesn’t need to wait for a website, even a few Tweets a week about your products and services will produce results.

To learn more about how Dell Outlet is successfully using Twitter read this excellent article by  Neville Hobson.  And more important, just Tweet!

Migrating from Blogger to WordPress in 7 Steps While Keeping Subscribers and Search Results (UPDATED)

It is easy to move the content of a Blogger blog into WordPress. But that is just the first part of moving your blog. You should really want to move all the benefits of your Blogspot blog to your new WordPress blog. This is particularly true for many photographers who have Bludomain or similar Flash websites and have been using a Blogger blog to gain better search marketing and reach more potential clients.

If you have been blogging for anytime on Blogspot you probably have many of its articles in Google’s index, readers who bookmarked your blog or articles in your blog, RSS feed subscribers who follow your blog and some level of Google Page Rank greater than 0. All of these are important benefits that are related to your blog’s marketing value and you don’t want to leave them behind in your old blog, and then start over with your new blog. It is best to move the benefits that you have earned to your new blog with your content and continue building on what you have done. So how-to do it?

The basic assumptions: 1) Your Blogger Blogspot blog is using a standard domain like yourblog.blogspot.com. 2) You promise to never delete your Blogspot blog.

Now here are the steps:

Beginning with the assumption that you have self hosted WordPress installed on your domain begin by importing the content from Blogger.

Step 0) BACKUP your Blogspot blog and template. To back up your Blogspot blog use the Export tool in the Admin panel it is in Settings > Basic > Export blog. Save the file to your computer. Template back up is done from, Layout > Edit HTML > Download Full Template. Save the file to your computer. Now if an error happens you can restore your old blog.

Step 1) Create the permalink structure that you need in your WordPress blog. To do this login into your new WordPress site’s admin panel and in the left side menu go to Settings > Permalinks. The screen looks like this –

WordPress Blogger permalink

You will need to use the “Month and name” option. It is most similar to the Blogger structure.

Step 2) Now let’s import your Blogger content. To do this login into your new WordPress site’s admin panel and in the left side menu go to Tools > Import. You will see a screen that looks like this –

WordPress Blogger import

Click on the Blogger option and follow the steps. Authorize WordPress to use your Google account and WordPress will display a list of blogs associated with Blogger account. Select the blog that you like to import in Blogger and click Import. Your posts, comments, categories and users will be imported into WordPress in moments.

(Sometimes, particularly for large Blogger blog with lot of content this process may be balky. If it is for you, the workaround is to go to WordPress.com and create a blog and import your Blogger blog into that and then import that WordPress.com version of your Blogger content into your self hosted WordPress. I don’t know why this works, but it does. You will also want to have the WordPress.com account to activate the spam blocker, Akismet, for your new self hosted WordPress blog, so don’t be concerned about starting a new account)

Now starts the details of moving all the related value of your Blogger blog to your new self hosted WordPress blog.

Step 3) Keep your RSS subscribers. If your Blogger blog is not using Feedburner, set it up now. This will make keeping your subscribers a simple matter of managing your blog’s Feedburner account. To burn a Feedburner feed got your Blogger blog go to http://feedburner.google.com and proceed through their steps. Once you have assigned your Blogger blog’s feed to Feedburner, or if you already are using Feedburner, just transfer your feed. Go into the feed and click on “Edit Feed Details.” Change your feed from your Blogspot feed URL to http://yournewblogdomain.com/feed/. At the same time you want to setup WordPress to use that Feedburner feed. To do this install a Feedburner plugin in your self hosted WordPress. In the Admin panel on the left side click Plugins > Add New. Then in the search box enter Feedburner and you will be presented with a screen that looks like this –

WordPress Blogger feed

Click Install on the right side (highlighted) of the “FD Feedburner Plugin” after it is installed. Alternately you can use the Feedburner Feedsmith plugin provided by Google (Feedburner parent) it can be downloaded here and has some very good instructions if you are new to Feedburner. Still in your WordPress, go to the plugin’s configuration screen and enter your Feedburner feed.

Step 4) Now we need to make sure that when someone clicks on a search result that lists your old blog that they end up at the right place in your new blog (no 404’s). Very important. Sounds like it could be complicated and it is a little.

UPDATE December 24, 2009 – I have changed how I do it to a method that seems to be a little more consistant. =Relatedly I no longer use Amit Agarwal’s process. Instead I use the plugin and code snippets provided by justinsomnia. Much of the Steps 4-6 are edited from his blog, please visit his blog for more understanding of the plugin if needed.

Lets get started. Download and install justinsomnia’s wp-maintain-blogger-permalinks-1.1 WordPress plugin and install it on your WordPress blog. Activate it and then go to Tools > Maintain Blogger Permalinks, and click the button that says “Maintain Blogger Permalink”. Let it operate and build the list.

Step 5) Next we have to mdify the .htaccess file on your website hosting server (this will be in the base WP folder) to have the Blogger URLs which always end in “.html” are probely redirected to your imprted Blogger post now in WordPress but which no longer ends in “.html” To do this open the .htaccess file and place the following code snippet ABOVE the block of code that starts with “# BEGIN WordPress”

Save the .htaccess file and upload if required.

Step 6) Install a Javascript redirect in your Blogspot blog. We do this to make sure that when someone is directed to your old blog (say for instance from another site or even a search engine) that they will be presented automatically to the correct post in your new blog. To set the JavaScript redirect, just copy the following code snippet and paste it in place of the code between your and tags in your Blogger template (under Layout > Edit HTML). Then edit the two lines that say old_domain and new_domain, replacing myoldblog.blogspot.com with your current blogspot blog name name and mynewblog.com with your new blog’s domain name. Save the template.

Step 7) Finally, tell the search engines to no longer index your old Blofspot blog. This will over time reduce the listings of your old blog. Go to the admin panel of your Blogspot blog, Settings > Basic and for “Add your blog to our listings?” choose “No” and for “Let search engines find your blog?” also choose “No”. Click “Save Settings”. (Note: Leave your blog “Public”, otherwise the redirect script will not work)

After you have done the all steps outlined by above, your new WordPress will appear seamlessly to your regular and new visitors who had become accustomed to your content in your old Blogger blog. As well as people visitors who click through from links on other sites or search engines. So you will not give up ground you have already earned through your blogging and can begin using the advantages of WordPress to further enhance your site’s style, marketing, social networking and SEO.

As usual, if you have any questions or want help just send me an email.

Total Health Concepts’ Denver Dispensary – New Website

This is my non-traditional site of the season. Recently a client asked me if I might do for a their new legal medical marijuana dispensary what I had done for their other businesses’ internet marketing efforts. (Yep, it is legal in Colorado, has been since 2000.) Looking to learn something new and keep the client happy I said yes.

Specifically they wanted an economical website, one that they could manage themselves. More importantly it needed to have superior search engine marketing potential while moving far away from the “classic” look still presented by many similar businesses. Total Health Concepts (THC) wanted a “clean, unique, healthy mainstream professional” look to the website that would reflect well on their new Denver area medical dispensary. Their business goal is to seek a competitive advantage in everything they do.

Because they wanted easy do-it-yourself interface for adding new content, articles and upgrades combined with “best of class” search engine marketing the site foundation would be WordPress. But what would it look like?

After spending a lot of time learning and understanding this business category’s marketing language, standards and rules and exploring the look and performance potetial competitors’ websites, this is what we created to meet the needs of Total Heath Concepts online marketing and strategy for the new dispensary.

Total Health Concepts Denver medical marijuana website screencap

Still some detail work to do, but I am pleased to say the owner is happy with the look, plus it is getting good reviews and comments from others in the same industry. I like the almost instant Google indexing that we were able to get for a brand new domain name. (WordPress combined with certain webhosts makes a huge difference in getting a new website into the Google index.) The site is now getting content and products added by the staff as they are getting ready for grand opening of Total Health Concepts new Denver dispensary in early December.