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Latest News September 29, 2023

How to Use Google Ads for Real Estate in 2023? A Step-By-Step Guide

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Google Ads is the best way for real estate agents to reach out to the growing number of home buyers and sellers who use the internet for their property needs.

Real estate agents of the past spent most of their time using old ways to sell, like cold calling or sending out postcards. Today, Google Ads is a more flexible and cheap way to put your real estate business in front of online customers who are looking for your services.

In this step-by-step guide, we’ll show you how to set up a Google Ads campaign so you can get more people to notice your real estate business and meet with more people who want to buy or sell a home.

The Basics of Google Ads and PPC Advertising

Before we talk about how to do something, let’s talk about what it means.

What is PPC Advertising?

Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is a simple model in which an ad is shown, but the marketer only pays when the ad is clicked. PPC advertising has become one of the most popular ways to get people to visit websites because it is cheap, easy to manage, and gets results quickly.

What is Google Ads?

Google Ads is a pay-per-click (PPC) service that puts your ads on Google’s SERPs (search engine results pages). You can set a budget for your projects, make ads that target certain keywords, and only pay when someone clicks on your ad.

Right now, Google Ads is the best tool for pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, and it works especially well for real estate agents, teams, and brokerages. It gives us a lot of useful tools, a huge audience, and an easy-to-use design that makes finding leads online easier than ever.

Reach is the best thing about using Google Ads. Over 95% of search traffic goes through Google, and every day, millions of people use Google to look for homes, real estate services, and other information connected to real estate.

How Does Google Ads Work?

The auction method that Google Ads uses can be a little confusing.

When a Google user types in a search question, Google holds an auction to decide which ads will show up in the search results. Advertisers bet on words and phrases that are important to their business.

The placement of an ad is based on a combination of the amount bid and the quality of the ad, which is decided by things like the expected click-through rate (CTR), how relevant the ad is, and how good the landing page experience is.

Benefits of Google Ads for Real Estate Professionals

Why does Google Ads stick out when there are so many other ways to market? Search purpose is the main reason why Google Ads are useful for real estate agents.

People who see your ads are actively looking for what your business has to offer. For instance, someone who searches “homes for sale in Miami” is probably in the process of buying or selling a home.

Compare Google Ads to Facebook Ads, where your ads can be targeted but are shown to a relatively passive audience that is busy looking at cat pictures or writing about their weekend.

Google Ads lets you reach out to potential clients in a similar way, but to people who are actively looking for topics related to real estate. This makes them more likely to become clients in the future.

How to Successfully Set Up Your Real Estate Google Ads Campaign

Now comes the fun part: how to make and set up your real estate business’s Google Ads strategy.

Step 1: Create Your Google Ads Account

Make sure you have a Google Ads account set up before we get started. You can sign up at

Your Google Ads account is where you manage high-level things like billing, admin rights, and your campaigns.

Campaigns are where your ad groups live. This is where you set your spending and who you want to reach. Each ad group will have a different set of keywords that focus on a different part of your business. You can put ads in these ad groups that will show up when people look for the keywords you choose.

Step 2: Conduct Research and Start Planning

After you’ve set up your Google Ads account, you should think about the places your business serves and who your ideal customer is.

Is your dream client looking for a place to put money? Homes on the water? Want to find something in a certain city or neighborhood? Make a list of five to seven places, neighborhoods, or markets you want to target. These will make up our ad groups in the end.

For Instance, if You Live in Miami, You Might Choose One of These Ad Groups:

  • Miami
  • Miami Beach
  • Fort Lauderdale
  • Coral Gables
  • Key Biscayne
  • Hollywood

Depending on what’s popular in your area, you may also want to list farms and ranches or oceanfront houses as separate groups.

Once you know where you’re going, it’s time to do a keyword study.

Use tools like the Free Keyword Tool or Google’s Keyword Planner to narrow it down. This will give you an idea of how many people look for those keywords, how much competition there is, and how much they might cost.

Keyword tools may give you more ideas that you hadn’t thought of before. Getting these keyword ideas helps us find the high-volume search terms that possible clients use to find properties and services like yours.

Once you’ve chosen five to seven places or niches to focus on, you can start your campaign.

Step 3: Start Your Campaign

Click the blue plus sign in your Google Ads account to start making an ad.

Choose the right campaign objective and type

The first step is to pick a campaign goal that fits with your goals. We usually suggest the website traffic goal for real estate, since you’re usually trying to get people to visit your website.

Here’s a Quick Rundown of the Different Goals of the Campaign:

  • Sales: Aimed at increasing the sales of your goods or services and generating revenue. This involves tactics like bidding strategies that target clicks, as well as creating assets and ads that persuade people to make purchases or conversions.
  • Leads: The objective is to collect information from potential customers who fill out forms. This helps build a database of potential leads that can be nurtured and converted into customers over time.
  • Website traffic: Focuses on driving more visitors to your website. While it may not directly result in immediate sales, increased website traffic can lead to conversions and sales in the long run.
  • Brand awareness: Aim to enhance the visibility and recognition of your brand. It may not immediately translate into more website visits or leads but contributes to building brand equity and trust over time.
  • App installs and engagement: Specifically designed to promote the installation of a mobile app and encourage users to engage with the app’s features and content.
  • Local store visits: Geared towards attracting people to physical retail locations, ultimately boosting offline sales for brick-and-mortar stores.
  • Product and brand consideration: Focuses on making your brand and products more visible to new potential customers who may be interested in your offerings. This helps create awareness and interest in what you have to offer.

These goals basically tell Google what we want to achieve with our campaigns. This lets real estate businesses keep track of their ads and make changes to get the best results.

Choose Your Campaign Type

Next, you’ll choose a campaign type. This will decide where your ads will show up.

We’re going to use a Search campaign type because we want our ads to show up on Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs) when people are looking to buy or sell real estate.

Name Your Campaign

Last, choose a name for your effort but don’t think too much about it.

A good rule of thumb for planning is that your campaign name should say something about your campaign goal. Based on the names we’ve already seen, “South Florida – Search” would be a good name.

Google will ask you about how you want to bid, but we’ll talk about that later. For now, leave it set to “maximize clicks.”

Choose Networks to Search for

The networks are the first campaign setting you should pay attention to. By default, Google Search and Display networks also show your ads. We suggest that you uncheck the box for the Display Network because we only want our ads to show up in SERPs.

Choose (and Exclude) Locations

Now we’ll talk about location targeting, which is where you put in the places you want to target and the areas around them. One important thing to know is that Google automatically shows your ads to “people who live, work, or show interest in your targeted locations.”

This means that your ads will show up for anyone in the world who searches for your keywords, no matter where they are. But these places tell you where people are hitting on your ads, which is useful in the long run.

You’ll also want to add some “negative” places, which stop your ads from showing up in those areas. Start by taking out countries that are known for having click farms and have a very small chance of sending relevant traffic.

Some Places to Start With That Are Known to Be Bad Are:

  • China
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • The Philippines
  • Bangladesh

Create Audience Segments to Improve Campaign Efficiency

Lastly, we’ll talk about audience groups, which will help us focus on Google’s in-market audiences in a very specific way. These are people who are looking into goods or services and might buy something.

Look up “real estate” and choose in-market groups that have a “For Sale” label. You can also target the “Commercial,” “Homeowner,” or “For Rent” categories if they are important to your business.

Now that our account is set up and the plan for our campaign is in place, we’re ready to move forward.

Step 4: Set Up Ad Groups

Ad groups are a way to organize your ads and keywords. They are part of your strategy. We’re going to make five to seven ad groups based on the choices we made earlier.

Name your first ad group after the area or type of property it will be showing ads for. We’re going to call it Miami.

Determine Your Keywords

Then, you will make a list of the keywords you want your ads to show up for. Based on what we learned from our keyword study, we’ll use the following keywords:

  • Miami FL homes for sale
  • Miami fl property for sale
  • Miami FL real estate
  • Miami condos for sale
  • MLS Miami FL
  • Houses for sale Miami
  • Zillow Miami

Understand Keyword Match Types

One thing to remember about keywords is that Google will show your ads for search terms that are similar to the keywords you give.

But there are different match types that tell Google how strict they need to be when figuring out which search terms are related to your keywords:

  • Broad Match (e.g., “Miami, FL homes for sale”): This is the default match type used by Google Ads. With broad match, your ads can appear in search results for queries that are related to the meaning of your keywords, even if they don’t contain the exact terms. It allows for a wide range of search variations.
  • Phrase Match (e.g., “Miami homes for sale”): With phrase match, your ads will show up in search results that include the exact keyword phrase or a close variation of it, but there may be other words before or after the phrase.
  • Exact Match (e.g., [Miami, FL Real Estate]): In this match type, your ads appear only in search results for queries that precisely match the exact term or a close variation of it. There are no other words allowed before or after the specified term. It offers the highest level of keyword precision.

First, we will make sure that all of our keywords are wide match. You can always change your keyword match types in the future if you think your ads aren’t being shown the right way.

Select Negative Keywords to Blacklist Search Terms

Use a list of “negative keywords” to tell Google what search terms it should not show your ads for.

These bad terms will be different for each market, but in general, you should think about searches that your ideal customer, or Avatar, won’t do. For example, in our real estate marketing, we will list these negative keywords:

  • Rent
  • News
  • Lease
  • Airbnb
  • Seasonal
  • Rentals
  • Commercial
  • Cheap
  • Management

Like our keywords, we can always change these negative keywords as we learn more about the search terms that make our ads appear.

Step 5: Build Your Ads

Now it’s time to get to the heart of our campaign by making our ads. These are responsive ads, which means that Google takes the headlines and descriptions we give them and combines them in different ways to make the end ad.

Start your ad by putting in your final URL, which is the page a person will go to when they click on your ad. This will be your home page. We’ll talk more about how to make it work for you down below.

Then you’ll need to pick a show path, which lets us shorten the final URL to make it look better in our ad. You can be creative here, but most of the time it’s best to use simple and clean display routes.

Create Powerful Headlines and Descriptions for Your Ad

Now we can talk about our headlines, which will be the most important part of our ad. To write great ad titles, you need to remember these important tips:

  • Use Keywords: Incorporate relevant keywords or phrases that potential clients are searching for. These keywords should reflect what your target audience is looking for in the real estate market.
  • Address the Problems: Understand the needs and desires of your ideal customers. Offer solutions to their problems or fulfill their desires. In real estate, this might include providing free home assessments or curated lists of homes for sale. Be creative in addressing their specific needs.
  • Add Information and Numbers: Include valuable data and statistics in your listings. Mention details like the median price of homes, the number of active or sold listings, or any other relevant information that can help potential clients make informed decisions.
  • Use Pins Effectively: Utilize pins to keep important headlines or information in place. You can pin items to the top of your listings to make them more prominent. Ensure that your headlines are well-organized and clearly convey the key points to potential clients.

Then, we’ll come up with four descriptions that will show up under the titles. To write good Google Ad descriptions, you should keep your points short and relevant, and you should include numbers and calls to action.

Use Assets to Improve Interaction With Your Ad

Now that our ads look good, we’re going to talk about some of the resources we have. These are extra pieces of information, which used to be called extensions, that can help your ad stand out and lead to sales.

The first thing we’ll do is set up site links. These are extra links that show up under your ad and lead people to sub-niches that are related to what you’re selling.

Then you can list some callouts, which are extra bits of text that tell people quickly what makes your real estate business special or what you specialize in.

For example, we might use callouts like “relocation,” “first-time buyers,” and “luxury specialists” in South Florida.

You can play around with quite a few assets to see how they improve your ad and service. Pay close attention to the Structured Snippet, Location, and Calls assets if you want to get more real estate leads.

Image images are also a great way to get people to notice your ad, but you can’t use them until your account has been open for 90 days.

Choose a Suitable Landing Page

Don’t forget the last URL we talked about. Well, let’s talk about how to choose good real estate landing pages that our ads will send people to when they click on them.

First and foremost, the main page you send people to should have exactly what they are looking for.

If your ad group is about Miami and your ad says “Miami Homes for Sale,” then your final URL should be current real estate listings.

If an ad says “Free Home Valuations” in the headline, the person should be taken to a page where they can easily get just that. In order to get real estate leads, it’s important to follow this rule very consistently.

Many people make a big mistake when they send all guests from every ad to a single page on their website. Then, the possible customer has to look around to find the information they really wanted in the first place.

You should also have one clear and obvious call to action so that the visitor knows what they need to do to get the piece of value you are giving them.

If you give your target audience what they want, they are more likely to buy from you and see you as the real estate expert.

Step 5: Set Your Campaign Budget

At the end of setting up a program, you’ll tell Google how much money to spend each day. This can be changed based on your wants or the seasons of your business, so set it to whatever works best for your company.

Google Ads also lets you choose from a variety of bidding tactics, but we only need to focus on the main ones:

  • Maximize Clicks: This automated bidding strategy aims to maximize the number of clicks you receive within your daily budget. It focuses on driving traffic to your website or landing pages.
  • Maximize Conversions: Maximize Conversions is a bidding technique that optimizes your campaigns to achieve the highest number of conversions (e.g., sales, sign-ups, etc.) possible within your daily budget. It’s designed to help you get the most value from your advertising by prioritizing actions that matter.
  • Cost per Acquisition (CPA) Goal: This strategy involves setting a specific target CPA, which is the amount you’re willing to pay for each conversion or acquisition. The bidding system will then adjust your bids to help you achieve as many sales or conversions as possible at or below your defined target CPA. This approach is ideal for businesses that have a specific cost-per-acquisition goal in mind and want to efficiently allocate their budget to achieve that goal.

Step 6: Set Up Conversion Tracking

As I said before, most real estate agents who are new to Google Ads will start by trying to get the most clicks. However, you will definitely want to set up conversion tracking, since the end goal is to get the most leads and deals.

Under “Tools and Settings,” click “Conversions” to set up a new conversion step. This is usually tracked when a website user fills out a contact form or signs up, but calls can also be tracked.

Follow the steps that Google gives you to set up conversion tracking on your website, and you’ll be able to properly measure how well your real estate campaigns are doing.

Keys to Success With Google Ads for Real Estate

Now that your Google Ads strategy for real estate is up and running, here are some tips to keep in mind.

1. Continually Monitor Key Metrics

As your promotion is running, keep a close eye on key metrics to measure how well it is doing. Keep an eye on important measures like cost per conversion, click-through rate (CTR), cost per click (CPC), and conversion rate to figure out which ads and ad groups work best.

We can figure out how well our ads work by using the Google Ads Performance Grader or a similar tool. These tools look at how well a campaign is doing and tell us what we can do to make it better.

2. Review Your Campaign’s Search Terms

Check the search terms that cause your ads to show up often. This helps you improve your lists of keywords and “negative” keywords so that your ads only show up for searches that are related to them.

3. A/b Test Your Ads

Try out different ads and tactics to find out what your potential customers like best. Make several ads with different titles, descriptions, and calls to action so you can see which ones work best.

4. Build Relationships

Don’t just worry about finding leads. Building connections is the key to success in real estate, and Google Ads are just one way to do that. If you give worth and come from a place of wanting to help, you’ll be successful in the long run.

5. Commit to a Follow-up Plan

Follow-up is very important in real estate, and it’s even more important in the internet world. Leads can be kept in mind through email campaigns, phone calls, and other human touches.

6. Leverage Technology and People

Use a good Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system to keep track of leads, contacts, appointments, and sales in an organized way.

Google Ads Can Help Your Real Estate Business Succeed

Google Ads gives real estate workers a chance to grow their businesses that has never been seen before in the industry. Setting up, managing, and constantly improving your Google Ads account is the first step to having your lead source instead of buying leads or waiting for the phone to ring.

Use this as a reference when you’re making new campaigns or going over old ones, and remember that it’s not just about showing ads. In the end, the goal is to provide value and build connections that will help your real estate business for years to come.

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