As the budgeting season approaches and your teams delve into assessing the outcomes of their marketing investments, we want to emphasize the role your website plays as your top marketing tool. Live websites have evolved into an absolute necessity for properties, serving the dual purpose of generating and converting leads into valuable leases.
But how exactly do your property websites impact your leasing results?
Your website functions as your digital leasing office, often serving as the initial point of contact between potential renters and your property. Surprisingly, statistics show that website visitors spend a mere 50 milliseconds assessing the visual appeal of your website. Just like a first interview or a date, first impressions matter significantly. It can make all the difference between a prospective renter exploring your website further or hastily moving on to a competitor’s site.
Give your website a personality and visual identity that aligns seamlessly with your brand. To achieve this, consider the qualities of a good friend: reliability, trustworthiness, honesty, clarity about identity and values, thoughtfulness, and anticipation of needs. Now, replace “friend” with “brand.” A strong property brand embodies the characteristics of a reliable friend, and your website should reflect this, leaving a lasting impression regardless of who visits.
24/7 Leasing Office
When we say, “digital leasing office,” we mean it quite literally. A whopping 83% of prospective renters visit property or company websites before signing a lease. Your website must be well-prepared to take on the role of a 24/7 digital leasing office.
Ensure that forms and calls-to-action are readily accessible throughout the website. Provide comprehensive answers to standard questions about the property, including its location, available units, amenities, pricing, and more. Consider incorporating a Chatbot to answer additional queries and capture leads. For lease-ups, create a dedicated landing page for future make-readys with new supply, offering a taste of the brand while collecting leads in advance. In essence, your website should embody the environment and services of your physical leasing office as closely as possible.
Painting a Picture of the Renter’s Experience
From virtual tours to interactive floor plan browsers and neighborhood explorers, your website empowers potential renters to interactively explore your communities, properties, buildings, floors, and available unit floor plans. This allows renters to envision themselves living in your community.
However, it’s crucial to ensure that the visual representation aligns with reality. Any discrepancies between what visitors see on your website and the actual experience during a tour can lead to friction and affect your ability to convert a lead into a lease.
Enable Measurement of Other Marketing Efforts
This is particularly valuable for multifamily marketing professionals. Your website serves as a valuable tool for tracking the performance of your other marketing initiatives. Whether it’s ILS listings, organic social media efforts, paid search or social ads, your website offers insights into where website visitors and leads are coming from so you can allocate your marketing budget for the best possible return. If you haven’t already, consider setting up GA4 (Google’s new website analytics platform) to enhance your website’s analytical capabilities.
Stand Out from the Competition
Chances are, competing properties and apartment communities also maintain their own websites to showcase available units and communities. Your website presents an opportunity to make a compelling case for why your community surpasses the competition. Having an attractive, engaging, and appealing website for your properties is an effective means of establishing a competitive advantage.
Property websites are, without a doubt, essential to your leasing process. However, they serve a broader purpose beyond lead capture. Websites, in every sense, are the starting touchpoint for most of your leases and ultimately set the tone of your relationship with future renters. It’s important to design and manage them in a way that maximizes their value to prospective renters and the returns they provide to your property assets. Your website, for better or for worse, will have a massive impact on your ability to reach your KPI goals.