One of the hottest new trends in Real Estate ventures is crowdfunding. Thought to be an irreversible concept in today’s new business world, more and more companies are jumping on board daily. But what are the risks, and how does SEO fit in?
Simply put, since many of the potential “investors” have little to no real property management experience, the world is your demographic.
Unfortunately, unlike traditional real estate ventures, crowdfunding is not bound by SEC regulations. This leaves room for not only unintentional mistakes and miscalculations, but also intentional fraud in a variety of ways. This is important to remember when attempting a crowdfunded project and subsequent SEO marketing. Providing a default track record and previous gains charts often helps ease the minds of potential new investors and proves to longtime veterans that you have the skills and the history to manage their investment.
Where, historically, companies would entice investors with a stake in the entire company at large, now individual properties under the company umbrella can be considered their own “projects.” This, in turn, enables SEO efforts to hone in on a specific, individual project name and not just the company’s brand. This also, when managing more than one project, minimizes the financial risk involved for both the investors and the company. By distributing the investments over several different projects, failed or low earning projects can be compensated for by other high yield investments. Compare this to traditional investments in a real estate company, where if the company does not earn profits all investments are lost, and it’s easy to see why crowd based funding has such a quickly rising fan base.
When related to SEO challenges, very little changes in regard to the multiple projects angles. Each property or project must be focused upon separately in much the same way a single company would be in traditional real estate. Understanding your needs and your clients’ needs regarding timeframe and scope of each venture will better help you choose the best SEO route for the project.
Timeframe proves to be particularly important in crowdfund-based real estate ventures due to the finite nature of each investment pitch. Putting out content quickly is of the utmost importance since each venture has an expiration date. Unlike traditional SEO, your content output needs to be more focused on the specific nature of your project. Content is king, and creating it early — before the launch of the project’s crowd funding event — is key. Being able to quickly plug in your pre-created, specifically targeted content as the project funding progresses will greatly increase the visibility to potential investors. Relevant content and positive reviews are an excellent way to get started.
Another challenge is brand recognition, which again, due to time constraints, can prove to be problematic for SEO. Having the aforementioned track record and positive reviews can lock in your brand early with trustworthiness and a commendatory reputation. Establishing the project as one in a long line of successful ventures is a sure fire way to secure both new and veteran investors.
You must also make sure that not only are you carefully choosing correct keywords and key phrases for your site content, but also in your social media surrounding the property and project. During the campaign, potential investors interested in this type of crowdfunded real estate venture will be actively searching for new opportunities, and you need them to find your project.
This leads us to the final piece of crowdfunded real estate SEO. It is especially important to make sure your project is easily mobile accessible. Mobile browsing is growing increasingly more important each year, and a user-friendly experience is an absolute must in this day and age. With Millennials entering the workforce and receiving the majority of their information from smart phones or tablets, having your crowdfunded real estate project easily accessible can mean the difference between perceived professionalism and a lack thereof, which could easily cost you your intended goal.
The crowdfunded real estate trend and all its inherent SEO challenges are here to stay, but, with a little forethought and adaptability, it can be mastered and utilized to create profitability for both the investor and the project itself.