Real estate web sites tend to be large, unruly monsters. They are typically jammed full of all sorts of stuff — info on schools, neighborhoods, mortgages, buying and selling tips, and more. Our own site is no exception. Don't get me wrong, our site gets a lot of visitors, and it has served our visitors, and our business, well.
In my ongoing effort to dominate the
global local search engine results, I got to wondering what would happen if I created a "bare bones" real estate web site. Took a minimalist approach so to speak.
If there is one thing the majority of real estate web site visitors want, it's to be able to search for real estate listings. All of the MLS/IDX search pages we have on our site get significant traffic. Our main search page is the second most visited page on our site (after the home page). More time is spent on it than any other page, by far.
So I said to myself, "Self, I wonder what would happen if you built a site with nothing on it but a real estate listings search function?" So I did.
There's not much too it. It was my first real adventure in using CSS to build web pages. CSS is wicked cool, and makes for some very small web pages (from a file size perspective — the home page of this site comes in at only 2.4KB. Compare that to the 76KB of our main site's home page…).
The questions are many… Is this a good idea, or just a complete waste of my time and bandwidth? Will visitors looking for Phoenix real estate find this site useful? Will they even be able to find the site? Without a lot of content, it may prove difficult to get this site to appear in search engines for anything close to a mainstream search term. It's a real Search Engine Optimization challenge to be sure.
Only time will tell I suppose. If nothing else, it's an interesting experiment.
If anyone out there in the real estate blogiverse has an opinion of the efficacy of such a minimalist site, I'm all ears. If any consumers out there have any thoughts, I'd really like to hear them. So take a jaunt over the PhoenixMLSSearch.info and let me know what you think!
(Note: The site is very new, just hours old, and there is still work to be done. But it's complete enough for you to get the gist of it. I'm wide open for suggestions.)
[tags]real estate web sites, IDX search, minimalist site[/tags]