Is your apartment website converting leads to leases?

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Are you looking for ways to make your apartment community more efficient and effective? This is Part 9 of our Apartment Vacancy Analysis series, which will help you find and fix the gaps across the marketing and leasing chain, and offers practical strategies and tools to help take your apartment community to the next level! Access the full table of contents available below.

🤕 Problems & symptoms of a poor apartment website

You're unable to make frequent updates to your community website.

The two most essential pieces of information every renter wants to know before leasing is a) how much the rent price is and b) whether there is an available unit in the floorplan they need. 

How can you provide truthful information about your apartments online while neglecting the most crucial marketing source responsible for displaying them?

This requires displaying accurate, up-to-date pricing and availability on your community website—the source of truth every prospect will visit to get the critical information they need.

Knowing that prospects will only convert after gathering those bits of information, it's problematic when you don't have the ability or capacity to make frequent updates to your community website. 

Consider that unit availability changes daily, as sometimes can price. How can you provide truthful information about your apartments online while neglecting the most crucial marketing source responsible for displaying them?

Your website's bounce rate is high and conversion rate low.

Another case where your website contributes to a vacancy problem is if it's performing poorly, which can indicate a higher bounce rate. 

Bounce rate measures the number of users who visit and leave your website in seconds without taking any interaction. 

If it's high, three things could be true:

  • Your website takes too long to load
  • It lacks unengaging or helpful content
  • Or the traffic you're generating from your advertising campaigns is poor

Additionally, suppose your website has a low conversion rate. In that case, visitors aren't clicking the application button or scheduling an appointment.

You're either missing both conversion events, not giving enough content that makes prospects comfortable contacting you, or, again, not generating the correct type of traffic.

For your website to be a successful marketing source, you're paying a significant amount in advertising to generate enough web traffic to impact leasing.

This is when you know your website (and the traffic to it) isn't up to snuff: Your average cost-per-lead or cost-per-lease is so expensive because you have to pay a significant amount of money on digital advertising to generate enough traffic to produce leases. 

You have an unsustainable situation when it takes that much expenditure to get results from your website, especially when revenue is already impacted by excessive vacancy loss.

🤦🏼‍♂️ Common mistakes multifamily operators make with their apartment websites

Your community website isn't focused on the mobile experience.

It's easy to focus on the appearance and performance of the desktop version of your apartment community's website. But it's the mobile version of your website today that's most important, even though it's typically overlooked.

The unignorable truth is that over 80% of all traffic to our clients' community websites is mobile! 

A mobile website incapable of seamlessly replicating the desktop experience of your community website will negatively impact your ability to attract prospective residents and generate leads.

Your website lacks engaging, floorplan-specific content.

Remember, every renter knows how many bedrooms they'll need before beginning their apartment search, so floorplans are their focal point as they evaluate communities.

That's why it's a mistake if your website doesn't have pages dedicated to each floorplan showing specific photos, video tours, and other critical information. 

You may have a page dedicated to each of your community's floorplan offerings or a photo gallery page showing various amenities or unit features. But if those things aren't presented on a floorplan-specific basis, it can unintentionally confuse the most focal part of a prospect's search. Thus, your website won't be as effective.

Your website is outdated (and it shows).

Your online presentation should create a favorable impression on prospective residents. 

When your website is up-to-date, features beautiful imagery, works great on any device, and provides helpful information, it shows prospects you care. They instantly believe your community will also follow through with providing excellent customer service and living experience. 

When your website is up-to-date, features beautiful imagery, works great on any device, and provides helpful information, it shows prospects you care.

They instantly believe that if you put that much effort into your website presentation, the management team at your community will also follow through with providing excellent customer service and living experience. 

The inverse is also true if your website is outdated and it's apparent right away. It creates a negative impression that will be hard to overcome.

Unit-specific availability and pricing information is missing or wrong on your website.

As previously established, prospects won't convert to leads from your website without these two critical pieces of information. If you don't have integration with your property or revenue management software on your community website, you're preventing it from being the lease generator you expect it to be.

And even if you are showing pricing, it must be transparent for prospects to quickly assess whether or not a unit they're interested in matches their budget. 

A common mistake is presenting pricing as a broad price range, which everyone will assume means they would pay more towards the higher end of the range.

🙌🏼 Best practices for developing an apartment website that converts

Give your community website the priority and updates it deserves.

It's easy, from reviewing some of the apartment website mistakes we see, to determine what the best practices are. Your community website can become your most effective and critical marketing source if you apply these three features:

  1. Floorplan-specific pages. Make it as easy as possible for prospects to gather all of the information they need about the specific floorplan that meets their predetermined needs. These dedicated floorplan pages should include engaging visual content, including a photo gallery and walkthrough video tour showing the inside of one of its units, as that provides the most straightforward depiction of their living experience. Additionally, you should include specific floorplan amenities alongside pricing and availability information for its units on the page. Engaging, floorplan-specific pages on your apartment's website enables you to pre-qualify prospects into your best leads—a massive tool for combating vacancy.
  2. Show one rent price. To make it easy for prospects to assess affordability, showing only the rent for a 12-month lease on your website would be best. 
  3. Set up pricing and availability integrations. Your website will instantly convert better when it shows up-to-date pricing and availability (alongside engaging content). Prospects will feel more confident taking the next step in the leasing process when they know how much their rent will be and when they can move in. Plus, it would be the website addition that would also benefit your leasing staff by making their jobs easier.

🛠 Tools to help you improve your apartment's website

Get an apartment community website built by RentVision.

Our apartment community websites are designed with a mobile-first mentality and prioritize floorplan-specific content. Plus, through integration with your property management software, we can dynamically arrange the order of floorplans to ensure that those with the most upcoming vacancies gain the highest visibility. Learn more about how a multifamily community website by RentVision can allow future renters to tour your community anytime, anywhere, on any device.

If all that is working as it should be,
then drive traffic!

➡️ Next page: How qualified is the traffic to your apartment website?

Complete Apartment Vacancy Analysis Series
Introduction: What's causing your apartment's vacancy? Here's how to find & fix it
Part 2: Is your apartment's renewals strategy causing more vacancy?
Part 3: Are your residents satisfied with their experience at your apartments?
Part 4: Are you accruing excess vacancy loss after units lease?
Part 5: Are you properly vetting your apartment's lease applications?
Part 6: Is your apartment's application process to blame for vacancies?
Part 7: Are your apartment tours helping overcome vacancy?
Part 8: Do you have enough 'good' leads to improve apartment leasing?
Part 9: Is your apartment website converting leads to leases?
Part 10: How qualified is the traffic to your apartment website?
Part 11: What about pricing?! How rents affect your apartment's performance

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