Cosmic Cow Pie: Connecting the Dots


Google Places Even More Emphasis on Blogs and Social Media

Google now offers a Blogs, Updates and Discussions option on their SERPs - real estate virtual assistanceGoogle is now placing even more emphasis on blogs and social media.  You have no doubt heard about the new Google SERPs (Search Engine Results Page) options that are available to refine your Google search even more than before.  In addition to the typical News, Images, Maps and Videos, Google has now added the options to refine your search term according to Blogs, Updates and Discussions.

How will this affect your business as a Realtor®?  Instead of having to go to the Google blog search engine, people can type in keywords and simply click "Blogs" in the left hand menu.  This will allow them to have the most relevant information available at their fingertips.  If this isn't an incentive to start blogging for your business, I don't know what else I could tell you to change your mind.

With the "Updates" option, Google pulls information from real-time search results.  This means that, by updating your status on Facebook and/or LinkedIn and Tweeting with your keywords, someone searching your market will be able to find you in real-time.  This is why you need to become socially active.  Setting up an account on a social media organizer is a great way to set up Tweets and Updates for different times on your different accounts to maximize your keyword and business exposure.  However, you do not want to appear SPAM-my by ONLY using keywords in your updates.

The "Discussions" option pulls information from forums and other Q&A sites.  Interacting with other Realtors®, businesses in your area or answering questions from potential clients online can increase the odds of someone finding you through a Google keyword search.  Places like Trulia, LinkedIn and even Active Rain encourage you to join up with groups and interact by answering questions and helping others in the community.

Now that Google has placed even more emphasis on blogging and social media, don't get left out in the cold.  Keep your keywords in mind when doing a status update, a tweet and a blog post.  This is a great way to get your name out in front of potential clients.  If you are unsure how to go about doing this, contact your friendly neighborhood Real Estate Virtual Assistant.  That's what we're here for!

Heather Chavez, Real Estate Virtual Assistant - Second Self Virtual Assistance: When There Isn't Enough of You to Go Around!




Comment balloon 57 commentsHeather Chavez • May 18 2010 12:29AM


Heather ~ This is very exciting information!  You always do a good job of keeping us in the loop!

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Posted by Carra Riley & Declan Kenyon, Helping people Transition at all ages! (Brokers Guild Cherry Creek Ltd) over 10 years ago

Interesting, But then why wouldn't they? Google is in the information gathering business. Good article...

Helping you help others live their American dream...

Posted by TeamCHI - Complete Home Inspections, Inc., Home Inspectons - Nashville, TN area - 615.661.029 (Complete Home Inspections, Inc.) over 10 years ago

Featured @ Club Chaos

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) over 10 years ago

Thank you for the information. One could say that it is about time they offer those  search options...

Posted by Catherine Chaudemanche - Edison & Central NJ, Full Time, Informed and Involved- Results Driven (Metuchen Keller Williams Elite Realty / Middlesex County, NJ) over 10 years ago

HA!  I googled "homes for sale in Lovettsville va" and went to "blogs".

I have about 6 of the 10 returns in SERP for that search terms.  Perhaps all that hard work had value.  Mmmmmm.

Love it. 

However, the consumer does have to take about 3 key strokes to get to the "blogs" selection.  If they stick to the original SERP, ActiveRain still tops.  For the general Google search page, I get 4 of 10 SERP listings. 

I'll take it.


Posted by Lenn Harley, Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland (Lenn Harley,, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate) over 10 years ago

Thanks for the info.  I have bookmarked it for reference.  That sure gives incentive to keep blogs going on a regular basis.

Posted by Barbara Calwhite, 417-438-7387 Specializing in Relocation (Keller Williams Realty of Southwest Missouri) over 10 years ago

I had noticed it last week, it is easier to search now. Some folks don't like it but like tags in our posts, I think it is much easier.


Posted by Missy Caulk, Savvy Realtor - Ann Arbor Real Estate (Missy Caulk TEAM) over 10 years ago

Thank you for this information - I need to check it out!

Posted by Betsy Schuman Dodek, (Washington Fine Properties - Washington DC Area Real Estate) over 10 years ago

The SEO battle rages on! We all need to make sure we have a presence in all the mediums.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 10 years ago

Our electronic world and how it effects our livelihoods evolves so quickly.  Thank you for cluing us in to this important change!

Posted by Richard Strahm, Lansdale and North Penn Real Estate (American Foursquare Realty) over 10 years ago


I hadn't noticed this so I'm looking forward to some experimentation!  Thanks.

Posted by Irene Kennedy Realtor® in Northwestern NJ (Weichert) over 10 years ago


This is great information, and I just took a look at your website - very impressive. I like your menu of services. You could definitely be a help to someone who needs to promote their business.


Posted by Claudette Millette, Buyer, Broker - Metrowest Mass (The Buyers' Counsel) over 10 years ago

Heather what a well written post and I appreciate the info. As Lenn pointed out, this may be worth something after all! I really enjoyed this post and thanks againl ;-)

Posted by Russell Lewis, Broker,CLHMS,GRI (Realty Austin, Austin Texas Real Estate) over 10 years ago

Heather, I checked on this, and it does yield great results. Except, I've been using posterous as well as AR, and the top results under Blogs for me shows my blogger page...which isn't supposed to be for real estate material, I'll have to remove blogger from my posterous autopost settings. I wonder what that will do for my blog ranking then..will my AR blogs finally show back up?

Posted by William James Walton Sr., Greater Waterbury Real Estate (WEICHERT, REALTORS® - Briotti Group) over 10 years ago



I have noticed recently that blogs have moved up quite smartly on the first page og Google.



Posted by Brian Madigan, LL.B., Broker (RE/MAX West Realty Inc., Brokerage (Toronto)) over 10 years ago

Oh, but when I search specific long-tail key words under everything, my AR blogs show up in the top spots...hmmm....this is very interesting indeed....

Posted by William James Walton Sr., Greater Waterbury Real Estate (WEICHERT, REALTORS® - Briotti Group) over 10 years ago

Heather - the change certainly makes sense given how social media, and blogging, continues to grow, but I wonder how many consumers are really going to take the extra step to further refine their searches? Do they even notice that there are these other options?

Whether they do or not, it's clear that being in the social media arena and having your information out there is a number of places is becoming more important.


Posted by Jeff Dowler, CRS, The Southern California Relocation Dude (eXp Realty of California, Inc.) over 10 years ago


Absolutely true.  We get most of our traffic on our web sites from our blog, than from our key words.  Thanks for sharing this.

Posted by Ron and Alexandra Seigel, Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy (Napa Consultants) over 10 years ago

I have to check this out, but may be calling you!

Posted by Rebecca Gaujot, Realtor®, Lewisburg WV, the go to agent for all real estate over 10 years ago

I actually just started blogging and already can see the importance. I have tried googling my name, my company, etc. my name comes up now before most of my colleagues. I'm hoping the hard work will pay off with true results. Only time will tell. Thanks for the article. Best Continued Success...

Posted by Vicky Amaro (The Maranda Group at Koenig & Strey Real Living) over 10 years ago

Heather- Real time search is here to stay although I am not convinced that it is really what searchers are looking for. I suppose it depends on how superficial their search is. Nothing drives me more crazy when I am doing research for a post or on a subject and all I get back are opinions, misinformation and people's bickering and gossip instead of the deep websites that really get into the meat of the subject. 

The next thing is we who are online need not assume that everyone else is or that everyone else knows what we know. Every single listing we have- we have been the ones teaching the sellers how to even go online to do see their listings, etc. 

Of course, none of what I say deters me from being a major blogger! Because still in all, we get a ton of business from my blogging. Katerina 

Posted by Katerina Gasset, Get It Done For Me Virtual Services (Get It Done For Me Virtual Services ) over 10 years ago

Like Lenn, I'm going to start fishing around & see where I come up.  I did see this in searches the other day & it didn't even register.  Thanks for the update & for taking the time to spread the word.

Posted by Lyn Sims, Schaumburg Real Estate (RE/MAX Suburban) over 10 years ago

Hi Heather - This is why you're an important part of the Second Self team!  Great information.  Thanks for sharing.

Posted by Pamela Cendejas, Second Self Virtual Assistance (928) 692-3235 (Second Self Virtual Assistance) over 10 years ago

Nice summary of what's new on Google results pages

Posted by Tina Gleisner, Home Tips for Women (Home Tips for Women) over 10 years ago

I LOVE active rain and all you people who keep us up to date...

Posted by Jill Nelson, Interior Design (Jill Nelson Design Services) over 10 years ago

Thanks Heather!  That's good information to have.

Posted by Karen Rice Madison AL Realtor, 256-348-1527 Call/Text (Keller Williams Realty Madison) over 10 years ago

Heather, I saw this yesterday while searching online and had not had an opportunity to check it out in detail.

Posted by Jennifer Archambeault, An Austin Texas Realtor (Cardani Group, REALTORS® - Austin Texas ) over 10 years ago

Great information! Gosh I love ActiveRain and everyone here! So much stuff learned every day!

Posted by Duane Murphy, Broker- Owner-Real Estate - (Expert Real Estate Partners LLC) over 10 years ago

Good information but I wonder how many people search this way. I know I don't (although I've recently started using the 'most recent results' button). I sincerely hope it catches on since right now I'm number one for the best keywords in town!

Posted by Julia Odom, Chattanooga Homes for Sale (Select Realty Professionals) over 10 years ago

I am happy about this one.  I'm going to check it out now.

Posted by Tammie White, Broker, Franklin TN Homes for Sale (Franklin Homes Realty LLC) over 10 years ago

Great info, thanks for sharing! Blogging and social media have become such a huge part of the was only a matter of time before Google pushed it to the fore-front!

Posted by Christine Wade - Real Estate Virtual Assistant, Proud to Serve Your Real Estate Support Needs (Christine Wade) over 10 years ago

Heather,  thanks for the information!  It seems that everyday technology just keeps adding and adding and adding ....


Posted by Pippa Mac, The Woodlands TX Real Estate (Chevaux Group Realtor, The Woodlands and Spring) over 10 years ago

Some people don't really like to read blogs. Do you think that this will drive certain readers away from blogs?

Posted by Melissa Zavala, Broker, Escondido Real Estate, San Diego County (Broadpoint Properties) over 10 years ago

Heather, thanks for the information. Sounds exciting.

Posted by Ted Tyndall, I will help You find the Home YOU want to Buy (Davidson Realty Inc.) over 10 years ago

I hadn't noticed the change, but do think it could segregate in the other direction as well, like Melissa brought up.  Thanks for bringing this to our attention!

Posted by Stanton Homes, Design/Build Custom Home Builder in North Carolina (Stanton Homes - New Home Builder) over 10 years ago

Muy cool~  I would personally rather find a blog on a search topic rather than a keyword stuffed static site.

Posted by Renée Donohue~Home Photography, Western Michigan Real Estate Photographer (Savvy Home Pix) over 10 years ago

Thanks for the update - had not heard of this at all.

Posted by Lori Cain, Midtown Tulsa Real Estate Top Producer (eXp Realty) over 10 years ago

Heather - I missed this, thanks for sharing, I will keep this in mind and certainly check it out.

Posted by Mike Saunders (Lanier Partners) over 10 years ago

Very cool...thanks for the update!

Posted by Linda Lohman, Former Teacher/Broker (Fonville Morisey Realty) over 10 years ago

Thanks for the information.  That is definitely something to know :) 

Posted by Cinda Rose, Your West Valley Real Estate Expert! (The West Valley Home Team at Realty ONE Group) over 10 years ago

Great updated information Heather and thank you for keeping us all in the 'loop'. We'll think of this when you decide we are too tired to get the blogging in. 

Posted by Al & Peggy Cunningham, Brokers, Our Family Wants To Help Your Family! (RE/MAX West Realty Inc., Brokerage) over 10 years ago

Excellent advise Heather ...thank you for this useful information


Posted by Hannah Williams, Expertise NE Philadelphia & Bucks 215-820-3376 (Re/Max Eastern inc.) over 10 years ago

Yeah, I'm all over the blogs too - and it seems that I am unique in that I always post ORIGINAL CONTENT. I saw 2 or 3 'local blogs' with canned content from some newsletter . . .

Posted by Candice A. Donofrio, 928-201-4BHC (4242) call/text (Next Wave RE Investments LLC Bullhead City AZ Commercial RE Broker) over 10 years ago

There's a lot of potential power here, Heather. The key is to maintain a sense of genuine engagement while leveraging Google's new search options.

Posted by John Novak, Henderson, Las Vegas and Summerlin Real Estate (Keller Williams Realty The Marketplace) over 10 years ago

There's always something new with Google.  Thanks for pointing all this out!


Posted by DeeDee Riley, Realtor - El Dorado Hills & the Surrounding Areas (Lyon Real Estate - El Dorado Hills CA) over 10 years ago

Thanks Heather.  A very informative (as always) post.   Please remember me at referral time to Charlottesville.

Posted by Cliff Kavanaugh, - 434-466-5128 - (Keller Williams Realty of Charlottesville Virginia) over 10 years ago

Oh my goodness!  So many responses.  I'll attempt to respond to them all.  So glad you guys found this informative.


Carra - Thanks, darlin'.  I appreciate it!

Thanks, Michael.  All the search engines are constantly trying to keep people on their search engines as long as possible.  So, they're constantly evolving.

Thank you, Miss C

I think that Bing really started the whole narrowing searches to be more specific idea, Catherine.  The other search engines were forced to follow suit.

You're right, Lenn.  It does take 3 keystrokes.  I do find now, however, that I am looking for the options on the left hand side more and more often to narrow my search terms down.  It's nice.

Posted by Heather Chavez, Real Estate Virtual, Assistant (928) 692-3235 (Second Self Virtual Assistance) over 10 years ago

Yes, Barbara.  It's a HUGE encouragement to keep on blogging.

I agree, Missy.  I find it helps to narrow my searches to be more specific to what I'm looking for.

Glad I could help, Betsy.

That's for darn sure, Bill!  You snooze, you lose.

You're welcome, Richard.  Glad I could help.

Posted by Heather Chavez, Real Estate Virtual, Assistant (928) 692-3235 (Second Self Virtual Assistance) over 10 years ago

Let me know how it goes, Irene.

Thanks, Claudette.  We're always ready to help.  And, at Second Self Virtual Assistance, we are always trying to stay on top of the game so that our clients can stay on top of their game.

Thanks, Russell.  Just keep on blogging.  You'll be happy you did.

Hmm, William.  I'm curious how that will affect your rankings, too.  Please let me know.  It just might force AR to the forefront.  Definitely don't forget the importance of long tail keyword terms.

Good job, Brian.

Posted by Heather Chavez, Real Estate Virtual, Assistant (928) 692-3235 (Second Self Virtual Assistance) over 10 years ago

For sure, Jeff.  Having your info out there and available to the consumer will give people more opportunities to find you.

That's because the search engines are VERY happy to index blog posts because this is information that changes often, Ron & Alexandra.  And search engines LOVE information that evolves constantly.  Another reason why blogging is such an important component in your business marketing.

Great, Rebecca.  I look forward to hearing from you.

Posted by Heather Chavez, Real Estate Virtual, Assistant (928) 692-3235 (Second Self Virtual Assistance) over 10 years ago

My Blogging seems to be my best method of getting to the top right now anyway, so I guess this is good.

Posted by Gene Riemenschneider, Turning Houses into Homes (Home Point Real Estate) over 10 years ago

Heather - I had noticed this, but I wonder how many consumers will use it.  To be sure, more and more people will make use of this tool/option over time, though, so there's no reason not to be blogging/tweeting, etc.  Good stuff!

Posted by Jason Crouch, Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653) (Austin Texas Homes, LLC) over 10 years ago

Eventually I bet they'll have options to check for videos, Twits, etc., so it might be good to start doing those.

Posted by Russel Ray, San Diego Business & Marketing Consultant & Photographer (Russel Ray) over 10 years ago

I think that blogs are relevant for many people so it makes sense.

Posted by Damon Gettier, Broker/Owner ABRM, GRI, CDPE (Damon Gettier & Associates, REALTORS- Roanoke Va Short Sale Expert) over 10 years ago

Thats why I'm here and contributing . This so true and necessary.

Posted by Ed Macias, Miami FL-REO Property Management Multifamily (Real Estate Teammates) over 10 years ago

I noticed this on Google search a week or so ago and really did not pay much attention to it.   It for sure will not hurt my blogging results.  Thanks for bringing it to my attention.

Posted by Jirius Isaac, Real Estate & loans in Kenmore, WA (Isaac Real Estate &TriStar Mortgage) over 10 years ago

Thanks for the information Heather, I'll have to go and check this out.

Posted by Bill Travis, Broker/Owner (Captain Bill Realty, LLC) over 10 years ago