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Google Insights- Insanely Cool Tool You NEED

origially published August 11, 2008

You Need This Tool

After reading Advanced Acess’ full writeup of Google Insights (click the link to learn what Insights is), I played with the new Google tool myself. I can see amazing ways to use this in any real estate brokerage in that you can see where Google search users are trending their search terms. Below are three searches I performed:

(1) Remax v. RE/MAX

When you have a complicated brand name, it’s important to watch how people are searching for you. This is a perfect example, just LOOK at how many people nationally searched for the brokerage as a word without a slash. If I were with RE/MAX, I would be sure to use the improperly used word on my site. (Click image to enlarge)

(2) Short Sale v. Foreclosure

Many Realtors’ markets are forcing their practices to change and in some cases, foreclosures have taken over their business. But when you’re writing your articles and designating categories and tags, you should take advantage of the free Google tool that can show you where you may need to refocus. (click image to enlarge)

(3) Getting Inspiration

Checking the national pulse for the real estate category will give you an idea of what’s hot and what’s on the minds of buyers and sellers. For example, the last 12 months has shown that search sites and mortgages are the rising topics on Google users’ minds. (click image to enlarge)

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Lani is the COO and News Director at The American Genius, has co-authored a book, co-founded BASHH, Austin Digital Jobs, Remote Digital Jobs, and is a seasoned business writer and editorialist with a penchant for the irreverent.



  1. Vicki Moore

    August 11, 2008 at 1:21 pm

    Wow. Being a remax-ite that’s one to take seriously. A new way to get inspiration is always welcome. 🙂

  2. Derek Overbey

    August 11, 2008 at 1:25 pm

    Look at this! Always finding those little nuggets that bring value to my business! Thanks again Lani!

  3. Jim Duncan

    August 11, 2008 at 1:46 pm

    Fascinating. Look at the decline in searches for “real estate school” and then look at the top four states – Arizon, Florida, North Carolina and Nevada (what’s NC doing there?).

    How about real estate bubble? – Seems it peaked in 2005.

    Or, for my market – charlottesville + real estate – seems I need to start commenting on local blogs in North Carolina, Montana, Colorado, New York …

  4. Irina Netchaev

    August 11, 2008 at 2:04 pm

    Lani, what a great new tool to play with. Thanks!

  5. Anna

    August 11, 2008 at 3:09 pm

    Thank you for the mention Lani!

    The remax vs RE/MAX results are incredible. It’s a bummer that RE/MAX won’t allow agents to use “remax” on their sites. I wonder if they will check out this tool and rethink some of the trademark usage guidelines when it comes to websites.

    Of course, I am not sure if the RE/MAX brand wants to compete with agent sites for search engine results.

    Here’s hoping this tool inspires some change in many industries!

  6. Chris de Jong

    August 11, 2008 at 3:15 pm

    I have been using Insights for a few days now, and it has proven to be a fantastic tool for data-mining and trending. Coupled with Google Trends for websites I do not see a really why I would ever have to move to a payola service such as Comscore. I have also found it is great for competitive analysis, for example check out example!

  7. Ginger Wilcox

    August 11, 2008 at 3:17 pm

    What a great tool to drill down and see what people are actually searching for. Some of the results are surprising to me! I can feel some targeted blog posts coming on..

  8. Lani Anglin-Rosales

    August 11, 2008 at 3:31 pm

    Anna, thank God for alt tags and metatags, huh? 😉 I’m betting they just look at the copy and yay/nay it.

    PS: thanks for showing this to me, I’m so excited to use it!!!! 🙂

  9. Paula Henry

    August 11, 2008 at 4:41 pm

    I love cool tools! I just need a full-time “cool tool guy” to help me install and use them. I wonder how I can sneak remax in my website? Hmmmm.

  10. Anna

    August 11, 2008 at 10:00 pm

    @Chris – It is interesting how the search trends “change” when you choose a specific category, and search worldwide. I used your original search but changed it to include only the US (which skews p2a results as you’re in Canada of course) and to include all categories, not just real estate. I think it’s good to look at multiple comparisons. I am also curious if you checked how many people search for point 2 agent versus point2, nls, etc.

    @Lani – No kidding, I think that may be the only significant way to get it in there. Still that would be an interesting experiment to see if it makes a difference even with “remax” not on the page. I wonder if Google even “reads” the slash? I guess I never thought about that before.

  11. Chris de Jong

    August 11, 2008 at 10:42 pm

    @Anna – I completely agree, it is always best to look at as many metrics and scenarios as possible when using a tool like this for business decision making, otherwise you run the risk of providing neither timely or complete information.

    In my case, I am prone to using a worldwide search when using Insights since Point2 offers its products and services to real estate professionals globally rather than just the United States. Also, I thought it best to just refine the search to real estate since doing otherwise may bring in outlier results in from our heavy equipment division.

    Finally, I went ahead and compared Point2 Agent and Point2 NLS using the metric you provided, and it turns out the search volume is consistent – it just shifted from Agent to NLS and back when we re-branded our site! hahaha


  12. Holly White

    August 11, 2008 at 11:27 pm

    @ Anna – Google DOES read the slash, at least in my own Nashville related search. And having already spent a couple of hours with this tool I can say that so far it’s invaluable. Google really does offer some fantastic tools for free. Now it’s back to work to capitalize on some “breakout” terms.

  13. Eric Blackwell

    August 12, 2008 at 6:19 am

    @ Paula- Google Louisville REMAX –grin. Been there for a couple of years and it is a killer source of traffic. Lani is 100% correct. Better (in our location) than city homes or city homes for sale…(IMO this is thanks to the $50 plus MM annual ad campaigns for the past couple of years.

    Shoot me an email and I will help a sista’ in Indy and fellow REMAXer out for a specific term (grin). (This is not a solicitation for business–i just enjoy your enthusiasm and want to help you succeed.) (hint: you don’t need to sneak REMAX into your site…)

    I have been using it for a few days (it actually was out in a different form before it was released as well) and I have found quite a bit of “insight”. I would caution, however that there are some reported traffic terms that will not bring you much relevant traffic at all (**cough** state real estate**cough**). I’m just sayin’….(grin)



  14. Amy Webb

    August 12, 2008 at 6:31 am

    Thanks for bringing this to my attention. I did just a few quick searched and found the results enlightening. I can see I will be spending the next few days playing with this tool!

  15. Carolyn Gjerde-Tu

    August 13, 2008 at 9:05 pm

    It seems like google keeps coming up with more refined tools to help webmasters see how and what people are searching for. This seems like another valuable tool that I will spend time working to integrate this information onto my site.

  16. Janice Bovee

    August 17, 2008 at 8:28 am

    I love seeing what search terms people are using and now I can see how that changes over time. I think this tool will be very valuable to anyone who does their own seo.

  17. Sharon Simms, St Petersburg, Florida

    September 5, 2008 at 5:44 pm

    It’s fascinating to see where people are who are searching for a specific term. Should be a great help in determining where to target your marketing.

  18. Mariana

    July 18, 2009 at 5:01 pm

    This is AWESOME!!

    Great. I NEEDED another time sucker. I love y’all anyway. #offtoplaywithinsightsfor6hours

  19. Shane

    July 18, 2009 at 7:06 pm

    What a great tip! Thanks for another fantastic find Lani. Glad I found this site, FINALLY!

  20. Dan Connolly

    July 19, 2009 at 12:10 am

    You are right, I do need this tool! Where will I ever find the time to implement all of this stuff?

  21. San Diego Real Estate

    July 19, 2009 at 2:18 am

    Awesome tool. Thanks for the tip. It is a quandry what to do about the RE/MAX trademark. They disallow use of the term Re/Max (Not all caps) as well as REMAX (without the slash). But I’ll have to assume that there are exceptions for SEO. The goal is to sell more real estate, right?

  22. Jim Rake

    July 19, 2009 at 10:13 am


    As always – thanks

    “I can say that so far it’s invaluable. Google really does offer some fantastic tools for free”…Holly – spot on…you gotta love Google.

    Eric – any chance you might help a Bloodhound ‘brother in Fredericksburg?

  23. Bob

    July 20, 2009 at 1:29 pm

    Lani, you are killing me. Insights has been one of my weapons for awhile.

  24. Gwen Banta

    July 20, 2009 at 2:49 pm

    This is GREAT, Lani. I am taking the apostrophe out of Sotheby’s, and I might even start spelling it incorrectly just to get more hits!

  25. Joe Loomer

    July 21, 2009 at 10:22 am

    Thanks Lani! Had been using to do similar things I can now do for free!

    Navy Chief, Navy Pride

  26. Lani Rosales

    July 21, 2009 at 10:26 am

    Here’s another super secret wicked awesome tool, it’s like having Miss Cleo on your webdev team:

  27. Baltimore Homes

    July 23, 2009 at 12:24 am

    I am with Remax Sails in Baltimore and I found this tool a little while back while search google. After comparing Re/max with REMAX my next call was to my web designer and SEO company to change my company information. The tool is extremely usfull for target marketing on major search engines and PPC ads. Thanks for the great write-up!

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