In this article: How to add IDX to a real estate website when using WordPress, and the benefits of doing so.
Many real estate agents use Internet Data Exchange (IDX) on their websites to display comprehensive and up-to-date property listings. IDX allows agents to display listing data from their local multiple listing service (MLS) on their own websites, along with property photos, descriptions, prices and more.
WordPress makes all of this easier. It allows you to add IDX to your real estate website through the use of plugins, shortcodes, and other handy features. This article will walk you through the steps for installing IDX on your website when using WordPress.
What Is IDX Exactly?
IDX (Internet Data Exchange) is a system that allows real estate agents and brokers to display listings from their local multiple listing service (MLS) on their own websites. It provides detailed information on local homes for sale, which gets updated automatically.
Listing data is typically provided through a feed or API (Application Programming Interface), which can be added to the agent’s site using a WordPress IDX plugin or code snippet.
Let’s shift gears now and talk about how you would add IDX to your real estate website, when using the WordPress CMS.
How to Add It to a WordPress Real Estate Website
Note: The steps for integrating IDX can vary due to a number of factors. So you’ll want to check with your data provider (and possibly your web hosting company) for specific instructions.
Here are the basic steps for adding IDX to a WordPress-powered real estate website…
- Choose an IDX provider: Several companies offer IDX integration for WordPress sites. So you will need to research and compare different options to find one that suits your needs. Consider factors such as the cost, the MLS(s) included, features and functionality, and user reviews.
- Sign up for an IDX account: When signing up, you’ll probably need to provide some personal and business information. You might have to pay an initial sign-up fee as well. Some IDX providers might require you to complete a MLS consent form prior to opening an account.
- Install the IDX plugin: Your IDX provider should provide you with a plugin or code snippet to install on your WordPress real estate website. Follow the instructions provided to install the plugin. You might have to upload the plugin file to your website or add the code snippet into your WordPress theme.
- Configure the IDX plugin: Once the plugin is installed, you will need to configure it to display listings from your local MLS. To do this, will probably need to enter your IDX account credentials and select the appropriate MLS for the listings you wish to display. You might also have to set up custom search fields or other options, depending on the program.
- Customize the appearance of your listings: You may be able to customize the appearance of your listings (color, font and layout) using the IDX plugin’s settings, or by using custom CSS. That’s one of the many benefits of using WordPress for a real estate website — it simplifies the integration process.
- Add listings to your site: You should now be able to display listings on your site using WordPress shortcodes or widgets provided by the plugin. You can add these to any page or post on your real estate website. You might also be able to create custom property pages or set up search pages using the plugin.
- Test and troubleshoot: Be sure to test your IDX integration to make sure it’s working properly. Verify that your listings are being displayed correctly. Perform some test searches, as if you were a home buyer. If you encounter any issues, refer to the documentation provided by your IDX provider or contact their support team.
The Benefits of Using It
We’ve already touched on some of the benefits IDX can offer. It allows you to add value to your WordPress real estate website, in the form of up-to-date property listings. Here are some of the other benefits:
Comprehensive property listings
This is the main benefit of using IDX, and the main purpose as well. It allows you to display detailed and up-to-date information about properties for sale in your area, including photos, descriptions, price, and location. This in turn will make your website a valuable resource for potential home buyers and sellers.
IDX gives you a way to capture leads and contact information from interested buyers and sellers. This can help you grow your client base and stay in touch with potential clients. Many real estate agents find that their IDX listings generate the most valuable leads, when compared to other marketing efforts.
Search engine optimization (SEO)
IDX can help to improve the SEO of your site. It allows you to add high-quality, relevant content (property listings) to your real estate website on a regular basis. This can help to increase your visibility in search results and drive more traffic to your site. If you combine IDX with other forms of content marketing, like blogging, you could really see your traffic take off.
Professionalism and expertise
Adding IDX to your WordPress real estate website can also bolster your image. By providing comprehensive property listings and search functionality on your website, you can demonstrate your expertise and professionalism to potential clients. This can help you build trust and credibility with your audience, and make them more likely to contact you.
User-friendly website experience
By providing an easy-to-use search interface and detailed property listings, you can enhance the user experience on your website. This can help to keep visitors on your site longer. Savvy internet marketers know that the more time a person spends on a website, the more likely they are to take action.
Easy property updates
Lastly, IDX allows you to easily update your property listings as new properties are added, or when existing listings are modified. This helps to ensure that your website always displays accurate and up-to-date information. Without this kind of tool, you could end up spending countless hours on website updates. But with IDX, it happens almost automatically.
The bottom line: Adding IDX to a WordPress real estate website offers a number of benefits. It allows you to display the latest property listings on your site, quickly and easily. It can help you generate leads and boost your search engine visibility over time. It can improve your professional image and make people more inclined to contact you. In other words, it’s well worth the investment.