Are you a realtor and want to develop an IDX website on WordPress? It is a fact, real estate websites have some very specific required features.
In this article, I shall provide you an insight into real estate websites. After reading it, you can create an IDX website in WordPress.
There are several plugins that you can use to display the listings on your site as well as a way to utilize widgets to place listings on your existing site.
What is IDX and why does it matter?
Realtors and real estate brokers use internet data exchange software allowing their teams display multiple listings on these websites.
This data exchanges is a consensual agreement for the use of specific data around the property listings.
The real estate agents pull up to date information from MLS and showcase the listings. With these websites, they can enlist multiple properties and generate more customers.
Additionally they can share this data and keep it well organized and specific to the property itself.
This is important to ensure the list follows applicable laws and is in the best interest of the seller.
How to develop an IDX real estate website with WordPress
Most realtors hire services of web developers to create IDX websites. This will end up costing you several hundred to thousand dollars just to get started.
If you want to make an IDX listing website yourself, you can easily do it with the vast number of plugins now available.
You don’t have to have any coding knowledge. Here I’ll provide you the information on how to create an IDX website. It would help if you had the following things for this purpose.
- Purchase a domain name
- Setup a web hosting account
- Find a Real estate website template
- Install an IDX plugin
Steps to take to setup an IDX Real Estate Website
Step 1: Purchase a Domain Name
First you’ll need a domain name if you don’t already have one.
Domain name costs about $15 per year depending on what TLD (.com, .net, io etc) you choose, and you can find an inexpensive host for $8 per month. Cloudways is a great choice for this purpose.
Step 2: Purchase Web Hosting
There’s lots of choices for hosting a website. You’ll see Bluehost, Hostgator and several other brands out there being shown as the best in reviews.
This is the case because they have very good affiliate programs. People are greedy, they’ll promote whatever earns them the most money.
I won’t go into knocking any of these hosting companies, they are cheap solutions. But they are cheap, will run slow and when you run into an issue, their support won’t be of much help.
Additionally Godaddy, Bluehost, Hostgator everything to them is a sales opportunity, you will hear a sales pitch anytime you call them.
After reviewing and working with tons of hosting providers, the best bang for your buck is going to be Cloudways.
Performance test show it’s one of the fastest hosting providers in time to first byte (I won’t go into detail).
Cloudways sits on top of other VPS or Dedicated server providers such as Digital Ocean, offering a powerful better than shared hosting experience.
Step 3: Select a Real Estate WordPress Theme
WordPress has thousands of Themes to choose from. A real estate website also has different requirements than general websites.
Choosing a theme which includes a IDX template or is configured to access IDX is highly recommended for quick setup.
Here are the most popular themes that have IDX templates built in.
Step 4: Select an IDX WordPress Plugin
In the market, you may find different IDX plugins. Make sure the plugin you choose works with the MLS provider you are using.
Our recommended plugin is the dsIDXpress plugin. This is because of the number of MLS systems support, which include Canadian MLS systems.
When this plugin is activated, it will provide you access to more menu items labeled IDX in your WordPress admin bar. A click will lead you to the plugin settings portion.
Here you enter the activation code. The plugin website or your email will provide you information about the activation process. Now you have different ways to add content to your website.
The plugin demo version gives you access to a fictional MLS setting. If you are a premium user, you may select the MLS provider from the plugin website.
You may use IDX widgets to add MLS content also. Here you need to:
Go to appearance then widget page.
Here you may find different IDX widgets that you can add to the website.
This may include:
- IDX listings
- IDX portion
- IDX search
- IDX single listing widget
You can also post content to pages and posts. You need to open a new post or page. Here you may find the listing bottom in the visual editor. You may also visit IDX pages and click on
Add New icon
IDX pages are like standard WordPress pages. They show your MLS listings. If you need to filter the content, you may opt for the IDX data filter at the IDX page’s bottom.
Your listings may not come with an attractive layout at the start. You need to care about the content you are posting.
Now, after you have to do basic things about MLS content, you need a team to support you in integrating all using CSS.
A few other popular IDX plugins:
- Optima Express + Market boost plugin
- IMPress for IDX Brokers
- See all IDX Plugin options on WordPress.org
Step 4: Promoting Your Real Estate Website
When you have created a real estate website, you have many options to rank your content in search engines. You may promote the website in many ways.
If you want to target neighborhood housing communities or your local area, you can develop particular pages and content for this purpose. Local marketing your website will significantly reduce your competition and open up a whole new traffic source.
Local pages and “near me” searches are huge and will only continue to grow. Creating content around local zip codes, highly targeted real estate (single family, single story etc), is a great way to generate highly targeted traffic.
Make sure you have the Yoast SEO Plugin installed and use it as guidance for your content.
Step 5: Engage clients from Your Real Estate Website
It’s a fact, most of your website visitors will never contact you about a listing. Creating useful impactful content, targeting local areas and capturing their contact information via forms to email them later will help improve this.
Additionally, offering a special code or discount on your website will increase the odds of people reaching out to you immediately and for future listing.
Mailoptin is a great plugin, allowing you to add popup forms and other forms to capture visitor information.
We hope you enjoyed this article and we wish you success and profits with your business!