You have probably come across many articles, bloggers, and some internet marketers who say you don’t need IDX on your real estate website. Their reason is that the top 10 real estate websites led by Zillow, Trulia and Realtor.com account for about half of all website traffic and therefore it is “useless” and “a waste of money” to try to compete with. they.
The term IDX is used a lot. When people hear IDX, they automatically think it’s just a home search for your real estate website. While property search is the core component of IDX, many don’t realize how to make the most of it and the valuable lead generation tools it provides.
In addition to providing home search on your website, I’m going to explain a few reasons why IDX is a must-have for any real estate website.
“Product” of your business
When I speak to real estate professionals, I always make this analogy. As a real estate professional, you are a company. You can think of your real estate website as your “store”. The MLS listings on your website are your “inventory.” Listings are all the products that exist in your “store” where visitors can browse and shop. What happens when someone visits your “store” but doesn’t have any products to offer? That person would do exactly what you and I would do … go off and go somewhere else where there is a product to look at and possibly buy.
These are valuable leads that you will lose if you don’t have IDX on your real estate website. Unless you are generating business from referrals only, your website (store) must have IDX (product).
Can create list pages
IDX gives you access to all the hundreds or thousands of listings on your MLS. As I mentioned earlier, this is your inventory and it’s like having thousands of products on your website.
By having access to all listings, you can create listing pages that focus on specific search criteria. For example, you can create a listing page that displays all listings at a specific price. Or you can create a listing page that displays listings in a specific subdivision, area, community, or school district. These listing pages provide a better user experience as they help direct your real estate website visitors to the listings they are looking for. Even more valuable is that these listing pages are search engine friendly, which is what I’ll talk about next.
Generate leads from Google search
All IDX pages that a platform provides are SEO friendly and indexed by Google, Bing, and all other major search engines. This means that all the listing pages within the IDX system are indexed by Google and it is an excellent source of organic leads. For example, for one of our clients, we created an IDX page that shows homes for sale in the Squires Elementary school district.
See what happens when you google
“Homes for Sale Squires Elementary School District”
Yes, our customer using our website with IDX is ranked # 1 out of 1,640,000 Google search results above Zillow and Realtor.com.
With IDX you can create hundreds of these real estate listing pages and they will all appear in Google search results! Do you still think you can’t compete with Zillow?
Platform and tools for your clients
IDX is much more than just a property search for your real estate website. Many are overseeing or unaware of the valuable tools you will provide to your clients. IDX takes your real estate website to the next level by providing a platform for your clients. Visitors to your website can create an account directly on your real estate website to use IDX tools, such as saving favorite listings and favorite searches. It’s an experience your customers look forward to and will always return to.
Automatically email the latest listings to your prospects
An IDX system will be able to send your potential customers the latest listings automatically by email based on their search criteria. You can think of this as a lead promotion with listings. The user can define the searches himself directly on his website where he wants to receive the most recent listings. This is a fully automated process that will keep you in touch with all of your potential customers. When they see a list that interests them, they simply contact you.
A place for your existing customers to return
If you have established a relationship with your existing clients, they will use your real estate website when looking to buy a home again. They already trust you and your website looks familiar to them. They will already have an account within your IDX system where they can simply log in to perform their searches and use the tools that you provide. If you don’t provide home search on your real estate website, where will all your clients go? Yes … elsewhere.
Landing Pages + IDX = Powerful Lead Generation
Using landing pages is a very popular method of generating leads, especially on Facebook. When you combine landing pages with IDX, you create a very effective and powerful lead generation system.
You can create listing pages within IDX and use those pages for your landing pages. For example, you can promote a landing page that gives users access to all homes under $ 600K in the city of Clairemont. When a prospect fills out the form on your landing page, you can direct them to a listing page in your IDX system that displays these listings. Without IDX on your real estate website, a system like this would not be possible.
Offering a much more personal experience
Large real estate websites like Zillow and realtor.com are highly commercialized and can be intimidating to the user. Their website is much nicer and offers confidence and a level of comfort. Since your website will focus on one area, this will also be much more familiar to your website visitors as they will know that you are a real estate expert in the area they are looking to buy from.
Do you need IDX on your real estate website? YES. IDX is a must have for your website for all the reasons mentioned above. The cost of having IDX on your website is very small compared to all the benefits you will get from it. Closing only a deal generated from your website with IDX can pay for your IDX and website service for 5-10 years!
All you have to do is look at the websites of the most successful real estate agents. Do you have IDX on your real estate website?