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Posts Tagged ‘idx solutions’

I was recently reading an article on realtor.org and came across this interesting approach to ‘spring cleaning’ as it relates to the real estate professional and your business/marketing plans.

Clean up your website

Have a friend or family member go through your site and ask them what drew them in and what drove them away. You’ll then get a base for where your website needs work. If revamping your entire site seems overwhelming, focus your efforts on simplifying your home page and ask yourself, ‘do I have the necessary lead generation tools in place?’.

Recognize that sellers are asking themselves four questions:

  • What’s for sale?
  • How much is my home worth?
  • How’s the market?
  • And why should I select you over the competition?

So write headlines on your Web site and other marketing materials that answer those four questions. Become more consumer-centric and less self-promotional!

Need suggestion or consultation on your website from a real estate internet solutions expert. RE/Advantage can suggest useful widgets and tools that make for a user friendly website that fits any budget. We also write website content and excel in the area of local community and amenity information.

Polish your listings

Spring is traditionally a season of optimism and growth. Try to tap into that mentality with buyers and sellers. Take a close look at your listings to ensure they’re coming across as fresh and welcoming. If a property has been on the market for a while, consider taking new photos for marketing materials and meeting with the seller to discuss additional changes that can be made inside the home to appeal to spring buyers. (fresh paint, potted plants, new windows etc.)

What’s the best way to display these listings on the internet? An IDX solution; this allows you to be the resource for hundreds if not thousands of listings fed to your website from your local MLS. Used correctly your IDX vendor should also include a lead management system and client portfolio tool that allows prospects and current buyers to save listings and searches and receive automated listings from the MLS – with your banding of course! If you currently display listings on your website trying re-wording your searches; drop the acronym MLS (because most of the time your clients/prospects have no idea what that even means!) say ‘Free Listings Search’ instead.

Scrub your data

By this I mean your lead management system. Hopefully by now you’re at least on an automated system to clearly tracts, organize and lays out a simple follow up plan on your leads, prospects and current clients. Regardless whether you are an agent or a broker, concretely preparing this lead management plan can only benefit you in the long run. Then you can develop a measuring system to see if your ‘lead management plan’ is actually working for you!

A good web designer should have designer your website with an integrated lead and content management system that allows for easy web content editing and quick access to your lead and prospect contact information. If you are looking for a new web solution make sure you keep in mind the ease of use AFTER the site is create and deployed. You do not want to have to contact you web master every time you need to make simple changes.

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RE/Advantage specializes in Real Estate Website Design, IDX Solutions, and Internet Technology. We have been working with the Real Estate Industry for over 10 years so we understand what makes a site work for you and your buyers and sellers. After all we have been developing real estate web sites, Internet tools and marketing strategies since 1997. No one provides a more comprehensive, well-thought-out site and tool set for your Internet presence. We provide you with not only the tools to manage and customize your site, but the peace of mind that comes from knowing we are here to help if you need us.

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Internet marketing has fast become one of the most prominent ways to cultivate clients/prospects in the Real Estate business. So what does your website, blog or social networking sites need to keep your clients coming back – LISTINGS! Listing data is one of the most important tools for your internet marketing platform.  This can be a manual task, but is more effective if somehow done with an automated process – RE/Advantage has just what you need!

RE/Advantage offers an IDX solution that is fully branded and customized to the user  IDX (Internet Data Exchange) is a way to put the listings of your local MLS on your website.  This allows you to bring an interested buyer to YOUR website rather then having them go searching on another website.  Having someone stay on your website is the key to getting leads funneled to you.

You, as the real estate professional, can also automatically send email alerts to your prospects on new listings with RE/Advantages ‘Home Portfolio’ feature. This powerful feature allows potential clients to create a free account on your website and encourages repeat visits – plus you can gain insight on their saved favorite properties; creating a truly qualified lead.

Updated features have been added to the IDX search solution which include map based searching, new quick search and featured properties widgets as well as an improved dashboard and our newest addition – WalkScore. WalkScore helps you find a ‘walkable’ place to live by calculating a Walk Score for any address. This feature combined with our comprehensive IDX pages will calculate the ‘walkability’ of a listing you client is viewing from your website. For a full list of features please contact us at (877)791-4825 or visit us at www.idxlistings.com.

 

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RE/Advantage specializes in Real Estate Website Design, IDX Solutions, and Internet Technology. We have been working with the Real Estate Industry for over 10 years so we understand what makes a site work for you and your buyers and sellers. After all we have been developing real estate web sites, Internet tools and marketing strategies since 1997. No one provides a more comprehensive, well-thought-out site and tool set for your Internet presence. We provide you with not only the tools to manage and customize your site, but the peace of mind that comes from knowing we are here to help if you need us.

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Last week, I conducted a seminar to the real estate agents and brokers that are members of  Passaic County Board of REALTORS®. My seminar was based on helping REALTORS® enhance their online marketing efforts to generate leads. In today’s competitive real estate market it is important to have a strong web presence.

My seminar covered the following topics:

  • Important elements to have a successful Real Estate Web site.
  • What is IDX (Internet Data Exchange) and the benefits of adding IDX to Your Web Site.
  • How important is your domain name
  • What is blogging and how effective blogging can impact your success
  • Social networking basics ( Using Facebook, Twitter, Active Rain, Linked In and YouTube)

My conclusion

Although many REALTORS® who attended had web sites, few were utilizing them in the correct way. Many of these agents and brokers were not generating the leads they had hoped to receive and were looking for ways to improve their marketing efforts. The topics that received the most attention were pertaining to the benefits of adding Internet Data Exchange, the benefits of blogging, and social networking basics.

Call to Actions are a MUST

Many of my attendees did not have a strong call-to-action on the home page. This means the site did not entice the user to search listings or to view the services the agent or broker provided.  Strong “Call to Action” items are needed and are a must in my opinion.

Content, Content, Content

Using default content rather than customized content specific to your expertise or marketing area is a major NO, NO!  Your web site should be loaded with “Rich” content specific to the areas that you work with and the unique services you will provide to the consumer.  It is also important to update your regularly as this will not only help you with search engine rankings, it will also entice consumers to keep visiting your site for up-to-date information.

He or She who has the Inventory has the Interested Buyer

Adding an IDX search on your home page  is also very important as it is an immediate call-to-action for consumers to view thousands of listing on your Web site. By adding IDX,  you are also branding your site to be used as a listings tool by consumers. Providing in-depth community information is great as it makes you look like an area expert. If you are able to add school information this is a plus as families with children will find this useful in determining where they will buy their next home.

To Blog or Not to Blog, That is the Question

In today’s market, blogging is becoming a hug asset to the REALTOR®.  Starting a blog site and updating your blog frequently is also important as it is it gives you another means of publishing important news to the consumer. Frequent blogging can also have a positive effect for search engines as it provides constantly updated content. It is also another way for you to establish new business relationships.

Social Networking

During our seminar, we also emphasized the importance of Social Networking as a means of expanding your sphere of influence. There are 6 applications that I like for accomplishing this:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • YouTube
  • Active Rain
  • Animoto

Summing it up

By the end of the seminar, many of the members had an understanding with the direction they should take to improving their Internet presence. Many of the attendees felt that while they learned a lot they will need assistance from Re/Advantage. Our team will work with the agents and brokers one-on one and will help by revamping their Web site,  setting up a blogging presence and how to properly blog, as well as utilizing Social Networking to gain more business.

Re/Advantage offers an entire portfolio of professional real estate websites and social network training for the active Real Estate professional.  For more information be sure to contact us.

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Typically on average you only have a few seconds to capture the attention of a potential client that visits your website – so what can you do to keep them interested long enough to chose you as their Real Estate Professional? Create a website that offers information available to your clients with just one click of the mouse. RE/Advantage has seen the effect that a Quick Search module and a Featured Property widget can have on a Real Estate website and has incorporated that into their web designs.

RE/Advantage’s Quick Search module allows home buyers to easily search for a home via their IDX listings by simply selecting their preferred property type, number of beds/baths, price range and community or area they are interested in. From there the buyer is brought to a comprehensive results page that outlines properties that match the clients search criteria. Very easy and straight forward to use – which will be helpful in allowing your potential clients to easily navigate your website for the Real Estate needs.

Check out an example of RE/Advantage’s Quick Search module!

The Featured Property widget RE/Advantage has developed is both stunning and informative. With several customizable options, RE/Advantage clients can either display their Featured Properties as a single listing of have several appear on their home page, always changing with a simple page change or refresh. RE/Advantage’s Featured Property widget allows Real Estate buyers to view the listing detail by easily clicking on the photo of “More Information” button on the widget.

Check out an example of RE/Advantage’s Featured Property Widget!

Why wouldn’t you take advantage of these services! With added office and listing exposure, plus a giant SEO boost – you can’t go wrong with RE/Advantage’s incomparable Real Estate website services.

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Internet Data Exchange Revisited

To achieve results when marketing your Web site,  you need the proper tools and branding to fit all the pieces of the puzzle.  Adding Internet Data Exchange or to some Broker Reciprocity to your site can help you in many ways.

In my monthly seminars, I ask the audience; “Do they have IDX on their real estate Web site(s)?”.  Many of these agents and brokers look at me in a puzzled way as they do not even know what IDX is.

In a nutshell IDX (Internet Data Exchange) allows agents and brokers to market properties other than their own on their site. It provides the agent or broker the ability to brand themselves as the source of the listing information and can literally take the web visitor’s property search from hundreds to even thousands of properties to search by. Adding IDX to your existing Web site is a great way to jumpstart your business. If you have a web site and are just adding a link for visitors to search on your broker’s web site or a MLS site, you may be losing a lot of business as the visitor is no longer on your site and worse yet you are exposing them to your competitors.

RE/Advantage has successfully developed IDX solutions for many brokers and agents on a national level. We are proud to say as a result with feedback and valuable insight from many REALTORS and MLSs such as The New Jersey Multiple listings service under the direction of Tina Griffin our solution has helped many Agents and Brokers leverage their MLS data.

IDX Solution Features:

  • Leads from web visitors go directly to you
  • User friendly MLS search framed within your site
  • Property Mapping
  • Custom URL searching
  • Your visitors can sign up to receive email notifications
  • Visitors can save favorite listings and searches
  • Lead capture forms
  • Display your listings first in a search for prominent exposure
  • Create your own specific customizable urls to specific areas for a search
  • Listing statistics
  • Mortgage calculator
  • and more…

While there are many IDX solution providers, we believe our IDX solution has been noted through the industry as user-friendly and robust search solution with features making it easier for your web visitors to view listings.

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I’ve compiled a list of useful Real Estate tools/sites that REALTORS® and consumers can benefit from when buying or selling a home. The internet is quickly becoming the most popular real estate marketing and information resource today and many companies have come up with tools that makes the home buying/selling process easier. Below I have included some useful internet tools that will assist both the real estate professional as well as the real estate client throughout the home buying/selling process.

Zillow is basically a real estate-centric information source. This website helps home buyers, sellers and renters as well as real estate agents, mortgage professionals, landlords, and property managers find and share information about homes, real estate, and mortgages.  Zillow exclaims that they are about “empowering people with data and information!”.  They have a feature called Zestimates which are Zillow’s home valuations for estimated market values.  I have heard some mixed emotions on the accuracy of this from people throughout the country but as a consumer tool it can be valuable.  Zillow claims to always be improving it.

Trulia another real estate portal offers some very comprehensive estate market guides for different areas. It is a quite nice tool that allows you to track trends and acquire statistics on different areas to see what the activity is like in different markets.

HomePages.com provides aerial photos of neighborhoods that you are searching. This site combines visual data with market data. It also includes other useful information on boosting your home’s appeal, making an offer on a home and more.

AcitveRain is a social networking website for the real estate professional. This sit “empowers the real estate professional and as an extension empowers the consumer.” ActiveRain was created to connect REALTORS® and consumers within the real estate business. Basically, this site is used as a service to develop relationships and increase your sphere of influence as a real estate professional. Localism.com is powered by ActiveRain and provides an environment where consumers and real estate professionals can create a micro-social networking community. This site is used to discuss local topics such as where to eat, work and play within a particular community.

RE/Advantage Websites and IDX Listing Solutions! In my opinion these are the most important tools on this list. Granted REALTORS® use newspapers, flyers, email blasts etc. but branding yourself to a professional website with an integrated listing search would help generate leads as well as be very useful to Real Estate consumers. RE/Advantage sales representatives and designers help to create intricate yet user-friendly designed websites that entice buyers and sellers to get interactive with a real estate website. On top of the useful marketing aspect of these websites RE/Advantage clients benefit from the comprehensive lead/content management back-end system where they can track leads and keep their website constantly updated! The integrated listing service or IDX solution that are also associated with RE/Advantage websites are the best of whats out there! Providing consumers with an easy way to search local listings from a real estate professionals website and creating an informative based tool for the clients as well as a lead capturing resource for the REALTOR®.

RE/Advantage – As experts in Real Estate web site design, we understand what makes Internet technology work for you and your visitors.  We have been developing real estate web sites, IDX Solutions, Internet tools and marketing strategies since 1997.  No one provides a more comprehensive, well-thought-out site and tool set for your Internet presence.  We provide you with not only the tools to manage and customize your site, but the peace of mind that comes from knowing we are here to help if you need us.

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