The Future of Home Buying: As Easy as Google Maps Combined with Consumer Privacy

Years ago, we all kept paper maps in our cars, then came early (expensive) navigations systems, followed by sites like Mapquest where you could print out specific sets of routing directions. Garmin quickly came out with lower-cost personal navigation systems, and now, we all have Waze on our smartphones and can easily embed Google Maps or Mapbox on any website.

As discussed at the Real Estate Standards Organization (RESO) Fall 2019 conference, real estate has come a long way from the paper catalogs used years ago. Keep reading to see the behind the scenes at the industry conference, and learn how new tools are changing how to search for a home for both consumers and Realtors.

Large real estate portals selling consumer information

Zillow and Trulia earned more than $1,333,600,000 (yes, $1.3 billion) in revenues in 2018 with the majority of that revenue coming from selling consumer contact and budget information to real estate agents and other providers.

According to their 2018 annual report, their IMT segment is defined as "We generate revenue from the sale of advertising services and our suite of marketing software and technology solutions to businesses and professionals primarily associated with the residential real estate, rental and mortgage industries.". Ask the average agent paying for their tools/advertising, and lead information is the primary value they see, and this accounted for $1.28 billion of their TOTAL $1.3 billion revenue. That's how much your clients' info is worth!

Consumers are quickly becoming aware of what happens on Zillow and other large real estate portals with their information. You would never go to a website and enter your contact info, along with the $500k value of your 401k, and let them know that you are planning to move investments in a few months, but that is equivalent of what happens when someone is looking for a $500k house. You're telling an information broker that you're planning to have a major financial transaction in several months.

Realtors are increasingly realizing that sending their clients to these large portals is causing them to lose clients because their clients' info is being provided to "Premier Agents" of those sites, so they're in essence referring clients to their competitors.

Smart real estate agents realize that consumer privacy is a competitive advantage and with a modern IDX engine and consumer tools, they can provide an even better home search experience on their own website.

Real estate data and tools following growth of maps and navigation applications

Remember paper maps in your car? I was at the front lines of the HERE Technologies (NAVTEQ) that provided the map and traffic data behind almost every map and navigation application in the United States and Europe and shaped the experience we all use almost every day today.

Here's a quick 10 minutes of my talk from The Real Estate Standards Organization (RESO) Fall conference about the parallels real estate agents and consumers are seeing today with what happened with map/navigation apps 15 years ago.

If you want to geek out a little more on innovation in the mapping industry and see more of what's coming in real estate, here are pages 6 and 7 from RESO's recent case study "It's Inevitable: Moving to Replication via the RESO Web API".

Auto Manufacturers Move to APIs

This was the situation when car manufacturer Toyota released the first navigation system in 1987 on the Toyota Crown. “While Google Maps was first released using GPS in November 2007, many of us first experienced a change in the navigation experience that was only possible due to a change in spatial data being accessed via APIs. This was done by pioneers like MapQuest’s Find Me and later by Waze, the GPS navigation software app owned by Google. This change in how the data was accessed also created a fundamental shift in how companies collected spatial data.”

A major player in this transformation was Kurt Uhlir, currently Showcase IDX’s Chief Marketing Officer. Uhlir was part of the small team that realized that there was a more efficient way to collect, enhance, and verify the data and created the spatial data and navigation industry that grew NAVTEQ from $85 million in revenue to $1.2 billion. Companies previously spent hundreds of millions of dollars on field teams and remote data to create their core asset (spatial data with 250+ attributes per road segment and millimeter-level accuracy) around the world, according to Uhlir. When Google entered the arena, it spent an estimated $300 million in 18 months to collect only a portion of the road network in the United States and Canada.

Since then, the technology Uhlir and his team invented and patented has been used by companies like Waze, Google Maps, Apple Maps, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and others, and is quickly becoming the backbone for the data driving much of the autonomous vehicle industry.

“This seemingly small, behind-the-scenes change to accessing spatial data via APIs was the triggering change that led to the vast majority of motorists using Waze to get directions to our next open house, people playing games like Pokémon GO, and many of the athletic applications we use to track our progress today,” Uhlir explains.

Borrowing a Page From the Navigation Industry

Uhlir cited the example of the navigation industry moving from one data set to an API. “Most people have multiple mapping apps on their phones that provide full navigation,” Uhlir explains.

“While the spatial data industry saw mass consumer adoption of navigation thanks to Garmin, Magellan, and TomTom offering personal navigation devices, it really was a change in how the data was accessed, combined with the mass adoption of smartphones that made navigation a part of our everyday lives.”

“HERE (formerly called NAVTEQ) has been the dominant map provider in the United States, Europe, and much of the world for decades,” said Uhlir, adding that everything from printed Rand McNally maps to car navigation systems to personal navigation devices and even websites like MapQuest were powered by HERE data and a few smaller data providers.

These navigation systems and applications used static copies of a subset of the HERE map that was generally recreated by each brand into a proprietary data format,” said Uhlir. "These navigation system and applications used static copies of a subset of the HERE map that was generally recreated by each brand into a proprietary data format,” said Uhlir. “This changed when and INRIX began providing real-time traffic data; these mapping and navigation systems incorporated into the consumer experiences. But the bulk of all spatial data was not accessed in real-time – or even short time,” Uhlir joked.

How to ride the tsunami of innovation in real estate marketing technology

If you wanted maps on your website or in your SaaS application, would you ever think of building your own version of Google Maps or Mapbox? Absolutely not.

Mapbox has invested hundreds of millions in capital, after having raised $227 million and earned many more millions in revenue, to build their solution. Google Maps is known to have invested hundreds of millions building search, display, and routing applications to create the Google Maps API offering. Even if an agent had access to the map data, the cost to build an experience reasonably acceptable to consumers could not be done.

Yet, many people attempting to build “all-in-one” real estate marketing platforms have tried to do this with home search and consumer engagement tools.

The rumor within real estate technology circles is that Zillow spent $25 million to create the technology and systems to ingest all the data they use on their sites. Now, this includes more than simply MLS data, but that’s still a staggering amount to just acquire data, normalize it, and make it internally available to applications like a home search.

Smart marketers and real estate companies have realized that a modern IDX requires the focus of a Google Maps or Mapbox. Showcase IDX has been called an “IDX engine” and referred to as the “Intel Inside” of any modern real estate marketing solution for that reason.

In my keynote talks about Tsunami Innovation, I talk about riding the increasing waves of innovation. It’s almost impossible to stand against a tidal shift of a tsunami, yet when you harness the wave and learn to ride on top, the entire industry changes and people’s lives change.

Home search and consumer engagement tools in real estate are at a similar point to where we saw mapping and navigation technology a few years ago.

I’m excited to be at the front of this change and working with a team that not only loves deep data and technology but that wakes up each day excited to be changing the world.

The central hub to successful real estate marketing

It takes incredible agencies and partners to provide a cohesive marketing strategy that works and is tailored for different teams and individual agent brands.

No matter the marketing campaign, you ultimately have to drive a consumer to an online experience where they can search for a home, save searches, get alerts of new properties, interact with their friends and family, etc. - all without having their information sent to competitive agents and service providers.

“Powered by Showcase IDX” has become the central hub to successful real estate marketing campaigns. We know that focusing on building the modern IDX engine allows other vendors (e.g. CRM, social media management, etc) to focus on what they do best.

Have your own website? Start your trial of Showcase IDX today.

Need a website? See our list of approved website developers.

Complete List of MLS in Real Estate

Welcome to the complete list of MLSs in the United States. Save/pin/bookmark this list to have easy access to the most complete and update list of MLSs in real estate.

Understanding the MLS landscape is a complex task. This list and short article gives you a big-picture of the MLSs in the United States and how they serve consumers, real estate agents, and brokerages with listings and other services.

If we have forgotten your MLS or you know of an upcoming name change/merger, please leave us a note in the comments.

List of MLS in Real Estate

What is MLS in Real Estate?

Is there a single definition? Yes but if you're not intimately familiar with MLSs outside of your local real estate market, these two will give you a better understanding.

An MLS is much more than a database of listings and the software used to access it. Each MLS is unique with their own staff, agreements with dozens (sometimes hundreds) of vendors for services, local rules, etc.

Your MLS is ultimately a collective of brokers that have signed covenants to establish and enforce rules for cooperation and compensation for sales.

The MLS is the foundation for how real estate brokers work with each other, both guidelines and enforcement of the rules, and the foundation on top of which technology platforms exist.

multiple listing service (MLS, also multiple listing system or multiple listings service) is a suite of services that real estate brokers use to establish contractual offers of compensation (among brokers) and accumulate and disseminate information to enable appraisals. A multiple listing service’s database and software is used by real estate brokers in real estate (or aircraft broker[1] in other industries for example), representing sellers under a listing contract to widely share information about properties with other brokers who may represent potential buyers or wish to work with a seller’s broker in finding a buyer for the property or asset. The listing data stored in a multiple listing service’s database is the proprietary information of the broker who has obtained a listing agreement with a property’s seller.

According to the U.S. National Association of Realtors:

In the late 1800s, real estate brokers regularly gathered at the offices of their local associations to share information about properties they were trying to sell. They agreed to compensate other brokers who helped sell those properties, and the first MLS was born, based on a fundamental principle that’s unique to organized real estate: Help me sell my inventory and I’ll help you sell yours

Two of the larger ways that most agents interact with their MLS is:

  1. Adding information about new property listings that they and the thousands of other agents in the MLS to market. While a FSBO (for sale by owner) may only reach dozens or maybe hundreds of potential buyers, a property properly listed on the MLS and marketed by a licensed agent will reach 100x and potentially 1000x the number of potential buyers.
  2. Approval to access all MLS listings on their own website via an approved IDX plugin or IDX engine, like Showcase IDX. Each MLS is ultimately a steward of the brokers' data and have a strict set of guidelines that an IDX plugin and home search must follow.

How many MLSs are in the United States?

There are approximately 600 MLSs in the United States, but the actual number is a moving target.

Many "MLSs" and local associations are merging and renaming. In as early as 2010, there were approximately 1,400 location associations/boards each with governing their own MLS practices across 54 states and territory associations of REALTORS® that house the local boards.

In the "old days", each of those 1,400 local associations ran their own MLS. Today, we see more regional MLSs with a good many legacy MLS still operating that are focused on their hyper-local market they know best.

Even NAR does not publish an authoritative list of MLS in the United States.

When speaking at the RESO (Real Estate Standards Organization) Fall 2019 conference, a RESO official stated there are about 635 MLSs. By our count, there are 608.

Why do we maintain the complete list of MLSs in the United States?

First and most clear if you know any of our team, we're data and software geeks that love real estate. We've been working with local MLSs to build tools for Realtors and brokers since 2005. There is no single authoritative MLS and no universal data format. The date/time of a new listing can be delivered using half a dozen different technologies in more 30+ different formats.

That makes working with real estate data too complex for many, and we love a challenge.

In early 2017, Kurt Uhlir joined our team. Kurt's known as a 10x marketer that's helped bring many business and life-changing technologies into our every day lives, but what many don't know is he is the lead inventor on 13 U.S. and international patents including three foundational patents covering Waze, Google Maps, Apple Maps, check-in/location services (e.g. Foursquare, Facebook, etc.), and location-based advertising. If you've ever checked in on Foursquare, tagged a location on Facebook, or used Waze, you've used some of the technology he invented.

With his addition, we've been able to both geek out internally on building software for agents as well as speak more regularly at marketing and real estate conferences about it.

Second, as more and more of the real estate market call Showcase IDX the "IDX engine powering the best Realtor websites" and how the "consumer engagement tools Showcase IDX provide to real estate agents are unmatched. A smart company would never try to build their own Google Maps or Mapbox, instead you use one of them, just as modern real estate agents and companies are turning to Showcase IDX as the engine behind their websites and client engagement portion of their websites.".

Those are big words for us to hear, and we're extremely grateful to hear things like that every day. This list is part of us continuing to make things easier for you.

We deal with technology, so you do not have to, and we love geeking out on innovative technology that people use every day.

What are the largest MLSs in the country?

See our list of the largest 20 MLSs by following this link. It contains the number of agents in each MLS as well as their corporate offices.

Here is the complete list of MLSs in the United States

Multiple Listing Services in Alabama

Multiple Listing Services in Alaska

MLS in American Samoa

Samoa Properties Realtors (not an official MLS but a good local resource)

Multiple Listing Services in Arizona

Multiple Listing Services in Arkansas

Multiple Listing Services in California

Multiple Listing Services in Colorado

Multiple Listing Services in Connecticut

Multiple Listing Services in Delaware

Multiple Listing Services in Florida

Multiple Listing Services in Georgia

MLS in Guam

Multiple Listing Services in Hawaii

Multiple Listing Services in Idaho

Multiple Listing Services in Illinois

Multiple Listing Services in Indiana

Multiple Listing Services in Iowa

Multiple Listing Services in Kansas

Multiple Listing Services in Kentucky

Multiple Listing Services in Louisiana

Multiple Listing Services in Maine

Multiple Listing Services in Maryland

Multiple Listing Services in Massachusetts

Multiple Listing Services in Michigan

Multiple Listing Services in Minnesota

Multiple Listing Services in Mississippi

Multiple Listing Services in Missouri

Multiple Listing Services in Montana

Multiple Listing Services in Nebraska

Multiple Listing Services in Nevada

Multiple Listing Services in New Hampshire

Multiple Listing Services in New Jersey

Multiple Listing Services in New Mexico

Multiple Listing Services in New York

MLSs in North Carolina

Multiple Listing Services in North Dakota

Badlands Board Of REALTORS®
Bismarck-Mandan Board of REALTORS®
Fargo Moorhead Area Association of REALTORS®
Grand Forks Board of REALTORS®
Jamestown Board of REALTORS®
Minot Board of REALTORS®
Williston Board of REALTORS®

MLSs in Northern Mariana Islands

We're not currently aware of one. Please comment if you have information on the local REALTOR association or MLS.

Multiple Listing Services in Ohio

Ashland Board of REALTORS®
Athens County Board of REALTORS®
Columbus and Central Ohio Regional MLS
Dayton MLS
Firelands MLS
Greater Portsmouth Area Board of REALTORS®
Heartland Board of REALTORS®
Knox County Board Of REALTORS®
Lancaster Board Of REALTORS
Mansfield Board of REALTORS®
Marion Board of REALTORS®
MLS of Greater Cincinnati (CincyMLS)
Northwest Ohio Regional Info Systems (NORIS) (may be joining Heartland)
Scioto Valley Association of REALTORS®
Tri State MLS (TSMLS)
West Central Association of REALTORS®
Western Regional Information Systems and Technology (WRIST)

Multiple Listing Services in Oklahoma

Cushing Board Of REALTORS®
Duncan Association of REALTORS®
Lawton Board of REALTORS®
MLS Technology, Inc.
Multiple Listing Service of Oklahoma (MLSOK)
North Central Board Of REALTORS®
Northeast Oklahoma Board of REALTORS®
Northwest Oklahoma Association of REALTORS®
Southern Oklahoma Board of REALTORS®
Stillwater Board of REALTORS®

Multiple Listing Services in Oregon

Central Oregon Association of REALTORS®
Clatsop Association of REALTORS®
Klamath County Association of REALTORS®
Lincoln County Board of REALTORS®
Regional Multiple Listing Service (RMLS)
Southern Oregon MLS (SOMLS)
Willamette Valley MLS

MLSs in Pennsylvania

Allegheny Highland Association of REALTORS®
Allegheny Valley Board of REALTORS®
Bradford Sullivan Association of REALTORS®
Cambria Somerset Association of REALTORS®
Central Susquehanna Valley Board of REALTORS®
Centre County Association of REALTORS®
Clearfield Jefferson Association of REALTORS®
Elk Cameron Board of REALTORS®
Fayette Board of REALTORS®
Greater Erie Board of REALTORS®
Greater Lehigh Valley REALTORS®
Greater Scranton Board of REALTORS®
Huntingdon County Board of REALTORS®
Luzerne County Association of REALTORS®
Mckean County Association of REALTORS®
North Central Penn Board of REALTORS®
Pike/Wayne Association of REALTORS®
Pocono Mountains Association of REALTORS®
Realtors Association Of York Adams Counties
Warren County Board Of Realtors
West Branch Valley Association of REALTORS®
West Penn Multi-List

Multiple Listing Services Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico MLS (PRMLS-RETS)
Arecibo Board of REALTORS®
Bayamon Board of REALTORS®
Caguas Board of REALTORS®
Mayaguez Board of REALTORS®
Ponce Board of REALTORS®

Puerto Rico Association of REALTORS®
San Juan Board of REALTORS®

Multiple Listing Services in Rhode Island

StateWide MLS

Multiple Listing Services in South Carolina

Aiken MLS
Charleston Trident MLS (CTMLS)
Cherokee County Board of REALTORS®
Coastal Carolina Association of REALTORS®
Consolidated MLS
Greater Greenville Association of REALTORS®
Greenwood Association of REALTORS®
Hilton Head Island MLS (HHIMLS)
Lowcountry Regional Multiple Listing Service Inc.
Pee Dee REALTOR® Association
Piedmont Regional Association of REALTORS®
Palmetto MLS
Spartanburg Association of REALTORS®
Sumter Board of REALTORS®
Western Upstate Association of REALTORS®

Multiple Listing Services in South Dakota

Aberdeen Board of REALTORS®
Black Hills MLS (BHMLS)
Central South Dakota Board of REALTORS®
East Central South Dakota Board of REALTORS®
Huron Board of REALTORS®
Lewis and Clark Board of REALTORS®
Mitchell Board of REALTORS®
Northeast South Dakota Association of REALTORS®
REALTOR® Association Of The Sioux Empire

Multiple Listing Services in Tennessee

Central West Tennessee Association of REALTORS®
Great Smoky Mountains Association of REALTORS®
Greater Chattanooga Association of REALTORS®
Knoxville Area Association of REALTORS®
Lakeway Area Association of REALTORS®
Memphis Area Association of REALTORS®
Reelfoot Regional Association of REALTORS®
River Counties Association of REALTORS®
Tennessee Valley Association of REALTORS®
Tennessee Virginia Regional MLS (TVRMLS)
Upper Cumberland Association of REALTORS®

Multiple Listing Services in Texas

Amarillo Association of REALTORS®
Austin Central Texas Realty Information Service (ACTRIS)
Beaumont Board of REALTORS®
Brazoria County Board of REALTORS®
Brownsville-South Padre Island Board of REALTORS®
Bryan-College Station Association of REALTORS®
Coastal Bend Association of REALTORS®
Corpus Christi Association of REALTORS®
Dalhart Board of REALTORS®
Dumas Board of REALTORS®
Eagle Pass Board of REALTORS®
Galveston Association of REALTORS®
Gillespie County Board of REALTORS®
Greater El Paso Association of REALTORS®
Greater McAllen Association of REALTORS®
Greater Tyler Association of REALTORS®
Harlingen Board of REALTORS®
Henderson County Board of REALTORS®
Highland Lakes Association of REALTORS®
Houston Association of REALTORS® (HARMLS) {TOP 20 MLS}
Kerrville Board of REALTORS®
Laredo Association of REALTORS®
Longview Area Association of REALTORS®
Lubbock Association of REALTORS®
Lufkin Association of REALTORS®
Nacogdoches County Board of REALTORS®
North Texas Real Estate Info Systems (NTREIS) {TOP 20 MLS}
Odessa Board of REALTORS®
Pampa Board of REALTORS®
Permian Basin Board of REALTORS®
Plainview Association of REALTORS®
Port Neches, Port Arthur, Nederland Board of REALTORS®
Rockport Area Association of REALTORS®
San Angelo Association of REALTORS®
San Antonio Board of REALTORS® (SABOR)
San Patricio County Association of REALTORS®
South Padre Island Board of REALTORS®
Uvalde Board of REALTORS®
Wichita Falls Association of REALTORS®

Multiple Listing Services in the U.S. Virgin Islands

St. Croix Board of Realtors
St. John Board of Rea
St. Thomas Board of Realtors
Virgin Islands Territorial Association of Realtors®

MLSs in Utah

Iron County Board of REALTORS®
Park City Board of REALTORS®
Wasatch Front Regional MLS (WFRMLS)
Washington County Board of REALTORS®

Multiple Listing Services in Virginia

Central Virginia Regional MLS (CVRMLS)
Dan River Region Association of REALTORS®
Eastern Shore Association of REALTORS®
Hamptons North Fork REALTORS® Association
Lynchburg Association of REALTORS®
Martinsville, Henry, Patrick Counties Association of REALTORS®
New River Valley Association of REALTORS®
Northern Neck Association of REALTORS®
Real Estate Information Network (REIN)
Roanoke Valley Association of REALTORS®
Rockbridge Association of REALTORS®
South Central Virginia Association of REALTORS®
Southern Piedmont Land & Lake Association of REALTORS®
Southside Virginia Association of REALTORS®
Southwest Virginia Association of REALTORS®
Virginia MLS CoOp

Multiple Listing Services in Washington

North Central Washington MLS (NCWMLS)
Northwest Multiple Listing Service (NWMLS) {TOP 20 MLS}
Pacific Regional MLS (PACMLS)
Spokane Association of REALTORS®
Walla Walla Association of REALTORS®
Yakima Association of REALTORS®

Multiple Listing Services in West Virginia

Beckley Board of REALTORS®
Central West Virginia Multiple Listing Service
Fayette-Nicholas Board of REALTORS®
Greenbrier Valley Board of REALTORS®
Huntington Board of REALTORS®
Kanawha Valley Board of REALTORS®
Mercer Tazewell County Board of REALTORS®
Mid Ohio Valley MLS (MOVMLS)
North Central West Virginia Real Estate Information Network
Wheeling Board of REALTORS®

Multiple Listing Services in Wisconsin

Central Wisconsin Board of REALTORS®
Door County MLS
Greater Northwoods MLS
Metro MLS
REALTOR® Association of Northwest Wisconsin
REALTORS® Association of South Central Wisconsin Inc
REALTORS® Association of Northeast Wisconsin

Multiple Listing Services in Wyoming

Cheyenne Board of REALTORS®
Laramie Board of REALTORS®
Northeast Wyoming REALTOR® Alliance (NEWRA)
Northwest Wyoming Board of REALTORS®
Sheridan County Board of REALTORS®
Teton Board of REALTORS®

Looking for more information? Check out this article from my friend Sam DeBord on what the MLS landscape will look like in 2019. The charts and write up will give you a keen view for 2020 and 2021 too.

How to add MLS Real Estate Listings?

If you want to add MLS listings to your local MLS, you must be a licensed agent or broker and be a member of your local MLS.

If you want to add MLS listings to your website, you need a modern IDX engine that integrates with your local MLS.

Here are two quick videos that will save you from making some of the mistakes we've seen from analyzing more than 100,000 real estate websites.

Be sure to never use an IDX that uses iFrames or Subdomains on your website. Some have tried rebranding this outdated technology as "smart frames" but it's the same 20-year-old technology that will hurt the chances of your site to rank organically on IDX.

Our exclusive IDX engine contains more than 2,000,000 active real estate listings and 22,800,000 images. It is continually updating new listings and images. Behind the scenes, it’s working for you, to update 110,000 listings and 152,000 images per hour to send new MLS listings to the IDX search pages on your site for some MLSs in as little as 10-15 minutes, so you can be confident that your clients and website visitors will see the most up-to-date listings, images, and information.

==> Click here to see our MLS Coverage page or start your free trial today.

How to add MLS search to your site?

An IDX plugin is the easiest and by far the best way to add home search and consumer engagement tools to your website that your clients will actually use.

Why add an IDX that your clients won't use and will still send them to Zillow or Trulia where their contact info will be sold to competiting agents? Showcasers never have to worry about that - instead, they've learned how to turn their website into a real estate lead generation machine.

Get the website you deserve

Don’t Just Take Our Word For It

Best IDX Solution out there

No solution even compares with what Showcase IDX offer. There is no way I would steer clients towards any other solution.

Best IDX plugin by far!

Showcase IDX is now the only IDX I recommend to my clients. Visually, it is stunning and so much better than the other IDX’s. To top it off, customer service is top notch


Since switching to Showcase, registrations and customer interaction have increased tremendously. Showcase is so much cleaner than just using our own MLS systems...easy to use even for a beginner starting their own website.

I switched from IDX Broker

I get more voluntary sign ups than I did with old provider. I think that speaks for itself.

Best WordPress IDX, period.

Simple to use (i.e. low bounce rates and high user engagement), great mapping with polygon search, fantastic mobile responsive functionality, ‘login with facebook’, ultra-fast, and they are always adding or updating functionalities.

Your retention rate will be much higher

No subdomains or Iframes is probably my favorite feature, but at the end of the day it's about Results. I think the biggest thing is how "sticky" their site becomes. With Showcase IDX, the retention rate is much higher.

Showcase IDX brings the leads!

I am very happy to say Showcase IDX delivers the leads! I am often told by prospects and clients that our website is their favorite in town. A large amount of business is generated through our website presence.

Converts website leads at a high level

Showcase IDX is leading the way in the world of WordPress IDX solutions. Clients love utilizing the Showcase IDX product with original features not found in any other product.

An IDX Feed That's Above The Rest!

Showcase IDX is a better solution in regards to search rankings. I love the hot sheets and the simplicity to create "hot sheets" for different areas.

What I have been looking for all along.

I have used both Diverse Solutions and IhomeFinder. Neither delivered what I wanted. Since switching to Showcase, my bounce rate is down 20%, time spent on my site has doubled, and most importantly I am getting 4x more registrations on my site.

Showcase IDX Support Team Rocks

Showcase IDX has a streamlined interface and easy to navigate features that don't clutter our website or lock us into particular themes. But where they really shine is in their customer service.

Would You Bet Your Business On A IDX Solution?

We effectively compete every day with Zillow, Trulia and Redfin. Showcase Idx is critical to our success...Our site stats are over 12K unique users per week. That is up significantly from a year ago when we were on Wolfnet Idx.

Showcase IDX all day everyday!

by far the best IDX solution out there. Forward thinking, always improving, with a clear focus on the interface - one of the major areas other providers fail. It feels like everyone else is still playing catch-up all these years later.

The Best All-Around IDX For Realtors Wanting Results

We were previously using another IDX for our client sites. As a digital agency focused on measurable results, we were frustrated with the limitations we had. We started researching alternatives and thank god we found Showcase IDX.

Next Steps

What Is IDX Integration? An Explanation for Beginner Real Estate Agents

IDX integration is one of the most misunderstood topics in real estate. I've seen agents, brokers, web developers, and marketing experts all struggle with this topic.

After reading this article and watching the accompanying videos, you will be an expert on IDX and how IDX integration applies to today's real estate agent.

What if you could become the most trusted source for online real estate listings in your local market?

You may think that is impossible. After all, Realtors are now used to clients starting their new home search on big listing syndication sites. How could you ever gain an edge on these giant corporations?

The answer is a little thing called IDX, but only when you understand the modern term.

With your own website and IDX integration, you wield the ability to not only show off your own listings but tap into the power of the entire MLS database to generate leads and grow your business. How? Read on to find out.

What is IDX?

The acronym "IDX" stands for Internet Data Exchange and is sometimes called Broker Reciprocity. As the National Association of Realtors explains, IDX is a policy within the governing structure of the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), which states that listing information may be shared online by real estate agents who participate in their local MLS.

While IDX is technically a policy from NAR, most real estate professionals and marketers use the term IDX to refer to the tools and software that

  • display MLS listing on agent websites,
  • provide consumers a way to search for active listings, and
  • protect consumer contact/budget information by allowing them to choose which real estate professional to share it with.

In practice, this means that Realtors can give consumers access to all MLS data on their own websites. Instead of sending potential clients to a third party listing service or even the local MLS, IDX keeps them on your site.

IDX is not a rigid portal that forces your buyer to use a one-size-fits-all platform. Instead, it is more like a database of MLS listings that can be displayed in different ways. That is why the proper implementation of IDX matters a great deal.

The IDX Integration Difference

How IDX is actually used makes a tremendous difference. It pays to have the right strategies.

This is because IDX, itself, does not have a one-size-fits-all framework. Some solutions to display MLS data using IDX will just display the listings, and that's it. Unfortunately, simply showing the property listings will not yield the best results because the pages are not indexable by search engines.

Instead of just displaying the listings, a modern IDX integration boosts your website by ensuring that each MLS listing has a page of its own which can be found, and indexed by, the most popular search engines.

Therefore, when someone is searching for a property – or even just local listings in general – your site will have a better chance of being found.

IDX Versus Listing Syndicates and Portals

It may be no surprise that most Realtors don't like the big listing syndicators who are omnipresent in advertising these days. Some of the big listing services (such as Trulia and Zillow) are damaging the credibility of the real estate market and squeezing Realtors for advertising dollars.

Worse, some of the “listings” are bogus from a consumers' viewpoint because the houses are not actually for sale.

Stats to know: Zillow and Trulia may be missing as many as 20% of agent-listed homes actively for sale and about 36% of listings marked "active" on these two portals are no longer for sale, according to a study by The WAV Group.

By inflating the number of listings that appear to be available, big listing sites woo consumers into a false reality based on homes that are not really available at all. The inaccurate listing data may come because these sites do not use IDX and instead receive listings from brokerage syndication and to a lesser extent from data feeds from MLS Systems.

While home buyers may be temporarily swayed by the dog and pony show of these corporations, they may come to be frustrated with the experience after coming up empty in their search for a new home.

This, in turn, creates an opportunity for savvy Realtors. It is where IDX integration, properly implemented, levels the playing field.

A real estate agent can and should inform potential clients that the MLS is the gold standard for listings, the most accurate and up-to-date information available. They shouldn't waste their time with anything less than what's most effective, right? Your job is to tell that story.

Then, you need to provide them with a great tool to utilize the power of MLS in their search. That is where IDX integration comes in.

IDX Integration

IDX Integration Protects Your Clients’ Info

Most consumers do not realize what these large Listing Sites actually do with their contacts (and budget information) when they sign up on the big real estate portals.

Zillow itself earned more than $1.5 BILLION in 2018 according to their public SEC filings, and the vast majority of this came from their advertising services (e.g. Premier Agents) where they provide consumer contact information to a variety of agents and other partners.

We’ve spoken with several consumer privacy experts that have verified that the average consumer does not realize that “they themselves are the product that these large portals are using to earn billions of dollars of revenue". Zillow receives revenue from sharing individuals contact info, their search intent, and their budget (as determined from what they're searching for) to agents/brokers in exchange for $$$.

A modern IDX integration on your own website not only provides your clients’ the real estate website experience that they expect but it also allows you as their trusted hyperlocal expert to help protect their information - yet another part of the value a good Realtor brings to the home buying process.

IDX Implementation That Works

When figuring out how to best bring IDX integration to your website, it's worth asking what consumers have gotten used to. The fact is, the huge listing services previously mentioned are the ones commanding most of the attention of new home buyers because of their enormous advertising budgets.

Use that to your advantage by mimicking their best qualities or exceeding them. Look for an IDX solution that combines beautiful, rich map-based search tools with listing photos and filtering options.

Of course, it doesn't have to stop there. Ideally, beyond just searching MLS listings, your IDX integration should also capture the new leads your website is sure to generate from additional search engine traffic.

Another means of lead generation is via organic social traffic. If someone finds a home they love, don't you want them sharing it via social media? These shares can create additional inbound traffic to your website, as long as you have an IDX solution which makes social media sharing a breeze.

The proprietary Friends & Family Search within Showcase IDX allows your clients to invite their significant other and trusted friends and family to collaborate together on your site. Instead of texting and emailing links around, your buyers are able to do that entirely on your website in a secure collaboration dashboard.

Conceivably, you could spend millions of dollars and an enormous amount of effort and time developing your own proprietary solution. That isn't necessary, especially if you already have an existing website.

If you do, there's a good chance you are using WordPress – it is an extremely popular platform for small business sites. WordPress plugins make finding a great IDX integration a piece of cake.

Want to know what to look for in a modern IDX integration? Watch the short answer below on making sure to avoid using an outdated IDX that uses subdomains or iFrames (e.g. IDX Broker) or our longer video that walks through the common mistakes on real estate website, like: using iFrames or Subdomains.

IDX Works for the Realtor - When Done Properly

If you're a Realtor, you know how hard it is to penetrate the crowded marketplace for new home buyers with your advertising and message. That's why it's so crucial to employ tools such as a modern IDX that tip the balance in your favor.

You may not have millions of dollars to spend on advertising like the big listing sites, but you have something even better: the trusted authority of a hardworking, community-focused real estate agent – you, and with the right IDX engine behind your website, you can rank well on Google.

You are a resource for new homes in your community; they see your signs, they see your advertisements, they see you at local events.

This local presence is an advantage that the big listing websites will never have.

What to consider when choosing your IDX?

Too often I see agents opt for an "all-in-one" system or upgrade to the IDX built by the same company running their MLS's system, but those can be critical mistakes.

real estate marketing stack - point solution vs all-in-one

Think about an all-in-one tool as a multi-tool. This can be great because it can do a little of everything, but would you ever give it to a team of contractors to build your house? No, you'd give each person a tool made specifically for the job they need to get done. That's where point solutions come in.

Picking a point solution allows you to get the best solution for your unique marketing needs and create your "best of breed" marketing stack.

Here are some of the primary components of your real estate marketing stack.

How to integrate your IDX with your CRM and other marketing tools?

We've walked through how the IDX is really the home search and listings engine powering your website, similar to how Google Maps, MapBox, or HERE Technologies are the providers of "maps" for almost every application and website, but how do you connect your IDX to the other tools in your marketing stack?

A modern IDX will have three ways of sending your leads to other tools:

  1. Manual exporting via CSV or copy/paste
  2. Automatic direct integration with a small number of tools. Direct integrations can be extremely powerful as they can allow your IDX to send over additional data (e.g. property search information, number of visits, etc.) to your CRM.
  3. Automatic Zapier or Real Synch integration

Here's a quick video walking through how to use Zapier to integrate your IDX with 60+ marketing tools such as BombBomb, MailChimp, BoomTown, Contactually, HubSpot & more. Click here to see the full Zapier integration guide with Zap Templates.

Bring the power of MLS listings to your website with IDX integration, and you can trade on that authority in a way that will not only endear you to your existing clients – it will win you countless new ones as well.

Do you agree that IDX integration is a game-changer? Leave a comment below and let us know what you think!

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