I think you all know that every real estate website needs a great IDX to enable visitors to your website to answer the question of “what’s for sale?” (still what 60-70% of people are looking for). We get asked a lot about the differences between the IDX products available on our predesigned platform – dsIDXpress and dsSearchAgent (both from Diverse Solutions). This is a question I answer on almost every sales call with a potential client, so I thought I’d take a few minutes to detail my answer so that maybe (hopefully) I’ll have to answer it fewer times on the phone.
Most of you are likely aware of the fact that depth of content on a given domain are one of many factors that go into SEO. That said, dsIDXpress is one of the best SEO tools I have ever seen. Many agent websites have been around for years and years and have fewer than 200 pages indexed on their site. Think of pages as easter eggs in Google. In any easter egg hunt, wouldn’t you rather have 2,000 eggs for people to find rather than only 200? That’s what I thought. With dsIDXpress, you instantly have a “page” for every single listing in your MLS integrated directly into your site, as well as pages for every city, community, and tract listed in the MLS. Many of our clients have over 1,000 pages (aka easter eggs) indexed within a few months — largely due to this plugin.
The plugin also gives you the ability to insert both individual listings as well as lists of listings directly into any post or page on your site. It can certainly handle basic searches for listings (try a search on one of our sites like MaryBaldwinHomes.com), but it does not include a full map search with search filters, nor does it include forced registration or saved searches.
dsSearchAgent + dsSearchAgent Mobile
I can confidently say you’re going to want dsSearchAgent once you build a bit of traffic on your domain. Simply put, the vast vast majority of your conversions are going to happen as part of your IDX — and dsSearchAgent has the conversion tools built in to increase your conversion rates. Want to enable forced registration before visitors can see any listings, or let someone do 5 searches and then have to register? Do you want a full map search with all the filters you can think of to compete with the Zillow’s and Realtor.com’s of the world? Want to enable people to do saved searches? Want to enable your visitors to browse sold listings? Want search by WalkScore on your site? Want to view what people are searching for on your site? Want lead alerts, an integrated CRM, and traffic statistics on your IDX? Want a mobile optimized browser experience?
If the answer is YES to any or all of those questions, you need dsSearchAgent (which comes with dsSearchAgent Mobile).
Hope that helps clear up some of the confusion between these two awesome IDX products. You can learn more about Diverse Solutions on their website, and you can view our monthly plans for our predesigned platform here. Questions? Leave them in the comments, and I’m sure the Diverse Solutions staff will be monitoring the conversation.