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Bright MLS/IDX Integration for Realtor Site

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See this existing thread:


About: SQSP User for 17 yrs. Circle Leader since 2017. I value honesty, transparency, diversity and good design ♥.
Work: Founder of SF Digital, building Squarespace Extensions to supercharge your commerce website. 
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  • 4 months later...

Hi Sharon,
For any website developer who wants to work with real estate agents, I know this can be a confusing topic and a potential roadblock to winning the website business!
However, its actually very simple and non-technical to seamlessly add MLS listings to a Squarespace website.

So, here's the primer so you can be confident about offering your website services to real estate agents:

All the MLS (in north America), have a policy that allows their members to show MLS listings on their own websites. This policy is known as "IDX" (Internet Data eXchange).
And, solutions that provide this function to Agents are generally known as "IDX", provided by "IDX solutions vendors".
To add MLS listings from any MLS, the Agent/Broker whose website it is, will need to be a member of that MLS! (E.g. a member of BRIGHT MLS in this case)

How to Add Properties to a Website:
To add MLS properties and property search functions to a website, the simplest approach is to use an add-on (a "plugin") from a third party "IDX solutions vendor". This 3rd party has a relationship with the MLS and so is getting the MLS data already and handling all the technical issues of working with the MLS data. The IDX solutions vendor then provides the solution by providing a "plugin" (JavaScript library) and methods to add listings and other MLS search functions to a website.
So technically, the steps you would follow are:
(1) Add the plugin - e.g a JavaScript library,
(2) Add short-codes (<div>s) on pages to show listings and other functions as needed.
These short code snippets are for showing listings, search forms, properties on maps etc in and around other content on web pages.

In order to use any IDX solution, the MLS will need to "approve" the Agent/Broker to do this - i.e. there's some initial paperwork to get "IDX approvals" (this is all handled by the IDX vendor - nothing for you to worry about).
Once they are approved (a day or so), you will then be able to add the plugin and start adding MLS properties and functions to the agents website.

This approach make it very simple for you as a website developer to engage with real estate agents and offer them great website solutions. You can focus on building great sites, and use an IDX solution, such as Buying Buddy, to add MLS properties as additional content to the pages you create.

Many MLS provide their members with a "free" IFRAME search link option - which of course if going to look dreadful on your beautiful website designs. Most agents want to showcase their own listings, or sold etc - they want it to be impressive - and so a solution that seamlessly embeds MLS content and function into an agents website will have more value for them.

I hope this helps you and any other website creator thinking about working with real estate agents!
This site shows how it could all look on your own creations: https://charliesmithrealty.net 
Please reach out to me directly if you need any assistance. 
- Paul Eastwood

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  • 2 months later...
  • 11 months later...

Real estate agents in Canada use a different IDX database so data from the Data Distribution Facility or board IDX/VOW won't import. Canadian agents need to use an iframe solution for Squarespace such as Agent iFrame, available at realtywebsites.ca. It's copy-paste so it works out the box without configs on Squarespace.

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