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Questions About IDX Websites With Hosting:
Q. What is IDX?
Internet Data Exchange (IDX) is a term that describes the concept of allowing the public to search and view available "For Sale" listings from your local multiple listing service (MLS) on your company or personal real estate website (IDX Website) subject to any IDX rules of the board or association that controls your MLS.
Q. What is managed IDX vs. framed IDX?
When you create a Design-Plus or a Custom-Pro website that includes "managed IDX", we will work with your local MLS to establish a data connection of listing data and photos. By "managed" we are simply referring to the process of obtaining and maintaining the listing data on our servers so that it is searchable from your website. Some MLS associations offer a free IDX solution or a website that you can frame into your site that allows the public to search the MLS without leaving your site. With a framed solution, the site you are framing maintains the listing data as apposed to us (RealtyPro Solutions). Generally, managed IDX looks more professional, gives you many more options on what you can do with your site, and has better lead generation features than framed IDX.
Q. What is Hosting?
Hosting means that we host your website on our server so that it is available to the public. Our monthly subscription fee includes the cost of hosting and access to the RealtyPro IDX Control Panel where you can edit and manage your website.
Q. What is the RealtyPro IDX Control Panel?
The Control Panel is a "back end" web-based software product provided by RealtyPro Solutions that allows you to view your billing, manage your account, and make changes to your website(s). Using the Website Editor inside the Control Panel, you can: customize your menus, add or delete webpages, edit the style and content (text and images) of each page, manage leads, and check and manage your email accounts. It gives you the ability to edit your website without having to know html or have any special programming skills. Once you have created an account, you can login to the Control Panel online at: www.RealtyProIDX.com
Q. What is the difference between a Design-Plus and a Custom-Pro website?
Both designs are extremely professional and very similar in how they work. They both include "real person" technical support to show you how to customize your template settings and edit your site using the Control Panel. The main differences between the two are price, selection, customization, and a few perks.
Design-Plus websites are less expensive and they do not require a setup fee. They generally have 6 menu links and 6 submenu links. They are easier to edit, but they are less customizable.
Custom-Pro websites are generally more professional looking, and there is a greater selection of templates to choose from. Custom-Pro websites allow you to have as many menu links, submenu links, and webpages as you need, and you have more flexibility and control over the design, layout, style, and look of each of your webpages. Custom-Pro websites include FREE annual domain registration, 10 FREE email accounts, and more customization of the initial setup and design of your site. As part of the setup fee, our friendly and professional design staff will help you select a design, customize your header, setup your menus and links, and edit the content of the home page and all of the default pages to your template. If you want to add additional pages or make changes later, you can do it yourself using the website editor in the Control Panel (no programing skills required) or you can hire us to do it for you at our reasonable hourly rate.
Q. What is a template-based website?
A template is basically the design and look of your website. It includes a header, footer, menu(s), and a color schema (backgrounds, etc.). You preview the templates until you find the one that you like best. Your initial site will be exactly like the template you choose. Then all you have to do is edit the content (text) of each page so that it says what you want it to say. Each template has certain settings that you can change such as: your logo, the text on your header, background image etc. You can also delete webpages that you don't want and add as many additional webpages as you need. You own the domain name, we own the template, and collectively your website exists (is hosted) for the public to see and use. There are several advantages of a template-based website over a custom built website. You get a professional design for hundreds of dollars less, you get to see what it looks like before you pay any up front fees, and you can edit and maintain your site without having to pay a webmaster or learn any programming skills.
Q. Can I reserve a template so no one else can use it?
Yes, you can lock your template for an additional fee which prevents anyone in the future from using it, but we don't suggest it for the following reasons. First, if you come up with a custom background and some custom images for your header, you will have a unique site that will never look like anyone else's website (even if they have the same template). Second, if someone wants a site like yours, it's pretty easy to find a webmaster that can create a site similar to yours without violating any copyright laws. Third, we are constantly adding templates to our designs, and we will automatically lock templates when they have reached a certain limit of uses.
Q. What's included in the Setup Fee?
The managed IDX setup fee ($99) helps cover the cost of the labor and hardware required to setup and maintain the listing data feed from your local MLS. The managed IDX fee will be refunded if we are unable to establish a data connection with your local MLS within a reasonable time period (30 days +/-). The Custom-Pro website setup fee includes help and support from our friendly and professional design staff to help you select a design, customize your header, setup your menus and links, and edit the content of the home page and all of the default pages that come with your template. If you want to add additional pages or make changes later, you can do it yourself using the website editor in the Control Panel (no programing skills required) or you can hire us to do it for you at our reasonable hourly rate.
Q. What is the process of creating a new IDX website?
After you have previewed our website examples and you are ready to start your website, the process is as follows:
- You click the [Create Account] button and create an account (which sends you a validation email)
- You log in to your account and add a website to your account which does the following:
- You identify or register a domain name that you will use with the new website.
- You select a website template. Your site will be an exact copy of the template you choose.
- You make your initial payment (You can either pay monthly or annually).
- You can start editing the content of your site immediately using the RealtyPro IDX Control Panel.
- We will contact you within 24-48 hours to discuss your needs and to help you do the following:
Once your initial site is setup and LIVE, we'll provide ongoing support to help you manage, edit, and maintain your website.
- Review your domain name and set the DNS settings to point to the new website.
- Obtain written authorization from your MLS to provide IDX for you (if you have managed IDX).
- Setup the IDX data feed from your MLS if we don't already have one.
- Help you customize your design, setup your menus, and edit the content of your webpages.
Q. How can I convert my existing website to a RealtyPro IDX website?
If you like your current website, but you're paying too much etc., we can help you convert it to a RealtyPro IDX website. Just give us a call at 1 (800) 992-8045 or drop us and email and we'll provide a free site review and offer suggestions on how you can improve your website and save money!
Questions About IDX Solutions Without Hosting:
Q. If I already have a website, can I just add IDX?
Yes. It's very simple and easy to setup and it will be a great improvement and add a valuable service to your existing website.
Q. How does the IDX Solution Work?
Once you have added an IDX solution (as a website) to your account, we will contact you and work with you, your webmaster, and your MLS to setup a data feed of listings and photos from the MLS. Once the data connection is in place, you can either frame one of our pages into your site, or you can provide us with a URL to a header and footer from your site, and we'll help you seamlessly integrate our IDX solution right into your site. Our IDX solution allows you to add custom searches to your site (where visitors to your site can search by any criteria) or preset searches that go straight to a results view with a custom heading (for example: Featured Listings, My Listings, Rentals, Condos, Foreclosures, Homes Under 100k, Commercial Properties, Short-sales, Farms & Ranches, etc.) and several options to control the look and display of the listing data. And best of all, we manage and maintain the data so that your website is always current and up-to-date with listing data and photos of available properties.