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Choosing a Listing Syndication Solution

August 25 2013

This is the latest in a series of 'Buyer's Guides' that feature questions to ask and options to consider before making a new purchase. See our previous guides to purchasing a CMACRMDocument and Transaction ManagementElectronic SignatureiPad App, Lead Generation solution, and Lockbox.

What is Listing Syndication?

sharingListing syndication allows you to share property information on third party Web sites. It is a cornerstone of Internet marketing; but, in order for it to be effective, a thorough understanding of the concept and your specific solution is essential. We recommend reading a few articles (for instance, "Listing Syndication Definitions") on RE Technology to get started. The companies that build listing syndication technology are experts in this area and can be a wonderful resource, so don't hesitate to reach out to them with any of your questions.

Questions to Ask

There are some important questions to ask when buying any real estate technology product and some that are unique to choosing a listing syndication solution.

First, let's look at general questions you'll want to ask.

  • What are my objectives for this piece of technology and will this product help me achieve those objectives?
  • What is my budget?
  • What kind of customer service and training programs are available? Are there webinars and, if so, are they recorded so you can view them at any time? Is the vendor's online help sufficient?

After you've asked and answered these questions, you can get down to the listing syndication-specific questions:

  • How much control will I have over where my listings are shared? Is there a dashboard to select locations?
  • What kind of reports will be available about how my listings perform on other sites? Do I need to pay any additional fees for the reports?
  • Does my broker, Association or MLS have a preferred solution for listing syndication? Are there any rules governing my use of listing syndication?
  • Am I willing to lose some of my rights when it comes to my data? What are the terms and conditions of using the syndication solution? Does the company help negotiate special terms or discounts with publishers?
  • Am I willing to accept some inaccuracies in my data? (Other than realtor.com®, the MLS is the only truly up-to-date source for listing information. The third-party sites to which you syndicate will not update their information as regularly, leading to inaccuracies.) Typically updates happen once a day. Ask if they update more frequently than that.

Your Options

For a thorough discussion of your options, download our 2013 Technology Guide2013 Technology Guide.

  • ListHub for Agents: ListHub’s basic listing distribution service is free and allows brokers and agents to advertise their listings on over 50 national real estate search sites. In addition, the basic service includes filters for reviewing publisher features, view publisher ratings, automatic daily updates form the MLS, free leads via phone and email, personal dashboard login, online technical support, and channel scorecard.