How to Add MLS Search to a Website
An MLS, or Multiple Listing Service, allows potential home buyers to search or browse for a property. It's important for realtors to provide an MLS search option on their websites to increase the validity of a website, to build brand recognition and trust, and offer worthwhile services to clients. A moderately-skilled computer user can typically add an MLS search function to a website without the help of a web developer.
Find an MLS search option. Most cities, states or regions have a main source offering MLS search options (sometimes referred to as "IDX," or Internet Data Exchange). For example, most Tennessee realtors use a company called RealTracs. You can start with a broader option, such as RealBird (See Resources), to get started. Once you find your option, fill out the required information, agree to the terms and click "Register" or "Sign Up."
Go to "widgets" or "embed" within the new MLS account. The embed code or widget will help you easily add the MLS search to your website.
Locate the HTML code to input into your website. Highlight the code and copy the code by holding down CTRL+C on a PC or CMD+C on a Mac.
Open the page of your website with an HTML editor where you want to insert the MLS search engine. If you are using an online editor, such as WordPress, make sure you are viewing your page editor in the HTML view by clicking the "HTML" button in the top right of the editor. Hold down CTRL+V or CMD+V on a Mac to paste the MLS search code into the editor. Click "Save" or "Update."
Open your favorite FTP client if you need to upload a raw HTML file to your server. Enter your username and password, and drag and drop the updated HTML file by holding down the left mouse button, dragging the mouse, and releasing the button to drop the file on the server. Ensure you upload the updated HTML file to the appropriate folder on the server where the website files are stored.
Visit your website to test your MLS search function.
Tips & Warnings
- Avoid MLS search tools or IDX tools that require the use of an iframe. While they are very easy to implement, iframes are not known for their functionality.