flexmls IDX Jump Start Guide ®
Step One: Activate your flexmls IDX. Go to the FBS Data Systems Web store at www.flexmlsIDX.com. Click the button that looks like a shopping cart and says “Activate IDX Now.” Note that you can come back to this home and watch a short training video on using the IDX Manager. The great thing about purchasing your subscription through this Web store is that it activates your IDX immediately and you can setup your first IDX link. Warning: Do not email or phone FBS Data Systems as that will take you to an inside sales person and is a manual process and can possibly delay activation for several days.
Step Two: Next you will be prompted to enter your flexmls User Name and Password. This is how you get activated immediately!
Just enter your flexmls User Name and Password. This is the same login you use to enter the flexmls or ARMLS system.
Step Three: The next screen allows you to securely enter your credit card information to activate your IDX subscription. You will also be asked to enter a Web address and Fax number as required fields, and there is a small box to check regarding the terms and conditions. After clicking the Update button you will be taken to IDX Manager and can start setting up your first IDX link.
Just fill in the information. You will be subscribed to the agent IDX for one year for just $240.
When finished click the Update button!
Step Four: If you are not ready begin right now you can always get back to IDX Manager by doing a fresh log in to flexmls as you normally would. Go to the Preferences screen and you should see a brand new option—IDX Manager! Choose that option by clicking on it.
Click the new option “IDX Manager” to create and manage IDX links.
Step Five: From the IDX Manager go to the upper right corner and select the “New” option to setup your IDX link. Note that this is a “full search” link where users will enter criteria. Creating a “one-click” or pre-defined search link is covered next. Click New to setup your first IDX link.
Step Six: The first step in setting up your new IDX link is to choose a name. To get started, you can leave the default name “Report Generation” but I recommend changing it to something like “My IDX Link” or “(your name’s) IDX Link.” The type of link is always “Quick Search.”
For Step 1 you can leave the default settings the way they are, but you should change the Link Name! Step Seven: Now we are on step two of creating a new IDX link in IDX Manager. This step is just like the last one. To get started just leave the Quick Search selection at the default, which is called Report Generator. The only option to consider is to check the “Map Search” box if you want your Web site visitors to see the Map Search option when they first click on your link.
Click the Map Search box to allow visitors to see the Map Search first.
Step Eight: From here we go to step 3 of creating our IDX link. This step let’s you choose how search data will display to your Web site visitors. The first option, Report Type, can only be “IDX Report.” Go ahead and click on it to fill it in. The next option, Listing View, is your choice! Simply use the pull down menu to choose how the list of properties will display. If you aren’t sure, just use the reliable standard “Client View.”
Just choose Client View to start. You can make a custom view and change the link at a later time!
Step Nine: So far so easy! We are on step 4 of the IDX link setup menu. Here is where you get to customize your own branding and color scheme. For most of you, your Generic Business Card is the easiest to select. It will have your picture, contact information, etc. as long as you have it setup in your Profile within flexmls. Orientation simply means where on the screen do you want your branding to appear. Lastly, click on the Accent Background Color box and choose from the palette the color you want for your IDX search screen background.
Choose your background color scheme here. Write down the color code so you use the same color for other links!
Step Ten: On to Step Five of the IDX link setup menu. This step activates one of the best features of flexmls IDX, namely the astonishing amount of property information your Web site visitors can see. This is very important for keeping prospects on your site until you can convert them to clients. The default setting is to show all of the tabs. However, you decide! You can uncheck any of the boxes to have that tab go away.
Step Eleven: Lastly, and most importantly, step 6 of the IDX link setup menu let’s you choose how you are going to capture leads. With a flexmls IDX link your Website leads can be captured by having visitors create their own Web Portal! This is an advantage to you because now you can monitor your prospects through all of the advanced features of the Web Portal rather than just receiving a name, phone number, and email. The only question is when do you want visitors to register themselves with you for a Portal? Do you want to let them search first, or do you want them to register right away. You have complete control over this important step. Remember, you can always come back and Edit this link later, and change the settings as you gain experience.
You can have visitors register at any of these different settings, and you can even allow them to skip if they want—it’s up to you!
Step Twelve: When you have completed all 6 steps in the IDX link setup menu, click the link at the bottom of your screen to save your work. This is the same Save button you will use if you come back and make any changes to your link.
Don’t forget to Save at the end. Your link is created ONLY after you have saved.
Step Thirteen: Now that you have clicked the SAVE button wait a few seconds while it is saving, then scroll back to the top of the page. Presto! Your IDX links are now created. From here you can Preview your new IDX search link to see what visitors will see, and you can choose between two different kinds of links. The first type of link is a direct link, and this is the most common. It typically is used as a Link Button or Link Text on your personal Web site. The Direct Link will open a new window from your Web site. The second link is an iFrame link. This link will “frame” the IDX search within a page on your Web site, so you will need a page with a lot of room for this type of link. To place the links in your Web site you can copy and paste the link, or write it down exactly for future reference. Some agents know how to setup or change hyperlinks in their Web sites. If you do not know, call your Web site provider or if you have a Web master contact them to put the link in for you. Remember that once your personal Web site is setup with the new IDX link you won’t have to change it again. You can make changes to your settings within flexmls IDX Manager and they will automatically flow through to your personal Web site. Congratulations! You are now ready to provide your prospects and clients with the Real, Live, and Official MLS system.
These are your new links. Copy and paste them into your Web site or have your site provider help you.
Setting Up a Pre-defined “One Click” Search Link Setting up a one-click search link is basically the same as setting up your full search link outlined previously. The main difference is how you begin. Naturally, since this is a pre-defined search it all begins with a flexmls standard search. Here are the terms used in the system: Quick Search— means a full search where the user enters criteria. Saved Search—means a pre-defined search where the user clicks the link and instantly sees the property search results. The following steps show how to setup a Saved Search IDX link. Step One: First go to the full search in flexmls like you always do. Remember that you can setup a Saved Search for any search criteria that you can think of, and the Status must be any form of Active and Pending. Search results that yield Solds, for example, will not display per IDX rules. However, you can always Save a search for Solds for a client once they have registered with a Portal. In the Portal the client or prospect can see Solds but not in a One Click IDX search link.
Start by performing a Full Search. One Click Saved Search links can be anything you want, such as Price Ranges, Horse Property, Foreclosures, Retirement Communities, Homes with Pools, etc.
Step Two: Once you have entered your criteria, click the Update link to see how many results you have. This is a good idea because you may not want to have a One Click search that yields more than 100 properties. If you find your search is too broad, narrow it down and make another link. You can create as many as you like.
Click Update to see how many matches you have.
Step Three: Once you have seen the number of matches, Click the View link to actually RUN the search. DO NOT click the Save link at this point! The Save link here is for saving a search for a client and not to setup an IDX link. The IDX link option will not be available yet. So remember, you need to click VIEW at this point as shown in the screenshot below.
You must click VIEW at this point to create a pre-defined one click search link. This will actually RUN the search which is exactly what you want to do.
Step Four: Once you have clicked View and therefore run the search you now have a different SAVE option as a tab across the upper right of your screen. Here is where you begin to setup your Saved Search, or One Click IDX search link. So, click on Save and you will now see an option to “Create IDX Link.”
Choose the option to “Create IDX Link” and it will now take you to the IDX Manager. All of your search criteria will be saved for this link!
Step: 5: Now you are back in IDX Manager. Note that the type of link now says “Saved Search.” From here follow the same steps as outlined previously in this Jump Start Guide for setting up a Quick Search, or Full Search link.
Now you are ready to setup your Saved Search with all of the same options as before!
Step 6: After you have clicked the “I’m Ready, Save this Link” button your saved search will give you three link options instead of the two you saw with a Quick Search. You have the same Direct Link which is great for a Web button or Hypertext link, and you have the Framed Link which “frames” the search results on your Web site. The third option you now have is “Listing Widget” Link! See the screenshot below.
Now you have a new link option, the Listing Widget!
If you click on the blue preview text next to the name â€œListing Widgetâ€? you will see how impressive this Widget is. The Widget displays the results of your pre-defined search in a small box that shows thumbnail pictures and some information for the first 5 properties that matched your criteria. Your agent or broker branding is displayed, and there are many options to view the whole list, a single property, setup a Portal etc. The Listing Widget is can be a useful and handsome addition to your Web site.
The Listing Widget can really dress up your Web site and is a great way to display pre-defined or One Click searches since the results display instantly!