Exposure vs. Control
The syndication of listing data is a fine balance of exposure and control.
On the one hand, it is natural for a broker to want to expose their listings to a wide audience, often accomplished by sharing listings with a large and visible network of websites. But on the other hand, brokers want to maintain firm control over their listings, especially since losing control can mean listings suffer from misuse and inaccuracy as information is distributed widely on the Internet.
For example, if you were to print fliers for an open house, you might print hundreds to post all over the city to ensure thousands of pairs of eyes see them and potentially cause a big turnout at your open house. But that can take a lot of time and energy to do. You also risk weather destroying your fliers or people throwing them away before they are seen. In short, you have no control over what you posted around town.
Syndication can be a lot like that scenario. You want as many people as possible to see your fliers, but you also want to maintain some control over the information while also protecting it from the spectrum of problems that can come with sending data out in all directions.
While this can be a tricky situation to manage, the good news is with syndication you determine your own balance of exposure and control based on your own preferences and what you deem is best for your business. Brokers who place few if any limitations on how they syndicate their data will certainly maximize the exposure of their listings. And they could also potentially attract thousands of consumers browsing their listings on a monthly basis – numbers they could never have achieved without syndication. While some of those may just be casually browsing or looking for home decorating ideas, many of them will be serious potential buyers that become valuable leads.
By contrast, a broker that syndicates to only one website (or not at all) will have a firm handle on where the data is being displayed – like placing one flier at a single intersection in the city. This creates a very high degree of control, but the potential audience who might view that information is very small.