By Peter Ricci
A bold, informative and fun Internet presence is practically a give-in for agents in today’s IT-driven economy, and WordPress offers a fun, relatively simple way for agents to set up their own personal websites or blogs.
However, it’s one thing to have a website, and another to make it unique and productive, and WordPress users can utilize a great tool to accomplish just that – plug-ins.
WordPress plugins are little programs that can be installed on your WordPress page, and they allow users to customize and improve their site; with that in mind, we’ve got five plugins that we think are particularly essential for a real estate-themed site:
- Akismet – Regardless of your website’s intention, spam is the enemy, and this plugin (one of the most popular on WordPress) could not be more important in the War on Spam. It does an awesome job stopping spam from appearing on your site and allowing your content to speak for itself. After all, it’ll be tough to sell that great raised ranch when your post is filled with comments from Middle Eastern royalty promising riches!
- WordPress Database Backup – WordPress is very stable, but still, even the most stable sites can have the occasional hiccup, and if that happens, you’ll want to make sure your data is backed up; you wouldn’t want all that hard work to go to waste!
- NextGen Gallery – Now this is one great plugin. Load your listing photographs into this plugin, and it organizes them into easily manageable galleries. Then, you can post galleries in your posts, and the photos will be displayed in an admittedly awesome grid; we should know – we use NextGen for our Scene posts!
- Contact Form 7 – An excellent plugin for agents, this plugin lets your create customized contact forms that your site’s visitors can fill out; what better (and easier) way to gain new leads and clients?
- Thank Me Later – This plugin is a perfect example of how darn useful plugins can be. If anyone comments on your site, this plugin automatically sends them a “Thank You” message for their comment via email, one that you can customize to include your own message and personal contact information. Has developing conversations with potential clients ever been easier?
As you can tell, WordPress offers some great potential for agents. And with the Internet now an indelible part of the homebuying process, it’s definitely something you should consider looking in to.