Virtual Office Websites (VOWs) are websites operated by MLS participant brokers through which they establish relationships and work with clients. VOW sites required a consumer to provide contact information prior to viewing listing information.
What is VOW?
VOW, or Virtual Office Website, is a program in which data is protected by a registration and authentication requirement (as opposed to no registration requirement for IDX). WolfNet offers VOW solutions, where all data is protected by a registration requirement, and IDX/VOW combo solutions, where only specific data is protected by a registration requirement. VOW is an enhanced version of IDX data.
1. Increased lead capture – VOW requires the user to have created a profile on the realtors website and authenticate their email address.
2. Additional listing information for your clients – a VOW data set provides additional information that an IDX feed cannot. Sometimes this data includes fields such as original list price of a house, price change history, days on market and even Sold Listings.
VOW Rules & Regulations
This data that is provided via the VOW feed is subject to the participating MLS’s rules and regulations. Because your listings are now shown on many other Broker sites, your selling clients have an exponentially greater chance of having their property noticed and sold.
VOW has been a controversial policy for the NAR (National Association of Realtors), but after a settlement with the US Department of Justice, in 2008, VOW is now a great and viable option to provide your clients with more comprehensive real estate listing data.
IDX/VOW; a powerful combo
Integrating IDX and VOW data together can be a very powerful tool for agents and brokers – it is a way to provide a more complete view of any given property listing, while also having more accurate data than real estate portal sites like Zillow and Trulia. Integrating VOW data into IDX property search allows for prospective clients to get access to exclusive, in-demand property information, while enhancing user engagement and lead capture.