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Does Your Real Estate Blog Need a Side of Widget?

Are you looking for a value add for your real estate blog or Website? Many widgets promise the world (MORE READERS), but sadly many fall short of maximizing their intended goal. When it comes to adding valuable content and tools to your blog, try a widget that compliments your niche. Just don’t try them all.

Many agents rightly focus on a niche or specific target market when it comes to blogging. So, why not add a widget that provides local content, events, and even property listings. Hyperlocal aside, even adding a news widget with a larger content scope (say, nationwide) adds value to readers who check both local and national market info.

When thinking about adding a widget to your blog, you may want to ask yourself:? (1) Does this widget provide helpful information? and (2) Does this widget foster interaction and build your network?

Some options for you:

Property Search
Give consumers a home search tool they will come back for again and again. Try: Realivent Home Search Plugin, Realbird Map Based Search, Foreclosure Radar, dsSearchAgent from Diverse Solutions

Featured Listings
Showcase all your listings and get additional online exposure. Try:? MyMarketWare, vFlyer, TruliaMap

Home Valuation
Provide home valuation reporting. Try: Zillow Search Box, or Cyberhomes API.

Hyperlocal Content
There’s that buzz word again…but “hyperlocal” info can help you carve your niche and further emphasize your local expert status. Try: Upcoming Events, Google Calendar,? iBegin Weather, and Walkscore

Industry News, Information & Statistics
Nothing supports your message like great data! Try: Trulia Stats, Altos Research, Wiki Widget

Custom News
MSNBC recently launched NewsWare which brings you a variety of news widget options, including the Spectra Visual Newsreader and NewScroller a build-your-own news ticker.

Social Media
Build your community and foster interaction by utilizing widgets from your favorite social networks. Try: MyBlogLog, Realbird Widget for ActiveRain, YouTube, Flickr, Criteo Autoroll

Chat
Personally, I’m not a big fan of chat widgets, but some agents really like the ability to instantly connect with readers and consumers. Try: Meebo

Calculators
Give consumers a helpful tool for calculating mortgage payments, etc. Try: Mortgage Calculators, 10 Mortgage Calculators, Amortization Calculator

Real Estate Technology
MyTechOpinion is your go-to resource for all the real estate technology happenings. The MTO Widget rocks and not just because my partner in this blogiverse created it, but because it provides great resources to your consumers and helpful tips to your colleagues.? Enough said, get the MTO widget now!

WIDGET DISCLAIMER: Although I’ve listed a nice variety of value-add widgets, PLEASE DO NOT OVER WIDGETIZE YOUR BLOG!!! Seriously! Adding too many widgets can actually harm your blog by being distracting, as well as slow down your load time. You do not want so many things going on in your sidebar that it actually takes away from the meaty content. Too many tools and not enough great blog posts will hurt you. Your number one focus for your blog should ALWAYS be: adding helpful and remarkable content frequently. Content is your main dish….and a great widget is your garlic mashed potatoes on the side.

About NikNik

Nicole Nicolay "@nik_nik" is Co-Founder and Chief Creative Officer at Agent Evolution, and author of "WordPress for Real Estate: From Static to Standout". Her passion is educating real estate professionals on how to generate business by integrating both new and traditional channels of marketing. She is also co-founder and editor of MyTechOpinion.com, where she's been blogging about real estate technology since 2005. Nicole was named one of the 100 Most Influential Leaders in Real Estate for 2010, Top 10 Most Fearless Women Online & in Social Media for 2011, and 2012's Top 30 Women in Social Media in the world.