The CREA Data Distribution Facility

The CREA Data Distribution Facility (DDF®) was first introduced in 2012, and is defined by CREA as a “a permission based data distribution facility to facilitate the distribution of its participating members’ listing information to National Pool Websites, Member Feed Websites, Franchisor Websites, and Third Party Websites.“

The Data Distribution Facility has its roots in a different kind of system technology, known as an Internet Data Exchange, or IDX. An IDX is a platform that allows participating Brokers to share their listings with other participating Brokers on their web sites, and usually provide less information than what you would get directly from MLS®, which is governed by rules created by MLS® that dictate what kind of information can be deemed “publicly accessible.” IDX’s are not widespread in Canada as only a handful of Boards/Associations make this service available to their members. The CREA National Shared Pool provides for greater opportunities for members who want to be involved in IDX and providing the ability to filter listings by property type or even geography.

A DDF®, on the other hand, allow agents to enter listing information into an MLS® board once, and have it instantly shared to their personal website and any other pre-selected third-party websites. Not only does the CREA DDF® give agents access to a constantly updating pool of nationwide listings, but it grants the agent greater control over where the listings are published. Participants are given access to an online dashboard that allows users to direct where listings are shared, while providing reports on the marketing success of information being disseminated.

The TREB (Toronto Real Estate Board) IDX is one of the most widely known in the industry, and is no more than a web interface designed for participating brokers to share information in and amongst themselves. The CREA DDF® is a tool used across Canada by real estate agents looking for a simple solution to updating all of their websites and social media accounts simultaneously with their own listings. According to the CREA website, the Data Distribution Facility (DDF®) allows CREA’s members to disseminate MLS® listing content to multiple websites, and to “ensure that MLS® listing content that is displayed on these websites is accurate, up to date, and uses CREA’s trademarks correctly.”

The Distribution Facility itself is comprised of three modules. The first is the “National Shared Pool Module,” where participants contribute listings to a national data pool that can be received by participants who wish to display that information. These feeds can be customized based on specific criteria.  The second, the “Member Feed Module,” allows the user to receive a data feed of their listings, or a data feed of all their Participating Brokerage’s listings. The last is referred to as the “Third Party Module,” which is used to send content to third party websites.

Members of CREA can register to receive a data feed, after which, certain website modifications are needed in order for the site to receive the data. That’s where AgentAccelerate comes in. Our premium CREA DDF solution for WordPress websites, AgentAccess, seamlessly integrates into your WordPress theme, and displays Canadian real estate listings data. The plugin is easy to install, with customizable feed options, multiple hooks and filters to add functionality, and an auto-updater to ensure users always have the most recent version of our product.

Jason Quintal | September 21, 2015

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