Create Communities Plugin
This plugin is an optional, extra cost add-on to the “Short Pages” plugin. It requires that the Smart Pages plugin also be purchased and be installed. Bundled package pricing is available.
You must have purchased and we must have installed, configured and tested the “IDX Include” and “Smart Pages” plugins on your WordPress website. The Create Communities plugin requires and uses the site configuration options provided by the IDX Include plugin, and without Smart Pages, it would not even work. However, Smart Pages will also still work very well without this plugin. You will just have to manually create each and every special property type and subdivision page on your website, which is exactly the tedious, time consuming and potential costly work this plugin is designed to do for you! Your county and city main “About” pages must be created in WordPress. The city About pages must include the applicable zip code lists for each city in order for the create-communities automated subdivision creation process to work. The automated county and city property type sub-pages do not require the zip codes list, as they “inherit” those from their parent pages.
When this plugin is installed, the following capabilities are added to the “Smart Pages” plugin:
- When present and activated on a page that includes the [county-top] short-code, and the page is viewed by a user who is logged on to WordPress with admin privileges, it will scan the sub-pages of that county page, and will automatically create new county property type sub-pages for any special property type pages that do not already exist. Each of the new county sub-pages will have the [county-top] and [county-search] shortcodes, with applicable county name, proptype and hometype parameters, for that sub-page. The SEO effect is that about 25 new IDX county specific search results page links can be generated on each sub-type page, times 15 sub-pages per county. So the search engines can see and index over 375 new pages, all with unique and indexable IDX search results for each county.
- When present and activated on a page that includes the [city-top] short-code, and the page is viewed by a user who is logged on to WordPress with admin privileges, it will scan the sub-pages of that county page, and will automatically create new city property type sub-pages for any special property type pages that do not already exist. Each of the new city sub-pages will have the [city-top] and [city-search] shortcodes, with applicable city name, proptype and hometype parameters, for that sub-page. The SEO effect is that about 25 new IDX city specific search results page links can be generated on each sub-type page, times 15 sub-pages per city. So the search engines can see and index over 375 new pages, all with unique and indexable IDX search results for each city.
- When present and activated on a page that includes the [city-top] smart pages short-code, and the page is viewed by a user who is logged on to WordPress with admin privileges, it will also do a special IDX query for subdivision names by the zip codes list in that city. Using the results of that query, for any subdivision not already in its communities database table, it will create new community/subdivision pages in WordPress as a sub-page of the applicable primary property type (Single Family, Condo/Townhome, Patio Home). The new subdivision pages will include the smart pages idx-subdivision shortcode and minimal parameters. However, because the street address and geo coordinates for the subdivision entry point are unknown, it cannot include the parameters for the additional demographics information that would be included from the “Simple Real Estate Pack” plugin, unless the site owner manually adds those parameters to the new subdivision pages later.
- When this plugin is present and activated, additional SEO enhancement capabilities are also added to the “Smart Pages” city / property type pages. Those pages will automatically include a full subdivisions list applicable to that city and property type, organized by zip codes, at the bottom of the page and following the 25 most recent listings for that city and property type.
- Using the new communities database table maintenance tools in the WP admin menu, the site owner can manually tag each subdivision with additional flags that indicate senior (55+) subdivisions, gated subdivisions, golf course communities and new construction subdivisions. This is a manual database maintenance process because there is no reliable way to determine these subdivision attributes except by personal market knowledge and research in the local MLS. Once this is done, then the idx-city-top shortcode for those property type pages can include those tagged subdivisions at the top of the page.
Additional WordPress shortcodes are included to allow subdivision lists to be created and included on any page the site owner wants, with a number of subdivision selection criteria. On the showcase website for example, the “list-communities” shortcode was used to list all subdivisions for all property types on a single “Subdivisions” page under each primary city page. See example. On our showcase site, this plugin has already created over 750 new city / proptype pages, 225 new county / proptype pages and almost 4000 subdivision pages, significantly improving the site’s SEO results and SERPs!
- Recognizing that the accuracy and reliability of subdivision names in the MLS is often problematic, especially in MLSs that allow listing agents to enter subdivision names “free form”, or where the subdivision names are derived by the MLS from public records databases, the plugin applies a number of subdivision name filtering rules. These rules delete common “noise words” from the subdivision names it gets from the MLS, so the resulting names should only include the appropriate name words. This process is not perfect, and is constantly being reviewed and enhanced.
- If / When subdivisions are created by the plugin based on incorrect names entered by listing agents, several methods are available to correct them.
- The newly created subdivisions will be displayed on the main city page as they are created. Next to the new subdivision name will be a trash can icon. Clicking the trash can icon will immediately delete that subdivision page and mark the subdivision table entry as “omitted”, so it will not be created again with that name.
- Assuming the site owner has elected to automatically create the special subdivision sub-page, when viewed by a logged in WP admin, that page will in include a “Review/Edit” tab. Clicking that tab will invoke a special version of the subdivisions list, in which every subdivision name will have its own trashcan icon. Reviewing all subdivisions at the same time will often reveal issues that may not be apparent when new subdivisions are being created. Some issues may be corrected by simple deletions. But others may require editing one or more subdivision pages in the WP page editor, and adding “alias” names to pick up the new subdivision name variations. In some extreme cases, using cPanel MySQL database tools may be required to fix some issues.
- Because actual WordPress pages are created, the website owner has the option of later adding additional subdivision specific content to any of those pages. However, this is not strictly necessary for every subdivision page, since the new pages will include at least some automatically generated content based on the city name, subdivision name and zip code the community is in.
- Because the plugin builds and maintains its own WP database table for the communities it creates, and does not rely on built-in and resource intensive WordPress functions to list the subdivision pages, page load performance is not significantly affected, regardless of the number of subdivisions. Using its own dedicated communities table in the database also allows for future enhancements.