High resolution images are coming to the Massachusetts MLS as soon as next week!
Very excited with MLS PIN’s newly announced changes.
When the feature becomes available, we will certainly be updating all of our Great Estate listing pictures to high resolution in MLS.
It will be interesting to see how the syndicated sites (Zillow etc.) handle this transition from low resolution to high resolution images (in Massachusetts). Zillow already offers high resolution images from other state’s MLS (i.e. Beverly Hills) so the capability is there on some sites. I anticipate hiccups on some of the smaller property search sites (individual agent websites and aggregators) as they update their parsing code.
Image Editing Workflow
Photographers and agents should be aware that images previously optimized for the current 512x400px resolution should start exporting higher resolution images. We will have to wait for rollout, next week, to see what resolutions are the best balance of user experience (easy to navigate) and helpful detail. Hopefully MLSPIN will increase the bitrate of images too–as a lot of fine details are currently lost.
Additionally, because the current standard is small images, I tend to lean towards over exposed pictures versus perfectly accurate ones, as darker tones become overwhelming at the smaller scale. I look forward to finding the best new exposure and color mixture to maximize this new resolution.
If the images always display in high resolution (default), and are still easy to navigate (quick loading), agents will likely prefer them over low resolution images.
The current 512x400px resolution maximum is outdated in 2017 (The Iphone 6 can shoot at 3264 x 2448), but does offer quick loading and smaller file sizes when emailing PDFs. Of course, images and image delivery is a challenging corner of the web. I hope that MLSPIN’s servers are ready for these new images, especially considering the volume they store and serve. If the servers are fast, and the images load quickly this will be a huge improvement to MLSPIN. If not, it could be a headache for agents (having to scroll through extra pages, as each page can fit fewer large images), and would likely lead to a preference for the lower resolution images. It is all in the implementation.
WHAT IS MLS?
MLS stands for “multiple listing service” and is usually a membership-based database that real estate professionals use to distribute and market listings. Think of it as a backend for real estate agents, offering agent contact information, details about listings, past sale and listing information, and public record searches. MLS is what agents typically use to find and research listings. MLS also feeds listing information to the various real estate search sites such as Zillow.com, Realtor.com, and Trulia.com as well as individual real estate agent’s “IDX” or “search” websites. The majority of Massachusetts real estate is listed on MLSPIN (Nantucket being a notable exception).