A 2014 study conducted by Parago found that homeowners use the Internet to search for things they need for the house, from electronics to auto parts and everything in between. When searching for services like HVAC repair and house cleaning, many online browsers trust social media and online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
Building brand loyalty and generating leads is a lofty task; but it’s one that can be easily mastered when your business has an engaging, responsive website. Newspaper ads and billboard messages are no longer enough when it comes to promoting your business. Now, you need a strong online presence if you want to beat out your competition.
Successful home service businesses are those that include the following “must-haves” in their overall marketing strategy.
1. SEO-Friendly Content
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, and it refers to the process of driving traffic to your website through free (i.e. organic, natural) results on search engines like Google. When browsers search for a product or service online, they type in certain keywords. These keywords are used to yield the results displayed on the search results page.
Incorporating the right keywords (keywords relevant to your business and the services you offer) in your website content will help your business rank higher in search results. This is key, because the higher you rank on search engines like Google, the more chances you stand of being found online – and ultimately getting the calls and leads you need to support your business.
Your website content should include:
- Proper keyword saturation
- Relevant links
- “Scannable” pages that highlight important information and are easy for people to read quickly
People are only interested in the information relevant to them. If your website includes “fluff” or other information unrelated to what users are looking for, they’ll quickly navigate away from your site. Search engines aim to please consumers, so they look for the same thing. The more SEO-friendly content you offer on your website, the better chances you’ll have of ranking on page one of search results.
Examples of SEO-friendly website content:
- FAQ pages
- Customer testimonials
If your website is not getting noticed by search engines, you’re missing out on a large portion of your target audience. Tactical, SEO-friendly content can help you get to the top of search results and boost your business.
2. Targeted PPC Campaign
SEO optimization is a practical place to start when creating a website, but it takes time to show results. A quick way to get to the top of page 1 search results is through PPC, or pay-per-click advertising.
PPC ads are bid-based, which means you’re competing with other businesses for a top spot on page 1 of Google, Bing, etc. If your ad is clicked, you pay a fee (which is predetermined by the bid amount YOU set).
When done correctly, the fee you pay for PPC is essentially trivial. The visit to your website is worth far more than what you’ll pay for the click. For example, if you pay $5 for a click that turns into a customer who ultimately pays you upwards of $500, you’ve made a substantial profit.
3. Active Social Media Presence
Social media is a driving factor in your business’s success. It allows browsers to learn more about your company and share what they know with their friends and family. When someone clicks “Like” on a Facebook post, everyone with access to that person’s newsfeed will know it. It’s free word-of-mouth advertising.
When you’re active on social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook, you’ll increase your chances of being found online. People trust businesses other people trust; they choose service providers other people have already chosen; and they gravitate toward what everyone else is doing. If your social media presence is big and your following is loyal, your business will thrive.
Pro tips for staying active on social media:
- Join the conversation – what are the people who follow you talking about? Get involved and build name / brand recognition.
- Include links to your blogs on your Twitter feed.
- Use hashtags related to your business or service line.
- Ask satisfied customers to leave a review on sites like Yelp or Angie’s List.
For more information on each of these areas of Internet marketing, download our free eBook.