race-cheetahWant an “unfair advantage” in your marketing?

Improve your Google rankings.

People believe whatever Google says about you.

If your company shows up top on Google’s search rankings, people automatically think you are the best.

It’s an unfair advantage.

You need every marketing edge you can get. But the edge in contractor marketing isn’t coming from trade shows or print advertising. It’s coming from Google.

According to the Construction Marketing Association nationwide survey:
“62.9% of construction professionals look to local SEO as their top lead generation tactic.”

In this post we’ll talk about the few things you need to know about contractor SEO (or search engine optimization).

It’s all about the keywords

google_keyword
“Keywords” are simply the words people put in a Google search.

Contractor SEO is a bit easier since most contractors operate in a local area. Instead of competing for “best contractor” you can compete for “best contractor in CITY, STATE” which is a lot easier.

Through working with other contractors we’ve picked up some tips about which keywords contractors should try to rank for.

  1. You want to be specific with your keywords. Instead of “best contractor”, try “best remodeling contractor”
  2. The location needs to come at the end – “best remodeling contractor in CITY, STATE” works better than “CITY, STATE best contractor”
  3. If your main keyword is too difficult to rank for think about the other services you offer. Instead of “best remodeling contractor in CITY, STATE” you could try for “custom home painting in CITY, STATE”

The keywords that you choose should be all over your website (something we call “on-site SEO”). One way you can insert keywords into your site is through blogging, which brings us to our next point.

Contractor blogging

I know you probably cringe when you hear this but blogging for your business is one of the best things you can do.

Why is blogging so great?

  1. It will improve your Google rankings
  2. Customers who read your blog will see you as an authority in your industry
  3. You can increase the amount of time people spend on your website

The blog posts you write should be centered around your keywords. So if your keyword is “emergency plumbing” you could write a post about “The 5 Costliest Emergency Plumbing Problems”.

Blogging is tough and you already have a lot on your plate, so you may choose to hire a company to manage your company blog.

I have to give a strong WARNING: keep a close eye on the blog posts they create.

In New Jersey in 2012, one HVAC owner I spoke to was embarrassed to find out he was blogging about heating controls – not Superstorm Sandy – one of the biggest weather events in a decade.

Small digital marketing shops will almost always be better at blogging (but more expensive) than their larger competitors.

Social Media

No one really knows exactly how Google decides to rank people #1 but the experts agree that “social sharing” is high on the list.

Social sharing is basically how many people “like” and “share” the content on your website.

This is another reason to blog:

No one is going to “share” your homepage on Facebook. But they might share a heartwarming story about, “Electrical contractor saves neighborhood dog”.

If people start sharing that article around Facebook ,Twitter, or Houzz, Google will reward you with better search results.

Social media is another area that many contractors don’t want to handle. You’re too busy, it’s complicated, you don’t want to spend all day on Facebook.

That’s why there are companies like Visible Builder to handle your social media profiles.

Visible Builder specializes in social media for contractors. They make it pretty easy, you just send them a few photos every month and you’re basically good to go.

Conclusion

The contractor marketing edge can be gained with strong SEO.

The topics we went over in this blog post can help you improve your Google rankings but it takes time. Speak to any web developer and they’ll tell you that SEO takes at least 3 months to kick in.

That may seem like a large investment in time but the results are worth it.

You are who Google says you are.