It’s no secret that the internet is the best place to acquire leads for contractors. Google is the number one search engine in the world, and is the most relied upon source for local business information. With the majority of internet users accessing the web on mobile devices, local businesses must cater directly to them. Technology has allowed local mapping to specify results for users based on their proximity to a business. There has never been a more important time to invest in online marketing.
2018 will be a challenging one for contractors. With great challenges come great opportunities. There has never been more channels through which to acquire contractor leads, but with so much access, more management is required. In addition, technology has made the distribution of information faster and more efficient while providing new products through which to consume it. Because of the overwhelming nature of digital marketing in 2018, Contractor Webmasters has created a Contractor Marketing Guide for the new year:
Step 1: Design a Functional Website
The foundation of your marketing success in 2018 will rest on the design and functionality of your website. This is more complex than it was 10 years ago. Today, websites must display optimally on a wide range of devices including mobile, desktop, and tablet. Obsolete websites will suffer gradual revenue loss because of an increasing level of failure in lead generation. A contractor website in 2018 should be:
- Informative: Google knows more about user intent than ever before which means your content must cater to your target audience
- Responsive: Mobile searches will dominate 2018 and having a clean mobile website is imperative
- Sleek: Less is more which means avoiding clunky designs in favor of clean ones is best practice
- Visual: The last thing users want to see on your website is a bunch of text which is why you must engage them through graphic design
There are aspects of web design you’ll want to avoid in the new year. Stay away from stock photos which have oversaturated the internet. It makes your website look cheap and uninspired. Needless to say any elements of a website that don’t translate to mobile are all but obsolete in today’s market. A good plan is to design a website with mobile in mind, and have it adjust to desktop based on responsive design code.
Step 2: Manage Your Online Reputation
The importance of online reviews in today’s marketplace cannot be understated. Consumers trust their peers far more than they trust a corporate advertisement. Checking Yelp, Facebook, or Google for customer reviews is like having a room full of friends available at all times, ready and willing to share their experiences with contractors and their respective companies. That’s why it’s important to manage reputation with the following methods:
- Listing Optimization: Claim and optimize your business pages on local internet directories
- Review Generation: Solicit reviews ethically by placing links in your website footer
- Review Responses: Respond to both positive and negative reviews in a professional manner
- Social Media Presence: Verify your business pages on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.
Testimonials of your best clients can also be displayed directly on your main website. You can even ask some of your most satisfied customers if they would be willing to repeat their testimonial on video and have it uploaded to YouTube, and embedded on your front page. Sleek web design also leaves room for “Review us” buttons in the footer of your website, as well as “Follow Us” and “Like Us” as buttons for your social media profiles.
Step 3: Create Video Content
A few decades ago, a commercial ad would entail all kinds of spending and commitments. In 2018, you can record a video commercial right from your smartphone. With a few affordable purchases, like an external condenser mic, you can create a legit looking commercial in a few hours. Of course you’ll need video editing software but there are many free options available, including some that can be downloaded right on your phone. Video content can be published on:
- Facebook: Embed YouTube clips or upload directly to Facebook
- Instagram: Use IG Stories and show “behind the scenes” video clips
- Website: Engage visitors immediately with embedded video introductions
- YouTube: Utilize this massive social media platform and its 1 billion active monthly users
Video combines movement and noise to create an engaging user experience. That’s why this content medium is likely to continue to grow throughout 2018. The best part about video content is that it can incorporate other types of content. Think about it. You can use text, images, links, and audio on your video clip. It’s the ultimate content medium for contractors. The key will be allocating enough time and resources to produce video content regularly, as well as distributing it through the proper channels.
Step 4: Perform SEO for Individual Service Pages
SEO is pretty much a household term in 2018. People know what it is, especially if they are involved in any kind of business operation. What is not as prevalent, is the specification of SEO to individual service pages. For contractors with websites, it is not enough to market yourself as a roofing contractor or plumbing contractor. Instead, your website should have multiple child pages which target keywords for specific services like residential tile roof repair or bathroom remodeling services. To accomplish this, you’ll require:
- Internal Linking: Anchor text links will be useful to enhance user navigation
- Keyword Research: Developing a list of specific long tail keywords in your industry
- Service Categorization: Create a list of individual services that your company offers
- URL Hierarchy: You’ll need parent and child pages (i.e. yourwebsite.com/residentialroofing/shingleroofrepair)
Many tools exist to find the best keywords for your individual service pages. Whether you use SEMRush, Google Keyword Planner, or MOZ Keyword Explorer, you’ll be looking for similar or the same information. How many users are searching for those services, or similar keywords in a given month? How difficult is it to rank for the service pages in a specific location? These are all questions you can answer through keyword research.
Pay Per Lead Marketing for Contractors
If completing the steps in this guide seem impossible to you right now, you will be relieved to learn about Contractor Webmasters. We are a pay per lead marketing company that handles all aspects of contractor marketing online. We only charge you after exclusive contractor leads are produced. That means you only pay for results and don’t have to worry about the accountability of your marketing service. We hold ourselves accountable by offering pay per lead agreements. Call 800-775-1250 for exclusive contractor lead generation services.