Americans spend more time on Facebook than they do eating. It is estimated that most U.S. residents check Facebook 15 times per day on average. Facebook pixel tracking allows your website to advertise to users who’ve already visited your site as they browse Facebook. Cookies are stored in their browser (Chrome, Firefox, Safari, etc.) when they visit, and then are pulled when they log onto Facebook. Pixel tracking typically improves conversion rates from around 3% to around 15%. Best of all, pixel tracking is relatively inexpensive but highly effective.
2) Google Remarketing Ads
Like Facebook, Google allows for advertisers to track and then follow visitors of their website. Remarketing ads from Google are the same fundamental concept as Facebook pixel tracking and are even less expensive. Why? Because Google doesn’t actually charge a fee until the remarketed ad gets clicked on. Remarketed ads appear on all kinds of platforms in Google’s display network. It could be anything from Accuweather to a tutorial blog post. Let’s say that a potential customer thinks they can fix the plumbing job themself, but then finds your ad on the how-to manual. They might reconsider.
3) Google Ads
Once known as Google AdWords, the now named Google Ads is still one of the most effective ways to advertise your plumbing business online. Because it can be expensive and requires a level of expertise to properly maximize, there are some who have grown frustrated with it as a platform. Still, if ads are properly targeted and campaigns are managed by experts who have an understanding of demographics, targeting, and ROI, plumbers can really clean up with Google Ads. Depending on what city you are looking to target for plumbing jobs, Google Ads may be less expensive than you think. In any case, make sure you hire an AdWords certified manager.
4) YouTube Ads
Like Google Ads, YouTube ads can target specific demographics. As the number one platform in the world for streaming video, YouTube is unsurprisingly a highly frequented domain. Investing in plumbing ads on YouTube can ensure that video watchers in your target area see your company promotions on relevant videos. While the ROI is typically less significant than that gained through Facebook and Google, it is still enough to pursue the venture with open eyes. What can enhance your ability to advertise on YouTube is by creating a video channel for your brand and even posting video content.
5) Search Engine Optimization
SEO remains the most efficient way to advertise a plumbing business online. Some would disagree with this sentiment and for good reason. These plumbers have been screwed over by shady SEO firms who overpromise and underdeliver. This unfortunate combination has given the SEO industry a negative connotation amongst many in the service industries. The facts are unbothered however. SEO is affordable and sustainable which are the two most important components of any advertising campaign in 2019. Make sure you invest in a trustworthy SEO company and one that specializes in your niche, which for you is plumbing.
6) Website Design
Design is important for conversion and personalization. Plumbers advertising campaigns don’t end until a visitor is actually converted. Design goes a long way towards making that happen. From clean codebase and pertinent calls to action, design elements can close the deal on behalf of plumbing companies. Web design also ties in with SEO so it can actually help generate more leads which makes it even more potent from an advertising standpoint. Aesthetics are a big part of trust building, so make sure you website is visually appealing.
Part of strong design is clean codebase. Template websites use obtrusive elements that bog down site speed and hinder SEO potential. The good news is that custom websites often have clean code that has the opposite effect in speeding up your website and improving SEO. Not every designer will be trustworthy however, so doing your due diligence is highly recommended if you are serious about ranking for top plumbing keywords in 2019 and beyond. Part of codebase is schema markup, which is a microdata tag language that helps Google parcel data.
8) Content Quality
Promoting plumbing services is not really possible without quality content. This can come on a multitude of different platforms and in various mediums. For example, videos are content but so are blog posts and so are service pages. Google lists their quality guidelines and calls for unique, valuable, and engaging content to separate your website from others. Prospective clients are not looking for a novel about pipe repair, but they would like to know the specifics about why your services are worth something to them and how they display true convenience.
9) Google My Business Optimization
Your GMB profile is your most important citation and essentially serves as your Google homepage. It is as close to as valuable as your primary website as any other branded web entity. For this reason, the GMB listing should be completely optimized. This includes original images, Google posts, and Q & A sections with informative answers. Don’t forget about hours of operation. When customers leave reviews, be sure to respond to these reviews and do so in a professional manner. Potential clients will want to see that you take complaint seriously.
10) Local Mapping
Google Maps are a major part of lead generation in 2019. Organic results now have local map packs which show the top 3 local rankings in a defined radius, which changes based on the location of the user. Map listings that are associated with a well optimized website and also have a number of favorable reviews are more likely to rank on the map pack. This local 3 pack appears above traditional organic results, making it even more visible to the typical mobile user. Best of all, you know that any local user
Plumbers can list their business on several directories throughout the internet. These listings are known as NAP citations. The most important information is your company’s name, address, and phone number. Google scans this info in the aggregate, meaning consistency and uniformity are important. Sure, you can also get calls off of these listings, but their real impact for promotion is that they collectively drive up your brand recognition and improve search rank. Yelp, HomeAdvisor, and Angie’s List are three of the most important for plumbing companies.
Blog posts keep fresh content circulating on your plumbing website but can also serve as advertising assets if they target the proper keyword terms. Posts are considered shareable content and can go viral as well as rank on Google search. Some posts can even rank years later and end up driving traffic to your business because of a recent event in the area. For example, a post about frozen pipes might suddenly ascend during an ice storm. The more quality content through blogs, the better chance of leveraging them for advertising.
13) Site Updates
A website shouldn’t remain stagnant for years. Since Google is always evolving, as is the needs of consumers, websites should continue to evolve along side of them. Site updates can make sure that this process is ongoing and can also prevent any connectivity errors with the server. Redesigns are also a part of sustaining online ranking. What was considered modern 5 years ago is now looked at as obsolete. Plumbers must always be looking for the next best way to market. Updating pictures and client requested changes are other things to consider in 2019.
Plumbers can advertise through podcast episodes. You might think of podcasting as something for celebrities, but that is not the case. Many “regular” people start podcasts and generate a major following. The reality is that consumers want to be able to relate to the podcast host. People interested in plumbing will be interested in episodes about specific plumbing services. These podcasts can also improve your web presence, social media signals, and overall SEO. Scope inspections make for a good topic to discuss, either through podcast or video.
15) Content Evolution
SEO content has changed again. Plumbing companies now have to write longer form pages. Google favors content length when all else is equal. Sure, you still need quality, readability, and uniqueness, but what Google really wants is detail. Part of great content is LSI keywords which can be found on LSIGraph.com. Just type in your primary keyword and see terms that are topically related. You can then use some of the best looking LSI terms to supplement your writing and make it more diverse.
We are the top digital marketing agency for plumbers but even in our case, there are certain things clients can do better than us for internet promotion. One of those things is review generation. We can provide the tools to make reviews convenient for your customers but you have to ask for them in person. Learn about the other things that you as a client can do better than us. If we work together, you can dominate SEO for plumbers in 2019.
In today’s plumbing industry, the competition is steep. Business owners are always looking for new plumbing marketing and advertising outlets, yet few plumbing companies utilize pay per click advertising. However, plumber PPC advertising can be a very effective and relatively inexpensive method of growing your customer base. These ads can be customized, controlled, and easily evaluated which makes them one of the most productive forms of plumbing marketing offered. However, PPC advertising must be utilized correctly to be effective.
What is Pay Per Click Advertising?
Pay Per Click (PPC) advertising is a method of presenting ads to prospective customers in which you only pay when the desired action is taken. These ads are available on platforms like Google, YouTube, Facebook, and other platforms and offer complete customization of content and audience parameters so get your money’s worth every time. The entries presented at the top of each Google search with the word “ad” in front of them are PPC ads. The shown ads have been chosen according to relevance, predetermined demographic and psychographic details, and keyword choice and present clear pathways to related content. Along with being presented at the top of SERPs, plumber PPC ads have a multitude of benefits.
Pay Per Click Advertising Utilizes a Combination of Keyword Usage, Quality Ads, and Relevant Placement to Reach More Viewers.
Easy Creation: PPC ads are simple to create with step-by-step instructions from each PPC platform.
Customizable Audience: When using PPC marketing, you are able to customize your audience by age, income level, interests, location, and more to get your ads in front of the right people.
Various Uses: Pay per click advertising can be used at any stage of the marketing funnel, from presenting information to new visitors to displaying new details to previous visitors.
Integratable: PPC plumbing ads can be easily integrated into other marketing efforts and channels for a comprehensive marketing plan.
Website Traffic Boost: Plumbing PPC ads present direct links back to your site for more valuable website visitors.
Quick Results: While a website could take up to a year to completely index, your plumbing pay per click ads begin immediately for fast results and visible ROI.
Budget Flexibility: PPC ads use budget criteria that can be set by flat or adjustable rates for complete control over your budget.
Easily Measured: Plumber PPC ads offer easily evaluated results that can be accessed through clear, accurate reports and real-time data.
Keyword Bidding for Plumber PPC Marketing
The most notable quality of PPC marketing is the ability to bid on the keywords you want your company to rank on searches for. These keywords are the same term used in SEO marketing, however, they are used as a basis for determining which PPC ads will appear for each search. Keyword bidding is decided by the popularity of the keyword itself. ‘Roofing’, for example, will hold a much more expensive bidding price than more specialized keywords like ‘metal roof repair’. Balancing your keyword bids with the quality of your site will give you the best chance for beating your competition in ad ranking.
Use Proper Keyword Research to Get Optimal Plumbing PPC Results.
Google Plumber PPC Options
As the first platform to offer PPC advertising, Google delivers incredible benefits for plumbing PPC efforts. This platform has multiple ad styles and types that can be viewed on the search network as SERP options or that can be shown as display ads on image and YouTube searches. Each ad choice offers its own advantages including audience targeting, content creation, and budget control so you get unbeatable value for your marketing dollars. Both display and search ads provide higher response figures than any other plumbing marketing method.
Google Display Ads
Plumbers can use Google display ads to provide rich media content to a high performing customer base. These ads are displayed on networks like YouTube, Gmail, and as banner and drop-in ads on other sites to reach the exact customer base you have predetermined. Display ads by Google can be presented to viewers by demographic information or psychographic details like interests, previously viewed content, and even lifestyle to ensure that your ad gets in front of the right people. Business owners are also able to easily control ad spend with display ads by using Google budgeting tools that allow budgets based on keywords, performance goals, and even conversions.
Google Display Ads Appear on Platforms Like YouTube, Gmail, and Image Searches.
Google Search Ads
Search ads are the most widely used type of PPC advertising available and offer customizable advertising on Google search pages. These ads appear at the top of Google searches and can be equipped with phone and contact links, additional information, and more. Since search ads are ranked according to keyword relativity along with ad quality, keyword research and content development are key to these ads’ success. Ensure your ad is equipped with a catchy headline, intriguing text, and a call to action for best results.
Search Ads Appear in Google Searches and are Labeled as Ads or Sponsored.
Plumbing PPC Ads That Get Noticed
Google ad placement is based on multiple factors to ensure that the Google network always presents its users with helpful, relevant content. In order for your Google ad to be shown, it must meet specific qualifications put forth by Google as well as having the correct keyword selections and bid settings. If even one of these factors is lacking, your ad may fail to be seen or could even be shown to an incorrect audience. Therefore, proper ad setup and placement setting are crucial.
Making Your Google Ads Seen
While Google ads are typically a lucrative advertising method, they must be created and displayed correctly to be effective. When you’re developing your Google plumbing ad campaign, consider these influential factors.
Bid Amount: This is the max amount you want to pay per bid. Adjust this amount according to keyword cost vs. searchability rankings.
Expected Click-Through Rate: This metric is how often Google expects your ad to be clicked.
Landing Page Quality: Google inspects the landing page connected to your Google ad to ensure information quality and usability for the viewer.
Ad Relevance: Your ad will be shown to viewers based on how relevant the content is to the search topic.
Ad Formats: Ads viewability is also based on the ad format itself and whether it includes extensions and additional helpful information.
Ad Quality: Google rates your ad according to quality, from 1-10. Higher quality ads with well-organized bidding structures are likely to be shown first.
Creating Quality Plumber PPC Ads on Google
The first step to creating a compelling ad is to decide what you want the ad to accomplish. Do you want your ad to drive traffic to your website? Are you more interested in promoting a particular promotional offer? Your goal will drive the style, keyword selection, and content creation of your ad by guiding the communication style, ad placement, and even the landing page. Ensure you have a clear goal defined before beginning your ad creation for the best results and most ROI.
Your PPC Marketing Should Persuade Your Viewer to Complete a Preset Goal.
As a business owner, you know that it doesn’t matter how many times a prospective customer sees your ad if they don’t complete the goal. But how do you create compelling Google ads that will be seen? The two most important factors of a well-performing Google ad are a compelling headline and an effective landing page. The landing page is the page on your website that the viewer is directed to through your Google ad. Each ad can have a separate landing page or can each direct back to a single page or promotional offer. No matter which route you choose, the landing page must be interesting and easy to navigate. It should offer relevant and useful information that is original and fresh. However, the landing page is irrelevant without a good Google ad, and a good Google ad begins with an intriguing headline. The headline of your ad can be up to 30 characters and should be clear and precise. A primary keyword should be included along with a secondary keyword, if possible. Whether you are creating a display or a text ad, your content should be compelling and interesting, with a clear call to action leading your viewer to complete a goal. It should highlight unique or specific services that your company provides along with including both primary and secondary keywords. Accurate Leak and Line Displays a search ad with multiple keywords and click-through options along with a clear, well-organized landing page. Consequently, their ad is listed first on the Google Search for their keyword.
A Well-Organized Google Ad Has Multiple Keywords and Calls to Action.
Creating a Good Landing Page Boosts the Chances of Your Ad Being Placed.
Building an Effective Plumbing PPC Budget With Google
One of the main factors of Google ad placement is budget setup including bid style selection. This element of your Google ad can be the deciding factor between whether your ad is shown or whether it’s outranked by another. Knowing your Google budget and ad spend choices can help you make the best budgeting decisions for your plumbing company’s PPC campaign.
Your PPC Budget is Balanced Between Keyword Cost and Competition.
CPM (Cost Per 1,000 Impressions): These ads are best used for general brand awareness and are distributed on all relative platforms and are charged a flat rate under 1,000 impressions. CPM is perfect for increasing awareness.
CPC (Cost Per Click): The most popular selection, this method charges only for clicks instead of views. CPC budgeting works well with sales and traffic increase goals.
CPV (Cost Per View): Used mainly to increase views and website traffic, CPV budgeted ads charge when the video content is viewed.
CPA (Cost Per Acquisition): With this budgeting style, your pay for goal completions only. CPA budgeted ads are great for increasing sales and appointments.
Your budget style can be adjusted or changed throughout your campaign depending on your company’s specific needs. This may be needed in situations where you want to change your bid structure or keyword list or if you want to make adjustments to your max bid or cap amount. Simply go into your campaign settings in Google Ads to adjust your budget amount, style, or even campaign length to meet your budgetary requirements and advertising goals.
Using Social Platforms for Plumber PPC Marketing
Along with Google, there are multiple platforms that offer companies PPC marketing campaign utilization. With more than 70 percent of the U.S. population being active on at least one social media platform, social media marketing is crucial for achieving maximum customer reach.
Social Media Platforms Offer a Lucrative PPC Marketing Option.
These marketing channels provide a constant stream of potential customers along with simple to use campaign set up so your plumbing company can market to a customized, specific audience base for the best results possible. Along with easy-to-use creation avenues, each platform offers analytics tools to measure and adjust your marketing efforts for maximum results. As with Google, PPC marketing campaigns on social platforms utilize keywords and user experience measurements to decide which ads rank best. Therefore, proper keyword research and ad planning are imperative for a quality PPC campaign.
Facebook Marketing for Plumbers
We’ve all seen the Facebook ads that pop up in our feed and on the right side of our screen. Facebook ads are a comparably inexpensive method of reaching your audience that can generate web traffic, brand awareness, and conversions. Like Google Ads, Facebook offers multiple audience-targeting methods including age, income, location, interest, and more so you can hone your marketing efforts to be as focused or as general of an audience as you wish. Facebook also offers budgeting options that allow you to set a daily or weekly cap to avoid overspending and prevent underperformance of your ad. However, developing an effective Facebook ad isn’t as easy as it sounds. In order to get the most out of your Facebook advertising efforts, your plumbing ads must have an interesting image, relevant content, and an effective call to action. It must also contain relevant keywords along with a budget and campaign structure that matches the marketing goals you have in mind.
As the Most Used Social Platform, Facebook PPC Offer Incredible Result Potential.
Planning Your Facebook Plumbing PPC Campaign
In order to create an effective Facebook plumber PPC campaign, it’s important to take proper planning steps. First, decide whether your campaign goal is to boost followers, drive traffic to your website, or increase conversions. Your business goal will greatly affect your Facebook ad and budget structure. Once you have decided on the goal of your marketing campaign, you can begin thinking about the topic of your marketing piece. Using your topic, you are able to identify keyword options to use within your marketing content. Remember to include national, local, and service-based keywords for optimal marketing results.
Facebook Marketing Creation
Once you have completed the necessary research to learn what your audience is looking for, you can begin creating your post. While not required on the Facebook platform, using visual aids like images and videos can exponentially boost your engagement and share results. However, images and videos must be formatted correctly to be accepted by Facebook and to deliver an ideal user experience. Text should also be well-planned and should include keywords, unique service or promotional information, and a clear call to action.
Format Videos Properly for Better Reception and More Frequent Placement
Formatting Your Images Correctly Leads to More Frequent Ad Placement
Your ads can appear in multiple locations on the Facebook platform. Facebook PPC ads can appear in-feed, meaning they appear in the scrolling feed that viewers see, or they can show on the right side of the screen along with other info and detail snippets. Both placement locations have great click-through potential and can drive traffic to your site or your Facebook page, depending on your goal.
Facebook PPC Marketing Offers Multiple Styles and Formats to Reach Your Audience.
Once you have your ad created, simply follow the steps provided by Facebook to build your plumbing PPC campaign. You can customize your plumber PPC campaign audience by demographic information such as age and location as well as psychographic details like interests and lifestyle behaviors. This ability promotes more promising results for your ad spend. You can also customize your budget. Choose a budget cap according to a flat rate for the campaign, daily spending limit, and more to ensure you’re getting the most out of every dollar you spend.
News Feed Ads are the Most Popular Style on Facebook Mobile.
Using Facebook Analytics to Optimize Your Plumbing PPC Campaign
While running your Facebook campaign, be sure to assess and adjust your campaign using the provided analytics tools. These tools provide information like clicks and shares, views, click-throughs, and other engagement metrics so you know exactly how your campaign is performing and can make proper adjustments. The metrics provided by Facebook are up-to-date and accurate so you can identify details such as the most responsive times and days of the week, what types of content work best with your audience, and even where your audience is located. Knowing these facts can give you the tools you need to maximize your customer base and your company’s PPC marketing ROI.
Facebook Analytics Tools Offers an In-Depth Look at Your PPC Endeavors.
Plumber PPC Campaigns On Instagram
As with Facebook, Instagram offers business PPC campaign creation and implementation that can boost your customer base and web traffic. Instagram provides an ideal channel for video and image display that highlights your company’s skills and workmanship along with promotion-awareness and company image. The platform also delivers accurate and up-to-date analytics tools that can help you maximize your Instagram advertising efforts.
Using Instagram PPC Campaigns Effectively
When creating your Instagram account, keep your business in mind. Use a business email address to create your account and create a username that reflects your company. When selecting a profile image, use an image that encompasses your business ideals such as a logo. Use the bio section to provide a general view of your company using service terms and keywords. Once your account is created, you can choose the “Switch to Business Account” option from the menu to begin using the PPC campaign platform.
From Your Account Page, Click the Menu Option and Press Settings.
From the Settings Menu, Select Account.
From Your Account Menu, Press Switch to Business Account.
There are now multiple ways to create a plumber PPC campaign through Instagram, although the Instagram app and Facebook platform are the most popular. These platforms provide easy setup of campaign goals, audience parameters, and add-ons so you are able to create campaigns that are productive and effective. Whether you use Facebook or the Instagram app to create your plumbing PPC campaign, the first step is to decide what the goal will be. When advertising on Instagram, you have a more limited goal selection than with Facebook. Your Instagram PPC campaign goal options include:
App Installation: This campaign option directs viewers to download your app on the appropriate app store.
Brand Awareness: By implementing this goal, you can help generate more awareness of your company using a more general audience base.
Conversions: Increase conversions on your site by using this marketing goal to direct viewers to a landing page.
Engagements: Maximize engagements with your post and your account by selecting this marketing goal.
Lead Generation: With this campaign goal, you can create marketing that directs your audience to provide lead information like name, phone number, and email address.
Reach: Use the reach goal to expand and maximize your reach by displaying your ad to a more general audience.
Traffic: Increase traffic to your site by selecting a traffic goal which directs viewers to a landing page on your site.
Once you have decided on a PPC campaign goal, you can select your content and viewing audience. In order for your plumber PPC marketing to be effective on Instagram, ensure that your media is properly optimized for efficient viewing. Proper image and video formatting is crucial for your audience to receive the intended experience, and should be completed before uploading to your marketing campaign. These formatting requirements ensure that your content can be viewed properly, no matter what type of device your audience is using.
Properly Formatting Your Images Allows for Optimal Ad Display.
Ensure Your Videos Are Properly Formatted for Optimal Display
Instagram Analytics for Your PPC Marketing Campaign
While Instagram doesn’t provide as many analytics metrics as Google or Facebook, the platform does deliver helpful information to ensure that you’re getting the most out of your campaign. Just as with other platforms, your PPC campaign can be adjusted and altered at any time for optimal results. Instagram provides metrics involving your audience interactions to give you an idea of how well your marketing is received. These analytics metrics include:
Engagement: This metric tells you how many viewers responded to your marketing in some way, whether it’s liking, commenting on, your clicking on your post.
Follower Growth: Find out exactly how much your follower base has increased to learn how well your plumber PPC marketing campaign is doing.
Impressions: Learn the total of viewers that your PPC marketing reached to learn whether your audience needs adjusting.
Reach: Find out how many unique viewers saw your ad to get an idea of how your viewer base is growing.
Other Platforms for Plumber PPC Marketing
Although Google, Facebook, and Instagram are the most popular options for PPC marketing, YouTube, Twitter, and other social platforms can also be used for PPC marketing efforts. In fact, YouTube is one of the most used platforms today and can provide a video viewer base that is unrivaled by any other platform. However, like with other social platforms, YouTube requires specific formatting for optimal viewing. It also requires extensive keyword research to ensure optimal results throughout the campaign. You can choose to display your ad before other videos or as a right-side ad during videos so you can reach your audience exactly how you prefer. Twitter and Snapchat also offer PPC marketing avenues that can help increase awareness, build your customer base, and maximize traffic to your website. While each platform has individual nuances, goal setup, audience selection, and analytics tools are similar and provide specific options and choices that help you identify the ideal viewer for your content.
Consider Where You Want Your Ad Placed for Optimal Formatting.
Each Platform Requires Correct Formatting for Display.
Using PPC Campaigns in Remarketing Efforts
To get the most out of your online efforts, remarketing can be used to present your marketing to previous viewers and visitors for a better response. This works by tracking viewers and actions to provide detailed data about engagement, location, and behavior, and delivering this pertinent information for you to use in re-delivery efforts. Remarketing is one of the most effective online marketing tactics and can deliver dramatically increased ad effectiveness over almost every platform. Some of the benefits of using remarketing efforts are:
Audience Targeting: Easily target recent visitors and viewers for better, more focused results.
Improved Brand Recallability: By remarketing to previous viewers, chances of audience recognition are increased exponentially.
Ad Relevance Improvement: Find out exactly what your audience is looking for and deliver more focused marketing for a better response.
Flexible Budget Options: Just like with other PPC marketing, a PPC remarketing budget is flexible and adjustable for the ultimate ROI.
Remarketing Redelivers Your Message to Previous Viewers for a More Promising Response.
Google provides remarketing campaign setup that makes creating a PPC remarketing campaign simple and quick. Through Google remarketing, you can quickly see which groups respond best to your marketing so you can customize your remarketing efforts to be delivered to your most promising viewers. Through Facebook and Instagram, your remarketing PPC campaigns are created through pixel tracking. This method uses a code that is embedded onto your website to track viewer response on landing pages as well as goal completion so you can see exactly who your most promising viewers are. Then, you can create remarketing plumber PPC campaigns that target these audiences for maximum response and engagement.
There is much dispute about whether organic marketing or PPC marketing is the better choice for reaching a bigger audience. However, there are multiple benefits to each style that makes both crucial for a well-rounded campaign effort. Organic SEO strategies offer unbeatable results in Google searches as well as on other platforms. However, plumber PPC campaigns can provide extended reach to focused audiences for increased response. In the end, both avenues provide outstanding marketing and lead generation capabilities.
Both Plumber SEO and Plumber PPC Marketing Have Benefits and Are Most Effective When Used Together.
Organic SEO marketing uses keywords and content to appear in organic SERPs throughout the internet including Google Search, Google Maps, Bing, Yahoo, and more. This method of marketing utilizes coding and presentation as well as content and linking to establish a rapport among search engines which results in top rankings and listings. Organic marketing for your plumbing business provides benefits like affordability, complete control and adjustment capabilities, and a spot on the top method of finding services. Because these strategies are organic, budgeting requirements are minimal. Along with affordability, SEO methods have comprehensive and accurate analytics tools that provide information on details like user engagement, click through rates and even platform where the viewer originated.
PPC marketing uses paid methods to communicate your message on social platforms as well as Google Search, Google Maps, Gmail, and more. While these marketing strategies are more expensive, they are completely trackable and revisable for complete control of your marketing. These methods are also more easily seen and can provide an ideal supplement for websites that have yet to index for proper optimization, new businesses, and even established businesses that are looking to expand their customer base. Like organic SEO tactics, PPC marketing comes with an extensive array of analytics tools that can be used for audience and budget adjustments as well as remarketing new marketing efforts.
While organic SEO tactics provide affordable ongoing searchability and engagement for your site, it can be difficult to outrank your competition, especially when considering older, more established sites. Google has structured a multitude of algorithms that use bot crawlers to index and identify the content of your website, judging search relevance, content quality and more. Because of the extensive and sometimes unknown requirements of Google, organic appearances may be difficult to achieve, especially in highly populated areas. These results are even more difficult to keep and require consistent website attention and adjustment in order to keep indexing well for search results.
Although plumber PPC marketing for your company offers a great way to expand your reach and customer base, an effective PPC campaign requires extensive attention and budgeting. These campaigns need regular adjustments including run-times, bid amounts, and audience parameters in order to continue being successful. Bidding can also be difficult and requires a balance of keyword strength and bidding amount in order to provide results.
Effective Plumber PPC Marketing Campaigns From the Experts
Plumbing PPC marketing campaigns are effective and efficient and offer exceptional results when correctly utilized. However, PPC marketing campaigns require consistent attention and intricate strategy in order to get the results your plumbing company is looking for. At Plumbing Webmasters, our experts have the experience and know-how to provide plumber PPC marketing efforts that expand your reach and increase your web traffic and customer base. Our professionals work with you to define your business goals and design a customized Google Ads, Facebook, or other PPC marketing campaign that gets your viewers’ attention and encourages action leading to conversion. Our PPC marketing team offers:
Goal Creation: Our experts provide guidance and advice on the most productive goals for your plumbing company.
Keyword Research and Implementation: The Plumbing Webmasters professionals will perform extensive keyword research to develop a comprehensive keyword list to implement in your PPC marketing.
Keyword Bidding Structures: Get expert help with your keyword bidding strategy to ensure you get the most bang for your buck.
Ad Creation: No campaign is successful without the right ad. We can help create the ideal ad for your marketing campaign.
Landing Page Creation and Optimization:Ensure that your campaign is performing at its best by ensuring that your landing page delivers a great user experience through the help of our team.
PPC Campaign Monitoring and Adjustment: Our experts provide continuous monitoring and adjustment of your plumber PPC campaign to ensure it’s always performing well.
PPC Budget Management: With the help of our professional PPC marketing team, you can rest assured that your PPC budget never gets out of hand. We monitor and adjust your budget as needed for optimal performance.
PPC Marketing Analytics and Performance Tracking and Reporting: Unlike other marketing channels, PPC marketing efforts provide results that are easily assessed. Our professionals keep you updated on the performance of your PPC campaign as well as the expected results.
Our Experts Work to Assess and Refine Your Current Plumber PPC Strategy for Improved Results.
Whether your plumbing company is large or small, rurally or metro located, brand new or well-established, it can benefit from the use of plumber PPC marketing campaigns. These easy to track and adjust campaigns offer extreme customizability, revisability, and adjustability so you always get the most out of every advertising dollar. Call our experts at (877) 388-9884 to learn more about your plumber PPC marketing campaign options and which routes may be best suited for your company. The Plumbing Webmasters experts are here to help you make the best marketing decisions for your plumbing company to gain you better ROI and extended reach in your market.
Plumbing marketing is a simple idea that presents a difficult challenge. Contractors know that service promotion is important and understand its correlation to success. What they often fail to grasp is how to optimally define, measure, and execute a marketing plan.
What is Plumbing Marketing?
Plumbing marketing is the action or business of promoting plumbing services, including market research and advertising.
How to Measure Plumbing Marketing
Since marketing is either an action or a business, and often both, it can be measured by result and revenue, and often both. Because the action of promoting a plumbing service is so wide-ranging, pinpointing a single metric that reveals success or failure is illogical. The truth is that measuring plumbing marketing involves several or more sets of data and the analysis of each. Because marketing can entail everything from Search Engine Optimization (SEO) to Pay Per Click Advertising (PPC), a broader examination is required. When viewing marketing strictly as a business, its measurement becomes more straightforward. In these cases, quantifiable metrics such as revenue or return on investment (ROI) can tell most, if not all, of the story.
Executing a Plumbing Marketing Plan
To execute a marketing plan, plumbers need information, strategy, and labor. Without them, there’s no effective way to follow through or to feel confident in the process going forward. Most contractors and companies are pressed for time and don’t feel that they have enough of it to properly allocate marketing resources.
Research is one way to gather info about markets, target consumers, and the processes of reaching them in 2019. Because of Google and advancements in technology, information is available at our fingertips 24/7. Smartphones with WiFi connectivity empower plumbers to gather intelligence anytime, anywhere. This has a downside to it however, since an excess of information naturally produces some that is inaccurate, misleading, and even manipulative. Other ways to gather information include consultation, networking, and even training.
Information itself is very raw until it is analyzed, organized, and conceptualized. For example, reading about the cost of a plumbing website can provide ideas and even cost figures, but until you decide what you’re willing to pay for a website and how much ROI you expect it to generate, it isn’t all that valuable. Developing a strategy solves this problem. If through research you can determine that you hope to make x amount of dollars through marketing this year, you can begin to formulate a plan that projects to achieve that goal in a defined timeframe.
Planning and doing are two different things. Plumbers can have the best strategy for marketing success, but without the labor to perform the tasks, it is inconsequential. You’ll learn later why a single person cannot possibly perform all the actions that make up a promising marketing campaign, and why having a team of individuals with unique skill sets is the most ideal scenario when promoting plumbing services. At Plumbing Webmasters, our team meets those exact needs. Call it a sales pitch, but we intentionally built a team of webmasters to provide the skilled labor required to execute a marketing plan in 2019.
Marketing Basics for Plumbers
Every form of promotion is marketing. Whether you buy billboard space on your local highway or you build a branded company website and publish it online, you are promoting your plumbing services. Think about the times you’ve left business cards on the windshield of parked vehicles or left fliers in the mailboxes of nearby homes. That is marketing. In fact, marketing happens even when you don’t realize it. When you are discussing your service with an acquaintance, thinking of it more as a friendly conversation but making sure to “sell yourself” just in case, you are actually marketing. Contrary to popular belief, marketing doesn’t have to be manipulative, but in confirmation of that same belief, it certainly can be.
1. Any Promotion of Your Plumbing Service is a Form of Marketing
2. Marketing Includes Paid Advertising
3. Manipulation is Not Required to Market Services but Neither are Ethics
Ways to Market Plumbing Services
At Plumbing Webmasters, our specialty is online marketing. There are many forms of promotion within the online marketing category, but there is also promotion that exists offline. The more traditional forms of advertising like print, billboards, and even radio / television are all conducted without need for an internet connection. They also no longer work very well. Very few consumers find plumbers through offline channels in 2019. Instead, they visit Google and perform a search for nearby plumbing companies and often compare and contrast them based on customer reviews from their Google My Business, Facebook, or Yelp pages. They might also check platforms like Instagram and YouTube to get a further understanding of the brand and its trustworthiness. Take a look at some the ways to market plumbing:
Google Ads (PPC)
Remarketing / Retargeting
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Social Media Ads
Social Media Marketing
Telemarketing (Cold Calling)
Television / Radio Spots
Inbound vs Outbound Marketing
If you were to breakdown the list above, you could place every way to market within one of two general categories which are inbound marketing and outbound marketing. The former aims to pull potential customers into your services organically while the latter is designed to go out and get them, per se. Most traditional forms of marketing (including advertising) are considered outbound. Newer strategies, most famously; SEO, are categorized as inbound promotion. The main distinction between the two is that outbound marketing is both intrusive and iterruptive while inbound marketing is notably less so. Since outbound promotion relies on “going out to get” potential customers it tends to require greater financial investment. The most common example of this is Google Ads (PPC) which is a modern form of outbound promotion and costs much more to execute than SEO which is the modern face of inbound marketing.
One old school promotional tactic that has been rendered obsolete by the onset of inbound marketing strategies, particularly those that are digitally relevant, is billboard advertising. When drivers pass a billboard for your plumbing services, the likelihood of the ad being relevant to them at that time and place is very low. Compare that to the relevance of a search result for your plumbing services that is revealed to someone who typed in “plumber near me” on their smartphone. In the latter case, the person viewing your search result has already demonstrated a need for your services which makes the relevance of the search result much greater. It so happens that the cost of securing that search result is also much lower than the cost of the billboard, making it that much more advantageous from a marketing perspective.
Although they can also be categorized as old-school marketing, business cards remain a worthwhile investment for plumbers, if for no other reason than their sheer cheapness. The investment in these paper-thin promotional materials is so miniscule that any benefit at all would make them “worth it.” There’s also a degree of interpersonality that business cards can aid. After completing a plumbing service for a paying customer, leaving them with a card that lists your contact information, and a reminder to review your service on Google or Facebook, can increase callbacks, customer retention, and of course; reviews. So while business cards are unlikely to “bring in” customers they can assist in retaining and maximizing the ones that are compiled through other marketing methods, such as search engine optimization (SEO).
One new-school form of promotion is content marketing. Whether it is a social media platform like YouTube or a search engine like Google, content is the internet’s lifeblood. Without content, Google could not exist, Facebook could not exist, YouTube could not exist, and so on. The opportunity present for plumbers is creating content assets and marketing them through all of these different channels. An example of content marketing would be writing a highly informative blog post about common plumbing problems and sharing it on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. As word of this blog post spread via search engine and social media, it would begin to funnel visitors to your homepage while growing brand awareness. If it became secure on page one of Google, it would start to earn inbound links naturally, improving its ranking even more.
Google Ads (PPC)
PPC is the intersection between modern and traditional marketing. The concept itself is conventional, but its application is very contemporary. You might think of Google Ads in comparison to the aforementioned billboard example. The difference with ads on Google is that there is relevance that can be demonstrated and tracked. In fact, Google allows advertisements to target specific keywords, locations, and demographics. This way, ads are revealed only to a group of people that are worth advertising to. This same tactic cannot be applied to a billboard campaign, since plumbers could not possibly track everyone who sees it. While Google Ads are decidedly modern in application, keep in mind that they are still a form of outbound marketing which makes them both expensive and in some cases, off-putting to consumers.
There was a time when an ad in the local newspaper, or even the Yellow Pages, was enough to generate high quality plumbing leads. Those days are long gone and print ads no longer carry much weight to prospective clients. There’s more than one reason for this phenomenon, but the most obvious one is rather straightforward; nobody reads print anymore. Ok so “nobody” is an exaggeration, but the decrease in print viewership from the late 90’s is astronomical. Most newspapers have transitioned to digital formats as their flagship distribution channel and that is of course because their readers will only show up online. Being mentioned in a newspaper article still holds value in 2019, but only if it’s digitally published, and preferably with a link back to your website. Inbound links serve as endorsements in Google’s algorithm.
Remarketing / Retargeting
If there’s one marketing method that can be considered both inbound and outbound it would be remarketing aka retargeting. Remarketing is the process of advertising services to someone who has already demonstrated interest in your service in one way or another. Most times, this interest is made clear through the act of website visitation but can also be expressed in other defined events, such as the watching of a branded YouTube video. If someone browses your website, or watches your video, their interest in your ad is theoretically greater than someone who has not. These users can be retargeted using browser cookie tracking. The numbers back up retargeting as a promotional method by showing significant increases in conversion rate to groups who have shown prior interest in the service. The prior interest of the consumer was inbound while your promotional targeting of them is outbound.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
SEO is the most effective marketing strategy for plumbers in 2019. It checks all the boxes discussed on this page. It is a form of inbound promotion, consumers reach it at their most preferred source (Google), and it is incredibly cost-efficient. Furthermore, it can be easily tracked, monitored, and analyzed at all times. While paid advertising methods like Google Ads (PPC) require a real-time investment for a short-term return, SEO is a concept that necessitates a much lesser investment to secure a long-term business asset. Once search results on Google are established, they can become an ongoing lead generator for years to come and cost you very little as a plumbing company in comparison to other forms of promotion. Google is a constantly evolving search engine, so SEO is always subject to minor changes.
Social Media Ads
You now know about Google Ads but were you aware that social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube also offer ad space? Displaying ads on social media has become an increasingly popular promotional method. This is especially true on Facebook, a social network that has minimized the impact of organic posts from local businesses, including plumbing contractors. Since an organic Facebook post on your business page will no longer reach any of your followers, advertising becomes the logical solution. Ads of course can be expensive but sometimes the investment is worth the trade. Facebook ads can yield considerable ROI if properly constructed, managed, and tracked throughout their lifespan. The process is not dissimilar to the analysis of a Google Ads campaign, and the goal is identical.
Social Media Marketing
Ads are not the only way to promote through social networks. Organic posts on Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube remain meaningful assets for plumbers. While they may not directly generate leads, they can help grow brand awareness and even influence local SEO by sending signals to Google. A presence on social media, even if it effectively as a business listing, boosts company trust and lets Google and their users know that you are a legitimate business and has taken the time to connect with your potential customers through social media. One way to utilize LinkedIn, for example, is to share blog posts published on your website. This helps distribute on-page content to external sources which is helpful for SEO as a general principle. Sharing original photos and videos is also beneficial to plumbers.
Telemarketing (Cold Calling)
Remember the days of smashing your Motorola to pieces with a baseball bat? Me neither. But that isn’t so far-fetched to consider when you are harassed by telemarketers. There was always a negative connotation associated with cold calls, but consumers are more aware of their tricks in 2019 than ever before. As a result, the few times telemarketing did work have dwindled to an even less likely occurrence. So imagine calling random strangers in your service area to see if they have a broken pipe in their kitchen. Here’s a tip; if they do, they have already searched Google and found the plumber of their choice to rectify the issue. This means they don’t need you and they don’t want your phone call. They might even block your number on their iPhone or Android device and make a note of your utter disgracefulness.
Television / Radio Spots
In 2019, the crazy plumber that comes on commercial when you are watching the local news is doing two things; embarrassing himself and wasting money. Flashback to 1999, and he’s only embarrassing himself. But today, there’s no longer an incentive to do so. TV spots, and radio spots for that matter, reach a much narrower audience than they did 20 years ago. The cost of advertising on either medium remains higher than it’s worth and the production of a commercial is not doing plumbers any favors. Uploading a self-made video to YouTube using only your iPhone device has a superior chance of ROI than does a TV spot. Like with other types of old-school promotion discussed on this page, TV and radio ads are a form of outbound marketing and reach a pool of viewers or listeners who will find them mostly irrelevant.
Draping your truck in a sized-fit and mobile promotional sticker is not a horrible idea, even in 2019. Although it is certainly a form of outbound marketing and is not trackable in the way that SEO or social media marketing is, it can still provide ROI to plumbing companies. What makes it different than a billboard you ask? For one, it costs less money to implement. Secondly, once it’s a part of your truck it becomes a permanent business asset. With a billboard or TV spot, you are paying an ongoing fee to keep the word out. The truck or car wrap can show your company logo, contact information, website URL and whatever else you choose to promote. Again, it can be a worthwhile investment because it is a one time cost with a lifetime of opportunity to return. There is no fixed fee and it can help brand your business.
Benefits of Marketing for Plumbing Companies
A plumber benefits from promotion in many ways. Assuming the best strategies are developed and implemented, marketing can literally drive your business to the top of your market. The key is to take the time to create a plan based on research and to invest in the labor required to successfully apply it.
Building a brand can seem like “fluff” from the standpoint of a plumber but branding is actually important for a number of reasons and is a product of effective marketing. Brands are built on recognition first and foremost but the ones that you aspire to, are built on trust. Google has shown time and again that trust is one of its most influential search ranking factors. By building a brand through digital platforms (business listings, social media, website) you are legitimizing your plumbing company with a strong and expansive web presence. When people complain about Google favoring brands, they are really bickering about the trust those companies have built through Google and the individuals who utilize its search engine. Sure, is it hard to build more trust than a conglomerate? Yes. But remember, local results get priority for plumbers.
Plumbing marketing exists to generate leads. It cannot be any more simple than that. Leads are potential customers who connect with your business in one way or another. Both an email inquiry and a phone call are examples of leads. Leads vary in quality. Services that claim to offer “lead generation for plumbers” are not always producing worthwhile leads to contractors. Sometimes they produce what are known as shared leads which implies they are also given to other plumbers in your area, making them less likely to convert into a sale. The best kinds of leads are exclusive meaning the prospect is inquiring only about your services in the email or phone call. SEO produces the highest quality leads (exclusives) which is another reason why it’s so valuable. Advertising, digital or otherwise, is also designed to generate leads.
Return on Investment (ROI)
The goal of plumbing companies is to make money. It’s not rocket science. You as a plumber must make more than you spend. This simple equation is known as ROI which is short for Return on Investment. To run a successful business of any kind, the revenue must significantly exceed the expenses. When properly executed, marketing will yield an ROI and sometimes one that is so significant, it changes the trajectory of your life. SEO is one of the most powerful tools on earth because it can help plumbers earn money without spending too much of it. It can get you a larger home, a nicer car, and a better education for your children. No it does not guarantee you any of those things, but it gives you the chance, which is normally enough to justify the investment in the first place. But plumbers must decide for themselves.
Defining an Audience
Marketing cannot be fully explained without discussing the importance of defining a target audience. Sure, promotion in of itself can be marketed to anyone, anywhere, anytime, but as we discussed with some of the specific methods, that is not always the best course of action. It makes far more sense from both a practical and financial standpoint to promote services to a defined subgroup of people. Who belongs to this subgroup is determined by you as a plumber and us as your marketing advisor.
Age, education-level, lifestyle, profession, relationship status, residence status. These are each examples of a demographic. Plumbing contractors might find one or more of these quite helpful when defining their target audience. Let’s take residence for example. For individuals who own and, or live in homes (homeowners), plumbing services are highly relevant. After all, they as a homeowner are responsible for the plumbing. Now let’s compare that to people who rent homes or apartments. These people are not liable for the plumbing maintenance. So by and large, they aren’t on the lookout for your services. As you might imagine, it’s cost-effective to promote services only to homeowners and not home renters.
Reaching a prospective customer requires some sort of vehicle and we don’t mean your plumbing truck. We are alluding to the medium or channel through which the prospect learns of your services. We’ve detailed some of your options to do this and which of them we believe are the most effective in 2019. In our opinion, Google is the number one medium through which to reach a potential client and the data backs this up. With this in mind, SEO becomes a clear-cut choice for plumbing marketing. Keep in mind that companies are not limited to only one channel. You can reach prospects on both Google and social media, for example. You can even use a truck wrap and also use Google Ads. There’s plenty of flexibility.
As a plumber with ambition, your service radius might be “optimistic” to put it kindly. The truth for contractors is that they should not market services to locations they cannot realistically serve in an efficient manner. If it takes you 2 hours to deploy a truck to a location to which you market, it can compromise your business. Not only are you spending on fuel it takes to get there and back, but you are providing a substandard service, and one that a company with a closer radius could easily outperform. Focusing on a radius that you can serve optimally is going to improve your performance and likely help build a superior reputation for your company, including through online reviews on Google and Facebook.
Tracking Marketing Data
We identified measurement as one of three core elements to marketing. But before anything can be measured, it must be tracked. There must be a large enough sample of data to make a measurement worthwhile. There’s several tools that exist that can help plumbers track their marketing data in 2019.
Facebook Page Insights is the platform’s native analytics tool that tracks behaviors of users who visit or interact with your page or posts. It is considered the most powerful native social media tracking tool available online. As we noted before, Facebook no longer a network on which to reach consumers organically. In an effort to bring people closer together they changed the algorithm to return the focus to human to human interactions rather than business or brand to human. That’s not great news for plumbers, but Facebook Insights remains a useful tool to track the behavior of Facebook users.
Google Analytics is the number one tracking tool available online. And why shouldn’t it be? After all, the data is tracked using the best source we possibly have, which is Google itself. Analytics can track data from both SEO and paid advertising campaigns. Although they don’t reveal every bit of information, for example; you can’t see all of the terms people search for to enter your website, they expose enough to give plumbing companies a good idea bout where improvements are necessary and where successes are originating. To install Google Analytics on a website, all you need to do is embed the code within the HTML. If you don’t know how to do this yourself, contact a local website designer or programmer.
HubSpot Marketing is a marketing analytics software that tracks data from all of your different promotional channels. Unlike Facebook Audience Insights or Google Analytics, HubSpot Marketing can organize information from multiple sources into a single unified dashboard. It empowers plumbers to analyze their data from a broader view. While HubSpot Marketing helps track data as it flows in, its utility is even more impactful than that. The ultimate goal of this tool is to increase website conversion rates for businesses. There’s other kinds of software like HS that exists on the web, but most independent evaluators rank it as the most prominent marketing analytics software available as of February 2019.
Plumbing Marketing Services
Many contractors have a very basic question about marketing, is there someone who can do it for me? The answer is yes. Plumbing Webmasters markets plumbers all across the United States of America and helps them reach their business goals each year. Our process is not complicated. We have a team of 15 skilled webmasters who perform the skilled labor required for an effective marketing campaign. We handle everything from design (custom websites) to plumbing SEO services. Here’s a full breakdown:
Our content team is made up of professional writers who are regularly trained in the latest SEO practices and whose work is verified by an on-staff editor. There is a saying in the SEO industry; content is king. That’s because Google has publicly stated its affinity for quality content and cites it as the single most important factor in a page’s value. We produce highly relevant content that is original, relevant, and unique. Each piece of content published on Plumbing Webmasters’ designed websites passes Copyscape to confirm its uniqueness and to avoid duplicate content issues. Our writers are knowledgeable about plumbing services and write content for your consumers. We never engage in black-hat content tricks like keyword stuffing. We are a white-hat SEO company.
Design (Custom Websites)
Our website design team is made up of professionals with experience in marketing for plumbers. Each site built by our staff is custom-made and optimized for search. But most importantly, it is designed with clean code and schema markup. There is a direct relationship between SEO and custom design. When HTML code is clean, CSS style sheets are advanced, and schema markup microdata is incorporated, the sky’s the limit for plumbing websites. Visual appeal is also a consideration, and one taken under the watchful eye of the Plumbing Webmasters design team. Although the presentation does not reveal the code behind it, having an aesthetically pleasing display can help increase conversion rates on a plumbing company website. An effective design integrates your company logo and color scheme.
There’s a saying in marketing “put yourself on the map” and its never been more literal than in 2019. Today, “the map” in its most literal sense is Google Maps. Search queries are adjusted based on the searcher’s geo-location in relation to the search result. Local SERPs yield a group of results known as the Local Map Pack which is 3 Google Maps listings that are most relevant to the user, based primarily on their own location. Google Maps links with Google My Business to show the aggregate star rating of a plumbing company. When Plumbing Webmasters conducts mapping services, we are verifying your Google My Business account’s location and optimizing it for local search. We also go to great length to ensure that your Google My Business listing is completely optimized including through the presence of favorable reviews that we help you generate with our native Righteous Reviews website widget.
Part of promotion is reputation. How can a plumber most effectively market himself without a solid reputation? For many plumbers, reputation starts with becoming known in their local community. Establishing a name can be difficult enough on its own, but maintaining a favorable perception is even more difficult. The first step in gaining notoriety is to install the Righteous Reviews widget from Plumbing Webmasters. It makes the process of leaving reviews more convenient for customers. They can visit your website and directly submit feedback to Google or Facebook without ever having to leave your site. Additionally, the widget sends text reminders with links so that customers don’t forget to do it while at home. As for maintaining a positive rep … try to do a great job on services and always monitor review platforms for any negativity. If it exists, respond professionally and request its removal if it is unfounded.
The objective of SEO is to optimize every aspect of your plumbing company’s web presence. Some mistakenly believe SEO is reserved specifically and only for a website. That is not the case. SEO expands far beyond your main website — although it helps to have one as a central hub. Business directories, external domains, and social media pages are examples of web properties that encompass SEO on a larger scale. There was a time when a website was the only viable destination for a prospective client but that is no longer the case. Google can no longer grade websites exclusive from other factors including but not limited to citations sources and social media signals. Inbound links remain an SEO factor whether Google chooses to dismiss it or not. Sites with quality links generally outperform those without them.
Summary: Nolen of Plumbing Webmasters discusses how plumbers can succeed in 2019 with digital marketing ventures like SEO, Website Design, PPC, Social Media, and more. Having worked with hundreds of plumbing clients, Plumbing Webmasters understands what it takes to rank on top of Google as a local contractor.
We shared recently some tips for on-page SEO for plumbing websites, and hope that post was helpful for thinking about how to develop strong, optimized webpages that help you get more calls for plumbing repairs in your area. After all, the best content writing out there won’t help you move the needle on business if the detailed work of organic SEO isn’t employed. Knowing that your primary website is just part of a solid internet marketing strategy, let’s chat today about how you can leverage Off-Page SEO to catch the eye of new customers.
Also known as “off-site SEO,” giving attention to sources outside of your main plumbing website — while still recognizing that resource as a pillar of your web marketing plan — is a great way to help meet customers wherever they find your business listings (also known as “citations”). Because potential clients will not find you by searching your business name directly (unless they are at the navigational stage of searching), you need to have good content about your services and make sure your NAP is correct across the web so that any directory listings or secondary websites (like social media plumbing pages) are ready to make a good impression.
Let’s review some specific ways that you get more business from off-page SEO efforts, and how you can implement a robust approach to plumber SEO overall.
Home Service Directories Are A Plumber’s Friend
Unlike other industries such as food or personal care services, home services are unique in that a quick Google search for plumbing repairs will often include a list of many home service directories like HomeAdvisor.com. These are also referred to as citation listings, as they are another flagpost, so to speak, for establishing your company as a pro in your field.
So while building an awesome website for plumbing services is necessary, it could take a newer domain a bit to optimize (which can be frustrating). While PPC options can help get the visibility to drive business, coupled with a strategy to optimize for low-hanging fruit long-tail keywords, these directories are another way for your name to keep coming up for clients in your area. It’s not uncommon for homeowners to connect with a repair specialist without ever having visited their website, so the value of citations can’t be overstated.
Claiming Citations And Treating Them Like A Legit In-Bound Marketing Source
Knowing that your business information is listed in an online directory for plumbing services is good and well, but don’t miss out on the opportunity to make that citation work for you and stand out from the crowd. Homeowners don’t have time to look through every single company mentioned when they need a plumber, so the more you can take advantage of the editable fields and any badges or bling to make your company look distinguished, the better.
Most sites like Angie’s List and BBB will give you the opportunity to claim and/or manage your company listing, which should absolutely be leveraged. This allows you to confirm or update the NAP — “name, address, phone” information — and to max out any other available fields to provide more value to potential customers. This includes attributes such as:
Financing options (if available)
Payment methods accepted
Google My Business, for example, also gives you the option of adding FAQs. This is a great way to anticipate clients’ needs, as well as to add more content to better appeal to search engines too. (Think of all text as an opportunity to put SEO to work, utilizing strong plumbing keywords and making it clear what your company is all about.)
Personalize the listing as much as possible, too! Add photos and make sure your company brand is represented as strongly as you’re able. Some directory listings intentionally keep things pretty vanilla, but others really let you put your mark on things and have opportunities for earning badges for reviews, adding business information, or simply being a member for a while. These things matter to catch the eye of customers in a highly competitive market, so don’t hesitate to upgrade if needed to make your listings more prominent, especially if you’re getting steady referrals from the site!
Social Media Marketing Is Off-Page SEO That Connects You Directly To Customers
Think about it: when a potential customer is cruising your website for plumbing repairs, or combing through reviews of your company, you have no idea who they are until they call you (…if they call you). But when it comes to social media, you’re far more likely to bump into folks perusing the services you offer for their home repair needs. Whether they join your Facebook page, follow your Instagram account, or subscribe to your YouTube channel, there is an in-built network of potential customers who have chosen to show up for the content you’re offering. (If your audience is a no-show, consider whether your content is worth reading, or if you’re just trying to push sales.)
The Key To Social Media For Plumbing: Engagement
I’ve said it over and over again, but if you (or whoever manages your social media accounts) only logs in to fish for leads, you’re going to sink. Not only will your social media presence look spammy and salesy, but you’re going to take a hit from the algorithms that drive traffic and views for the various social media platforms. Nearly all of the social sites are going to prioritize engagement — or as Facebook puts it, “meaningful interactions” — given that the goal is social interaction. That’s why the exist, so you’ve got to respect the medium or you’re not going to leverage your social business pages as an opportunity for off-site SEO.
And yes, technically, just having your business represented across the various social platforms is helpful to signal to Google that you’re a legit business and improve search rankings. But it doesn’t have near as much weight as if you actually use those pages well. Interact with followers, respond to comments, post valuable content, and actually show up like you want to be a member of that online community. That’s what it is, afterall, and if you just take with no give, you’re missing out on cultivating a great network for leads and referrals!
Online Plumbing Reviews Are Off-Page SEO Gold
One of the primary factors that consumers look at these days when making buying decisions — including which plumber to call for repairs — is online reviews. There are many online review sites, like Google, Yelp, Angie’s List, etc., and the key is to have a nice representation across all of them. Quality matters, but so does quantity in the world of online reviews for businesses, so don’t hesitate to ask customers for feedback. It is totally acceptable (and wise, in fact) to direct customers to specific sites to start to build up a reputation across the web, because search results will often pull several sites to show on the Google Home Page.
As With Social Media, Engagement Is Important For Online Reviews…Especially Bad Ones
The overall star rating on a given site is usually considered as a cumulative “score” when quickly vetting who to call, but once a potential client starts diving deeper into your business (presumably because of a decent star rating), they’re going to want to know what people are saying.
Until you build up a nice volume of reviews to keep the weight on the positive side, you may have to run interference on any less-than-stellar reviews that trickle in. It happens to almost everyone, and is often the result of really unreasonable circumstances, but handling a poor review with grace and integrity can actually trump the foul feedback altogether.
On the other hand, if you don’t respond to negative reviews (or even OK feedback that leaves an opening for you to interject for the benefit of your business), it’s assumed that the criticism is correct and/or that you don’t care. (The latter assumption is worse.) And bear in mind that viewers will give more weight to reviews coming from actual clients, versus those who never got a call back or simply didn’t like their quote. Either way, represent yourself well in the face of negative reviews, and your professionalism will go a long way in leaving a positive impression, even in light of a bad review.
Every Little Thing Counts For Plumbing SEO
While it would be so much easier for web marketing if company websites were the only measure by which search engine rankings were decided, it ultimately benefits everyone to look at a comprehensive approach. The interwebs are multi-faceted and different sites serve very different people. Making sure you have a strategy for everyone is a great way to avoid leaving business on the table. Demographics vary, but every homeowner or business owner is a potential client — after all, we all need plumbing! So make the most of off-page SEO as part of a robust plumbing internet marketing plan to help clients find you, as well as make sure Google knows you’re legit.
Plumber SEO refers to the process of refining digital content for higher Google rankings.
Who Should Care About Plumber SEO?
Plumbers of all kinds should care about SEO as a marketing tool. Let’s say you run your company in Newark, NJ. When locals need plumbing services they will go to Google and type in search queries like “plumber in newark” or “newark plumbing repair” and things of that nature. After submitting their search query, they can view a list of organic results as well as local Maps listings. If your company shows up on either organic or Maps for those kinds of keywords, you can expect to generate leads. The more traffic that is driven to your website and the more people who are exposed to your business listing, the more leads you will ultimately generate.
Leads don’t always transfer into sales conversions, but there’s measures to take that can increase that probability. One of them is conversion rate optimization, otherwise shortened as CRO. Fort those unaware, CRO can take traffic drawn in through SEO and increase its overall value. The two methods are actually very inter-connected, and having one of them without the other discourages the type of sales growth that plumbers aim for. Driving relevant users to your website or listing is the first step, but converting them is the next one. Ways to improve CRO include improving website design, showcasing clear & convincing calls to action, and increasing loading speeds, especially on mobile.
Tricking consumers is less probable than it was prior to the internet. With Google Reviews, Facebook Reviews, and simple ways to gauge the reputation of any plumber, outbound marketing tactics are no longer effective on a larger scale. Think of outbound marketing as old-school and aggressive methods that once lured in plumbing clients. One such example is telemarketing. Before Google, the receiver of the telephone sales pitch could still be sold based on persuasion. Today, if that same prospective customer is typing your name into Google while on the phone and sees a 2.5/5 star review, there’s nothing you can say to convince them to trust your services. Inbound marketing is far more effective, and SEO is the most affordable inbound method. This kind of marketing empowers the consumer to “come to you” and make the decision themselves. All you have to do is facilitate the opportunity.
The Definitive Guide
The digital marketing era has given new platforms to businesses of all kinds. Some have taken advantage of these an propelled them into financial success. Others have lacked the dedication to the process and have failed to capitalize in the same manner. Plumbing contractors typically fall into the latter category where their opportunities have not been taken full advantage of. Search Engine Optimization, otherwise shortened as SEO, is the most sustainable digital marketing practice available and one that every successful business utilizes in some manner.
As plumbers will attest to, the bottom line goal of marketing of any kind is to generate leads. There’s a multitude of ways to promote plumbing services, including paid advertising and old-school outbound marketing, but neither of them offer the affordability and sustainability of SEO. Because of Google searches and Google Maps listings, there’s no greater source of plumbing leads than the world wide web. Every day access to WiFi enabled smartphones makes the stream of potential leads almost infinite, and every plumber should address this reality in 2019.
Planning Search Engine Optimization
SEO is not something to make up as you go. Instead, SEO should be planned and strategies using analytical tools, including keyword research. Some of the most popular keyword research tools are MOZ & SEMRush. The goal during SEO planning is to locate high opportunity keywords. The formula for a high opportunity keyword is volume and relevance. Volume is a quantitative metric and represents the amount of times a term is searched per month while relevance is qualitative and generally subjective. An example of a relevant keyword term for plumbers is “plumbing repair services” while a term like “buy plumbing parts” would lack relevance in most cases.
There’s a term associated with keyword research known as commercial intent. This term indicates that the user who performs the search query intends to spend money. For this reason, a query like “diy plumbing repair” would not have commercial intent and ultimately would not be a good target for local plumbing websites. The goal is to drive traffic that can be converted into sales. Individuals looking for information only, are not intending to invest in your services and become “empty” visitors on your website. There’s some indirect value in having people come to your website regardless of reasoning, but it can also backfire if they don’t have their needs met. If they exit your site quickly upon entrance, your bounce rate will increase and ranking will decrease.
Keywords can be broken down into groups based on priority and range of influence. For example a term like “plumber in newark” is going to bring in a significant number of people because it is a more general term. A keyword like that, which has high volume and is also highly relevant to your website is going to be considered a primary keyword. These types of keywords should be on your homepage, including its title tag, meta description and even H1 tag. It also helps to link back (internally) to your homepage using anchor text with the primary keyword. So if you later write a blog post on a more specific plumbing service that gets clicks, you’ll want to make sure to place a link on the bottom to your homepage using the primary keyword anchor text.
Your homepage can’t optimize for every single plumbing keyword which is the entire reason why you need a large website with pages for each individual service. Those internal pages will target what are known as secondary keywords. These kinds of terms have less search volume but are more specific. They tend to attract a niche group of people who while are lower in total volume, are highly likely to convert once reaching your site. So for lesser known services like gas leak detection, the traffic won’t be as frequent, but when it does come, it will be very valuable. Keyword research tools are equally as important in identifying secondary keywords as they are for primary terms.
Using the website LSIGraph.com, you can gather terms that are related to a primary or secondary term. The concept of LSI keywords is based on the semantic search theory. When groups of semantically related terms are present on a single page, the search algorithm detects a higher level of relevance than a page that uses the same keyword over and over again. Just like synonyms help readability in a general sense, LSI keywords help diversify the language of a page while keeping the general topic interwoven. Since content quality is so important to Google, the implementation of semantic search methodologies have multi-faceted advantages.
Choosing keywords informs an eventual URL structures which should be designed as a hierarchy. The top level or parent pages go on the top and they drill down to lower level or child pages. Think of them as branches on a family tree. The homepage starts the hierarchy and it goes down from there. You can drill down pages to as many subsets as you want, but no more than 4 is recommended. A URL like plumber.com/services/toilet-repair is more than enough to organize and display a logical structure that users and search engines alike can interpret. Try to use as few words as possible when creating URL slugs (permalinks) which we will touch on later. As for keywords, they should be the foundation of URL structuring and inform their development.
Photos & Images
Plumbing websites with original photos convert at a much higher rate, leading to higher ranking and a superior client base. That’s why utilizing images of your team, equipment, and logo are best practice for SEO. Aside from the image quality itself, optimizing photos for web use is also critical. That’s why every file should be renamed with lowercase letters and a topical title. An example of an image file would be plumbing-truck.jpg. This would note an image of your truck which could then be uploaded to your website and featured on the homepage. Once uploaded, the image should be tagged with alt text which describes in short, what the image shows. In this case the alt text would be as simple as Company Name Plumbing Truck.
Executing Search Engine Optimization
After planning comes implementation and SEO is most effectively executed when preceded by a well developed plan. Since the research that went into your plan is trustworthy, you can rest assured that the process of implementation is worth your time and trouble. But make no mistake, executing SEO correctly can be a painstaking process with minor details that can have major implications. The end goal of course is to generate as many leads as possible for your plumbing company. And believe us, there is no more affordable or sustainable method of plumbing lead generation than SEO. That’s why the efforts are worth your time as a contractor.
Google’s algorithm changes constantly. In fact, it changes almost every day. That’s why no SEO marketer can ever become too attached to a certain way of doing things. Sure, Google has made it clear that it values ethical or white-hat methods. But within that range of tasks can be a lot of room for variance. Never engage in tactics that seem shady from the get go but always stay attuned to what the latest SEO trends are. Websites like Search Engine Journal can help you stay on top of the latest trends from Google, while the Plumbing Webmasters blog can help you focus on marketing trends within your niche.
Custom Website Design
Most plumbers either have a website or know that they need one. So on that level, they understand the importance of internet marketing. What less of them know is the differences between an SEO-friendly website and one that is simply taking up space or serving as a digital business card that is only seen when someone is specifically instructed to visit the web address. SEO-friendly sites in contrast help consumers find services through organic means, i.e. Google search. With cleaner code, schema markup, and other perks of customized design, websites built by professionals have a greater chance of ranking than DIY website maker templates.
Business Contact Information
Since the goal of all marketing ventures is to create contact, having business contact information prominently displayed is imperative. When a prospective customer clicks through your plumbing website they should notice NAP information on the homepage. NAP for those who don’t know, stands for name, address, phone number. All three pieces of info should be on the footer of your website, while the name and phone number should be shown in several areas throughout each page. NAP info is not only critical to website success, but also to business directory influence, especially as it pertains to Google My Business.
Call To Action (CTA)
The presence of a phone number isn’t enough to make someone call it. They must have incentive and urgency. That’s what a CTA or call to action is for. A CTA in the SEO world refers to an element of a website that encourages the user to take a desired action. In many cases the action encouraged is calling a phone number. Using this example, an effective CTA would be a clickable phone number button that said “Call Now for a Free Phone Consultation.” The incentive of the user is to receive the free consultation and the abruptly take an action as a result. Now you have them in your conversion funnel and can discuss their plumbing issues. If they like how you communicate, it’s more likely than not that they become a customer at some point, if not that very day. CTA’s can also be less direct, and drive consumers towards entry levels of a more drawn out sales funnel. One such example of this would be an email newsletter opt in. While the user isn’t explicitly demonstrating an intent to use your services in the near term, they are consenting to the delivery of your marketing materials which can lead to a later sale.
Awards & Badges
Trust is one of the most important conversion factors, and nothing builds trust like 3rd party endorsements. While inbound links can serve as 3rd party endorsements in the eyes of Google, the user, once on your page, is going to need a more concrete, visual demonstration. Awards and badges make this task rather simplistic. Most institutions encourage websites who receive awards to publish the badge on their website. Whether it’s Angie’s List, Better Business Bureau, or HomeAdvisor, badges for plumbers with accreditations and awards are readily available. You can take this process a step further with news publications. If you’ve ever been interviewed by a local newspaper, you can place its logo under an “As Featured In” section of your website. The more reputable companies that associate with your brand, the more customers perceive trust.
The user most likely to consume your website will do so on a mobile device. That’s right, over half of all website visitors are on mobile in 2019. Plumbers should be especially aware of this trend, as local searches with commercial intent are often performed through smartphones. Because the goal is to show up both on organic and Maps results for mobile SERPs it is mandatory that your webpage is mobile optimized. What does that really mean? It means clean navigation, an undistorted viewport, and ideally, a clickable call to action that connects the user directly to your office phone line. Speed is also crucial on mobile devices even more so than with desktop. Sites that don’t load within 3 seconds can expect to lose over 60% of their would-be visitors.
Local SEO for Plumbers
Google Maps and Google My Business are critical to a plumber’s online success. It is the central hub of every local businesses’ online presence. The two entities are interconnected so when you see star review ratings on Google Maps, they are coming from reviews made to the My Business account. One cannot exist properly, without the other. Plumbers who rank the highest on organic and Maps have consistent contact information listed on both their Google profiles and their main website. The business address within the footer of your primary website should exactly match the one found on Google Maps and Google My Business. This information is verified by Google through postcard so that they can acknowledge the legitimacy of your business. PO boxes and virtual offices are not acceptable for Google. So if you want to be seen as a real business, you must have a legitimate physical address.
Local SEO for plumbing companies is responsible for most of their leads. Unless you run a national plumbing company, which is rare, the searchers who come across your information will be targeting a local service. The goal is to appear in both the Local Map Pack as well as the regular organic results for related terms. As you know, Google results are dynamic based on the user’s location. So for example, the search of plumber near me in Oklahoma City will show different results than the same query submitted by a user in Dallas. Google’s goal is to match relevant results with its users and so its most logical to market to prospective plumbing customers within a defined local service area. For these reasons, Google Maps and My Business are non negotiables.
Part of local SEO is local business citations. Most major directories offer a free citation to any plumber with a business. Angie’s List and HomeAdvisor are examples of niche directories for plumbers. In contrast, Better Business Bureau and Yep are for all types of businesses, not just home service providers. Still, they help expand your contact info across a diverse digital landscape. You might get offers for premium services from these directories, most of which promise more lead generation for a monthly fee and enhanced profile pages. These are largely unnecessary, as the goal of citations is not to be the lead generator themselves, but to improve local SEO. You might find that some directories have listings of your business that you never manually submitted. They likely got them from data miners like Acxiom who gather your information from public record and then distribute it to these directories. You can address the direct source by ensuring your info on Acxiom is accurate, consistent, and up to date.
Speaking of consistency, NAP information is only helpful when uniform. That means that your name, address, and phone number on your plumbing company’s Facebook Business Pages should be identical to the information on your Yelp listing. This includes seemingly minor details like the abbreviation of your address suffix. If you write out Street on one listing, and abbreviate it as St. on another, it can’t have the same impact from a local SEO standpoint. There’s also cases where inconsistency is far more severe and begins to confuse the potential customer. When a company name is written differently on separate platforms, customers may not know if its the same plumber. This type of confusion is something Google prefers to avoid on behalf of its users and will therefore give priority to the companies who demonstrated consistency and uniformity throughout all corners of the world wide web.
Google My Business Optimization
GMB, better known as Google My Business requires its own level of optimization. Aside from claiming and verifying the listing, GMB profiles can be enhanced through a series of tasks which can increase conversions. One prime example is uploading company photos. When potential customers see the names and faces of your employees along with some of your equipment (trucks, transportation, etc.) they are bound to place more value in your company as a while. Other ways to enhance Google My Business are Google Posts, Question & Answer sections, and a clickable call to action, all of which Google makes available to anyone who chooses to utilize it. Keep in mind that for branded searches (when someone searches your company name), your Google My Business profile should be displayed on the right hand side of the SERP. This is a good barometer of whether or not your plumbing company is properly optimized online.
Since plumbers typically have one business address, they are unable to optimize as well as they’d like in nearby cities and towns. Still, these locations within a 45 minute driving distance are worth targeting for leads. But let’s be clear about something, Google will give priority to plumbers who are actually located in the zip code they serve, as determined by their verified Google Maps address. So how do you expand your reach to other cities? One way is through location pages, but be careful, mass producing city pages is not good for SEO. If you choose to make location pages, make them unique and robust and never use spun content. For those unaware, spun content is auto generated writing that is aimed at mass producing content for thousands of pages (in a short period of time). Some agencies use this tactic to try to get plumbers visibility in tons of nearby cities and towns. It does not work. Don’t do it.
Reviews are a major factor for local SEO. In fact, according to Bright Local, 86% of consumers read local reviews before making a purchasing decision. With that in mind, plumbers need to generate customer reviews. This can be done by asking for them in person after completing a service. One tool that can help you facilitate more reviews is Righteous Reviews widget from Plumbing Webmasters. This plugin populates reviews of your service from Google and Facebook directly on your website and comes with a Review Us button that helps visitors leave a review on either platform without having to ever leave your site. It also sends text notifications as reminders to customers to leave the review. The added convenience of having this on your main website increases the likelihood of people leaving the feedback.
On-Page SEO for Plumbers
On-page SEO refers to optimization that takes place directly on a page from your primary website. For people with casual knowledge of SEO, on-page SEO is what they think about. It is understood as a way to get your website to rank higher on Google and is closely associated with keywords, meta descriptions, and many of the most discussed tactical actions. How well on-page SEO works is determined by the quality of your planning stage along with the competence of the individuals executing it. Although many of the tasks are fairly simple, they are not always easy and require consistency and attention to detail.
If on-page SEO is done properly, its impact will be ongoing and serve as a major business asset for your plumbing company. Securing a top spot on Google SERPs is one of the most gratifying promotional experiences you can ever have. It will translate directly to lead generation in the form of phone calls and email requests, and you won’t be paying any sort of advertising fee to keep it going. Google’s algorithm may shift your rankings around from time to time, which is why it is important to stay on top of the latest algorithm updates and continue to invest in SEO marketing. On-page optimization can be a foundation for other aspects of SEO like off-site, technical, and local.
Plumber Keyword Placement
Titles, headers, meta descriptions, paragraph content. These are places where plumbers should place keywords on their website. When Google crawls a page they pick up on keywords which helps define the context of the site and or page. Each page on your website should target a primary keyword which should be placed at least once in each of the areas mentioned. Be careful not to stuff keywords however, as Google will penalize any placements that look unnatural an manipulative. Aside from primary keywords, you also want to input secondary and LSI keywords throughout your content to help diversify the language and improve readability.
The SEO title is the most basic way to explain what a webpage is about. Calling your homepage Plumbing Company in Oklahoma City, for example, makes perfect sense for SEO. You want title tags on each page to be simple but clear and to contain the target keyword for the page in question. Avoid using spam-like titles that stuff multiple keywords into the 60 character limit. You can test the length of your title tag, as well as how it will appear on search engines, by using MOZ’s Title Tag Preview Tool. If the preview looks appealing from a consumer’s perspective it will increase click through rate (CTR). Consider adding a sales pitch of sorts after the main keyword. An example would be Plumbing Company in Oklahoma City | 24/7 Services.
Let’s face it, no user is going to sit down and read pages worth of content on plumbing. Header tags help organize the content so readers can locate the portion of the page that is most urgent to them. Headers like titles are effective ways to execute SEO. There’s multiple variations of headers. H1s have the most SEO equity, if you will, while H2s and H3s are more about formatting and readability. Some websites even have H4s, H5s, and so on, depending on their CSS style sheet. Because of its influence over SEO, the H1 is a good area for keyword placement. Once again we must stress that stuffing keywords is never acceptable, and it should always be executed in a natural and readable manner. If your title is Plumbing Company in Van Nuys, CA | 24/7 Services. Your H1 might be Plumber in Van Nuys, CA.
A meta description is a short summary of what a page is about. It’s longer than a title and a place to expand upon the page’s context. There is no mandatory character limit for a meta description, but the recommended length for optimal display is between 50-300 characters. As is the case with other areas, meta descriptions are great for keyword placement. Try placing your primary term towards the beginning of the description and perhaps a secondary or LSI keyword in the middle. Another option of meta descriptions are call to actions. Try placing your office phone number in the description itself and encourage those who see the result to contact you ASAP.
When you visit a website an look at the address, you’ll notice the last part of the URL defines the page you are on. In other words, plumbingcompany.com/clogged-drain-reapir demonstrates that you are on the clogged drain repair page within the plumbingcompany.com website. The last part of the URL is called the permalink or sometimes the slug. It can and should be edited before publishing a page. Permalinks are great for keyword placement especially if the term is short and concise. Google can more easily crawl shorter URLs and so the less characters, the better. A URL slug should generally match the title tag. It doesn’t have to be identical, but it should be on topic.
Image Alt Text
There’s one more section to place a keyword in, and it deserves its own write up on this guide. That section is the image alt text on image files. This requires a bit of context. We spoke about the importance of images earlier in the guide. They should always be topical and relevant to the written content on the pages and ideally should be unique and original. Let’s say your page for clogged drain repair shows one of your employees performing this very service on a previous job. In this case, you’ll want to upload the image file as clogged-drain-repair.jpg and then write out the alt text as something like “Employee Performs Clogged Drain Repair in Oklahoma City” or wherever you are located. Now you have the keyword within the image alt text and it perfectly describes the image. A win-win SEO task for plumbers across the country.
Off-Site SEO for Plumbers
On-page SEO is something even people with basic marketing knowledge can grasp. Off-site SEO is not as commonly understood by the masses. Off-site SEO refers to optimization that happens off of a primary website. It involves social media, link building, and external branding. Sometimes off-site factors can have direct influence over page ranking (inbound links) while sometimes their impact is indirect (branding). And then there’s the factors that we don’t know for sure about. One of those is social media signals. MOZ and others have found them to be at least somewhat of a local ranking factor but others vehemently declare that they have no impact. What we do know however is that they do impact brand and search visibility in other ways making them an off-site SEO factor, regardless of how much they influence page rank.
Link building is really the foundation of off-site SEO, which some may refer to as off-page SEO. There’s many ways to build links, some legitimate, some manipulative. One thing is for certain however, links still matter. If you’ve heard of metrics like Domain Authority from MOZ, then you might have a concept of what links do for SEO. The idea is that inbound links from authoritative websites service as votes of confidence. They are the SEO version of a political endorsement. If Google finds out that a national plumbing parts supplier endorses your company with a link to its main website, they take that under consideration when establishing its ranking position. There’s ways to build links and ways to earn links, and we’ll discuss both in the following section.
Social Media for Plumbers
Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube. Keep those 5 platforms in mind when developing a social media presence. Each of them offer plumbers the chance to create a free business profile. These are very popular social channels and at the very least, serve as another web entity on which your business can brand itself. At the most, the become sources of lead generation themselves and influence the ranking of your company’s website and Google Maps profile. Facebook in particular is very important for plumbers. Not only is it a social media network but it is also a local business directory. Like with GMB, Facebook shows a rating for businesses in the area, so plumbers should pursue reviews on Facebook as well as Google.
Link Building for Plumbing Companies
Building links can be a grind for plumbers. Some of the best places to start are with free profiles, including social media. Your Facebook Business Page for example can serve as an inbound link from Facebook to you. It can also be a place to share blog posts which then create further inbound links. Keep in mind however that links from social media profiles are considered NoFollow. What this means is that Google tags them as less valuable from a link equity standpoint. This is done because Facebook itself is not endorsing your website, it is you who are manually creating the link. Because of this, anyone can do it, and it matters less than a real endorsement. Despite this, these links can still help grow your brand and authority, just not as much. Business directories are also NoFollow links. Other ways to build links include guest blogging, and email requests. If you build inbound links in these ways, the links will be considered Follow and hold more link equity.
Link Earning for Plumbing Companies
Google prefers that links are built organically, which essentially means they are earned rather than arranged. The best way to earn links is to write great blog posts and share them on social media. The hope is that another website will see them naturally and link back to the page. Writing great blog posts can also help you rank high on Google for certain keywords. The top results for any given term are the most likely to be linked naturally, usually as a reference in another blog post. This manner of link formation is something Google hopes to facilitate as it is the antithesis of old school linking tactics that were mostly arrangements and seldom indicative of legitimate association. The algorithm has gotten more advanced and can now more effectively determine the relevance of a link. Plumbers should proceed accordingly.
A Plumber SEO Company You Can Trust
Having been in business for the better part of a decade, Plumbing Webmasters serves hundreds of clients. Through our use of in-house client communication software, dedicated customer service reps, and a team of 20 Webmasters, we are able to provide a one stop shop to local plumbers who are looking to market their services online. Since our expertise is the plumbing industry, we know what it takes to rank plumbers on top of Google, for both Maps and traditional organic results in 2019. There’s plenty of digital marketing firms offering services, but how many of them specialize in the plumbing industry? There might even be some that offer plumbing & HVAC SEO services, but what about those designed specifically for plumbers?
We pride ourselves on being the most trusted plumbing SEO company in the United States. Talk to our clients, they continue to be impressed by our dedication to their campaigns, and the evolution of our services as Google evolves themselves. We are not set in our ways because the only way to keep clients at the top is to continue to progress and take notice of industry trends. As a local plumbing company, you don’t have the time to do this yourself and you need someone trustworthy to do it on your behalf. We are here to tell you that Plumbing Webmasters is the SEO service for you. We will design a custom website, optimize it for search, and continue to work on it throughout the duration of our relationship. Call (877) 388-9884now to learn more.
It’s no surprise that social media is all the rage…and it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. Facebook marketing still dominates most of the attention of business owners who seek to leverage social media marketing to grow and appeal to new customers. But Instagram emerges as a viable lead source for plumbing repairs, especially taking into consideration that 60% of Instagram users check in with the app daily. That’s a dedicated user! It’s a wise business owner indeed who realizes that meeting potential plumbing customers right where they are — often checking their social media feeds — is a natural way to make Instagram Marketing a powerful tool in building your business.
Today we’re going to share a few tips for using Instagram Stories as a way to get maximum attention, bypassing the challenging (for businesses) feed algorithm and standing out well from the competition for target customers.
What Is Instagram Stories And Why Should Plumbers Use It?
Admittedly, plumbers probably aren’t the target demographic when Instagram released the Stories feature in late 2016. No offense, but pipe repairs aren’t exactly sexy. However, as Hootsuite reports, Stories initiate Direct Messages for one in every five posted. (Direct Messages — or “DMs” — are when users privately contact another user or account, kind of like Instant Messaging.) This represents a keen opportunity to connect directly with potential customers and foster relationships before the need for plumbing repairs even arise!
Instagram Stories are viewed at the top of a user’s feed from the app, and may include photos, videos (including specialized videos like Boomerang, Superzoom, etc.), or text content. Because these are not displayed in the optimized feed for users (based on an algorithm that admittedly doesn’t tend to fair well for businesses), they tend to get unique attention and are actually becoming more popular than feed posts. Stories mimic features in Snapchat, and were so welcomed that Facebook (who owns Instagram) introduced them in their platform as well.
At a high level, you can think about Instagram posts as evergreen content that users are more likely to see if they navigate intentionally to your profile page, while Stories are like behind the scenes looks at your every day. Stories tend to be more informal, and given the increasing desire for authenticity on social media, this is often a preferred view to see users and businesses with their hair down, so to speak.
Example of text and poll features for Instagram Stories
Tip #1: Think About Stories As Content Marketing For Plumbers
As we recently shared on the blog, content marketing is a great way to attract new customers for your plumbing business. This approach, in contrast to traditional marketing, provides content focused on relevant services and information for potential clients, versus advertising your specific company. The goal is to serve the reader/user by answering questions and anticipating needs, versus explicitly saying, “Hire me!” (Though that may likely follow when you do this well.)
Instagram Stories can absolutely be content marketing for your plumbing business if you use them to share practical information, such as tips for keeping a home maintained according to season, or a behind-the-scenes look at a repair to offer advice for locating pipe leaks. The key here is that the information your sharing (the content) is helpful whether they’re in your service area or not. So while it’s a good idea to make feed content a little more tailored — perhaps highlighting local businesses you work with or sharing some favorite plumbing jobs from various neighborhoods you service — Stories are a great place to literally show up. Let followers get to know YOU and your team by interviewing your stellar techs, and even give your shop pup some love. (You’ll probably get more engagement over posts of your animals than you do your team, no offense.)
Tip #2: Use Questions And Poll Stickers To Encourage Engagement on Stories
Adding stickers and text to your Stories is a great way to make them pop as users scroll through new content, as well as optimize who sees what you’re creating. Stickers are found by tapping the square face icon. You can add auto-generated content like time, temperature (which could be impactful if you’re doing an extreme seasonal repair), or emojis. Here are a few others worth playing with:
Countdown – This is an entertaining way to create a shared-sense of excitement. Maybe your local sports team has a big game coming up. Create a countdown to make it known you’re involved!
Location – Great for attracting attention within your service area by tagging your location in familiar places. (Locations don’t necessarily tie back to a certain company or shop, so be sure to @Mention the shop to share the love.)
Poll – Poses a binary choice to followers, against which they can gauge other responses by percent answered. Fun opportunity for engagement and easy for folks to participate.
Questions – Allows you to pose a question and collect responses from viewers. This is an awesome way to start a conversation with users, and you can even share responses to keep the topic going and create a sense of community.
Screenshot of Stories stickers for Instagram Marketing
Adding text to video Stories is wise because many people watch videos without their sound on, so adding captions to summarize the content is key for getting the message across and reaching all your users. (Consider, too, hearing impaired followers! They’re often left out when Stories rely on sound to get the message across.) So if you record a quick repair overview using the Hands Free function — which just recently let you capture sequential 15-second clips without having to keep tapping — you can add some text to call out your content. (A little goes a long way. Keep it brief and use the Typewriter font for a sleek, simple look.) You should also add hashtags, just as you would in the caption of a feed post, to categorize your content and help new viewers find you!
Looking for practical advice to use the app to create Stories? Check out this post from Later for a step-by-step guide to Stories! They nailed it.
Let’s Address The Elephant In The Room
You don’t have time to be thinking about stickers and hashtags and emojis. We get that. You’re a busy professional and social media is probably the last thing you want to focus on after a busy day of service calls and running your business. Most home service professionals are farming our their social media marketing, and plumbers are no exception. This is a really wise delegation, as social media experts for SEO are far more capable of making the most of those efforts to increase leads and help your Instagram account boost your overall rankings.
That being said, I’m still addressing this post to you because it’s important that you understand the thought process behind why SEO specialists like us do what we do. Assuming you hire this out, how else will you know the value of what you’re getting (or not getting, unfortunately) if you don’t have a sense of social media marketing done well? This is our service to you, whether you call us or not. (That’s content marketing, by the way. See, it all ties together!)
Tip #3: Make A Plan For Engagement In Social Media Marketing
To the point I just made, we’re fully aware that you’re not watching your DMs like a hawk all day long. But someone should be. Whoever you hire out or delegate within your team to monitor the Instagram account for your plumbing business should make it a priority to stay on top of activity. Why? The Instagram algorithm is all about engagement. If you want to show up for more users, then you need to engage. It’s well known by now that not all followers are going to see every new post unless there is active engagement that lets Instagram know that there is value in that content based on experience.
In other words, if you post self-serving content on the regular, overly promoting your company and being overtly “salesy,” not only does this not foster genuine community (enjoy those Spambots, thought), but your posts will rarely be seen by anyone. Wasted effort, all the way. However, if you publish relevant, valuable plumbing information, aligned with an overall content marketing strategy for social media that aims to serve your customer base, then you’re far more likely to invite comments, receive Direct Messages, and get the kind of engagement that helps your company separate itself from the myriad of business that fade into the background on Instagram. Your followers are giving you the green light to market to them regularly, so give that some respect and make sure you’re delivering value and trying to cultivate a community. If you just show up to shove your brand in their face, no one is going to want to play with you.
In closing, it’s important to understand how each social media platform works to best leverage them as a tool for growing your business. Showing up with the same approach across the board isn’t going to help you fare well, and could actually hurt the plumbing social media marketing you’re working so hard to establish. However, rocking features like Instagram Stories will make your brand memorable and worth following, fostering a loyal referral network that will allow your company to thrive!