Author Archives: Plumbing Webmasters

Google Reviews: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Google Reviews drive local search and online branding more than almost any other ranking factor. Most plumbing professionals have some notion of the impact reviews have on their business. However, most don’t fully understand how to effectively collect and manage their client feedback.

Even though COVID-19 halted the production of new Google Reviews, you’ll need to have a plan in motion once they return. To help guide your plumbing company toward stronger brand growth, we’ve created a quick how-to for gathering, managing, and protecting your client feedback. These reviews aren’t going to collect themselves!

Key Takeaways for Plumbing Professionals

  • Google Reviews are the most visible form of feedback.
  • They directly affect rankability for local search results.
  • Google Reviews are best earned right after a successful service visit.
  • Negative reviews are opportunities to showcase your customer service prowess.
  • Fake reviews are not worth it. They’ve killed many businesses.

Understanding Google Reviews

Tied directly to your company’s Google My Business listing, Google Reviews represent your brand’s overall service quality to the entire local search community. Homeowners (and/or commercial clients) can leave a rating by directly searching your business name and submitting a review in the knowledge graph located on the right hand side of the screen. On mobile devices, the review tab on your listing houses the collection and submission area for new client ratings.

There are a few crucial truths you’ll need to when it comes to Google Reviews and their uses.

They are Necessary for SEO

Absolutely essential. To Google, these reviews provide undeniable proof that your business is both active and trustworthy. That means they can depend on your listing, and send more traffic your way by ranking up your website. That’s why many of the top listings on local map packs, some of the best traffic earners, feature companies with dozens (even hundreds) of Google Reviews!

That makes sense, because those reviews represent activity tied directly to your GMB account. Your GMB heavily influences local search results. If you want to win those premium map pack placements, you’ll need to consistently gather reviews on a job by job basis. By the way, if you want more detail about local map packs and optimizing for them, be sure to check out our video guide on Search Marketing, which covers the 3 major aspects of a search engine results page.

They’re Crucial for Sales

Even back in 2015, Pew Research studies showed that at least half of all Americans consider online reviews prior to making a purchase. Five years later, that number continues to climb. That’s because reviews are essentially personal recommendations from other consumers, less biased than the word of the associated business. Even with essential services like plumbing, reviews can make or break a purchase decision.

It’s not enough to gather one or two. Fresh reviews, at least in the mind of local homeowners, provide the most dependable representation of your service quality. The more, the better! After all, don’t you consider reviews on your key purchase decisions?

They Won’t Collect Themselves

Did you know that the vast majority of plumbing clients never leave a review, positive or negative? In fact, a business could consider themselves luck if even one in ten of their clients remember to leave a rating. On the other hand, most plumbing clients would be more than happy to provide a review when asked. According to a study covered by Search Engine Land:

“…if asked, approximately 71 percent of consumers will leave a review for a business.”

Those are good odds! Just imagine how many reviews you could collect in a given year if even half that percentage left them when asked. All you have to do is ask. Add in a geotagging review software (like BrandREVU), and you’ve got the makings of an outrageous improvement in local search rankings! This, of course, could mean significantly more revenue for your business.

Responding to Negative Reviews

Now comes the unpleasant, but necessary side of reputation management: negative reviews. When an angry client leaves a disparaging rating on your GMB, it’s easy to take it personally. With a little ingenuity and a lot of patience however, you can turn negative reviews into unique branding opportunities. Master the art of turning a low rating into a customer service moment, and you’ll wow all your future prospects!

Keep Calm and Carry On

First of all, don’t sweat every negative review that shows up on your GMB. If you’ve been doing a good job providing exceptional service, odds are these negative reviews will be few and far between. Continue to gather positive feedback every time you finish a job by immediately ask your clients for reviews.

The more reviews you gather, the less impact those stinging complaints will have!

Respond to the Problem

Some complaints are legitimate, while others are simply caused by misunderstandings. Either way, it’s best to respond to complaints quickly and courteously. Politely ask the client to provide more information about the circumstances behind their poor service rating. Be sure to take the conversation offline. Email or direct phone calls work best.

Once you’ve identified the cause behind the complaint, consider what you can do to satisfy the unhappy client. For repair problems, that might mean scheduling a next day service visit. For pricing or payment issues, that might mean giving a discount. Obviously, you’ll want to find a solution that meets their needs without breaking the bank!

Finally, make sure the client is completely satisfied before moving on. When you’re confident they feel happy, ask them if they’d feel comfortable updating or deleting their review. Be sure to emphasize just how essential their review is to your business, and how you’d appreciate their help. Odds are, you’ll see a higher star rating soon and earn a happy long-term client for your trouble!

Dangers of Fake Reviews

Fake reviews are bad business, whether they come from Google Reviews or somewhere else. Yet they’ve been a growing concern across multiple industries these last few years. Tech giants, such as Amazon and Google, have done their best to lessen the impact of these fictional ratings, but high demand means that review-writing services still manage to thrive.

How do fake reviews threaten your business? Consider the viewpoints of both clients and Google.

From a Client’s Perspective

Trust is everything in business, especially when it comes to essential home services. If a consumer can’t trust that the reviews on your GMB account accurately represent your service quality, they’ll turn to other options fast. So zealously guard your ratings from any sort of manipulation. If anyone suggests buying up reviews, don’t. It’s not worth the risk to your local search results.

Remember this: consumers understand if you don’t have a perfect 5-star rating. In fact, they may even prefer if your score is less than perfect, because it suggests your reviews are authentic! Just keep getting those new ratings.

From Google’s Perspective

A business caught with fake (purchased or incentivised) reviews creates risk for Google. After all, that company may be struggling for business or suffering from low service quality. Google takes risky company listings and ranks them on the backside of search results. At the very least, they could cancel any suspected reviews and remove them from your collection.

In worst case scenario, we’ve seen companies lose their GMB account overnight. That means no showing up for local-based searches. Worse yet, it means a tremendous loss of traffic and leads coming into your website. That’s an expensive mistake not worth making!

Closing Thoughts

As one of the most important factors affecting your local search ranking, Google Reviews deserve consistent attention. Collect them as often as you, immediately after service visits if possible. Not only does this protect and grow your brand, it promotes stronger results on Google Search. That’s easy money for your business.

If you’re looking to automate and empower your reviews process, talk with our team at Plumbing Webmasters. Each of our custom websites come with integrated review software, enabling you to automatically ask clients for reviews and post them on your website (and any citation sources you desire). We’ve helped plumbing companies, such as the Chattanooga Water Heater Co, dominate local map packs and earn premium leads in a matter of months.

To learn more about Google Reviews and our related services, call us at (877) 388-9884!

Additional Resources From Plumbing Webmasters

Related Podcasts and Articles
True Client Stories: Local Plumber Dominance (Podcast)
Brown Friday: Rockstar Plumber (Podcast)
Sunset West Plumber & Rooter (Podcast)

Related Services
Google Maps for Plumbers
Exclusive Plumbing Leads
Citation Sources for Plumbers

Posted: | Updated: Mar 24, 2020 | Categories: Podcast

How The Coronavirus (COVID-19) Might Impact Plumbing Companies

Coronavirus for Plumbers Blog Cover

As a plumber, you are becoming more aware of the coronavirus (COVID-19) with each passing hour.

COVID-19 is a virus spreading through the United States at a rapid pace and has already caused economic turmoil.

Plumbers will be affected, though it is too early to tell how much it will hurt plumbing as an industry.

As a plumber SEO company, we have the unique perspective of monitoring our hundreds of clients through Google Analytics and our own propriety tracking software.

We are interested in how COVID-19 is impacting things like search traffic, website clicks, and keyword searches.

So what does all of this mean for plumbing companies?

What NOT to DO

Don’t Let Panic Cloud Your Judgement

While the first reaction for most plumbers might be to panic and suspend operations, it may not be the best reaction. We’ve seen plumbers in some parts of the country actually get more business since the coronavirus outbreak. Even New York state, which is currently the most affected by the virus, lists skilled tradesmen like plumbers as part of the essential services that can remain active.

Don’t Suspend Internet Marketing

During economic uncertainty, it is common for businesses to cut unnecessary costs. As a plumber during the COVID-19 outbreak, one cost that is absolutely necessary is internet marketing. Now would be the worst time to cut your online marketing campaign since most people are stuck in their house, and their only method of finding your business is online.

What You CAN DO to Capitalize

Triple Down on SEO & Internet Marketing

Because some plumbers will bail due to economic pressure, there will be an opportunity to take over search engine results pages within your local community, not just in the interim, but in the long-term. This is true both on traditional organic search results (ten blue links) and Google Map Pack results which are based on a separate algorithm but often provide the most accessible leads. Consider your options:

Google Map Pack Results 

Google Maps shows prominent and relevant businesses within the proximity of the searcher, and if multiple plumbing companies shut down, you can quickly become most prominent. This is especially true if your business is already established with an existing Google Business profile showcasing multiple customer reviews. Now is the time to overtake competitors in your area.

Traditional Organic Results

If a plumber shuts down their business, don’t expect Google to hold their ranking position for much longer. Because Google’s algorithm can detect user engagement and other similar metrics, a plumbing company that goes out of business is extremely vulnerable to being overtaken, not just in real-time, but on Google search results. You can be the replacement.

Google Ads

Since PPC advertising requires ongoing payment, some plumbers may pull the plug on their ads. If this happens, it will drive down the cost per click (CPC) which means you can get highly valuable keyword clicks for a fraction of their peak price. Since plumbers throughout the States are still getting business, acquiring these once highly-coveted clicks could have a nice impact.

Be a Leader in Your Community by Protecting Customers & Staff

Most people remember who was there for them during tough times, not easy ones. This is true for homeowners during the COVID-19 outbreak. Plumbers who answer the call, and do so while exercising precautions and creating a safe working environment, can cement themselves as go-to plumbers once all the smoke clears. Your customers will remember you forever after this.

COVID-19 Prevention Tip

Summary for Plumbers During the Coronavirus Outbreak

Protect Your Clients & Employees

Now is not the time to be reckless, instead, be vigilant. Take safety precautions to avoid spreading the virus to staff or clients. You can use your online tools as a method of limiting face to face interactions. Once you schedule services, your direct interaction with the homeowner can be very limited. Your job is to ensure you don’t contaminate their living space.

Take Your Marketing Seriously

Now is not the time to cut marketing costs, if anything, it is a time to triple down on them. There are very few opportunities to overtake long-cemented plumbing companies on Google search results but now is one of those times. As businesses close down because of the outbreak, other companies will take their consumers and their reputation within the community. Will you be one of them?

Call Plumbing Webmasters

You won’t have much time to execute an online marketing strategy during these uncertain times. Your best option is to call Plumbing Webmasters at (877) 388-9884 and ask about our discount. We are working with plumbers across the United States to ensure that homeowners can find the contractors they need to keep their plumbing systems up and running at a time when normalcy is needed as much as possible.

Posted: | Updated: Mar 25, 2020 | Categories: Marketing

Social Media Advertising for Plumbers – 3 Essentials for Business

Picture of Facebook Recommendation

If you’ve ever closed your feed, deleted an app, and sworn off social media before, you know just how time consuming the marketing channel can be. Every day, countless Americans spend hours of their life pining away at photos of friends and loved ones. What we often forget, is how often social media helps us find the goods and services we need most.

While most consumers rely on Google for their day to day search, others use Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube to explore their plumbing options.

Today, we’ll be examining three of the top social media advertising platforms, and how to harness them on a budget. Each offers sophisticated marketing solutions for connecting with qualified prospects in your area, for a price. If you’ve never dipped your toe into this particular social pond, be sure to take notes! You may just discover your next supplementary source of revenue.

Before You Advertise on Social…

Commit to taking baby steps every week. Social media advertising can be an intimidating proposition, especially if you’ve never had any experience with PPC campaign management. Tackle one platform, one tool, one service at a time! Not only does this make social media more manageable, it also allows you to better trace lead generation more accurately.

Helpful Tips on Social Media

  • Set a maximum budget ahead of time.
  • Explore all your free options in each platform.
  • Keep your contact information consistent, especially addresses.
  • Practice creating multiple campaigns before you launch one.

The odds of striking gold and “going viral” on social media may be small (especially for a plumbing business), but there’s so much practical value in taking full advantage of free exposure. For instance, a company profile offers another outlet for consumers to ask questions about your services, request quotes, and even call. Don’t expect Facebook to replace your website anytime soon, but it just might offer the sort of personal interaction that people need to try your business for the first time.

Advertising Through Facebook

Plumbing Video Upload Good for Facebook Social Media AdvertisingSpeaking of Facebook, our first platform features an outstanding collection of over two billion active user accounts. While the social media staple has surely matured over the last few years, there are still thousands of people in your community spending time on Facebook every day. That means plenty of opportunity to get your plumbing company brand in front of the right eyes!

So many plumbers make the mistake of only trying Google Ads in their PPC strategy, when Facebook offers an equally (if not more) affordable marketing platform. Through the Facebook Ads management system, plumbers select the desired geographic area, target audience, and viewing window for their specific needs. This makes it much easier to maximize return on advertising spend and minimize bad leads.

If you’ve struggled with low conversion problems in your current ad strategy, you realize just how crucial eliminating bad leads is to your bottom line!

Advertising Your Most Popular Content

On a side note, Facebook also proffers solutions for reinvigorating your content marketing campaigns. If you have a popular video series or how-to guide that you’d like to milk for even more leads, try “boosting” them for a very reasonable cost. You don’t get as much control over who sees your posts, but the exposure might be worth the investment.

Just don’t get carried away. Focus on assets that deliver real leads to your company phone, not likes to your Facebook Business page. Likes may feel great, but they don’t pay the bills.

Advertising in Instagram

Uploaded Pictures for Instagram Social Media AdvertisingHave an unusually photogenic plumbing team? It might be time to start posting those happy smiles to Instagram! The sibling platform to Facebook may cater to younger demographics, but that user base is aging into home ownership. Instagram advertising offers a distinctively visual medium for showcasing your services and staff.

If you’re looking to advertise with purpose, lay the groundwork by collecting an extensive variety of quality service photos, staff shots, and family pictures. This will give you a stronger assortment of images to choose from when you make your ads. You may also capture some short videos of repair jobs or plumbing products for Instagram Stories. Professional grade footage isn’t mandatory; an iPhone or Android device should be enough to acquire the video you need.

Getting Started on IG

Thankfully, Instagram’s ties to Facebook mean you have many of the same sophisticated consumer targeting tools. Pick your audience and location, and start testing ads! Don’t put all your money into the first campaign. It’s going to take several tries before you find a style that clicks with your audience.

Once you’ve developed a complete company profile on Instagram, be sure to send some of that visual love towards your website! High-grade, original photos make a big difference in organic SEO for plumbing. Both Google and your users appreciate the effort, and you might as well get extra credit for all your hard work! Plus, nice looking photos are their own reward.

YouTube: Video Ad Heaven

One of the most explosively successful platforms in the last decade, YouTube offers billions of hours of content in a convenient user experience. The YouTube Advertising experience is just as lucrative, offering a variety of means for connecting with your target audience (be they residential or commercial). Your audience won’t demand professional level footage either!

Examples of Plumbing Commercials

Advertising Options on YouTube

Most video ads range between 6 and 30 seconds, and come before the viewers desired content. That’s plenty of time to show off your brand, explain a promotional event, or even fix a leaky pipe. You can also create full length videos and pay to have them promoted on viewers video queues. How-to guides are perfect for this style of YouTube ad.

Just make sure that all your videos link back to your website. Better yet, create unique landing pages for the services most related to your videos.

Parting Thoughts on Ads

Experiment. Experiment some more. Then, experiment again. Finding the ideal platform and social media advertising style is going to take time. Keep taking those baby steps towards your lead generation goal, and protect your budget against splurging.

Remember, social media marketing is supplement for SEO. It’s not a replacement.

If you’d like professional help with your plumbing social media advertising, our team at Plumbing Webmasters is here to serve you! We provide budgeted campaign management for both Facebook and Instagram advertising platforms. To learn more about our services, contact our team today at (877) 388-9884!

Posted: | Updated: Mar 30, 2020 | Categories: Social Media

Am I Getting it Right? – A Web Design Talk With Jason Landry

Website design may feel like an artsy fartsy, technical world, but the best websites are always grounded in practicality. That’s doubly true for plumbing company websites, which serve the needs of visiting homeowners and commercial clients before the needs of the plumber. If you feel like your website still leaves something to be desired, there’s plenty of opportunities to start fresh.

Today, we’ll explore how to tackle web design the right way. No one knows how to craft a practical, revenue-driving website better than Jason Ingram, the Creative Director at Plumbing Webmasters! We recently sat down with him to answer some questions. Grab a pen and paper as you listen in, and make sure to check out our guide below too!

Key Takeaways for Plumbers

  • Keep your design goals simple. Focus on providing key details in an easy read.
  • Make sure calls to action (CTAs) are clearly visible, especially phone numbers.
  • Make an optimized page for every category and each individual service.
  • Use original images of your crew, staff, and/or family. Google knows stock photos.
  • Don’t sweat originality or visual fluff. Stick with practical and familiar design!

The Two Pillars of Web Design

People tend to overthink web design. It’s true, thousands of styles, colors, and widgets produce a fantastic array of diversity and branding. The core precepts of web design, on the other hand, keep things refreshingly simple. As Creative Director Jason Landry puts it, “Web design really boils down to two parts: information and presentation.

When it comes to creating a productive (profitable and popular) site, the best developers determine what sort of information the typical client needs and works hard to present it effectively.

This is where industry experience proves invaluable! In the case of the plumbing world, a designer who knows his sump pumps from his grinders can make all the difference. At the same time, you need a professional who can put themselves in the shoes of frantic homeowner or business owner and craft a website that meets their needs.

Providing the Right Information

Homeowners do not need a step by step manual of how install a well pump. Neither do they desire constant reminders of your plumbing team’s skills. In reality, your clients only require a handful of details from your website:

  • The exact services your company provides.
  • Your operating hours (including emergency services).
  • How to contact your business.
  • What to expect when they schedule a service call.
  • Whether or not their situation warrants calling your business.

If you’re popping up on search results, you won’t need to spend much time explaining qualifications for fixing their home’s pipes. While those prospects will certainly feel glad to know you’re qualified, you can easily communicate that with a simple license number and/or badges. Instead, think about the questions that clients are always asking. Spend time digging into those topics and providing helpful answers.

An Example of a Plumbing Service Page

Each of Your Services Should Have a Dedicated Page. Otherwise, Google Won’t Rank You For It!

Nailing the Presentation

Now, simply wadding up all those details into a ball of information and throwing it at your homepage will not produce the results you desire. Countless plumbers fall to the bullet service list trap, so we’ll just say this once:

Putting services into bullets, dumping them on the homepage, and calling it quits won’t work.

There are a handful of tools you’ll need to properly share the information your clients need most. First, get that office phone number and address big and bold at the top of your homepage! If a prospect decides to call your company, they should be able to instantly locate and click on your number.

Second, make sure every single one of your services has its own service page. A healthy serving of keywords will allow your business to earn a wider variety of listings, increasing your brand’s ability to generate leads. Group these pages under a handful of category pages, and house it all under your navigational menu.

Closing Thoughts on Design

Don’t sweat the visual details! Many plumbers think that pretty makes perfect, but visuals rarely drive revenue. The only exception is your photos. Take as many quality images of your team, staff, family, and projects as possible! Google knows the difference between a photo of your master plumber and the familiar face of a stock photo model from another country. It rewards optimized, original photos with better SEO status.

If you decide to hire a professional to design your site, remember that plumbing industry experience makes all the difference! Our team at Plumbing Webmasters would love to be your custom web design team. Our original content, smooth graphic design, and original coding make for fantastic results in local search results.

To learn more about our web design services, call us at (877) 388-9884!

Other Resources From Plumbing Webmasters

Related Articles and Podcasts
15 Amazing Plumbing Websites, With Features (Article)
Sunset West Plumber & Rooter | True Client Stories (Podcast)
All About Plumbing and Septic (Case Study)

Related Services
Web Design Services
– Google Optimization for Plumbing Webmasters
Local SEO for Plumbing Companies

Posted: | Updated: Mar 9, 2020 | Categories: Podcast

Sunset West Plumber & Rooter | True Client Stories

With hundreds of clients across the United States, our team at Plumbing Webmasters hears some pretty fantastic stories. Naturally, we’re thrilled to listen when our clients call back with the latest revenue milestone or ranking triumph. Every once in a while however, a plumbing company delivers a truly awe-inspiring testimony of success.

Those are the stories we love to share the most!

Today, Jason and Nolen share the story of Jimmy, a king among California plumbers. This hardworking professional now sits at the top of search results for dozens and dozens of high-volume keywords in his community. It’s not just any community either; it’s the Westside of Los Angeles. Be sure to listen in and see what ideas you can take away!

Learn Some Amazing SEO Tips for Plumbing!

  • While organic ranking takes time, local rankings can change quickly with the right tools!
  • Plumbers can rank high for hundreds of keywords, not just a couple dozen.
  • SEO grants opportunity for sustainable growth.
  • Organic SEO produces cheap, high quality results that would cost thousands in PPC ads.

A California Plumbing King

When it comes to SEO, success is often measured in keyword victories. It’s no mystery that ranking for the right plumbing key phrases can rapidly increase both leads and revenue potential. Four years ago, that goal seemed out of reach for Jimmy, a Los Angeles resident and plumbing professional.

Today, he sits atop of throne of hundreds of premium keywords! He is most certainly winning.

When Plumbing Webmasters founder Nolen Walker last spoke with Jimmy, the Californian enthusiastically shared that his business was adding a new truck and plumbing pro every year. New clients continue to pour in, while his existing client base thrives more than ever before. He’s living the dream and providing a reliable source of employment for local plumbers. Business only continues to grow.

Jimmy’s Journey Up the Ranks

So how did Jimmy go from fledgling plumber to enjoying map pack listings and page 1 organic results for hundreds of keywords? It all started with an enthusiastic marketing plan.

He needed a website. That much was obvious. But his website needed to overcome a substantial number of ranking competitors to earn real traffic and leads. That meant substantial search engine optimization (SEO) work from a seasoned team. So he turned to the Plumbing Webmasters for help.

Our Web Development & SEO Process

Service Pages

Organizing and Optimizing Service Pages

No matter what anyone says, Google isn’t omniscient. They don’t magically know everything there is to know about your services and operating community. Some well-meaning plumbing professionals believe that a simple bullet list of solutions on their homepage is enough to convey exactly what they do. That’s wrong.

Plumbers need to provide that information in the form of categorized service pages. Our team took Jimmy’s core list of services and constructed individual pages for every single one. Each service received tailored content describing the needs, circumstances, and benefits surrounding it. We poured in a swath of keywords, headers, original images, meta tags, and more. Our content writers delivered a healthy mix of short and long-tail keywords to enable both brand growth and immediate lead potential.

Citation Sources

Arranging Citation Sources

Jimmy would also require a reliable channel of reviews for his business. These are the lifeblood of SEO, accelerating growth (rankings, traffic, conversions, etc) across the board. Reviews sources, or citation sources, also provide verification of your services.

We got to work optimizing West Sunset Plumber & Rooter’s citations, including his Google My Business (GMB) listing. The GMB profile heavily influences local search performance, so it’s crucial to fully optimize the listing. We also ensured Jimmy’s other citation sources, such as his Facebook Business account, were aligned with the GMB information. Many plumbers don’t realize that even a slight difference between the profiles (such as an altered address abbreviation) can cause Google to doubt their legitimacy.

Geotagging Data

Geotagging: Check-ins & Reviews

We also embedded our Righteous Reviews reputation management software into the website. This enabled Jimmy to create check-ins whenever he left a job site, upload a short description and photo of the project, and tag it to the related service and city pages. The associated pages updated automatically to show the latest areas Jimmy provided service.

Google absolutely loves the geotagged data associated with these check-ins, seeing it as undeniable proof of activity!

The software also allows requests for reviews via text and email. Those texts and emails are also geotagged and uploaded to their respective pages for double the SEO power. Of course, this program only works when our clients faithfully use it. Jimmy is wholeheartedly embracing the technology for even stronger rankings!

Where is Jimmy Now?

Four years later, Jimmy’s plumbing business is still kicking butt all over the Westside of Los Angeles. While the hardworking team at Plumbing Webmasters certainly helped, it was Jimmy’s enthusiasm for faithfully marketing and embracing best SEO practices that have earned him such overwhelming results. He serves as a prime example for plumbers across the US what can happen when you invest in the right marketing solutions.

Want to learn more about West Sunset Plumber & Rooter’s journey to success? Talk with one of our seasoned SEO professionals today! We’d love to see your business earn the same outstanding results. Contact us for a free consultation at (877) 388-9884.

Additional Resources From Plumbing Webmasters

Related Articles and Podcasts
How to Rank Your Plumbing Company for “Plumber Near Me” (Article)
Brown Friday: Rockstar Plumber (Podcast)
The Coolest Review Software Ever (Podcast)

Helpful SEO Services
Local SEO Services
Exclusive Plumbing Leads
50 Keywords for Plumbing SEO

Posted: | Updated: Feb 27, 2020 | Categories: Podcast

How a Content Writer Works: Insights From Blair Fawcett

What does it look like when a content writer plans out their newest website? Today, we’ll take a close look at their process as we interview Blair Fawcett, one of the skilled content writers at Plumbing Webmasters.

You can view the whole interview on YouTube, or explore our Content Marketing section for additional details about our services.

Introductions With Blair Fawcett

Madison: Hey guys! Welcome back to the Plumbing Webmasters Podcast. I’m Madison. Today, we’re going to shake things up a little bit. We’re going to be talking about content creation, but from the perspective of one of our content writers. We have Blair Fawcett with us today. She is one of our spunky content writers here at the Webmasters. I’m going to be interviewing her, asking her some questions about her process.

Blair: Yes, indeed. Very spunky!

Madison: Let’s go ahead and jump right in. Blair, can you tell us a little bit about what led up to working with the Webmasters?

Blair: Absolutely. I have a degree in Creative Writing from the University of North Texas. After I graduated, I became a teacher for a few years in the public school system. After that, I decided I really wanted to focus on journaling, writing, becoming a journalist. That’s where I found the Webmasters.

Madison: Cool! You caught the bug and you’ve been writing since you’ve been in grade school? That’s awesome. A lot of our content writers start with one different degree – anthropology I think was Shabnam’s (one of our other writers) – and they end up in a few years writing as a career. But I think it’s cool to see somebody who’s been writing her entire adult life.

The Content Writer Planning Process

Keyword Research and Placement

Madison: Why don’t we go ahead and get started on your writing process? Before we start big though, let’s go on a smaller scale. Let’s take a single service page, say “Water Heater Installation” or something like that. How would you start planning that page and what’s your process for working that page?

Blair: I’m so glad you asked! I focus on two different parts of the question. One: How do I optimize the page for SEO? The other: How do I make it where it’s really easy for the customer to read?

The first thing that I do to make sure that I’m optimizing for SEO is that I make sure the word count is correct, that the headers are aligned with the subject matter. I make sure that there’s a call to action, there’s a linked phone number so the customer always has easy access to the company. They know what the company does, so they can say “Okay. Clearly this company does…” What did you say?

Madison: Water heater installation.

Blair: So if I’m the customer and I say “You know what? I need a new water heater.” This is the company that popped up and they popped up because I had my page SEO optimized. That’s great.

Madison: Okay, so you’ve clearly done your keyword research and made sure that’s ingrained into the page itself.

Blair: Keyword research is so crucial for this aspect.

Writing Content for People

Madison: Now you said you had a second goal, which was making for an easier reading experience. How are you going about that?

Blair: So I do this thing called “Kiss it. Don’t kill it.” K.I.S.S it means “Keep it short and sweet.” K.I.L.L. it means “Keep it long and lengthy”.

Madison: That’s cute. Kiss it; don’t kill it. Nice.

Blair: What I do there, I make sure it’s direct. It’s to the point, and I also make sure that the customer has access to what’s going on in that page, as opposed to it’s just long/length/tedious sentences that are missing the point.

Courting Customers and Converting Leads

Madison: That’s so important! A natural reading experience makes for great reading for the [consumer], but it also feeds back into the conversion process of actually turning a prospect into a sale, which is what our clients want. So what sort of stuff are you doing to create that natural experience and to maximize that conversion process?

Blair: I think perspective is so important. I imagine two things. I imagine that I am the customer who’s looking for service (like I mentioned earlier), and I also imagine that I’m the company. What is the message that I want to convey from the company? I do one thing that is really important: I do a logical, an ethical, and emotional appeal.

Let’s say that I have a burst pipe in my home. I’m the customer, and I want a service. I’m going to look for something that’s logical, that makes sense to me. “Yes, I need a plumbing repair right now.” Ethical: “Okay, this company is insured, they have the right certifications. Those are important from an ethical standpoint.” Then finally, we have the pathos, which is emotional. I’ve actually had a burst pipe in my home, and it was terrible! I really feel for the customer there.

Madison: That’s so cool! So you’ve been able to take a lot of your own experience (both as a teach and as a homeowner) and feed that back into your writing. That’s great. You mentioned different sorts of appeals you can make: the ethical, the emotional, and the logical. That’s really feeding back into that natural reading experience. So many plumbing websites are missing that. They focus on the sale, sale, sale. “This is why our services are great…” but they don’t relate it back to the customer.

Blending SEO With Natural Reading Experience

Madison: That’s something that many websites struggle with. How do you make sure that you have that balance with those SEO elements (and clearly displaying services) with that natural reading experience? Is that a struggle to balance those?

Blair: No! I actually have a really good team that works with me all the time. I have graphic designers that make sure the website layout is really clean, pristine, and nice. That all the buttons click where they’re supposed to go. Also, something that I personally do is make sure that all of the pictures that are associated with the services they match what exactly is going on in that page.

Here’s something that I love! Sometimes the companies will give us a whole bunch of pictures that we can work with.

Madison: Oh yes! Pictures are so nice when [clients] actually give them to us. We sometimes have to work with stock photos. We definitely don’t want to if we can avoid it. It’s okay, but if we can get those original photos…that’s fantastic.

Blair: It is. It’s authentic!

Non-Text Elements Crucial to Content Writers

Madison: Now, taking a tangent off that, you’ve mentioned that this is just one of many non-text elements. What other sort of non-text elements really feed into your process that are really important for the page?

Blair: Something that we do is incorporate Righteous Reviews…for the customers to have easy access to the reviews and then also have access to the services themselves. We have a really clean look. We really work with our [clients] to make sure that their plumbing website looks exactly the way they want their plumbing website to look like. We personalize it. We make it really stand out as a beacon of what that company’s message is and what they’re about.

Madison: Now is that from a graphical standpoint, or formatting? What sort of styling are you thinking of?

Blair: From my end as a content writer…I do a lot of research into the company. I see what they’re about. I see how long they’ve been around. Every single company is different. Whenever I work with a company, I make sure to incorporate those individual characteristics (those little details) are worked into the page as much as I can, while also continuing to have it SEO optimized and have all the easy reading.

TLDR, a Challenge for Content Writers

Madison: Speaking of reading, there’s a challenge that many content writers and businesses in general face today. There’s a saying that you’ll see on the internet:TLDR which stands for “Too Long; Didn’t Read.”

Blair: Ah! What a travesty!

Madison: So many people are crunched for time. Maybe they’re browsing for services while they’re at work or they’re at their pilates class, and they need to find information quickly. How do you deal with this challenge in a way that ensures that people actually get to the content that you want them to?

Blair: Madison! You’ve actually hit the heart of the issue. The best way to address that is to make sure that it is a pleasant reading experience. I never want my customers to feel like “Wow. I’ve gotten sold to.” I want them to feel like “Oh. This is informative. It’s telling me about this company. It’s telling me about the service.” That’s what a good website will do. That is what a good message will do.

Madison: Mmhmm. I think a lot of great websites, when you’re reading them it feels almost like a conversation that you’re having with a person, not somebody telling you “Okay, this is how X, Y, and Z goes.” It’s such a relatable experience, that it feels like you’re talking with a person.

Key Takeaways for Great Reading

Madison: What do you think are the most important elements in your content writing that are providing a great user experience for somebody that’s visiting the site (maybe for the first time)? They need services and they’re trying to get information.

Blair: I put in some imagery. I put in some metaphors; I put in some details…

Madison: There’s that creative writing for you!

Blair: Ya! Exactly…describe a burst pipe. “Ah! A burst pipe is in your home and that’s terrible.” That way everybody feels emotionally invested in the process.

Madison: So you’re scene setting?

Blair: Exactly. Scene setting; getting some imagery in there. Everyone likes a good metaphor.

Madison: So many plumbing websites when you read through them, they’re just so dry. I’m like “Ya, I know what plumbing is, but this doesn’t really relate to me.” But the way you’re describing it like a person can see the situation going on in the page. That’s really cool!

A Broader Point of View

Madison: Let’s blow up this perspective and look at it from a whole, cross-site view. How are you going to make sure, as a whole, that your content across the entire website is successful (cohesive, informative, not overlapping)? What are you going to do to try and ensure that?

Blair: Whenever you’re managing a really big website, you’ve got a lot of pages. You’ve got 60 pages that you’ve gotta make sure have a really similar message. That it all works together. To that end, on the front end [it’s about] all the research you do on the front end from the very get go. You’re going to reap the benefits of that as you go through the website and create the content.

Madison: That’s a good point. So you know ahead of time what all the services are so you’re not accidentally overlapping on content. And what else are you doing?

Clear Messaging in Website Content

Blair: Something else that I’m doing is that I’m making sure to review and convey the company’s message in a succinct way. Again, I’m making sure that… “You know what? This company really advertises trenchless plumbing repairs. Let’s make sure that message is clear, and let’s hyperlink back to it.” Because if there’s a related service, let’s hop back there. Let’s make it really easy for the customer to have access to these different pages in this big website. It’s a great undertaking to create a website, and with that comes a lot of responsibility.

Madison: Oh ya! I know from experience that process can take weeks to go through, maybe even a month depending on the size of the site. A lot of formatting, a lot of navigational structure is going in. The graphic design team is helping with that, and of course we have people like Amberlynn [our top editor] who are going in and editing it and making sure the message is consistent. There’s so much going in.

Key Takeaways for Plumbers

Madison: Now Blair. Let’s say that up to this point nobody was listening whatsoever. What would you say to plumbers if you had one thing you wanted them to take away from our discussion? What advice would you give to them?

Blair: I would say “Hi! How are you?” Dear plumbing friends, a well-designed website can work wonders for your company’s image. A really good website can tell the customers who you are in a clear way. Your website is your first point of contact with a lot of your new customers, and some of your old customers. By getting a good website, you’re putting a good foot forward on the internet and in real life.

Madison: And you’re balancing that SEO with natural reading experience so that people can not only find you, but choose you as well. Thanks for coming in, Blair. We’ll see what we’re gonna talk about next time. In the meantime, thank you so much for listening in plumbers. We’ll see you next time.

Blair: Thank you!

Related Pages From Plumbing Webmasters

For More Research:
How to Craft a 5-Star Website User Experience (Article)
Brown Friday: Rockstar Plumber (Podcast)
How Plumbers Should React to the Google BERT Update (Article)

Services From Plumbing Webmasters:
Custom WordPress Plumbing Websites
Plumbing Leads
– Plumbing Content Management

Posted: | Updated: Feb 19, 2020 | Categories: Podcast

True Client Stories: Local Plumber Dominance

We all love to hear underdog success stories, especially when the underdog is a startup plumbing company! In today’s True Client Story, we explore the shocking rise of a water heater specialist who began with no brand or online history to speak up, and ended up a top ranking dynamo with outrageous success!

The best part: This plumber did it all in less than six months.

Jason and Nolen share how this clever professional managed to top local search results in such a short time. If you’ve been struggling to break into page one search results – you’ll have to be willing to work a bit – be sure to listen in! Let’s get started.

Key Takeaways From This Podcast: 

  • Local search results are more fluid than they used to be, thanks to Google updates.
  • Geotagging can quickly elevate your brand above surrounding competitors.
  • Google My Business (GMB) is essential for local ranking.
  • Righteous Reviews only works if you use it.

A Chattanooga Plumber Story

One day, a fresh-faced plumber – We’ll call him “Rob” – came to us from Chattanooga, Tennessee. Bob shared his dreams of opening up a plumbing business that specialized in water heater services. Chattanooga was no small town, so he would be facing quite a few established competitors in his local search arena. In fact, when we took a look at Bob’s local community, we discovered a veteran company with hundreds of glowing reviews. This Chattanooga plumber had his work cut out for him!

Less than six months later however, Bob’s water heater service company ranked in the local map pack for almost all of his top service keywords.

That’s right! A brand new plumbing business was beating out long-time champions to dominate the local market. With the power of exceptional search marketing and geotagging, this plumber quickly found himself swimming in business for a premium plumbing service.

Let’s dig into how Bob did it…

Localized Keywords Earn Better Rankings for Your Area. (Name & Number Obscured)

Step #1: He Optimized His Website

Given the substantial revenue potential of water heater services, our Chattanooga plumber faced substantial competition entering the market. Bob’s decision to specialize however, actually made it easier to thoroughly optimize his website. Instead of a handful of pages getting optimized for a handful of generic terms, Bob’s website exclusively optimized for a wide variety of water heater keywords terms from his local area.

When we wrote the site, our team also made sure to tailor the service pages specifically to Bob’s target city. A lot of plumbing contractors make the mistake of targeting a massive area (such as the entire state) before they’ve managed to gain a foothold in their immediate community. We made sure that all of Bob’s service pages specifically contained the Chattanooga, TN keyword tail, which makes it so much easier for local consumers to find his business.

Once we mixed in these localized keywords into the conversational writing and engaging photos, Bob’s site was ready to start kicking butt. But there was still more work to do beyond the site.

An Example of Bob's Local Map Pack Listings

Local Map Pack Listings Offer Tremendous Traffic Volume! (Name & Number Obscured)

Step #2: He Optimized His GMB

Google My Business plays an integral role in local search. Once claimed, filled out, and verified, this free listing service identifies your industry for consumers in your community. Google Maps listings heavily depend on GMB accounts to provide the best possible results for local homeowners. In other words: if you haven’t claimed your GMB account yet, you’re missing out on free traffic!

We gladly handled Bob’s GMB account optimization, making sure his company was specifically designated as a water heater business. This greatly increased his chances of popping up before general service plumbers whenever a nearby homeowner or business Google searched for water heater repairs. Bob automatically bypassed numerous competitors in his service area.

Step #3: Bob Used Geotagging

Geotagging is the process of attaching GPS data to online content. In Bob’s case, he utilized the Righteous Reviews software integrated into all of our custom-built websites. Every time the water heater specialist finished a repair visit or an original installation, he checked-in to the jobsite and asked for a review. He also used the software’s automatic review function to automatically request reviews from clients following each service visit.

In just a couple months, Bob collected scores of new online reviews for his company.

Water Heater Installation Check-in Mark

“Bob” Regularly Checks-in to His Job Sites to Boost Local Search Results. (Name Obscured)

Better still, all of these check-ins and reviews came with GPS data attached. Pins started popping up all over the digital Chattanooga map where Bob provided water heater services. The Righteous Reviews software connected the check-ins and reviews to the associated service pages on Bob’s website. In other words, Bob was creating undeniable proof of his work for local search.

And Google took notice…

Our Story Ends

In less than two months after launching his brand new website, Bob earned a top slot in his local map pack for his most crucial industry keyword. Fast forward to today, and Bob’s website will pop up on local maps for almost all of his top keywords. While the Plumbing Webmasters played a key role in his initial success, this Chattanooga plumber also takes an active role in his continued growth. He actively utilizes his Righteous Reviews tool with each service call, and he continually provides exceptional customer care wherever he goes.

Way to go, Bob!

If you’d like to learn more about Bob’s story of aggressive growth, or if you’d like to see how your business can break out through local search, our team is happy to help. Call us today at (877) 388-9884 and ask about search marketing through Plumbing Webmasters. See what sort of amazing growth your business can achieve!

Helpful Resources From Plumbing Webmasters

Related Articles and Podcasts
The Coolest Review Software Ever (Podcast)
Brown Friday: Rockstar Plumber (Podcast)
Plumbing Client Case Study #1: All About Plumbing and Septic (Case Study)

Our Services
Righteous Reviews for Plumbing Companies
Google Maps for Plumbers
Citation Sources for Plumbers

Posted: | Updated: Feb 5, 2020 | Categories: Podcast

Conversational Marketing: The Ultimate Guide for Plumbers

There was a time when customized solutions and personalized care were the norm in almost every service industry. As modern technology progressed, service became more streamlined for the sake of cost and convenience. With the advent of new software and web development tools however, that service trend has come full circle all the way back to personalized care.

These days, that often takes the form of conversational marketing. We’ll be talking about conversational marketing for plumbers today, exploring the concept and how you can adapt it for stronger lead generation! If you’ve struggled with leads this year, be sure to read along carefully.

A Messaging Form on a Plumber Website

Some Consumers (Especially Younger Ages) Prefer to Instant Message Over Calling.

What is Conversational Marketing?

Conversational marketing creates stronger ties with prospective and existing clients by placing greater emphasis on personal conversation with each individual. That may seem like a very simple idea, especially in the plumbing industry where in-person service is such a core aspect. With conversational marketing however, we take that principle online and adopt it for each of our primary points of interaction with clients.

Key Areas of Conversational Marketing for Plumbers

It’s Personal Interaction

For most plumbers, conversational marketing will primarily involve direct correspondence with prospective clients prior to them hiring your service. The more direct, the better! A chat bot is better than an email. An instant message tool is greater than chat bots, and a direct phone call is absolutely amazing!

At some point during the sales process – this matters whether the consumer needs fast repairs or a system installation – there has to be direct interaction between the client and a dedicated member of your staff. That’s personal service! Your challenge is making sure that each client is directed to the appropriate member of your staff. Callers needing a water heater installation should be directed to an experienced plumber or a knowledgeable sales team, whereas a typical repair call should go straight to your office staff or your cell (depending on the size of your business).

Drainmen Plumbing Inc.'s Promise of Great Customer Care

Plumbing Companies That Focus on a Highly Positive Customer Experience Earn the Best Long-Term Success!

It’s Tailored Service

Not every client’s needs are the same. In metropolitan areas where contracting businesses are plentiful, conversational marketing for plumbers stands out. That’s because plumbers who incorporate this strategy into their marketing provide spectacularly tailored customer service!

What does that look like for a small business? It means offering multiple convenient ways for consumers to contact your business and inquire about your services. When a homeowner or commercial prospect lands on your website, they get the 5 star user experience with all the helpful insights and contact information they need.

It’s Timely Interaction

This may be the most crucial aspect of conversational marketing contributing to your success. Consumers have grown more and more demanding in their essential services. If a prospective client can’t gain direct contact with a member of your team within a matter of minutes (sometimes seconds) there’s a real chance of losing the lead! So it’s essential that your business is ready to interact with these online consumers in real time. 

How to Use Conversational Marketing

So what can your business do to take the concept of conversational marketing for plumbers and really nail it for your customers? First, you’ll need to understand how your clients prefer to interact with your business, such as whether they prefer instant messaging or service forms (or both). Next, you’ll need to have the systems in place to support these communication channels.

Don’t worry! You shouldn’t have to spend thousands of dollars on some complex organizational system (unless you want to). There are very simple ways to make sure your business is ready to handle these potential leads.

Emergency Services

In Fast Plumbing Repair Service

When it comes to small scale repair projects, consumers don’t need that much time to investigate their local services. Most likely, they’ll be eager to contact the first highly-rated plumber located in their community. Your Google My Business (GMB) profile plays a critical role in whether your company shows up first in a consumer’s local map pack!

Make sure your GMB profile is up to date with your latest contact information. If you haven’t already, you should download the GMB app on your phone and enable instant messaging for your business. This creates a “Message” button on your GMB profile that consumers can use for immediate contact. Considering the high percentage of consumers that use a phone as their primary search device, this is a great tool to have!

Home Projects

For Larger Home Projects

Home projects, such as water heater replacement, may require more steps between a consumer’s initial research and calling your business. With that being said, conversational marketing provides consumers with means to conveniently contact your business at any phase of the sales funnel. For homeowners not quite invested in a particular solution, a contact forms and instant messaging tools allow them to inquire about their options without calling your business.

You can easily provide a general quote for these prospects, and allow them to follow up at their own speed. Just make sure your website is ready with dedicated service pages for those projects, be they water heater replacement, water restoration, or pump installation. Your sales professionals can also follow up with questions and helpful information!

Commercial

With Commercial Solutions

Do you provide specialized services for local businesses and non-profit organizations? When it comes to commercial-oriented projects, clear communication is essential. You need to be able to provide accurate documentation of the projected costs for the project, as well as the timeframe.

While chatbots and instant messaging could save you time, your commercial clients will appreciate direct communication. Make sure your GMB is set up to receive calls! Having a documented quote will also speed bidding for any major projects, so it’s great to follow up with a personalized email.

Website Integration

For many consumers, the first point of interaction with your business is on your company website. For others, it may begin on a GMB knowledge graph with your company information. Conversational marketing for plumbers demands that both your website and GMB be ready to handle these interactions in a timely, convenient manner.

There are several tools worth integrating into your website to ensure your customers can easily contact you as they need. If you haven’t already added these features into your site, now’s the time to consider them!

Linking Your Chatbot

Chatbots have come a long way in the last decade. A long way! Through the use of artificial learning programs, they can better understand conversational subtext. Put simply, chatbots understand the sort of language we use everyday in order to provide better service for clients. If your clients need to ask questions about your plumbing services after hours, they can engage with the chatbot.

A Question Transfers From a Chatbot to a Staff Member

If a Chatbot Can’t Answer a Question, it Gets Routed to a Staff Member. Image Source: Acquire

In the event of an emergency, the chatbot can redirect the prospect to a staff member on standby. Otherwise, they can answer many of the typical questions your clients have to ask. According to the experts from Convince & Convert, “25% of consumers say that basic details about the business are hard to find!” Chatbots can relay this sort of information quickly.

Chatbots are by no means a replacement for dedicated, informed staff members. However, they can reduce the number of informational calls coming into your office. Clever companies can also use the chatbot to link to important resources, blogs, and galleries, making it easier for prospects to find the details they need for their project. Some programs can even service appointments for your clients, though that function may come at a premium to your business! If you’re interested in learning more about chatbot technology, Drift and Intercom are two of the top names in the industry, though you can find other popular tools in this helpful list from New Breed.

Setting Up Instant Messaging

As we’ve said before, there’s no replacement for quality human interaction. If you’ve ever struggled through an automated service call, you know how much comfort a real person can provide! At the same time, not everyone likes to communicate through phone calls (especially younger age groups). That’s where instant messaging comes into play.

Mobile View of a Business to Consumer Messenger Chat

Facebook Messenger Already Has Over 1.3 Billion Users to Pursue! Image Source: Facebook

Instant messaging, be it through Facebook Messenger or WhatsApp, provides direct access between your business and your clients. That connection can be dangerous if you aren’t ready to handle the conversation, but it can be a tremendous source of higher lead conversion. If you aren’t ready for an integrated website feature yet, the Google My Business app allows you to set up instant messaging for your clients to your phone. You can also arrange instant messaging for your website.

Preparing Your Team

Now, it’s going to take a little work to make sure your team is ready to engage people in this highly-personalized manner. After all, communicating through multiple platforms can be a challenge for smaller teams. With proper planning however, you can achieve outstanding results with conversational marketing for plumbers!

There are several aspects of this marketing strategy that you’ll need to prepare for. 

  • Receiving messages and calls through new channels
  • Delivering personalized care for each client.
  • Creating a process for collecting client feedback and reviews.

Process Training

Process Training

For every line of communication that you open with clients, your staff needs proper training to receive them. Chatbots, for instance, can handle many of the initial questions that a homeowner has regarding your services. When the time comes for the handoff to a live staff member, that process needs to happen quickly to avoid losing the prospective client. Some chatbot service providers offer training to help get your team acquainted with the capabilities and uses of their software. Be sure to take full advantage!

If you install an instant messaging system to communicate directly with homeowners and needy businesses, your staff will need to be able to write about services in detail. It may take some time to get use to each channel of communication, but success only comes from dedication and thorough preparation.

Personal Care

Personalized Care Training

Like we mentioned before, there’s no substitute for the personal touch a human provides! As your staff members learn each new channel of communication, it’s crucial that they also grasp how to listen to the needs of each individual prospect. At Plumbing Webmasters, we’ve witnessed so many high-quality leads lost due to miscommunication (or inexperience) from the call handler. We’ve also seen would-be clients turn away because of rude staff members!

If you want to provide the sort of personalized care that leaves clients wanting more interaction with your business, train your staff well. Teach them how to talk about your services, handle questions about pricing, and how to work best with each channel. If you do, you’ll see much stronger returns in your conversational marketing.

Brace for Success

Preparing for Glowing Reviews

When you have dedicated staff providing exceptional service, outstanding results are sure to follow! For many homeowners, customer service is almost as important as the plumbing work itself. If you nail conversational marketing by providing the personalized service consumers so strongly desire, glowing reviews are the natural result. That is, if you know how to ask for them!

Historically, consumers haven’t been very good at providing positive feedback for the services they receive. Only a small percentage ever take the time to leave a review, while a larger number of consumers jump at the chance to leave an angry review! That’s why your team must take every opportunity to ask for reviews, especially after a job well done. This ensures a steady stream of happy 4 to 5 star reviews, which does wonders for your local SEO! If you haven’t listened to it yet, be sure to check out our podcast “The Coolest Review Software Ever“, which dives into how to further enhance your reviews.

Long-Term Strategy

When it comes to any marketing strategy, it’s always important to keep both eyes open for problems. While conversational marketing for plumbers is based on long standing principles of customer service, it does come with it’s own share of obstacles to overcome. For instance…

  • How will customers react to the new communication channels?
  • How will your staff respond to learning a new process?
  • How will you examine / measure your results to determine success?
  • What will you do if customers struggle to use the new tools?
  • How will your team respond if the new channels are wildly popular?
A Website's Behavior Flow Chart in Analytics

Use the Analytics Behavior Flow Chart to Inspire Your Conversational Marketing Plan!

You will naturally find ways to improve your service over time, identifying areas of weak performance and opportunities for growth. Your staff may need to talk with clients and see how they like whatever chatbots, instant messaging, or form submissions you add to the website. Don’t be afraid of making mistakes! As long as you continue to treat customers with respect (and provide good plumbing services), your clients will keep coming back.

On the other end of the spectrum, don’t shy away from rejecting a new technology if it fails to provide measurable returns after long-term use. Not every plumbing business needs a chatbot, even if many companies benefit from the technology. Only cling to conversational marketing strategies that actively grow your business and serve your clients’ needs.

Measuring Success in Conversational Marketing

It’s exciting to try out new tactics and tools! However, it’s crucial for your long-term success to measure the effectiveness of each channel you open. If you install a chatbot on your website, for instance, you can gauge the effect it has on your sales.

Do you see a higher or lower number of people calling in for service? You may find that the volume of people calling into your office for service stays the same, while the number of informational calls drops. That frees up more phones in the office, a definite win for your staff!

If your company sets up an instant messaging system, keep track of how many inquiries result in scheduled service. If instant messaging ends up taking more of your staff’s time than you’d like, that’s another important factor to consider in your overall strategy. Conversational marketing for plumbers requires tinkering to ensure peak performance!

Adapting Your Strategy Over Time

As a plumber’s client base grows, there’s always the risk of losing hold of the customer service quality that brought people to that business in the first place. Your plumbing experts don’t have the time to answer every call for information. To meet the needs of both your clients and staff, an effective conversational marketing strategy must be able to gradually expand over time.

A Look at a Plumbing Company's Analytics Data

Google Analytics Will Help You Track Your Marketing Effectiveness Over Time.

For example, instant messaging through your phone may become a serious challenge to keep up with once your client base grows large enough. This may lead your team towards a more integrated messaging system for your website, or even a chatbot. That’s just one more reason to routinely examine the effectiveness of your customer service!

Before You Get Started

Jumping into a new form of customer care without preparation is a recipe for disaster. No business is exactly the same as the next. Take the time to determine which channels will work best for your customers. Determine which members of your staff are likeliest to provide exceptional service. Have them champion the new technology and processes, so they can train other people how to do it too!

How to Adopt Conversational Marketing for Plumbers

  • Research, test, and adapt the right conversational tools for your clients’ needs.
  • Make sure you have the time, energy, and resources for each new channel.
  • Pick capable team members to try out the new technology.
  • Train other staff on how to deliver personalized care through the new channels.
  • Reassess performance every month, including Google Analytics.
  • Adjust your strategy as needed.

Again, we can’t stress enough how important it is to have the right people handling the customer service side of conversational marketing for plumbers. Well-spoken, courteous staff members make a huge difference in both the client experience and your lead generation. If a rude or ignorant staff member handles the conversation, it could permanently marr the prospect’s view of your business. It might even result in a very public low-star review on Google.

On the other hand, skilled and friendly staff members turn interested homeowners into lifelong clients! That means recurring business and a steady stream of outstanding reviews coming into your brand. Stronger customer experience is one of the top 10 marketing trends of 2020! Consumers are looking to develop deeper relationships with the companies they do business with. With a team of seasoned customer service experts driving your conversational marketing, you’ll create an experience unlike any your clients have seen in plumbing!

Example of Review Geotagging Through Righteous Reviews

Our Righteous Reviews Check-in System Works Really Well With Conversational Marketing.

Support from the Plumbing Webmasters

Homeowners and commercial consumers demand better customer service than ever before. Thankfully, conversational marketing allows your plumbing company to uphold that premium standard of service. We’re here to help you adopt this strategy into your online marketing for stronger results than ever before!

Adapting new technologies and strategies can be a challenging process. Integrating them into your website is just as difficult. At Plumbing Webmasters, our website design team makes it easy to develop a custom site perfectly tailored to your team’s needs. Not only do we make it easy for your staff to interact with plumbing prospects, we also produce stronger performance from local Google Search results!

Learn more about how conversational marketing for plumbers and plumbing SEO work hand in hand by calling us at (877) 388-9884.

Additional Resources for Study

Related Podcasts and Articles
Being Social on Google (Podcast)
10 Really Awesome Email Marketing Tips for Plumbers (Article)
How to Expand Your Plumbing Business in 2020 (Article)

Services From Plumbing Webmasters
Plumbing SEO Lead Generation
Google My Business for Plumbers
Plumber Reputation Management

True Client Stories: Trouble With Leads

Have you ever been on a kids roller coaster? As a child, the thrill of moving easily keeps us entertained. As an adult however, that thrill changes to irritation as we long to progress to loops, sudden drops, and rapid turns. A kids roller coaster simply goes nowhere, fast. 

When it comes to plumbing companies, lead sellers are the new kids roller coaster. There’s a real thrill of feeling your business gradually move with each incoming lead. As your company brand matures however, it becomes clear that you’re paying a frustrating sum of money to essentially spin in circles. Very little brand growth occurs, and you’re left none the richer from your investment.

Today, we’re going to talk about that frustrating ride. More importantly, we’re going to reveal how to get your business off the tracks and into some real long-term growth. Be sure to listen in as Jason and Nolen share real-life stories from plumbing companies.

Key Lead Generation Lessons & Plumbing SEO

  • Continually paying for leads slows down your brand development and customer base growth.
  • Even when you pay a seller for a lead, you may still have to compete with other local businesses.
  • Paid leads are simply way more expensive, both in the short and long term.

Buying Your Way Into Oblivion

Another day, another frustrated caller talking about expensive lead sellers. But what is it about buying leads that plumbers find so frustrating? At the Webmasters, we’ve heard all kinds of stories about people’s experiences with these services. Most boil down into a handful of common complains…

Top Problems With Buying Leads

  • They get really, really expensive!
  • When you pay for a lead, you still compete with other listed companies in your area.
  • Some “leads” are just people looking for quotes, not interested would-be clients.
  • It discourages SEO for plumbers, and other forms of lead generation.
  • Buying leads encourages return visits to your lead seller, not your company website.

The Eye-Opening Secret of Lead Sellers

Everyone wishes they could cut out the middleman and earn their leads at cost. After all, that would mean saving thousands (maybe tens of thousands) of dollars every year! It’s clearly possible; not everyone pays for lead sales. How do they do it? The real question you should be asking is: Where does your seller find their leads?

95 times out of 100, lead selling companies source their leads directly from Google Search! Not only do lead sellers pay next to nothing for each lead (even when you factor in long-term marketing), they add a massive upcharge to leads you could have earned for free.

Two Lead Sellers and an Organic Listing for a Local Plumber

This Local Plumber Managed to Outrank a National Lead Seller and Earn Their Own Leads.

How does that make you feel?

In the picture above, you can see one of the frequently-used tools of lead sellers for acquiring new customers. National level brands like to use localized “top plumber” lists to try to capture consumers. However, they actually have to work very hard to secure these listings, because Google prefers to list local businesses over national organizations. That’s why an independent contractor can earn a second place organic (free) in the same results page as two huge lead generation companies! 

Not only is it very possible compete with these household name lead sellers, Google will practically help you do it. If you’re tired of spending lots of money paying for leads, why not invest in making your own leads like this plumber?

How to Generate Leads

You’ll need two major tools to start generating your own leads: a Google My Business account and a company website. Some businesses try to get away with only one of the two; it just doesn’t work well. Now you might be thinking “Bah! I’ve heard about this SEO for plumbers stuff. It takes too long.” While plumbing SEO does take a couple months to start producing results, at least.

So what?

A Local Map Pack for Repiping Companies

Local Search Optimization Offers Faster Results After Google’s Local Search Algorithm Update.

Marketing always takes time to fully mature. If you have to spend a little money to earn a long-term source of cheap, high-quality leads, isn’t that worth your money? Anyway, there’s great news.

If you optimize your website and GMB well, you could start earning local listing traffic even sooner. In a recent podcast called “Brown Friday” (linked below), our team at Plumbing Webmasters got a tankless water heater specialist ranking for his top keyword in his community within a month. A brand new business (and website) knocked out long-term champions for top spot in a local map pack, which represents a huge portion of traffic.

Optimized Website Design

Your website will need to be fully optimized with dedicated service pages for the keywords you wish to rank for. This supports the local search results driven by your Google My Business account (which is absolutely free, by the way). Tools like Moz Keyword Explorer, Answer the Public, and SEMrush make it easy to discover hot keywords in your industry. You can also use Ubersuggest to see what terms your competitors are ranking for, and try to steal them!

If you’d like to learn more about using local search and organic listings to secure high quality leads, our team at Plumbing Webmasters would be happy to talk about it with you. Consult with one of our seasoned experts for free at (877) 388-9884!

Additional Resources From Plumbing Webmasters

Related Articles and Podcasts
Brown Friday: Rockstar Plumber (Podcast)
How to Rank Your Plumbing Company for “Plumber Near Me” (Article)
Forced to Brand (Podcast)
– All About Plumbing and Septic (Case Study)

Services Related to Lead Generation
Google Analytics for Plumbing Websites
PPC vs Organic SEO
Website Design Services

Posted: | Updated: Dec 23, 2019 | Categories: Podcast

Brown Friday: Rockstar Plumber | The Plumbing SEO Podcast

Family holidays are a fantastic time for residential plumbing professionals. With all the festive meals and grease goop going down the drown, it’s no wonder that homeowner calls shoot through the roof! In fact, it’s estimated that “Brown Friday” (the day after Thanksgiving), produces a 50 percent increase in plumbing leads for garbage disposals and sink clogs.

Not every plumbing professional however, is in a place to take advantage of that surge in leads.

If your website and GMB account haven’t been properly optimized, you could be missing out on thousands of dollars in service calls throughout the holidays! Thankfully, that’s what we’ll be covering today in our latest podcast. Listen in as Jason and Nolen explain how to capture more leads through the season.

Key Plumbing SEO Lessons

  • Make sure your GMB profile covers each of your major services.
  • Keyword-optimized services pages will almost always outperform simple service lists.
  • Talk with your marketing service company about optimizing for seasonal surges.
  • Make sure your PPC ads each link to a related service page.

Seasonal SEO Opportunities

As with many home service industries, plumbing experiences seasonal spikes in demand. That’s especially true during family holidays like Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years. Because this season represents such a considerable windfall for plumbers, it’s also a period of strong online competition. The winners earn premium placement in local map packs, plus the traffic that comes with it. 

So how can your business work towards earning these exceptional local listings?

It all starts with plumber SEO, your website, and your GMB account. We’ll dig into some of the most impactful tools to enhance your online marketing performance, both now and in the coming 2020. Ultimately, we’re looking to create a sustainable strategy that offers big dividends for years to come.

The Tools You’ll Need

Keywords

A Strong Keyword List

What’s the first task you think about when developing a high-performance page? A strong, diverse assortment of keywords not only makes it easier for Google to rank your content, it also creates a better user experience for your site visitors. Each service page should have a high volume primary keyword mixed in with a variety of similar phrases and synonyms.

Where you can you find these premium keywords?

  • SEMrush
  • Answer the Public
  • Moz Keyword Explorer
  • Ubersuggest
  • People also ask (Google SERP feature)
  • Blue phrases at the bottom of search results

GMB

A Completed & Verified GMB Listing

Considering how crucial the listing is to your local search, it’s remarkably easy to claim, complete, and verify your Google My Business account! If you haven’t done so already, take an hour. Fill out everything and request your postcard verification. Upload those pics and videos. Neglecting your GMB account only hurts your business, so don’t put it off!

Moving forward, make sure to check your GMB on a monthly basis for potential updates. The address you pick for your GMB should match the one you use for all your other citations, including abbreviations. Google continues to update the listing program with additional service categories, so be on the lookout for ones fitting your plumbing solutions.

Google Ads

A Google Ads Account

PPC advertising is a great channel for supplementing your organic leads. They also enable your business to quickly adapt your marketing tactics for seasonal opportunities. While Google Ads is the most recognized and comfortable advertising option for many plumbers, Facebook and Instagram both offer some cost-effective solutions.

When you create a new campaign for Brown Friday, Christmas, or another holiday, make sure you have dedicated service pages to divert that ad traffic to. If you’re going to take advantage of the upshift in drain clogs, have a “Drain Clog Removal” page ready to go! Plain landing pages are better than simply directing users to your homepage, but service pages generally offer the best SEO power for your website.

Reviews

A Collection of Client Reviews

No one supports your business better than happy customers! Client reviews are one of the most important resources for your local search marketing, but they don’t grow from trees. You need to have a system in place to request feedback after service. Whether that comes in the form of employee training sessions on how to ask for reviews or an automated program, consistency is key.

For more information about automated review platforms, be sure to see our podcast on Righteous Reviews!

Five Steps to Boost Local SEO

Keep in mind, this plan hinges on a solid company web design. If your company doesn’t have that yet, here are 15 amazing plumbing websites to get inspiration from. They incorporate the tips we’re about to reveal.

How to Improve Local SEO Performance

  • Step #1: Create three to four primary service category pages.
  • Step #2: Write keyword-optimized pages for more focused services, and arrange them by those categories.
  • Step #3: Take original pictures with your staff members, then post them in all your pages (as well as your GMB account).
  • Step #4: Embed your client reviews into your website. Search for reputation management software, such as Righteous Reviews.
  • Step #5: Run service campaigns of Google and Facebook Ads ahead of peak seasons.
A Review Geotagging Software Solution

Righteous Reviews Enables Job Site Checkins and Geotagged Reviews.

Need an SEO Consultation?

Want to get professional input on your plumbing company’s local SEO strategy? Our seasoned experts at Plumbing Webmasters would love to talk with you! Call us anytime for a free consultation at (877) 388-9884. You’ll see why so many of our plumbers earn premium ranking in local, organic, and paid search!

Other Resources From Plumbing Webmasters

Related Articles and Podcasts
How to Rank Your Plumbing Company for “Plumber Near Me” (Article)
How to Expand Your Plumbing Business in 2020 (Article)
Forced to Brand (Podcast)

Plumbing SEO Services
Plumber Content Management
On-Page SEO for Plumbing Sites
Ranking #1 on Google for Plumbing Companies

Posted: | Updated: Dec 23, 2019 | Categories: Podcast