Tag Archives: Conversion Rate Optimization

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Email Marketing for Plumbers: 10 (Awesome) Tips for 2022

Did you know that email marketing for plumbers boasts one of the highest return rates, but less than a quarter of US small businesses planned on using it in 2021? With careful segmentation, consistent scheduling, and regular testing, any plumber can craft a sophisticated (and productive) email campaign. Considering how easy and cheap the marketing channel is, it’s a wonder that more businesses haven’t made an effort to enhance their plumbing digital marketing through email.

Today, we’ll explore ten easy ideas to power up your email marketing campaigns for stronger lead generation. If you’ve been struggling to get your email list off the ground, be sure to read along. Remember, even the most robust email campaigns work better when partnered with a healthy website and local search optimization. 

Idea #1: Reader Segmentation

Do your would-be clients receive the same emails as your long-time customers? If so, you could be missing out on a whole lot of leads! While you may not experience the 750% increase in revenue that Campaign Monitor speaks of in its recent guide, email marketing for plumbers naturally benefits from matching clients with the content that suits them best.

How can you effectively break your email list into cohesive groups?

Idea #2: Segmenting by Interest

Toilets vs water heaters. There’s a huge interest gap between these two topics. Likewise, the client base in your email list is made up of different segments with very different interests. Some crave insight on how to save on water utilities. Others want to avoid the sort of emergencies that require calling your business early Saturday morning!

But how can you construct fitting segments for each of these groups?

A Potential Email List Segmentation Strategy
One Potential Segmentation Strategy Would Be to Divide Repair Clients from Installation Clients.

Take a look at each client’s service history. If you’ve kept good records over the last few years, this should be an easy task. For customers who’ve called for emergency repairs in the last three to sixth months, consider sending content related to home maintenance, leak prevention, and/or clog situations. For original installation customers, you may want to contact them with remodeling guides and style tips!

Idea #3: Segmenting by Sales Funnel

Your prospective clients might not be as eager to hear from you as your faithful company fans. One of the easiest ways to segment your email base is to consider where each individual is in the sales funnel. If you aren’t familiar with the term, a sales funnel represents the various stages of interest in your services.

When it comes to email marketing for plumbers, you may distinguish a few different levels in the funnel:

  • Early-stage browsers (top)
  • Deeply interested researchers
  • Spenders (bottom)

Early-stage prospects usually don’t have as much motivation to read through dense informational content, but they might be tempted with a special offer email. Your researchers, on the other hand, should be more willing to spend time reading. Client stories and limited-time-offers might be the encouragement they need to make the jump to spenders!

A Plumbing Company's Client Review
This Previous Client Might Be Interested in Learning About Septic Maintenance in a Marketing Email.

Former clients, especially happy ones, have a much higher likelihood of coming to your business for larger installations in the future. For these people, you may spend some time talking about remodeling ideas and high-efficiency products. You might even create a segment specifically for recurring clients, the ones that like to share content with their friends!

Idea #4: Personalized Email Design

Names are very powerful. There’s something wired deeply into the mind that lights up when someone’s name is called aloud. The same can be said when a company takes the time to personalize an email with a client’s name. It has tremendous conversion-boosting power, which is why the best email marketing services work so hard to gather that personal information.

In fact, it’s said that a personalized email subject alone can increase open rates by 26%.

A Concept Explaining Personalized Email Subjects
Name Usage is a Powerful Tool in Email Marketing for Plumbers. Image Source: Campaign Monitor

Custom Email Copy

Why stop at a subject line though? Imagine receiving an email specifically written with your name, service history, and interests sprinkled throughout the content! That can be a reality with today’s advanced email marketing software companies. Brands like MailChimp and AWeber offer exciting tools for personalizing your standard email campaigns with each client’s name.

Personalized emails enjoy higher click-through rates (CTR) than non-customized emails sent out en masse. Even if you can only manage to plug in the client (or prospect’s) name, it still has tremendous value for your campaigns.

Idea #5: Regulating Frequency

We get battered by a barrage of emails every day. One of our content writers boasts that his personal (non-work) inbox is filled with almost 20,000 unread emails. Marketers describe the growing resistance to opening and reading inbox messages as “email fatigue“. While you may think that people who voluntarily signed up for an email list would be a hard drive away, that simply isn’t the case.

Does your email list seem to be shrinking on a regular basis? While some regular turnover is to be expected, a rapidly dropping number of subscribers could be a symptom of email fatigue. Many plumbers operate on a monthly schedule, while others simply blast out emails whenever they feel up to it. Consider switching to a scheduling cycle with fewer releases. This allows more time to plan and craft an impactful message and offer. It also makes for higher opening percentages and reduced fatigue.

How to Schedule Delayed Email Marketing for Plumbers
Regular Email Intervals Increase the Chances of People Finding and Opening Your Emails.

Idea #6: Switch to a Scheduled Release

Does your email production schedule look random from the outside? Many contractors are so busy, they simply don’t have the time to manage a regularly recurring email campaign. However, your clients and prospects will better respect a regular release period. People like to know when to expect email!

If you’ve been wondering how to do email marketing on a tight time budget, simply write the emails whenever you have the time, and schedule them through your email provider. For instance, you can arrange delayed release through your regular Gmail account.

How to Pick a Date for Delayed Emails
If You Have Little Available Time to Write, Use Delayed Releases to Maintain Your Schedule.

Idea #7: Protect Against Email Fatigue

Worried about over-sending in your email campaigns? Having trouble keeping track of how many times you’ve mailed a particular segment? Thankfully, there are tools to assist you as your team tries to avoid creating email fatigue!

For instance, Thinbox monitors your email campaigns to see who your company contacts the most. If you lose track of posting frequency and over-push your welcome in a particular address’s inbox, Thinbox issues an alert to warn you. You can also use the planning software of the other big brands we’ve mentioned to keep tabs on your posting frequency.

Remember, moderating volume is a make-or-break challenge in email marketing for plumbers. If you successfully find your perfect posting rate for each segment, you’ll see remarkable returns on your investment!

Idea #8: Start A/B Testing Emails

We all feel the pull of routine. Writing emails for a large pool of individuals takes time and serious effort. While it’s tempting to rely on tried and (fairly) true templates, there’s also the real possibility that your emails could become even more effective at creating leads for your business. 

That’s where A/B testing, the process of running two different versions of an email, comes into play.

A Graphic Explaining the A/B Testing Concept
Some A/B Testing Tools Allow You To Send the Best Performing Templates to the Rest of Your List. Image: Zapier

Email marketing for plumbers takes a lot of trial and error, but A/B (or split) testing makes it much easier to determine what type of materials, email lengths, images, etc. work best with your audience. Both MailChimp and AWeber provide convenient tools for convenient A/B testing, but you can theoretically save the subscription fee and do it manually. It’s just a lot more work doing it by yourself.

Going Small

Idea #9: Try Micro-Emails

In email marketing for plumbers, one of the most decisive elements of email design is the actual length of the material. 2000 word essays about the credibility, ratings, and skill of a plumbing team may do more harm than good, driving away members of your email list. In contrast, some of the most successful email marketing campaigns rely on brevity to communicate important sales, events, etc. 

What if you could boil down your longest emails into 300-word releases? These short, sweet, and to-the-point emails work exceedingly well for prospective clients, particularly when combined with tasty deals. When you A/B test the same email with different lengths, just make sure you use addresses from the same user segment. This makes it easier to determine if email length is really the driving factor in stronger CTR.

New Attractions

Idea #10: Switch Email Lead Attractions

Do you use the same “Free Inspection” hook for every single email? You might experiment with some new lead attractions. There are so many alluring materials, resources, and deals to try out! 

  • Special coupons
  • BOGO deals
  • Pro tips
  • YouTube how-to guides
  • Downloadable pamphlets
  • Consultations
  • and More

As we mentioned earlier, early-stage prospects may not respond well to certain promotions. YouTube videos and coupons are great ways to lure in would-be clients. In the meantime, you might use special maintenance promotions to bring past clients back into circulation!

Need a Digital Marketing Team?

At Plumbing Webmasters, we support hundreds of businesses around the nation with custom web design, local SEO, reputation management, and paid advertising campaigns. We’ve helped so many plumbers find page one rankings for their local service area, leading to lasting growth opportunities.

Posted: | Updated: Oct 6, 2021 | Categories: Marketing
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How to Craft a 5-Star Website User Experience

Consumers are often driven by emotion, rather than logic. Even in the most crucial homeowner decisions, how we feel still influences the decision making process. That’s why professional web design, specifically the user experience, is so critical to a website’s overall effectiveness. Text walls and poor menu navigation may seem like minor annoyances to a business owner, but the frustration they create may cause would-be clients to take their business elsewhere!

That’s why we’re taking a look at smart website design for a pleasant, productive user experience. If your plumbing company has struggled with high bounce rates and other poor site metrics, be sure to read along.

Create a Journey: Site Navigation

The goal of navigation should be to connect your clients with the services they need the most, in as few steps as possible. Picture the end goal of each type of client and create a simple one or two click path there. The easiest way to accomplish this is with a navigational menu at the top of your page. You can also place related links throughout your content below.

Dropdown Menu for Simplified User Experience

A Dropdown Menu and Collection of Service Pages Make for a Faster User Experience.

Here’s a good rule of thumb. A new website visitor should be able to locate their desired service page and your associated number in under 60 seconds. Any longer, and there’s a good chance your target users will give up and try a competitor’s website. Under 30 seconds would be even better!

Most plumbing companies can break down their users into three camps: frantic homeowner (or business owner), intentional scanner, and mild-interest reader. You may recognize these as phases of the customer buying cycle. There’s a purchase time frame associated with each category. Scared homeowners in need of immediate service may take less than a minute between finding your search listing and calling your office. Intentional scanners are actively hunting for a solution, but they may look through multiple websites first. Finally, mild-interest readers merely browse for information. They’re more interested in pricing data, as well as planning insights for upcoming projects.

Choose Responsive Design

A Good Mobile User Experience

How Does Your Site Read on Mobile?

By now, you’ve probably noticed that most people prefer to browse on their phones. Responsible design (also known as mobile responsiveness) simply means that your website can adapt itself to fit into a user’s phone. Nothing disrupts a user experience like trying to pinch and side scroll through a desktop sized page! 

Thankfully, it’s remarkably easy to create a mobile friendly website.

WordPress alone offers thousands of templates already designed for mobile responsiveness. A professional web designer can also produce a site that fits inside the palm of your hand. Wondering whether or not your company website caters to the mobile user experience? Simply Google Search “Mobile Friendly Test” and use the search engine’s free testing tool!

Remember, mobile friendly sites are the norm now. Since responsive design tools have been readily available for over five years, Google won’t promote a site that only provides desktop viewing (at least on the first page of search results). By the way, if a marketing company tries to pass off responsive design as a new capability, they’re pulling your leg!

Frantic User

Helping the Frantic Homeowner

Think of your website from the point of view of a frantic homeowner trying to get help in an emergency. When every minute counts, there’s no time to waste carefully reading through your company bio. All an emergency plumbing client needs to see is:

  • 4-5 star ratings in local search
  • Your emergency plumbing service page
  • Your company phone number

Many frantic clients won’t even make it through all these steps, instead calling the first 4-5 star plumbing company they see straight from the local map pack! That’s even more reason to make sure your service pages have been properly optimized with the appropriate keywords and calls to action (CTAs). Your Google My Business account will also heavily impact your service page visibility.

Intentional Scanner

Catering to the Intentional “Scanner”

In this phase, consumers have started to consider the different options they have to tackle a plumbing project. When it comes to plumbing SEO, there’s usually a driving force behind these potential clients, such as a rising water bill or a suspicious leak in the yard. In other words, these people have real motivation to find a solution within a few days or weeks.

Bombarding your clients with sales pitches and confusing website navigation only sabotages this natural momentum. Instead, focus on creating easy to find paths between your homepage and service pages. There’s your navigation menu at the top, an easy way to connect to your services quickly. You should also take a little time to talk about your service categories on the homepage itself, then include links to your various solutions.

Finally, we come to the service pages, the last stop in the scanner’s journey before contacting your business. To really nail these pages, focus on a handful of objectives:

  • Reviewing the problem(s) that specific service solves.
  • Educating the reader on the typical service process (step by step).
  • Providing applicable images that showcase the service / product.
  • Providing a clear calls to action at the beginning and end of the pages.

Mild-Interest Reader

Courting Future Customers

These casual browsers aren’t interested in immediate plumbing service. Most visit your website for research purposes. From identifying ways to save on water costs to planning their next bathroom remodel, mild-interest readers crave professional, unique insight for their projects.

Unlike your other two user categories, mild-interest readers have a high chance of landing on your website through blog articles and other forms of content marketing. If you’ve been faithfully posting how-to guides on your company blog (as you should be), make sure to keep linking back to related service pages. This creates a natural introduction to your solutions, sowing seeds that will slowly grow over the coming months until the readers return as active shoppers.

Enrich With Beautiful Imagery

Nothing creates a more comfortable user experience than classy imagery! It’s easy for readers to lose themselves in a great wall of text, which makes a well-placed custom photo such a relief. By carefully spacing out your wording with original images, readers can better digest information and learn about your services.

Imagery Making the User Experience More Rewarding

When You’re Afraid of Information Overload, Try Using Images to Refresh Your Readers.

In addition to the clear spacing improvements that images produce, they also provide opportunities to enhance your keyword optimization. Captions, alt image attributes, and image titles contribute to each page’s keyword strategy. Images also help with challenging topics too difficult or time-consuming to explain through words.

How many images should you use per service page?

Try opening up a website in a desktop browser. Arrange your window so that it takes up half the screen, then start scrolling down. Ideally, you should see a new image every 1.5 – 2 screen lengths until you see the end of the page. When one disappears, another takes its place soon afterwards. You can stretch the gap between photos with text formatting (bullet lists, quote blocks, etc.).

Summing Up the User Experience

The ultimate website user experience directs people to their services in a timely manner and makes it easy to digest information, no matter what device they browse with. With responsive design, your business can pursue a much larger audience from your local community, and earn higher rankings as a result. Your navigational menu, pages structure, and linking tactics all form the natural path from homepage to call to action! Finally, a healthy supply of original imagery saves potential clients from the frustration of text walls.

If your plumbing company struggles with a poor user experience, our team at Plumbing Webmasters would be thrilled to consult with you! With an enthusiastic collection of web designers, content writers, and plumbing SEO specialists, there’s no online challenge we can’t overcome together. For your free consultation, contact us today at (877) 388-9884!

Posted: | Updated: Sep 24, 2019 | Categories: Web Design