Contractor SEO is simply a local SEO campaign geared towards a specific sector of businesses, contractors. Choosing an SEO agency to work with helps to utilize a company that understands your market. Although many SEO campaigns are similar in nature, SEO for specific industries like roofers, plumbers, electricians, and so on will be far more effective if the person working on your campaign understands how your customers search for your services.
It is crucial to employ a variation of SEO techniques because algorithms power search engines. Those algorithms direct how the search engine locates your website and crawls the site's content and backend data.
In more straightforward terms: Your website has a ton of elements that set off various signals when search engines read over your content. If those signals are missing or incorrect, it can affect your website's ability to perform.
Luckily, SEO is a science, and if proper steps are taken, the desired outcome will arise. For average business owners, though, it can feel overwhelming. Don't worry; this article is designed to help you understand the basics with less technical jargon.
Follow These Steps To Improve Your Contractor SEO Campaign
There are four main aspects of SEO you should focus on to see results. Although these are not the only steps required for many local contractors, these steps will significantly benefit your business.
With search engine optimization, ranking in Google search results for any search term is possible. For contractors and local service providers, it is crucial to focus on local SEO. When performing local SEO, your goal is to dominate your geographical area when people seek services in your town.
Searching for a local contractor will typically return results that include three main things:
You'll see paid ads at the top.
You'll see a map listing with business info and reviews.
There will be the typical organic results that go down the remainder of the page.
The map results is a critical area to have your business located. Many companies don't show up here for various reasons. For example, not creating a map listing is a sure way not to be listed in that spot. Maybe you do have a listing, but it lacks critical information or has minimal to no reviews.
Putting in some time to optimize this listing will go a long way. Follow these steps, and you'll be on the right path:
Choose the best category for your industry.
Add all the essential information for your business—name, address, phone number, website, etc.
Upload images of your work, branded trucks, and possibly your storefront.
Turn on the ability for people to message you directly from your listing.
Publish posts/articles to your listing regularly.
If your information ever changes, keep it current. People hate when your hours say available only to find out that you now are closed on Saturdays.
Content is significant for your SEO efforts. Google is full of content and relies on it for everything. When you need to find something online, the only way it is possible is because someone created informative content that search engines determine is what that searcher is looking to find.
Too many contractors put little effort into their website's content. It is common to see a website with only 3-5 pages and a handful of paragraphs. This is why websites like Home Advisor tend to perform well at the top of search results over local service providers. If you want to compete truly, then don't stunt on your website's content. Put more words on each page to explain who you are, your services, the process, etc. In addition, have monthly blogs written to give your readers and search engines more to digest.
If you have ever researched SEO or spoken to an agency before, chances are you've heard the term "backlinks." The easiest way to explain the importance of backlinks is to compare your website to a credit report. New websites are like young credit reports that have no history or creditworthiness. It can be hard to get that big loan initially because banks have no account to base their decision on. Your website is the same way; you can't expect to create a new website and magically show up on the first page of Google. Your website has no credit, and your competitors that may have taken the steps needed to advance their SEO will have far more excellent credit, or what we call "domain authority."
Link building is a natural process. Never trust a company that says you can buy 100 backlinks that will be delivered overnight. There is nothing natural about that, and Google will penalize you for these poor-quality links. An example of a high-quality backlink would be if your roofing business could get a link on an article of a popular home improvement publication site. Google would see this backlink and give your credit report a boost. It is kind of like getting your first $1000 credit limit and earning a little bit of trust from creditors. Get a few more of these links, and that will be like making payments on time and not holding a high balance. Google might decide let's raise their credit limit, or in this case, move you up in the search results.
Use Keywords Correctly
This is where many businesses go wrong. Even if you got everything else above correct, the poor use of keywords could make all of that less effective. For example, I always see websites full of content and have decent backlinks that struggle to be at the top in search results for the words that matter. The reason is that they didn't do the research required to choose and implement the correct keywords.
You'd be surprised how much keywords can affect monthly potential search volumes even with the slightest changes. Keywords like "roofer in Dallas" might produce 500 monthly searches on average, where a word like "roof company in Dallas" might only bring in a fraction of that or none at all. If the content on your website doesn't correctly target the best performing words, it could be the difference in where your website is found in search results.
Try using a tool like Google's Keyword Planner. It is free to use but requires creating a Google Adwords account. Think up keywords that you believe your customers might be searching for and enter them in the planner. Google will return results on the words you've chosen and suggest some words that might perform better. You'll get to see average search volumes and competitiveness, which will help you make better decisions when writing your website's content.
SEO and PPC, What's The Difference?
Chances are, by now that you've heard both of these terms. SEO which is what we've discussed in this article, stands for "Search Engine Optimization." On the other hand, PPC is "Pay Per Click," which uses Google paid ads to get new potential customers. PPC and SEO should work hand-in-hand and not used one or the other. Using PPC will allow you to show up at the top of search results, but once you quit paying for those ads, your website will still be nowhere to find. SEO will get you to the top organically but is far more time-consuming of a process. We like to use paid ads for our customers to help us get a return on investment while we spend the time required to get our SEO in a top position. Once the website is at the top, you can either shift your PPC focus to other keywords you are not yet ranking for organically or double down on the words you are ranking for, giving you more click opportunities on a prospective client's search results.
SEO is a process that doesn't seem like it will be going away any time soon. Right now, as a contractor, you have an advantage as a large percentage of businesses in these industries have not jumped on the SEO train. As each day passes, more and more companies are learning about SEO and its importance. Get a jump start now and build your credit with Google to give you a leg up on future competitors that eventually take the plunge. Hire a contractor marketing agency today!