As a contractor, it’s important to consider that much of the business received will be local. Accordingly, contractors benefit when their SEO strategy has a local focus. To stand out locally or regionally, it’s important to make sure all information on Google My Business is complete; then make sure to establish a local SEO strategy on the company website and beyond.
Google My Business is Key
Complete the entirety of your Google My Business profile. This allows users to learn as much as possible about the business before even clicking off of Google. It’s important to double-check this information often, because Google will often prompt users to answer questions about the business and allow them to suggest edits. This means that competitors can technically provide incorrect information about the business or a customer can be misinformed. Check the business listing often to make sure none of the information is ever incorrect.
Also, be sure to take advantage of the Business Description portion. It’s a newer feature that gives business owners an opportunity to expand on the brand’s story and to include key information.
Encourage happy customers to review – always in an ethical way. If a project went really well, it may be a good idea to ask for an honest review. This can be done in-person or via email. Reviews can do plenty to help how your business shows up in Google’s results. It also improves the business’s credibility, as previous customers are vetting the business.
Statistics don’t lie. Here’s what the public thinks of reviews:
- Ask and you shall receive. 68% of customers will leave a review when asked. This just shows how important it is to request a review; plenty of customers don’t remember to do on their own.
- A whopping 97% read local reviews. All eyes are on this section of your company’s local profile.
- 85% of users trust a review as much as a personal recommendation. Clearly, users take these reviews very seriously.
- 49% of users only choose businesses with 4-stars or higher. The best way to counteract a bad review is with good reviews; this is why it’s so important to remind satisfied customers to share their experience.
- 30% of people judge a business on whether not they respond to reviews, so be sure to respond to all reviews, good and bad.
Google gives business owners the ability to upload company photos and videos. Be sure to take advantage of this. Potential customers can scroll through a gallery of your construction firm’s projects, behind-the-scenes videos, and more.
Include a Service Menu
Make clear what the business does with a Service menu. Businesses can create a list of services and even sort them into categories. If a service name is not self-explanatory, include a short description. If it makes sense to include a price, Google gives you the option to do so.
Be Sure to Take Advantage of Google Posts
Google+ may have fallen flat, but Google Posts is a pretty useful social media-like feature. Posts expire after a period of time (one week max) and they allow the owner to provide the most up-to-date information about the business. Show off the progress of your company’s latest construction project or a completed work. Provide some information, a photo or video, and a call-to-action.
Some good ideas for a post:
- Feature the newest service or project. If the company is offering a new service, promote it!
- Amplify company content. If your website has a blog, be sure to share new posts.
- Spread the news about a promotion. If the business is offering some type of discount, be sure to tell potential customers via Google. Google even provides a specific template just for sales and promotions.
- Share an upcoming event. Whether it’s in-person or online, this is a great opportunity to promote it. Be sure to provide a link to the registration page!
- Celebrate the latest holiday – and let prospects know if contact hours will be limited because of them.
Text New Business
Businesses have the ability to give customers the option to text them. Enable this under the “Messaging” card of Google My Business. Because text messaging is easier than other forms of communication and can be done from a mobile device, it’s a great option for customers early in the research process.
SEO Goes Beyond Google
If your Google My Business profile is complete, it’s time to review your website to ensure that other SEO features are optimized for local search. So check out Local SEO for Contractors -Part 2 for more information, and also be sure to read our Construction Marketing Association guest blog, Contractor Website Best Practices.