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Lokala SEO-strategier för rörmokare och andra affärer

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Local SEO Strategies For Plumbers And Other Trades

Plumbers and other tradespeople are essential in modern society, yet they face one huge barrier to entering new markets: Peeling away customers from the competition.

Many homeowners have established relationships with plumbers and contractors, making breaking into certain markets difficult.

Thankfully, plumbers have ways to excel in a new market, particularly when capturing new homeowners or performing emergency services where other plumbers are unavailable.

The best sources for seizing these opportunities are Google Search, and you can improve your visibility there using local SEO.

In this guide, you’ll find tips and tactics to help plumbers, electricians, contractors, and other tradespeople and businesses break into a new market, build a customer base, and expand your brand.

Off-Site SEO Essentials

One of the biggest traffic sources for all businesses comes from ‘near me’ searches, particularly on mobile phones.

By optimizing your Google Business Profile listing and third-party directory listings, you can build your business’s exposure and increase the number of incoming calls to your business.

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Google Business Profile Optimization

Your Google Business Profile shows in local search pack results and is displayed in Google Maps searches.

As a result, optimizing your Google Business Profile listing enables customers to call your business, drive to its location, or visit its website with just one click.

Screenshot from Google, July 2022

To optimize your Google Business Profile listing correctly, follow these tips and dive deeper with this guide.

  • Ensure consistent NAP information (i.e., name, address, and phone number).
  • Verify your business on Google Maps.
  • Respond to customer reviews on your profile with helpful advice or kind responses.
  • Write a description of your business and its services.
  • Use high-resolution and relevant photos to showcase your brand and company.

Local Directories

Next, you’ll want to optimize your brand’s business profile on other third-party sites that customers frequently use to find plumbers, including:

  • The Better Business Bureau.
  • Yellow Pages.
  • Angie’s List.
  • Yelp.
  • Houzz.
  • Home Advisor.
  • LinkedIn.
  • Iambuilders.com.
  • Blue Book.

While some sites like Yelp have waned over the years, these directory sites are still important business referral sources.

Some sites provide ranked lists of different businesses based on customer reviews, which can furnish social proof and trust for your business (if you get enough positive reviews).

Moz offers tools for local citation building, or you can manually claim each business yourself, following the tips above to optimize your social media presence.

Build A Social Media Presence

While engaging with customers on social media is not critical for many contractors or trades, sources like Facebook can be valuable for customers looking for special announcements, business hours, and reviews.

Build a social media page for Facebook och LinkedIn, providing high-resolution photos and clear NAP info for easy contact.

Managing Reviews

Finally, you’ll need to manage reviews on external third-party websites to build customer trust.

Generally, you should analyze each third-party site at least once a month, if not more, to see what people are saying about your business and how you can improve.

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Think of reviews like personal referrals – which are already a massive source of revenue for your business.

According to one survey, 84% of customers of service businesses and tradespersons said reviews are ‘important’ or ‘very important’ in their decision-making process.

Follow these tips to manage online reviews for your plumbing business:

  • Encourage customers to leave a review after a positive service or engagement.
  • Encourage customers to leave reviews on your website and all marketing materials.
  • Respond to positive reviews.
  • Respond to negative reviews with solutions or an apology.

Don’t worry too much about negative reviews, as most customers will be equally dismayed by overtly harsh reviews.

However, responding to negative reviews with a positive service engagement could build more customer trust over time.

It also helps you show off your customer service skills.

On-Page SEO Essentials

Now that you’ve optimized your business listing on strategic third-party websites, it’s time to optimize your website for local SEO results.

Local Keyword Research

To begin, you’ll need to conduct local keyword research to see which terms drive the most qualified traffic to your website.

Open up a free Google Ads account and use the Keyword Planner tool to search for keywords in your area.

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For example, if you operate in Houston, you could use “plumbers houston” as your seed keyword and filter your search for Houston, Texas, to uncover further ideas:

conduct local keyword researchScreenshot from Google Ads, July 2022

Based on this list, “plumber houston tx” and “houston plumbing services” have less competition and can be easily won in local search results.

You can also filter this list by “top of page bid” and look at the highest bids for the most commercially relevant keywords.

You can also take a competitor from your initial keyword list and plug in their URL to see which keywords they rank for.

You can add a semantic filter to adjust your results for strictly plumbing-related keywords.

Building a list of these keywordsScreenshot from Google Ads, July 2022

Building a list of these keywords will be critical for optimizing meta tags on top-level pages and developing content ideas.

Meta Tag Optimization

Now that we have our list of seed keywords, we need to apply them to our web pages.

The first area will be your homepage, where you can customize the title tag to include your brand name and a seed keyword, such as “Matt’s Plumbing Company | Plumbers Houston.”

You will need to optimize the metadata on each page with relevant keyword data to make pages more likely to rank for search results.

This metadata will include:

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  • Title Tag/H1: The primary keyword related to a page and the page’s topic. Title tags must be between 50-60 characters, or titles will be truncated in SERPs (search engine results page).
  • Metabeskrivning: A brief description of your webpage, which includes your seed keyword and a call-to-action to read or find out more. Meta descriptions are ideally between 145–160 characters.
  • Header Tags: The subtopics or dividing headers across each page. Each header should include a relevant long-tail keyword.
  • webbadresser: URLs should retain a simple structure with your site name followed by the name of the title of the webpage.
  • Keyword Usage: Seed keywords should be used in the webpage’s introduction and 1–5% throughout the text document.

Local Schema

While local keyword research will certainly help Google or Bing index your website for local search results, nothing is guaranteed.

To help search engines index your website properly, use schema markup on web pages to properly label and index them.

While schema markup can be complicated, Google’s Structured Data Tool simplifies the task.

Insert your URL and add the appropriate schema markup to ensure each page on your website is properly indexed by Google.

Some common schema markup data that will apply to your plumbing business include:

  • Geo.
  • Type.
  • Opening Hours.
  • Telephone.
  • Address.
  • Review.
  • Price.

See our Complete Guide to Local Schema for more useful tips.

Mobil lyhördhet

Another big component of local search is mobile search.

Many local searches for your business will be conducted via smartphones, so you can’t ignore the importance of mobile.

Thankfully, most modern CMS options come with responsive webbdesign.

However, to ensure your website runs smoothly on mobile, consider the following tips:

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  • Compress all images.
  • Reduce clicks and leverage scrolling.
  • Keep webpages short and simple.
  • Insert click-to-call buttons and icons.
  • Limit the amount of JavaScript.
  • Avoid large videos (leverage YouTube instead!)

Site Speed Optimization

Fortunately, by optimizing for mobile, you’ll also be optimizing for page speed.

To increase page speeds, consider the following tips:

  • Minify CSS.
  • Enable file compression.
  • Use browser caching.
  • Clean up redirects.

You should still identify page speed issues using Google’s Page Speed Insights for more helpful information.

Creating Consistent NAP

As a final tip for this section, it’s crucial to ensure that all contact information (name, address, phone number = NAP) and branding are consistent across all your pages.

For example, inserting a click-to-call button and your address in the top corner of each page (or the footer) will ensure customers can contact you whenever they’re ready.

Content Essentials

With your website in place and ready to rock, it’s time to build landing pages for your most important services and service regions.

Service Pages

Ideally, your UX should retain very simple navigation, with your target keyword (such as “Plumbers Houston”) and all auxiliary services as secondary or service pages.

These pages could include services, such as:

  • Emergency Plumbing.
  • Toilet Repairs.
  • Pipe Leaks.
  • Garbage Disposal Repair.
  • Water Heater Services.
  • Sewage.
  • Drain Cleaning.
  • Gas Piping.

These should all be located under a general Plumbing Services top-navigation page where users can explore different services, find out pricing, repair specifics, etc.

Regional Pages

Another important consideration for plumbers and contractors is whether your business serves a large metro area or different locations.

For example, if you provide plumbing services to most of New York City, you could create regional pages for Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens with a list of various services.

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Furthermore, if there is enough keyword volume to warrant those pages, you could create regional pages for neighborhoods in New York, such as the Upper East Side, Upper West Side, and SoHo.

These pages may also rank for ‘near me’ searches in those neighborhoods.

Creating A Blog

Finally, you could also consider starting a blog if you feel it will give you a leg up on the competition.

Blogs provide several benefits for local businesses, including plumbers, such as:

  • Providing customers with easy DIY tips and repairs.
  • Separating your brand from other plumbers as a local authority.
  • Providing you with engaging content to share on your social channels.
  • Ranking for long-tail keywords relevant to your business to drive traffic.

You can also consider sharing DIY and tutorial videos on platforms like YouTube, which link back to your website.

Video content is highly shareable and easy to consume, giving your business much-needed exposure.

Link Building Strategies

While we discussed ways to drive traffic from third-party websites, länkbygge can be an exceptionally useful tool in your arsenal to give your business a leg-up on the competition.

Link building – whether it’s using rel=follow or nofollow länkar – directs qualified traffic to your site and customers to your business.

If you don’t have the money to spend on a tool like Ahrefs, here are some free local link building tips to help you drive traffic to your website:

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  • Reach out to newspapers in your town that list local contractors and ask for a link to your site.
  • Reach out to local bloggers who have interviewed local businesses in your area to contribute a quote or interview.
  • Write guest posts on websites with local influencers to contribute some DIY repair tips and other related content.
  • Sponsor a local team, volunteer, or host an event that forces journalists and bloggers to write about your business.

These tips will help give your brand exposure, which, in turn, will drive more customers to your business over time.

Digital reklam

Uppkopplad reklam- can also be very effective if you want to drive quick exposure and calls to your business.

Till exempel, reklam- on Google Ads allows you to bid on the keywords you’re trying to rank for, so your website shows up above the local search pack.

online advertising can be very effective. Screenshot from Google Ads, July 2022

While I suggest enlisting help or taking a course to begin reklam- on Google, here are a few helpful tips to help you promote your plumbing business on Google:

  • Use geotargeting to narrow your audience to a specific region.
  • Insert negative keywords to reduce ad spend.
  • Leverage location-specific keywords to compete with ‘“near me” and organic results.
  • Gör det möjligt annonstillägg that provide easy call options and list your business address.
  • Create landing page copy that’s relevant to your ad and includes relevant keywords, high-quality images, and an easy way to contact your business.
  • A/B test ads to see which ad copy generates the best performance.
  • Use longer tail keywords with less competition or change your bid strategy to limit CPC (cost per click).

In addition, Facebook provides sophisticated audience research tools that allow you to advertise to customers based on demographic information, such as whether they’re a homeowner, over a certain age, or own residential/commercial real estate.

Email Marketing

Finally, I want to mention e-post marknadsföring, as it can be a powerful tool for local businesses.

Plumbers can benefit from email marketing by sending re-engagement emails that remind previous customers of your business, especially if you work with residential and commercial residents.

You can send emails to advertise local promotions in your area, such as discounted inspections or preventative maintenance.

However, email marketing can be expensive, especially for a handel that relies heavily on emergency repairs.

For this reason, email marketing is not truly necessary for plumbers unless you actively create content, engage with the community, or run promotions.

Slutsats

SEO for tradespeople and their businesses involves many of the same strategies as with other local businesses.

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However, tradespeople require special consideration for their unique business model.

Some forms of marketing, such as social media and email marketing, may not be as effective as reklam- or reputation management.

Hopefully, by following these tips, you can establish a positive web presence for your business and start getting more phone calls.

Fler resurser:


Utvald bild: Khosro/Shutterstock

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SEO

WordPress Considers Historic Development Change

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WordPress Considers Historic Development Change

Matt Mullenweg, developer of WordPress and CEO of Autommatic, proposed no longer adding new features to the WordPress, pivoting instead to a plugin-first policy.

This new approach to the future of WordPress has already resulted in a new feature intended for the next version of WordPress to be dropped entirely.

Canonical plugins are said to offer a way to keep improving WordPress on a faster schedule.

But some WordPress core contributors expressed the opinion that publisher user experience may suffer.

Canonical Plugins

First discussed in 2009, canonical plugins is a way to develop new features in the form of plugins.

The goal of this approach is to keep the WordPress core fast and lean while also encouraging development of experimental features in the form of plugins.

The original 2009 proposal described it like this:

“Canonical plugins would be plugins that are community developed (multiple developers, not just one person) and address the most popular functionality requests with superlative execution.

…There would be a very strong relationship between core and these plugins that ensured that a) the plugin code would be secure and the best possible example of coding standards, and b) that new versions of WordPress would be tested against these plugins prior to release to ensure compatibility.”

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This approach to features and options is also referred to as Plugin First, to emphasize how features will first appear in the form of plugins.

These plugins are called canonical because they are developed by the WordPress core development team as opposed to non-canonical plugins that are created by third parties that might limit features in order to encourage purchase of a pro-version.

Integration of canonical plugins into the WordPress core itself would be considered once the plugin technology has proven itself to be popular and essential to the majority of users.

The benefit of this new approach to WordPress would be to avoid adding new features that might not be needed by the majority of users.

Plugin-first could be seen to be in keeping with the WordPress philosophy called Decisions, Not Options, which seeks to avoid burdening users with layers of technical options.

By offloading different features and functionalities to plugins, a user won’t have to wade through enabling or disabling functionalities they need, don’t need or don’t understand.

The WordPress design philosophy states:

“It’s our duty as developers to make smart design decisions and avoid putting the weight of technical choices on our end users.”

Canonical Plugins the Future?

Matt Mullenweg published a post titled, Canonical Plugins Revisited, in which he made the case that this is the way that WordPress should be developed moving forward.

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He wrote:

“We are reaching a point where core needs to be more editorial and say “no” to features coming in as ad hoc as they sometimes do, and my hope is that more Make teams use this as an opportunity to influence the future of WordPress through a plugin-first approach that gives them the luxury of faster development and release cycles (instead of three times per year), less review overhead, and and path to come into core if the plugin becomes a runaway success.”

The first casualty of this new approach is the cancellation of integrating WebP image conversion into the next version of WordPress, WordPress 6.1, currently scheduled for November 2022.

Plugin-First is Controversial

The shift to a plugin-first development process was subjected to debate in the comments section.

Some developers, such as core contributor Jon Brown, expressed reservations about the proposal to switch to developing with canonical plugins.

They kommenterade:

“The problem remains that there are too many complicated plugins standing in for what would be a simple optional feature.

Plugins are _not_ a user-friendly option to core settings. First users have to discover there is a plugin, then they have negotiated yet another settings screen and updates and maintenance of that plugin.”

The commenter used the example of a commenting functionality that is currently served by mutliple bloated plugins as a less than ideal user experience.

They noted that having one canonical plugin to solve a problem is preferable to the current state where desirable options can only be found on bloated third party plugins.

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But they also said that having a settings option within core, without the need for a plugin, could present a better user experience.

They continued:

“Now, I do think Canonical plugins are a better situation than 6+ bloated plugins like exist here, but so would a single checkbox added to the settings page in core to do this. Which would further improve the UX and discovery issues inherent in plugins.”

Ultimately, the commenter expressed the idea that the concept of canonical plugins seemed like a way to shut down discussions about features that should be considered, so that the conversation never happens.

“Canonical plugins” seems like a weaponized tool to derail discussions the same way “decisions not options” has become for years.”

That last statement is a reference to frustrations felt by some core contributors with the inability to add options for features because of the “decisions, not options” philosophy.

Others also disagreed with the plugin-first approach:

“Canonical plugin sounds grand but it will further increase maintenance burden on maintainers.

In my opinion, it’s no go.

It will be much more better to include some basic features in core itself instead of further saying – It’s a good place for plugin.”

Someone else pointed out a flaw in plugin-first in that collecting user feedback might not be easy. If that’s the case then there might not be a good way to improve plugins in a way that meets user needs if those needs are unknown.

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They skrev:

“How can we better capture feedback from users?

Unless site owners are knowledgeable enough to report issues on GitHub or Trac (let’s be honest, no one reports plugin issues on Trac), there’s really no way to gather feedback from users to improve these recommended/official plugins. “

Canonical Plugins

WordPress development is evolving to make improvements faster. Core contributor comments indicate that there are many unresolved questions on how well this system will work for users.

An early indicator will be in what happens with the cancelled WebP feature that was previously intended to be integrated into the core and will now become a plugin.


Featured image by Shutterstock/Studio Romantic

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