Let’s say a homeowner is in need of a plumbing service. Where do they go? Google of course! And what do they ask Google? Most likely, who and where the plumbers are closest to them.
Do you want your plumbing business to appear at the top of the page within the first 5-10 websites shown?
If you want more leads, more customers, and more money — the answer is yes. Honestly, if you’re looking for ANY kind of growth in your plumbing business, the answer is yes.
Pulse Tip: If you’re unfamiliar with the term SEO, it stands for “search engine optimization.” SEO is the process of improving your business’s website so that when people search on browsers like Google, they are connected to your services.
Need proof that improving your website’s SEO is worthwhile? As of 2020, over 368,000 people every month type “plumbers near me” into Google. While the websites that show up vary depending on the area the individual is searching from, that’s still a whole lot of people looking for plumbers. To get more specific, over 1,600 people type “plumbers in charlotte nc” into Google each month. Depending on how big the area you’re based in is compared to Charlotte, you could potentially have 1,600 or more potential customers seeing your website.
It’s easy to be intimidated by this stuff — because let’s be real, our expertise lies in servicing customers and fixing problems, not plumber marketing.
Optimizing for SEO can be relatively easy and something you can accomplish efficiently.
Optimizing your site for search does not need to be a massive undertaking. By implementing a few simple steps, you could potentially see a marked improvement not only in how people find you online, but also how many eventually use your services.
Every page on your website should have plumbing keywords that are commonly searched by your intended audience (or customer base). Avoid too many uses of the same keyword though. Keep it diverse.
One of the best places to put your keywords is your page’s “header titles.” These are the main headers of each paragraph or section of your page, and they are a big part of what Google “crawls” to see what a page is all about. There are several types of headers, with the main header being the “H1” and all secondary headers falling into H2, H3, H4, H5 and H6 categories.
So what would good header optimization look like? Let’s say your page is on plumbing tools you use in your business. Your H1 could be “Top Plumbing Tools We Use” with “top plumbing tools” being the keyword you want to rank for in Google.
Any H2 keywords would be used in the following paragraph headers that describe each tool and its uses. Throw in a few H3s if say one tool can be used in multiple different ways.
When Google’s robots crawl the page, they will recognize the page’s goal and begin to “rank” it for the keywords it found on the page. If Google finds the overall page to be highly informative and helpful, it will rank it higher and higher over time, resulting in a higher likelihood of your customers seeing it and finding your business online .
Pulse Tip: Keywords are phrases (usually two to five words) that people commonly type into Google, such as “plumbers near me.”
Some great plumber keywords for a homepage are:
For a service business like yours — one that operates in a specific area — using local keywords is key (ha) to making sure your business shows up when people are looking for local shops.
For example, if you’re based in Portland, Oregon, you have to use keywords on your site to let Google know where you are located. “Best Plumbing Company in Portland, Oregon” is a highly optimized keyword for a homepage title.
Metadata may sound like something out of a science fiction movie, but it’s arguably the most important part of SEO.
There are two parts of a page’s metadata: the title tag and the description. Both serve to describe what your webpage is about, but unlike header titles, metadata primarily appears in Google search results. Solid metadata will not only tell Google what a page is about, but also entice the customer to click on your link. Remember you have a lot of competition on a Google search page so make sure you stand out!
Take a look at this title tag in the search results list for a page:
The title tag includes the business’s top keyword (Boca Raton, FL Plumber) in a succinct and clear way. This tells Google what the business is, and where its located. Make sure your title tag is no more than 50 characters though because Google will cut it off (as you can see above).
Once you have your title tag, its time to work on your meta description. A meta description is the explanatory text you see right underneath the title tag in the screenshot above. The primary goal of a meta description is to talk to your customer. As we mentioned above, you’ll have a lot of competition on the search page, and your meta description is your chance to stand out from the crowd. Your meta description should be no more than 160 characters.
Think of SEO and keywords as a balancing act.
You can’t have tons of the same plumbing keywords on your website. If you do, Google will be very unhappy — unhappy as in a customer whose scheduled field tech was 30 minutes late to a service call.
Having several keywords on one page is known as keyword stuffing and it’s something you want to avoid. If Google feels you’re trying to game the system (by adding tons of useless keywords to every page), it will actually demote your site and make your business almost invisible to the Google searching world.
In general, Google recommends that each webpage has at least 200 to 300 words to have any chance of ranking in search results. With this in mind, your ratio of keywords to text should be 1:100. For every 100 words, you should use one of your keywords.
Pulse Tip: The more text you can have on your website, the higher your website will appear in search. Websites that appear in the first, second, or third slot usually have pages with 1,000-2,000 words. That’s why marketers focus so much on blog writing!
We all know 2020 is a chaotic year and owning a plumbing business is not easy. You don’t have much (if any) free time on your hands and you need to make sure your business is getting value from how you spend your time and money.
The terms “marketing” and “seo” can make your eyes roll, but don’t count them out too quickly. These easy steps are a sure way to grow your business, even during these crazy times. People are still in need of good plumbers and are still Googling for businesses near them. All you need to do is a few simple things to make sure they can easily find you.