With customers doing more and more of their research and shopping online, it’s more important than ever to have a strong online presence. The majority of Google searches are location-based, ie. "HVAC contractor near me", so it is crucial to make sure your business is listed in online directories with accurate information. After that, your focus should be on gathering positive online reviews, to increase your credibility and prominence. Make it easy for satisfied customers to sing your praises online, and use that as a tool to attract new business!
Here are some tips to enhance your online presence:
Consumers are constantly changing how they search and buy. Half of all Google searches are location-based, and most are done via mobile phone.
Consumers want the best and they want it close by. "Near me" and "close by" searches have gone up 9x over last 2 years. People want both quality and convenience.
Local smartphone searches drive new business more than print ads, or an attractive storefront. Online reviews can make or break a potential sale.
Google prioritizes local businesses in their search results. They determine their rankings with a formula focused on relevance, distance, and prominence.
Optimize your directory listings, ie. Google, Facebook, Better Business Bureau.
Claim your business and review and update your details
Include keywords in descriptions
Keep your hours of operation up-to-date
Make sure your NAP (name, address, phone) is always the same in each directory listing. This can help increase your prominence.
One of the fastest and most impactful ways to improve your online ranking is by collecting and managing online reviews. It will boost your local SEO and build trust and loyalty. Of course, not all reviews are created equal. It’s important to focus on recency, frequency, quality, and then quantity. Respond respectfully to bad reviews, and you can turn those into a positive, too.
Here are a few tips to gather high-quality reviews:
Deliver great customer service!
Set expectations for the review. Be sure to ask the customer to leave you a review, and use your experience to figure out the best time to make the ask.
Send the customer a link via text to create an online review. Make it easy for them, and meet them where they are – their smartphone!
Leave behind a postcard with instructions on how to create a review.