Tag Archives: Google My Business

HVAC SEO Conference 2020 (Podcast)

The world of search marketing shifts and sways all the time. Even seasoned professionals work hard to keep up to date on the latest Google algorithm updates and industry strategies. That’s why our team invests the time, money, and energy to attend key conferences around the country.

In our latest podcast, Nolen and Jason share some of the insights they accumulated from their latest conference adventures! If you’ve struggled to cultivate your online brand this year, be sure to listen in for some HVAC SEO tips.

Key Facts on SEO for HVAC Professionals

  • GMB plays a more active role now, allowing people to contact your business directly via messaging, phone, or Q&A entries.
  • SSL Certificates, custom code base, and mobile-ready design should be considered basics, but not every company provides these attributes.
  • Without a GMB account claimed and verified, it’s almost impossible to show up properly for local maps listings.

New Light on GMB

One of the most noticeable trends discussed these days is the rising prominence of GMB and the Knowledge Graph. Google My Business (GMB) is a free listing service that allows companies to show up in local searches. Businesses simply need to claim their free listing, provide their basic operational information, and verify their address with Google.

Once the account is active, Google generates a Knowledge Graph with contact information, hours of operation, and uploaded photos for your company.

A Mobile Knowledge Graph for HVAC SEO

Notice the buttons in the middle of the screenshot above. These enable streamlined communication with potential customers around the area. Not only can they easily call your business (even from the road), they can also request quotes via the messaging system. GMB creates high-value prospects without ever needing to send to your website.

Optimization for GMB

As the capabilities grow for your Google My Business account, so does the responsibility of ensuring your listing stays accurate and up to date. We’ve seen too many businesses lose valuable leads over the years because of discrepancies in their GMB listings. In fact, we witnessed one outside company (a roofing contractor) lose over $2 million revenue in a single year because of a suspended listing.

It’s more important than ever to keep your account optimized. How can your business accomplish this?

Listing Settings

Initial Listing Setup

  • Make sure you’ve gone through the official verification process.
  • Use the same address (including abbreviations) for all other listings.
  • Update your GMB when you start offering new services.
  • Use your home address only if you don’t have an official office.
  • Answer as many GMB questions about your operations as possible.

Ongoing Activities

Ongoing Activities Good for HVAC SEO

  • Answer prospect questions in the Q&A section.
  • Create a short GMB post every week with new content or promotions.
  • Add team photos, interior views, exteriors shots, and job site pics.
  • Continue asking for reviews!

Big No-Nos

Bad SEO for HVAC Professionals

  • Don’t try to mess with other HVAC company websites!
  • Do not create fake locations to try to expand your service area.
  • Do not offer any sort of incentives or discounts for client reviews.
  • Do not get rid of your website domain (barring legal reasons).
  • Do not leave your GMB vacant after verifying it.

Keyword Strategy & HVAC SEO

Back in the day keyword optimization simply involved using a particular phrase three times for every 100 words. Unfortunately, this strategy created gobbity-gook messes that no one enjoyed reading. Nowadays, the Google Search algorithm does a much better job comprehending the meaning behind everyday speech. This allows the search giant to reward high quality content with the best rankings.

Keyword strategy plays a foundational role in SEO for HVAC company websites, but it also continues to slowly shift every year.

SEO conferences continue to speak what we already instinctively know: keyword diversity and natural writing produce the strongest results. That means incorporating synonyms and other phrases related to your primary keywords as your produce new content. Whether you’re re-writing a service page for the fifth time, or you’re constructing the latest guide for maintaining a home AC unit, keyword diversity makes for better reading and ranking.

Potential New Keywords From a Term Search
These Related Search Terms Add More Keyword Listings for Your Website.

If you aren’t sure which phrases best match keyword, try searching it in Google and looking at the blue phrases at the very bottom of the page. You can also try out helpful keyword tools, such as Answer the Public.

Looking for Stronger Search Results?

At HVAC Webmasters, we specialize in creating search-optimized websites for higher rankings and better leads. If you’ve been stuck with expensive lead channels or simply aren’t seeing the local search results you want, our team is here to help! Call (800) 353-3409 and get a free consultation for your HVAC SEO.

How HVAC Contractors Can Implement E-A-T (Expertise, Authority, Trustworthiness)

HVAC E-A-T Blog Banner

If you are a contractor, it goes without saying that it is a crowded industry. There is a litany of options for consumers to choose from and it can be difficult to set your business apart from the rest. You can have the best product and service in the world, but if the general public doesn’t know how to find you, none of that will matter much.

Part of making yourself stand out is to know how to properly use Google’s optimized search tools. Google quickly figured out that links and content, the building blocks of its ranking algorithm, were being exploited and have focused on both identifying as well as incentivizing those sites that provide contextual and beneficial information to the audiences they reach. They have actually made all efforts to reward those brands that are built with SEO by chasing the users instead of simply chasing an algorithm.

Google, in order to provide the kind of highly relevant and high-quality searches that they feel their users deserve, has honed in on a paradigm that is known as EAT: Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness. They use this paradigm to assess the overall accuracy and usefulness of the content that is on every webpage that they crawl.

EAT tips

How to build authority in the quickest way possible

While there is no single shortcut or path when it comes to building your authority as well as trust in SEO, there are certainly helpful factors. Make sure that whatever content you have is unique and interesting, that it is shareable, that it contains the right keywords, and that it highlights the opinions that the leaders of your industry share.

Once you have established that base, you can try and promote all of your content through social media. If you mention some of the people that you have quoted, that can have a ripple effect of sorts. Whatever you post, keep your audience in mind.

Another factor is your reviews. Reviews play a huge part in SEO rankings these days and they help to establish that trust and authority that your customers are after. Google reviews are actually a part of their SEO ranking algorithm. Whenever possible, request that your customers leave online reviews for your business, especially through sources like Google My Business.

The thing to keep in mind is that this all does not happen overnight. It takes a complex mix of content marketing, link building, targeting mobile devices, guest blogging, social media marketing, and personalization among other things. The most important thing that you can do is to maintain frequency and quality with your content. Whatever your brand message is, it needs to be consistent across all digital platforms, especially if you are looking to establish your brand as one to be reckoned with when it comes to Google.

How to use your website to build authority and trust

In any guide that you read about growing your small business, you will see a number of comments about how important your website is. And it is. This is because potential customers will oftentimes go straight to your website to get an inclination as to what your company is all about. If your company is unprofessional looking or doesn’t provide the information that they need, they likely won’t come back.

You can also use your website to build trust and authority among those who visit your website with any level of frequency. The three pages where you can really make the most impact are on your home page (since it’s the first thing customers will see), your about page (which many people check to get a better feel for what the company in question is all about), and the products/services page (as customers will visit your website to inquire about specific items or services.

You might also want to create a separate page that houses your testimonials and customer reviews. Make it as easy as possible for prospective customers to find all the glowing things former customers have said about you. This will only serve to help your business in the long run.

The content for these pages should be of the highest quality and relate to your specific industry. This is the biggest key to developing trust and authority among your customers. This also depends on your website, the audience you are targeting, and your industry, but these are all things that can be adapted.

One thing to keep in mind with these pages is to make it so that they don’t sound too much like sales pitches. You want to stay on target addressing your users’ needs, not selling them on everything under the sun. Customers won’t appreciate sales pitches and will flee from your site if they feel like they’re being sold.

What are some of the determining factors of EAT in the eyes of Google?

While there is nothing solid and Google won’t come out and say what is most important when determining the factors of EAT, it is widely agreed that quality content is the biggest factor that influences your page quality rating. While quality is not a subjective factor, it can be determined by how many benefits it offers to your users.  If your page doesn’t provide any content of value to your customers and simply acts as a sales pitch, Google will absolutely ignore it.

Whatever content you are providing, you need to provide an authoritative take to it so that your customers trust in what you are saying. Make sure that it relates to your industry and that it benefits your customers, otherwise it will be seen as useless in the eyes of Google.

Other things that can sway your authority are things like mentions from other businesses or users, interviews, testimonials, links from authorities or hubs, social shares, notable citations, associations with respected entities, and any kind of achievements.

Links also still very much matter when it comes to deciding authority. PageRank, which is Google’s algorithm that was built on the strength of links, so links remain one of the biggest factors that might affect a page ranking.

iimportance of EAT

Building authority for local businesses

If you are a localized business that serves a designated geographical area, using all of the aforementioned things is obviously important but the key is to be authoritative in your geographical area. There are a number of different things that small, local businesses can do to build their authority and trust in their area.

Try to get involved in guest blogging or any podcasts that may cater to your area. Receiving awards is a great way to show your authority, develop trust, and boost your overall rankings. The key, again, is through your website and making sure that you are implementing marketing strategies that pay attention to the real world.

Another important item to consider is citations from other business directories as well as prominent sites in the region. This helps build authority for local businesses. Make sure that you track your citations and provide your phone number, name, and address consistently across all of those listings.

While focusing on Google My Business is certainly a great place to start, don’t make that your sole focus. Go to any platform where you can find additional customers and where they can actually find you. Make sure that you reply to all reviews on all platforms and do so in a professional manner. You should also scour any local Facebook Groups or places where you can join in on the conversation.

How do you identify good brand authority?

You might know this already, but the most recognizable brands are the ones that have the most authority and trust among customers. Make sure that you protect your online reputation at any possible cost. How you are perceived by the community can make or break your business in no time

There are a number of online metrics that will give you a better indication as to where your site stands in terms of authority in SEO. Not only that, your social media presence and backlink profile will help add to those trust factors that influence your overall online brand identity; you should use these metrics to build upon.

Ultimately, the key to building the EAT paradigm is to start with quality content. Offer value and information to your audience and they will find themselves trusting in your brand more often.  Make sure that you are branding everything that you do online so that it can link back to you.

In order to build your list of potential customers, they have to have trust in you and the services that you provide. If they don’t, they will look until they find a business that can. Make sure that the content you are providing is relative to the wants and needs of customers in that sect and make sure that everything you do is informative to your customer base. This is what will build their trust in you and, ultimately, help your overall SEO ranking and make you more searchable.

HVAC SEO Strategies for 2020 (Podcast)

What does the online marketing landscape look like as we advance towards 2020? What sort of HVAC SEO strategies can your company use to climb the ranks even higher this year? Nolen and Jason of HVAC Webmasters discuss some helpful tips to increase local search visibility and earn more leads. So if you’ve struggled to make page 1 rankings in Google Search, be sure to listen in.

Helpful Points for HVAC Companies:

  • Original content is still essential, but it’s a baseline now.
  • Collecting reviews is more vital than ever.
  • Make sure your Google My Business account remains active.

A New Baseline for Marketing

Original content is a concept businesses live and die by and a practice that’s become the norm for those looking to perform well in local search. While everyone can and should pursue original content that provides real value for consumers in their target market, it is more of a requirement than a bonus.

In other words, quality content is the new baseline.

To win front page rankings and develop a consistent pool of website traffic, roofing contractors have to go above and beyond that baseline. Thankfully, there are plenty of tools at your disposal to rise above the competition and let your brand stand out. Some of them are free tools from Google, while others may require a little investment from your company.

Google My Business Activity

It’s one of the most accessible resources, yet many businesses fail to claim their free Google My Business (GMB) account. If you haven’t claimed your business listing, you’re liking missing out on hundreds of potential customer impressions. Fill out as many boxes as possible, as Google will be more likely to present your business during a local consumer search.

GMB accounts come with several fun tools to showcase your company. The portal allows businesses to upload original company photos, videos, and infographics. You can also create updates and promotions that show up whenever someone searches for your company name. So it takes only a few minutes to upload a photo, write some catchy insights about standard heating and cooling challenges, then send out the post for viewing in local search!

Be sure to post regularly, as GMB posts disappear a week after crafting them. You can view historic Google posts from your archives, but Google only shows recent releases in search engine results pages (SERPs).

Showing Off Office Life for SEO Strategies
Posts are Also a Great Means of Showing Internal Company Life.

You can upload images to serve as your company cover and exterior office shots. Just be careful that the photos you post represent your company well. Unfortunately, there’s currently no way to ensure that your favorite photos are the ones showing up in local SERPs.

Review Management and Collection

Apart from your company website and content optimization strategy, nothing impacts local search like customer reviews. As such, all great SEO strategies work to incorporate a steady influx of client feedback. For example, Google used to favor reviews from its own portal (Google Reviews), but now it prefers them from various sources.

You’ll notice that many top industry performers work hard to gather reviews from their customers consistently. As a result, you’ll find these companies standing out in local service packs, earning premium leads for some of the most popular services. As you can see, even a little effort goes a long way when it comes to reviews.

Where should you ask for reviews?

  • Google Reviews
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Better Business Bureau
  • Yelp
  • Angie’s List
  • Your Website
Most SEO Strategies Incorporate Client Reviews
Reviews, in Google and Your Website, Create Trust With Consumers.

Of course, the easiest way to collect client feedback is to ask for it. Then, send your customers (especially the happy ones) a short invitation via text or email. It doesn’t have to be complicated; provide the link(s), so they can do it quickly.

Showcasing Reviews on Your Website

For the most significant impact, incorporate those reviews into the company website. You’ll likely need a professional to do this for you, but watch out! Most HVAC SEO companies aren’t very good at infusing these reviews into the site effectively. Our team at HVAC Webmasters took years to develop our tool (DataPins) to do so, but the impact on our clients’ local search results is nothing short of incredible.

Team Up With HVAC Webmasters.

If your business sometimes struggles to earn that oh-so-important front-page listing, our team would love to talk with you! At HVAC Webmasters, we enable HVAC companies around the country to achieve higher ranks, better traffic, and outstanding leads. 

Buying Leads Can Be a Pitfall for HVAC Companies (Podcast)

Buying a lead is not the worst idea for an HVAC contractor. After all, leads drive your business. Unfortunately, in our experience, when HVAC contractors do buy leads, the leads are expensive, and the contractor is unhappy. But the issue with purchasing HVAC leads expands even further beyond the negativity surrounding them. Buying leads can be a pitfall for your company and might discourage you from investing in marketing resources that increase your brand visibility and generate sales sustainably.

Finding a Lead Source for HVAC Companies

If you are a heating & cooling contractor, who struggles to find a solid lead source, you aren’t alone. Although buying leads as a concept is not foolish since every business’s goal is to profit, the practice presents challenges. Low-quality distributors who offer “shared” leads rather than exclusives are the most common problem. But even with so-called exclusive prospects, HVAC companies are climbing uphill to secure the sale.

Getting More Leads

Despite well-documented disgust with lead sources many contractors continue to buy them. Why? Because at the end of the day they still want more leads. Securing a sale brings money to their business and becomes a cyclical process. The profit is just enough to seem like it’s worth it for the heating & cooling business. Getting more leads can be a challenge especially with sources offering shared leads. Worse yet, it often distracts contractors from other forms of marketing, like SEO, that will actually end up producing more sales over the long run.

Investing in Your HVAC Company

When you purchase a lead from a 3rd party platform, their brand benefits most. Next time the customer needs HVAC services, they will probably go back to the source instead of your HVAC company. Your goal should shift towards investing in your brand and growing the allegiance of consumers. This way, you will generate sustainable business for your company and not shell out hard-earned funds to 3rd parties.

Custom Websites

The first thing you’ll need is a custom website with schema markup. A website can be the central hub of your HVAC company and create a foundation for sales. Unfortunately, today, most websites use templates, either from a WordPress theme market or from DIY website builders like Wix, Weebly, and Squarespace. While they have their advantages, of course, they don’t have the type of long-term potential that custom sites do. As a result, they limit ROI in terms of organic optimization and the long-term control of your brand, which we want to avoid.

Google My Business

Nobody will take your company seriously without a Google My Business listing. You might ask how GMB is different from a 3rd party lead platform. First, you are not investing money. Google My Business listings are free and allow you to rank in the Local Map 3-Pack. Second, you can link your website URL to your GMB listing so that your web property becomes associated with the Google listing as well as the Google Reviews. All of this is free of charge for companies.

Search Engine Optimization

The best leads come from organic clicks on Google. For example, ranking for terms like “ac repair” and similar phrases can drive searchers to your website or Google My Business Listing. In either case, with websites optimized for conversions, you can earn most of your profit organically. SEO is the best long-term strategy for online marketing since it is an investment in yourself and becomes a sustainable profit generator for years and decades to come. 

A Full-Scale Approach

A single strategy may not always work out, but the combination of several techniques helps HVAC companies earn sales online. Investing your marketing dollars in leads only or ads only discourages long-term growth. You can still buy HVAC leads, but only if you optimize your brand at the same time. Using SEO, you can reap the long-term rewards of a complete and robust web presence. Try partnering with a full digital marketing agency like HVAC Webmasters, the top-rated agency in 2021.