Setting your expectations for the future, finding a fruitful city to operate in, and optimizing all of your online efforts all represent significant challenges for a roofing contractor. With such a heavily fluctuating market, it’s easy to panic when your service area hasn’t seen a business-driving storm in many years. In our latest podcast from the Roofing Webmasters, Nolen and Jason discuss how to strategize for the future, whether or not there’s a storm on the horizon! If you’ve struggled with earning the long-term growth your roofing company craves, be sure to listen in.
Key Points in Our Podcast
- Most roofing contractors (and family members) don’t know how to optimize.
- Changing locations dramatically affects SEO results.
- There are multiple ways to earn business during after major storms.
- Don’t let peak storm years affect your expectations for non-storm years.
Roofing SEO and Strategic Planning
There’s a very small segment of roofing professionals that can effectively chase after hail storms and hurricanes and turn them into profit. While every eager contractor certainly longs for the year they earn 750 roofing clients a single storm year, that’s simply not the norm for most businesses. For the vast majority of roofers, it simply makes more sense to put down roots and work for steady growth. Not only is it more pleasant for your family and staff, it’s also better for your roofing SEO.
How Location Shifting Affects Online Performance
Believe it or not, Google works extremely hard to develop lists of the most dependable industry professionals within a geographical area. In previous discussions, we’ve mentioned the E-A-T factors (expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness) that the search engine hunts for to prove a company deserves a place in the top rankings. What kind of businesses capture these coveted front page listings?
Common Factors Among Top Ranked Companies
- They earn high reviews from a variety of platforms.
- They optimize their websites, PPC, and social for Google.
- They continually feed content back into their website.
- They’ve filled out all applicable business listings.
- They stay in place and gradually expand.
All of the factors listed above drive traffic towards your roofing company’s website. The last two likely affect your results the most. Nothing impacts local search rankings more than a change in location. Even changing addresses within the same city can change your rankings, for better or for worse. Google’s search algorithm gets very picky when it comes to changes in address. Even a minor difference in how you abbreviate the same address between multiple online listings may lower your chances of seeing front page listings.
So don’t go changing your address without doing significant research prior!
Below, you’ll find a few critical rules of thumb when in comes to changing location and how changes affect your roofing SEO. If you make any of these mistakes, it’s not the end of the world. However, you will likely need to partner with an experienced online marketing professional to get your team back on track for search.
Mistake #1: Switching Cities & Expecting Immediate Results
It takes roofing contractors years to develop an established reputation in a city. Google’s vetting process is a never-ending cycle of evaluation and re-evaluation. That’s why it’s so frustrating to see a successful business jump ship and move to a new city, then expect the same level of success from the get-go.
Any business that moves to a different location, especially out of state, can anticipate the old challenge of earning credibility in their near market. In our podcast, Jason and Nolen speak of a former client who opened up two new locations within the same state and couldn’t understand why they didn’t see immediate results. The situation was made all the more heated when the prolific storm damage market dried up in their original location.
Our Lesson: SEO results take time to grow in each new location.
Mistake #2: Setting Up Virtual Offices With Friends/Families
Just don’t do it. Google’s grace for virtual offices seems to have run out for the time being. It may seem like a lucrative method to expand the reach of your service area, but business listings can get suspended (and delisted from search results) for this sort of behavior. In reality, you’ll be shooting your business in the foot and slowing down lead generation.
Our Lesson: If you need to expand, do it the natural way. Create new physical locations for your company and let your friends and family avoid the hassle.
Mistake #3: Moving Business Out of Your Home Too Early
Like many popular bands, roofing contractors typically start out of a garage. You’ve probably used your home address for Google My Business and other listings. That’s perfectly fine! Our word of caution applies to businesses that are looking to take on a second location.
When you take the plunge and open up an official company office, your home address can no longer serve as a company location. One good office deserves another, so Google seems to believe. Your rankings could suffer if you ignore this crucial rule.
Our Lesson: If you can’t afford to move business completely out of the house, don’t open up that new office just yet. If you’re ready to move however, you’ll need to either close your home (as a company location) or open up a second office.
How Many Lead Calls is Normal?
Before finishing our discussion, we need to touch on a topic that many roofing contractors seem to struggle with: lead volume. Your average lead generation rate depends on multiple factors, such as:
- Local climate and storm frequency
- Service area populations
- Marketing practices
- Management & staff capabilities
- Category of roofing
Some commercial roofers feel happy with just three projects a month, considering their larger scope and higher value. Residential companies may need a minimum of 8 to 12 to earn their target monthly revenue. While your market may produce a higher volume of leads, it’s crucial to establish a baseline average.
Why Storm Seasons Make for Poor Baselines
Suppose a business operates near the Florida coast, or a Texas coastal city like Corpus Christi. In one average year, the company might see an average of 200 projects completed. After a particularly destructive hurricane season however, the yearly amount may rise to three times that many projects. While that may provide opportunities to expand the business (or buy that dream home), owners need to remember that business eventually returns to the baseline. Forgetting that could lead to undue financial stress and overstaffing.
Contact the Roofing Webmasters!
At the Roofing Webmasters, we support numerous roofing contractors across the nation. Whether you depend on storm seasons or normal wear and tear for the bulk of your projects, our team can help you optimize your online presence to earn stronger results from Google Search. Clients dominate their local search rankings, enjoying better traffic and faster lead generation!
Learn more about our business and get a free, professional consultation when you call us at (800) 353-5758.
SEO for Roofers: Additional Resources