Monthly billing helps businesses save valuable time and effort, not to mention thousands of dollars! That’s because this type of accounting pushes your local search marketing team much harder to produce results. Jason and Nolen talk about the roofing industry, search marketing, and some glaring red flags to look out for as your reassess your online investments.
Key Lessons for Roofing Professionals
- Transparent pricing and reporting is key in accountable PPC advertising.
- Flat fee, lump sum pricing can trap you in a low-performance search marketing plan.
- More expensive doesn’t always mean better in PPC, or in SEO.
Winners and Losers (in Search)
In local search marketing, there are clear winners and losers. Most people gauge success by rank position, whether or not their business makes the front page of a Google Search Engine Results Page (SERP). The more experienced marketing professionals know that their clients (and their agency, by extension) truly win when those keyword rankings turn into site visits and roofing leads. That’s what separates the search marketing champions from the rest of the industry.
Winners continually strive to produce higher volume, higher quality, and lower cost leads.
Losers look for surface level results, the kind that makes them look good on a monthly report. A lot of effort goes into producing just enough results to maintain their clients, but not a lot into creating long-term success. That’s the unhappy truth for many roofing companies and their marketing agencies.
So what kind of qualities can a roofing professional look for as they hunt for a winning team?
Marketing Quality #1: Expertise
A little obvious, right? Unfortunately, most contractors don’t understand what expertise looks like in the search marketing industry. After all, they (probably) didn’t go to school for digital marketing and advertising! That’s why knowing the key signs of real expertise is so crucial.
Signs of a Winning Search Marketing Team
- Excellent Keyword Rankings (For Their Company)
- Great Keyword Rankings (For Their Clients)
- Impeccable Communication Skills
- Clear, Measurable Service Deliverables
- Basic Understanding of Your Industry
Keyword rankings serve as a resume for companies that work in local search marketing. If they enjoy page one rankings for their primary industry keywords (such as “roofing seo” or “seo for roofing”), that’s a good sign! Should their clients enjoy excellent keyword rankings in organic search, that’s even better.
Your marketing company should know their craft well enough that they can effectively explain it to anyone in your staff. Winning search marketers also know how to communicate their services and deliverables, so that you can accurately set your expectations for the coming months. Of course, all that expertise is specifically adapted to help your business, which in turn demands a basic understanding of the roofing industry. If they can’t understand the lead development cycle for a homeowner or commercial organization looking for roofing services, then how can they market for those services?
Marketing Quality #2: Accountability
Have you ever received a shady service bill? It’s not a pleasant feeling, especially when you see fees and charges that you didn’t anticipate. When there’s little to keep a service provider accountable, these sort of shady practices can creep up in any industry. As a relatively new sector however, digital marketing still lacks many of the safety mechanisms that consumers rely on to ensure quality service.
Sly businesses often use sketchy reporting and costing measures to skim money out of your marketing budget without investing it in your local SEO or PPC campaigns. This practice is particularly common among lump-sum, flat fee service packages where money can easily be distributed wherever the agency desires. At the Roofing Webmasters, we’ve heard this story a lot more often than we’d like.
How can you make sure that your search marketing team is held accountable?
- Examine their reporting process ahead of time.
- Make sure their PPC spend is provided directly through Google (or Facebook, etc.).
- Pay month to month, instead of an annual or long-term contract.
- Keep your PPC and SEO services charged separately.
- Talk with their current clients and ask about the process for implementing changes.
Reporting is a fickle thing. On one hand, industry giants like Google make it their goal to provide thorough, detailed accounts of your spending and results. On the other hand, agency reporting and even third party services have a tendency to blur where your money is going. That’s why it’s always prudent to arrange your PPC billing to go directly through your advertising platforms (Google, Facebook, etc.). This prevents marketing agencies from upcharging on ad costs per click.
Understand your search marketing company’s process for implementing website changes (for SEO) and ad campaign updates (for PPC). If you discover it’s almost impossible to receive updates once your services go live, then it’s wiser to look for another provider. Consider talking with a handful of your prospective marketing agency and see what they have to say about their service.
Marketing Quality #3: Adaptive
When it comes to local search marketing, a successful business must know how to adapt to industry changes. Google regularly shakes up their algorithm so that one type of content buoys to the top, while another sinks to the back pages of search results. For instance, how-to guides and Q&A-styled articles have a tendency to rank very well for consumer searches.
Potential Challenges to Overcome in Local Search
- Rank drops
- Traffic slumps
- Surges in poor quality leads
- Technical errors
- Industry shifts
When your website traffic takes a dip for a month, how does your local search marketing team respond? There are many potential reasons for the lower volume. If your company quickly works to understand the problem and present a solution, you know you have a winner on your hand. On the flip side, a sluggish (or nonexistent) response could indicate your company simply doesn’t care.
Ready for Results?
Local search marketing takes time and effort, but an experienced and dedicated team makes all the difference! If you’ve struggled to make headway with your current agency, our team at Roofing Webmasters would love to talk with you. We offer free consultations for anyone looking to understand their current search marketing performance.
Speak with an expert today at (800) 353-5758!