Tag Archives: Local SEO

COVID-19: The Death of Door Knocking

Covid-19 has taken many things away from our society. However, it’s also given us something important: perspective. We now know just how quickly our daily life, routine, and business can change.

The roofing industry was a relatively lucky one. Even during the crisis, homeowners continued to require roof repairs, installations, and replacements. What Covid-19 did change was the marketing options roofers had to work with. The practice of door knocking, in particular, took a big hit, forcing countless roofing professionals to explore other opportunities for sharing their brand.

Today, we’ll explore the death (or at least the induced coma) of door knocking and what that means for your roofing business. We’ll also dig into your other options for marketing your company in the meantime. Listen in to our latest podcast and take notes as we discuss the changing landscape of the industry, and how your business can continue to thrive.

Takeaways for Enterprising Roofers

  • Even before the crisis, door knocking effectiveness had waned.
  • Today’s newest generations don’t answer the door for many people.
  • Covid-19 is an opportunity to reevaluate your marketing strategy.
  • Local SEO offers more lucrative gains than it did a few years ago.

Is Door Knocking Effective Now?

In the throws of Covid-19, door knocking has come grinding to a halt. Put simply, door knocking isn’t even an option right now. If you happen to come back and read this article in the future after the crisis has resolved itself, odds are door knocking still hasn’t recovered to its former glory.

It’s not your fault. Much of society has shifted away from answering the door bell anyway.

Even prior to the Covid-19 crisis, the death of door knocking seemed to draw ever closer and closer as younger generations took on the mantle of home ownership. The practice may never fully pass away, but its waning effectiveness means that your roofing company will likely need to focus in another direction for your marketing efforts.

What are My Marketing Options?

We could pour over the dozens of advertising options available on the market right now, but that would take too much time. Right now, your number one goal should be putting your brand in front of the people who are most likely to need your services. This begs a couple questions:

  • Where do you need to put your brand so that those people see it?
  • How do you focus specifically on people in your service area?

More than ever, homeowners (and commercial prospects) are looking online for their day to day needs. That includes big budget purchases like roof replacements too. So if you want to get your brand in front of the right eyes, that’s going to happen on a digital landscape.

Connecting with people in your specific service area is going to force you to think locally. This limits false leads from outside your community and maximizes your chances of converting to sales. No more driving an hour from your office just to perform shingle repairs (unless that’s something you really like doing).

Now that you’ve established online marketing offers the best brand exposure and you know locally-targeted marketing offers the best sales potential, that leads us to our final question. What digital marketing solution targets the greatest number of people within your service area?

The answer is Local SEO.

How Local SEO Works Now

If you want to develop a consistent stream of roofing leads, the most practical method to do so is local search engine optimization (local SEO). That means getting your company website to the top of Google Search results specifically for the people in your community.

Now you might say “But our company is already on Google. We have a website.” Unless you are literally the only roofing company within a 30 mile radius, simply having a website isn’t going to get you the sales you crave. With local SEO however, your website will start to deliver actual (qualified) leads for your business.

As your rankings improve on Google, you’ll naturally start to receive more calls from homeowners and/or commercial prospects in your community. More calls means more lead potential for your company.

How to Improve Local SEO Rankings

While Google uses hundreds of signals to determine ranking potential, there are a handful of areas that impact your local search rank the most.

These include:

  • Roofing Website Design
  • Google My Business Listing Optimization
  • Local Citation Creation
  • Domain Naming
  • Content Creation (Writing, Pictures, Etc.)

Thanks to industry changes over the last few years – Google’s Local Search Update of November 2019 was especially impactful – it’s easier than ever before for roofing companies to make large gains in local rankings. So don’t let unfamiliarity or inexperience stop you from earning more revenue for your business. Even if your team doesn’t have the time or resources to pursue it, there are several amazing marketing teams out their with the skills to manage it for you.

Ultimately, local SEO provides the best marketing opportunities for your business because it allows you to make quality connections with people within your community. If you’ve traditionally relied on door knocking until now to grow your company, it’s not too late to get started online. Of course, our team at Roofing Webmasters is always here to help!

Posted: | Updated: May 11, 2022 | Categories: Podcast

How Check-ins Radically Boost Local SEO

When Google hunts for the best contractors to list for local consumers, the search engine collects all the evidence it finds. Sure, website service pages can claim a business provides impact resistant shingle installation, but how often is the company really performing that service? The best types of evidence are customer reviews and check-ins. The latter is what we’ll be talking about today.

Jobsite check-ins are woefully under-utilized in the contracting industries. Of course, there’s another way of looking at it. Any roofing contractors who consistently utilize the right check-in tools can earn serious lead generation improvements through local SEO! Find out more about check-ins in our latest podcast with Amberlynn and Madison from Roofing Webmasters.

Key Lessons for Roofing Contractors

  • Building up a collection of check-ins each month drives higher local SEO ranks.
  • Consistency is key. Only your team can perform these check-ins.
  • This type of activity is rare, meaning businesses can still reap tremendous rewards.

How Do Jobsite Check-ins Work?

Have you ever seen a Google Map of your city? Hundreds of businesses line the streets, and all corners swell with thriving residential communities. What you do not see is all the places your roofing company has provided service throughout the city. Google doesn’t see it either, no matter how many times you’ve written about it in your website.

Check-ins change that. When you whip out your phone and perform one, you provide Google with some invaluable data:

  • Your location,
  • The services you just finished providing, and
  • The time.

Why Do Check-ins Matter?

While other companies are busy claiming to provide (for example) metal roofing installation in Atlanta, you’ve just shown Google very real evidence of your activity. That’s one small pin on the Google Map, at first. Scale this up to hundreds of pins over the course of a year, and you’ve given Google a very real reason to rank your business first in local search results.

All your competitors have roofing websites. Most of your competitors know to collect reviews. Very few roofing companies in your area are performing check-ins. That means there’s a clear opportunity to get ahead of other brands and generate some exclusive roofing leads.

Thanks to the Local Search Update of last year, it’s now possible for young (or even brand new) businesses to win placements in local map packs if they optimize well. We’ve seen previously unknown brands earn top spots within a matter of months after starting up a regular check-in program. The results are real!

Who Can Use Check-ins?

Employees of any business can use check-ins once they have been granted a user login. At the end of each job, they take a picture of your installation (roof replacement, roof coating, etc.) and fill out the project information. Finally, you select “check-in” and your job is done for that particular location.

The check-in is populated to your company website in the necessary context, creating an SEO advantage and also validating your business as credible. This kind of content is premium in Google’s eyes and is not something that can be copied or duplicated by a competitor website because of its uniqueness.

Maximizing Your Check-in Capabilities

The two things that make or break check-ins are frequency and accuracy. Accurate check-ins establish credibility with your business and serve as premium SEO content. Frequent check-ins prove your business is doing regular jobs and provides an indication that you are a popular service. Furthermore, you are likely to earn more reviews, the more check-ins you publish on your website.

Since many of your competitors lack check-in functionality, accumulating as many as possible in the near-term should give you a major head start several years down the road. Once other roofers start to catch-on, they will be significantly behind the curve that you created.

Another aspect of check-ins that should be maximized is image optimization. If you snap an original photo on the job-site it is going to be worth far more from an SEO standpoint, than a non-visual check-in, or worse: a stock photo check-in. The whole idea is to verify your legitimacy as a roofer, and nothing confirms that more than a picture of the actual job.

Conclusion on Check-ins

SEO can seem like a rat race in many industries. But roofers must ask themselves about the most efficient way to grow their brand online. By performing check-ins at job sites, you are differentiation yourself from other roofing websites. Not only can you improve local SEO on GMB and the Local 3 Pack but you can also increase conversion-rates and validate your presence in service areas that are outside your office or home zip code.

Nobody knows for sure where SEO will be in 5 years, but the best estimate projects that local businesses will be judged by social proof and confirmed job site check-ins. Imagine being #1 on GMB rankings and being able to serve customers throughout all nearby service areas. This is what online roofing marketing may look like in the coming years.

Posted: | Updated: Apr 28, 2020 | Categories: Podcast

How Do Google Reviews Work?

Google Reviews drive business for thousands of service companies. While only one of many ranking factors, client reviews have been the deciding factors for homeowners for decades. It’s no wonder that Google also prizes this feedback as they consider which websites to rank highest.

While the COVID-19 crisis has temporarily halted the creation of new ones, knowing how to collect and manage these reviews will be essential for your company’s future. In this handy guide, we dig into the easiest ways to protect your brand reputation, expand your collection of reviews, and respond to customer complaints. Grab a pen, paper, and take notes.

Keep hanging in there!

Important Lessons For Roofing Professionals

  • Google Reviews don’t happen by themselves. You have to actively ask for them!
  • The best defense is a good offense. Increase your positive reviews to dwarf negative ones.
  • Learn how to respond effectively to complaints. Future clients will be very impressed!
  • Fake reviews can cause lost trust, GMB listing cancellations, and even business failure.

How Google Reviews Work

Google Reviews are directly connected to your Google My Business (GMB) account. To leave a review, clients perform a direct search of your brand name, locate the knowledge graph on the side of search results – this assumes you have a GMB account, and you definitely should! and click on your reviews. From there, they submit a star rating for your service, and leave a message about their experience. This helps other consumers with similar heating and cooling needs create an clearer picture of your company.

Why Google Reviews Matter for SEO

Google Reviews garner more visibility than any other platform around. That’s because they’re featured prominently on your Google My Business profile. They’ll also appear on your Google Maps listings, and any local map packs your company wins in search. While Facebook Recommendations and other feedback platforms certainly offer their own unique user bases, people rely on Google Reviews more than any of these.

That means stakes are high when it comes to this very public feedback tool.

On a positive note, happy client reviews prove to both Google and consumers that your business is worth the investment. Reviews show relevant activity, which Google relies on to generate the best Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) possible. If you aren’t familiar with the layout of SERPs, make sure you check out our video on search marketing, which offers key ranking factors for each section.

Prospective clients heavily depend on reviews when making their decision to invest or look elsewhere. The more recent and relevant your feedback, the more confident they’ll feel about choosing your heating and cooling services. Be sure to collect them as consistently as possible. Speaking of which…

How to Collect Reviews

Whether your company uses sophisticated software or old fashioned approach, collecting reviews boils down to one basic task: asking for them. If American consumers have proven anything, it’s that they have a very short term attention span. You need to ask your customers for their review as quickly as possible upon finishing any project. The longer you wait to request that review, the more goodwill is lost to forgetfulness.

A quick note: Google Reviews should be as natural and unfiltered as possible. You may ask clients to provide information about the services you provided and (perhaps) the project leader, but you shouldn’t ask for anything beyond that. Never offer to incentivise or compensate someone for a review. That includes discounts, gift cards, or direct payments to the clients involved. We’ll talk more about this later.

A Roofing Company Addresses a Negative Google Review
This Experienced Roofing Company Kindly Responds to Negative Google Reviews. (Names Obscured)

How to Handle Negativity

It’s so easy to take negative Google Reviews personally. After all, business depends heavily on maintaining a productive, positive reputation. Instead of immediately hopping on your GMB account, busting out your best writing, and making your case about how wrong their complaint is, pause. If you’re feeling heated, walk away from the issue for a few minutes.

You’ll need a cool head for tackling the problem. Here’s how to address negative reviews:

How to Respond to Negative Reviews

Analyze

Analyze the Problem

Try to figure out what happened. Was there an issue in communication with the client? Did a sub make a mistake on a portion of the project? Even if there was no direct error on your team’s side, there may still be an opportunity to improve your services. So keep an open mind.

Be sure to put yourself in the client’s shoes too! So many complaints are the product of misunderstood expectations or lack of communication. Try to understand what that client is going through before you try to provide a solution.

Reply

Reply Directly to the Review, Then Take Things Offline

Don’t rush this step! Write a courteous, sympathetic response to the complaint. Keep in mind, it’s okay to apologize even if you haven’t done anything wrong. After all, you want all your customers to feel satisfied with your services. Offer to hear more of the client’s problem, but take the matter offline. You don’t need to continue the conversation in Google Reviews for everyone to see!

Ask the client to call or email you with a description of what went wrong. If the situation warrants it, consider providing free touch ups, a discount, or another solution. Remember, fixing the problem in a timely manner should be the primary concern. You need to get this step right!

Ask

Ask Them to Change Their Review

Once you feel confident the client has been satisfied, it’s time to move on to the final step. Remind the client how important their review is to your business. Politely ask if they would be comfortable with updating their review to a higher rating, or removing it completely. Most customers will be more than happy to update their original review. You may even get some free brand recognition from it!

After that, simply move on. Continue collecting Google Reviews from all your happy clients. Just ask immediately after you finish their project, or within the next few days at least. Enthusiasm fades over time, and even the happiest clients can be forgetful.

How to Treat Fake Reviews

Treat them like the plague. Avoid fake reviews at all costs, as they’ve been the death of businesses. Fake reviews destroy trust with clients. Just as important, they destroy trust with Google, who may respond by suspending reviews. Google may even suspend your GMB account, which would severely limit your ability to appear in localized search.

Essentially, fake reviews could make your business disappear from search. We’ve seen one business lose millions in annual revenue because of review snafus. That’s a risk you cannot afford to take. When it comes to reviews…

  • Never pay for someone to provide a review.
  • Never ask a non-client to provide a review.
  • Never create your own reviews.
  • Never create fake reviews on competitors accounts to hurt them.
  • Never offer incentives for reviews.
  • Just ask for them after each project.

In Summary

Google Reviews create trust and connection with prospective clients. They also serve as a key ranking factor for local search, where the majority of online leads come from these days. Collecting them matters. So be sure to consistently ask clients for them, and you’ll notice stronger brand growth as a result.

Want help collecting those reviews and supercharging them for search? Try out our BrandREVU software, which comes with all of our custom designed websites. We’ve helped brand new businesses earn local map pack rankings in a matter of months, and we’d love to help you too! Call the Roofing Webmasters at (800) 353-5758 for more details.

Additional Resources From Roofing Webmasters

Related Podcasts and Articles
Local SEO Updates for Roofers (Podcast)
– Survey Says: Roofers Need Reviews to Excel in 2020 (Research)
– Roofing SEO Conference 2020 (Podcast)
Savage Exteriors Inc. (Case Study)

Related Services
– Online Reviews and Reputation Management for Roofers
Buy Roofing Leads

Posted: | Updated: Mar 24, 2020 | Categories: Podcast

How I Got Started in SEO | Roofing SEO Podcast

When no one offers a solution to your problem, sometimes you have to become the answer! Through a strange adventure filled with twists and turns, a long-time professional in the home security industry became the founder of an SEO and web design company. Nolen and Jason talk about the history of Roofing Webmasters!

Key Lessons for Roofing Professionals

  • Marketing is one of the most powerful factors contributing towards roofing company success.
  • Online marketing grows your digital channel of leads.
  • It takes dedication to make page one in search results, but the payoffs are huge.
  • In-house marketing is impractical (and expensive) for most small businesses.

A Brief History

Roofing Webmasters actually grew out of a completely different industry! Years ago, our founder Nolen Walker ran a home security business out of the Dallas / Fort Worth area. When telemarketing began to face strong federal backlash, he saw that online advertising and website optimization was the best way to further his business.

Unfortunately, few local marketing companies had any experience with SEO. Those that did charged a fortune for the most basic services. Their cockiness and patronizing drove Nolen away from their services very quickly!

Dissatisfaction Breeds Innovation

Nolen decided to take matters into his own hands by hiring an in-house team of marketers to promote the business. It was a very expensive proposition at the time, but it laid the groundwork of what would ultimately become Roofing Webmasters! Today, our team consists of over twenty content writers, web designers, programmers, video specialists, and SEO analysts.

We take on the online marketing challenges that are too time-consuming or costly for many roofing professionals to handle themselves.

Local Roofing Companies Show in the Google Map Pack
Earning a Spot in the Local Map Pack Can Mean Significant Increases in Site Traffic and Leads!

Crucial Lessons From Our Past

It took years of trial and error to find the well-balanced team of professionals we have today. We learned some crucial marketing lessons during that time.

  • The most successful businesses typically invest heavily in marketing.
  • Not all digital marketing firms have the necessary experience to manage SEO.
  • In-house is an expensive challenge that most businesses can’t manage.
  • Cockyness isn’t always a sign of expertise.
  • Clear communication with your marketing team is essential for long-term success.

These are lessons that we continually honor and share as we serve businesses across the country. They are why we strive so hard to provide timely, customized service for our clients. But enough about our business! Why does online marketing matter for your roofing company?

Why Online Marketing Matters

The concept behind marketing is a simple one to grasp: if you want people to know about your services, they have to be told. If you need prospects to choose your team over a competitor, you have to persuade them. Marketing accomplishes both of these goals, providing the necessary information and persuasion to draw clients into your revenue stream.

Marketing is simply part of doing business.

That truth extends into the realm of search marketing, which connects your company brand / website with local consumers on Google Search. With so many people relying on Google to find their essential services, it’s amazing how many professionals in the roofing industry still don’t quite grasp the significance of this type of marketing. Yet there are so many benefits to reap from it!

Expanded Revenue Potential

Think of all the consumers looking for roofing service online! Search marketing provides roofers with the essential visibility and authority needed to earn premium rankings. Scoring page one rankings could land you thousands of dollars in new revenues each year. The best part? Organic search results are so much cheaper than buying leads from a seller!

Impressions Stat on Search Console
Search Marketing Increases the Number of People Exposed to Your Brand.

Enhanced Branding Growth

How people perceive your business is just as important as what you have to say about it, if not more. With a high ranking website on Google Search, people automatically perceive your business as more authoritative and trustworthy. Enhance that site with professional web design, plentiful client reviews, and verified local citations (from Yelp, BBB, etc) for an even stronger online performance!

These are all activities your search marketing strategy should include.

Empowered Customer Service

Be where the customers are. That’s a crucial pillar of business and an even more essential facet of customer service. If your potential clients can’t even find your business online, then how can they find the relief they need? Search marketing enables your company to better communicate with the thousands of homeowners, through your website and other online assets.

Thousands of contractors claim superior skill and expertise, but few take the time to answer the key questions that consumers ask every day.

Keywords on a Roofing Company's Search Console
Search Marketing Also Reveals Which Keywords are Securing Clicks for Your Business.
Posted: | Updated: Feb 28, 2022 | Categories: Podcast

Local SEO Updates For Roofers | Roofing SEO Podcast

This is the tale of how a fresh-faced contractor with a brand new website managed to dethrone an industry champion…in two months. Learn how changes in local SEO (and some fancy software) made it all possible. If you’ve struggled to get ahead in search this year, be sure to listen in!

Local SEO Tips for Roofers

  • Local SEO for roofers begins with claiming and verifying your Google My Business listing.
  • Reviews provide strong evidence of your company activity and dependability.
  • Local search results can change much faster than regular organic listings.

Bob: the Local SEO Superstar

“Bob” recently broke into the plumbing industry for a town of over a quarter million people. As you may know, our team at the Webmasters supports businesses from all kinds of industries (though we specialize in roofing, plumbing, and HVAC). Here was Bob with a brand new business, a freshly minted website, and what seemed like a long road towards success ahead of him.

In just two months, Bob earned the top spot in a local map pack for one of the most competitive keywords in the industry! 

As a matter of fact, Bob secured top listings for several critical phrases in his local search area. You can bet he’s enjoying an outpouring of business in both his hometown and nearby cities. Wondering how Bob pulled off such an amazing transformation as a brand new business?

Two factors made Bob’s outrageous success possible: the recent Local Search Update from Google, and geotagging. We have great news for you! Your roofing company can take advantage of these opportunities too.

Here’s how…

A Local Map Pack For a Common Roofing Term
What if You Could Secure Highly Competitive Keywords in Local Search?

The Shift in Local SEO

While organic rankings depend predominantly on your company website, local SEO focuses on your Google My Business (GMB) account. The search engine analyzes your listing to determine your industry, related services, contact information, and operational details (such as business hours). Afterward, it examines your company website to find supporting evidence.

In other words, you need both an optimized GMB and an optimized website to win in local SEO.

With the latest major update to Google’s search algorithm – release was surprisingly quiet, by the way – local mapping results have shifted yet again. We’ve seen local contracting champions with hundreds of reviews dethroned by underdogs with less than ten! Bob, our new plumbing contractor, dethroned an established business that had likely held that spot for years. Your roofing company can do the same!

Shaking Things Up

The Big Difference

Once again, well-written and schema-coded content seems to be coming out on top with this Local Search Update. The map pack champions falling out of top local placements typically share one trait in common: they haven’t taken the time to optimize their websites. On the other hand, the businesses skyrocketing up in local search have carefully made keyword-rich service pages. All their pages are further enhanced with schema code.

If you’re a long-time brand in the roofing industry, this should scare you.

No more resting on being the oldest roofing company in town! Google continues to seek out the best user experience for consumers, and so should you. If your ranks are falling fast in local search, it’s time to reassess your website content and design.

Secret Weapon

Bob’s Secret Weapon

As we mentioned before, Bob’s success rested on two factors. We’ve covered how the Local Search Update paved the way for him to overthrow long-running industry champs in his community. Bob relied on another key tool for his wild success. His secret weapon: geotagging.

Geotagging is the process of adding GPS (or location) data to your digital assets. In Bob’s case, he used our Righteous Reviews software to geotag both his on-site check-ins and his client reviews. Most businesses can only claim they provide services in a particular area. In Bob’s case, Google started seeing little pins all across the community map in places Bob completed projects and homeowners had left glowing reviews. The search engine absolutely craves this data, because it provides concrete proof of a business’ service area!

All of Bob’s check-ins and geotagged reviews sync with the related service and city pages. This means the latest tag gets automatically uploaded to his pages, where Google notes the new activity and rewards the business with higher rankings. This is how a brand new business (with a two-month-old website) managed to take the top spot in local search for one of the most competitive keywords in his industry!

Posted: | Updated: Feb 28, 2022 | Categories: Podcast

Local Search Update For Roofers | Roofing SEO Podcast

The digital marketing world knows Google well for its secrecy, but not so much for subtlety. When the search engine giant drops a massive new update that potentially affects millions of businesses around the country, you can bet there will be a scramble to get up to speed on critical changes. Thankfully, our team at Roofing Webmasters has done all the Local SEO prep work already.

So let’s talk about the Local Search Update, and how your business can adjust its content strategy!

SEO Tips for Roofers

  • The latest local search update places even greater emphasis on diverse keyword strategy.
  • Make sure your website has enough service pages to rank for your desired terms!
  • Google My Business should be optimized and filled out as much as possible.
  • Schema coding dramatically helps your business stand out from others.

Immediate Impact of the Local Search Update

Let’s get started with the most important impact the local search update might have on your roofing business. If you’ve relied on a company name that incorporates an industry keyword (ex: Bill’s Roof Repair) to earn you leads, you may have already noticed a steep drop in local listings. That’s because Google’s neural mapping system has expanded the search engine’s ability to recognize synonyms of hot industry keywords.

Now Google can recognize all kinds of synonyms and phrases related to roofing and use them to assign ranks in local search results.

If your business has already developed a diverse collection of industry keywords on your roofing company website, you may notice an increase in rank. However, if you’ve relied on generic go-to phrases that everyone else does, you may drop in local search ranks. That could be especially damaging if you’ve held a long-term position at the top of a local map pack!

Your Strategy

How to Take Advantage of the Local Search Update

As always, Google connects search users with the highest quality content. Since they don’t have to rely on exact matching and the same old keywords, they will vigorously expand their ranking process to hunt for even better search results. There are a few ways you can take advantage of the local search update for your business:

How to Earn Stronger Ranking After the Local Search Update

  • Make sure your website has dedicated pages for each of your specific services.
  • Avoid spammy (repetitive) usage of keywords as you try to rank.
  • Write naturally, using synonyms and language a ninth grader could understand.
  • Infuse your pages with schema code, especially in headers and lists.
  • Continue releasing material (through content marketing) with new, relevant keywords.

Key Tools

What Tools Can You Use to Optimize?

If you haven’t taken the time to develop a broader keyword strategy, don’t worry. There’s always time to start optimizing your website. Look to helpful tools like SEMrush, Moz Keyword Explorer, Answer the Public, and Ubersuggest to search out new and exciting phrases!

Ideally, you’ll want to target mid to low-volume phrases with high user intent. That means the terms themselves clearly reveal what the consumer is looking for (such as installation service). Mixing these quality keywords in with more generic phrases makes your content pop in Google Search!

If you haven’t taken the time to update your Google My Business (GMB) account recently, it’s time to take another look! No other tools affect your local listings as much as your GMB, so regular checkups are essential. Continue adding photos of all your greatest jobs! You can also promote limited-time offers through GMB posts.

Is Your Website Ready?

There are a few ways to tell whether or not your website is ready for the Local Search Update. First, compare the number of pages on your website to the number of individual services your company provides. If the site currently tries to advertise all your services on a handful of pages – it’s even worse if your site doesn’t mention them at all – you’re not ranking as well as you could be. Dedicated service pages are the way to go, at least for now. 

Next, make sure that your pages have plenty of schema code. This coding allows Google to better interpret various page elements on your website, improving your chance of earning outstanding local ranks. If you haven’t already, you need to listen to our talk on Righteous Reviews and schema-enriched client reviews! The results we’ve seen in local search are truly incredible.

If you’d like to learn more about local search, the Local Search Update, or anything related to website optimization, our team at Roofing Webmasters would love to talk with you! Consult with our experts for free at (800) 353-5758, and see why so many contractors come to us for higher search rankings.

Posted: | Updated: Feb 28, 2022 | Categories: Podcast

True Client Stories: Roofing GMB Nightmare

We’ve all heard the tales of marketing disasters, but few professionals fully understand just how close they could be to losing serious business online. In our latest podcast, Nolen tells the scary story of how a once successful roofing professional lost over two thirds of their annual revenue ($2+ million) thanks to some unfortunate online mistakes! If you ever feel worried about the future of your lead generation, be sure to listen in.

Key Lessons for Roofing Professionals

  • Your Google My Business account plays an essential role in local search results!
  • Trying to manipulate the rankings of other companies is a recipe for disaster.
  • Relying exclusively on reviews and referral traffic can lead to sudden drops in lead generation.
  • Make sure your company has an organic presence to work off of.

A Shaky Foundation

Every seasoned industry professional knows that even the strongest roofing system is only as sound as its supporting framework. Without a solid foundation to rely on, a roof can quite literally implode on itself. One roofing company owner – we’ll call him “Bob” – found out the hard way that this concept applies to online search marketing as well!

In fact, a handful of mistakes cost his business over two million dollars in one year!

Bob ran a very successful company. With years of experience under their belts, Bob’s team managed to complete hundreds of roofing projects each year. Much of his business arose from repair and replacement jobs, as the company operated in one of the top hail-prone states in the country. His staff consisted of over 30 people, and the business still saw fantastic profits year over year. Unfortunately, all Bob’s success came crumbling down around him one day.

A Painful Local Search Mistake

Bob’s company did little in the way of marketing online, with the exception of collecting reviews. The company’s Google My Business account had yet to be verified. His website lacked essential optimization factors that could elevate rankings in local search. He didn’t even have to advertise very often. Like too many contractors and owners, Bob assumed that the company could coast along in reviews, so that’s where he spent his efforts. 

That’s where he made the gravest mistake of all.

A Customer Leaves a Review for a Roofing Contractor
Bob Accidentally Violated Google Quality Guidelines by Offering Discounts for Reviews.

Bob wanted to encourage people to submit reviews for his company, so he offered $50 gift cards for anyone who would provide them. In the man’s defense, he wasn’t trying to coerce or bribe people for better ratings. His team already did great work, and the reviews created were from real, happy customers.

That didn’t matter when Google found out about his practice. It seems an unhappy former employee contacted the search engine and informed on his boss’ practice. Since this violated Google’s quality guidelines, they closed down Bob’s GMB account. Almost overnight, Bob’s roofing company went from premium rankings to practically disappearing in local map results.

A Difficult Lesson

Bob made an honest mistake when he incentivized reviews. Regardless, his company went from earning $3+ million in revenue to less than a third of that. He contacted Google, eagerly sought out his error, and apologized. Google reinstated his account, but Bob’s company still hadn’t recovered when they came to our team at Roofing Webmasters for help.

His company signed on, and we’ve worked very hard to restore Bob’s company to their former online glory. It’s been a challenging journey. The shaky reviews-only foundation that had supported the business collapsed when the GMB account was suspended! Because the company had practically zero search engine optimization for their website, no one could find the brand when they tried to search local contractors. 

We’ve since started overhauling Bob’s website so he can start ranking again, but it’s going to take some time before his team fully recovers.

An Example of a Well-Optimized Website
Even in Rare Search Mistakes, Well-Optimized Sites Like This One Can Bounce Back With Steady Organic Traffic.

How Can You Avoid Bob’s Mistake?

There are a few key activities you can tackle to lessen your chances of a major marketing disaster like Bob’s. First, make sure that you’ve claimed, completed, and verified your Google My Business listing. While verification methods change from time to time, you should be able to get your roofing company taken care of within a few weeks.

Second, invest in a quality, search-optimized website. A sturdy website should have dedicated pages for each of your services. We see companies that provide dozens of services strip down their list to two or three, then jam-pack those few pages with way too many keywords. Instead, craft a handful of pages for your top categories (such as residential, metal, and commercial roofing), then create sub-pages beneath each of those with all the related services. Take time to work related keywords into every page in a way that reads naturally.

Finally, make sure that your company is consistently asking customers with reviews. Of course, you should avoid any sort of practice that could be interpreted as incentivizing reviews! If you ever feel unsure about a particular practice, check out Google’s Webmaster Quality Guidelines

How to Earn Leads and Avoid Search Penalties

  • Register, claim, and verify your GMB account.
  • Create a custom, keyword-optimized website with dedicated service pages.
  • Collect reviews from a variety of sources (Yelp, Google Reviews, Manta, etc)
  • Get listed with citation sources, such as the Better Business Bureau.
  • Never offer incentives for reviews!
  • Never try to mess with reviews or listings for competitors.
  • Consult Google’s webmaster quality guidelines.

If you’ve been hit with a serious Google penalty, our team at Roofing Webmasters would love to help. Contact us anytime at (800) 353-5758 for a free consultation!

Other Resources from the Roofing Webmasters

Podcasts and Articles
14 Roofing Sales Strategies to Boost Income Potential (Article)
Roofing Marketing: 22 Proven Tips for Contractors (Article)
Skin in the Game with Roofer Marketing Dollars (Podcast)

Related Services
Google My Business
Google Maps for Roofing Contractors
Local Search Marketing for Roofers

Posted: | Updated: Feb 26, 2020 | Categories: Podcast

True Client Stories: 34 Minutes and 34 Seconds Of Roofer Story Hell For Nolen

It’s a story we hear over and over again. A roofing contractor tells of how digital marketing companies have cheated them in the past. The frustration is so intense, so palpable at times, that contractors can’t even move forward and escape their situation. That’s the greatest tragedy.

We understand what it feels like to be disappointed and anxious. In today’s podcast, Nolen and Jason discuss real world contractors who’ve gotten stuck in a vicious cycle of marketing failure. Thankfully, your business doesn’t have to settle for mediocre business growth! We’ll explore how your company can start over again with a new, productive marketing plan.

Helpful Tips for Roofing Professionals

  • Before trying to fix your marketing plan, try taking some time to clear your head.
  • Use Google Analytics to see where your website is falling short.
  • See what the top roofing companies in your community do with their website strategies.
  • Try consulting with an expert before committing to one particular strategy.

Turning Frustration into Action

How can you take months (or even years) of disappointment, and turn them into success for your roofing company? It’s an arduous process, but we’ve seen so many businesses turn their marketing around with fantastic results. It all starts with examining your current situation, removing hindrances, evaluating your strategy, and making baby steps towards success.

You don’t have to have the perfect marketing plan to earn a place among the top local companies.

This process does require a clear head however, so give yourself some time to calm, organize your thoughts, and (if necessary) get alone by yourself. Anxiety only hinders your ability to plan, and online marketing strategy requires clear thinking! If necessary, you can talk about your current situation with a seasoned marketing expert, but try to do some research by yourself first.

Step #1: Make Your Exit

What’s the first step to escaping mediocre marketing results? Part ways with your current marketing strategy. That doesn’t mean you have to get rid of every marketing asset you have. But you do need to recognize which aspects of your plans are not contributing to your company’s success.

Online Marketing Graph Information
Your Marketing Company Should Be Able to Show Provide Proof of ROI.

Now, hopefully you have enough control of your online marketing program that you can determine which elements are actually producing leads. If not, that’s okay. A lot of businesses who pay an agency to manage their marketing end up with little understanding of what’s actually going on month to month. In cases where your marketing company shows no results after years of work, it’s often best to simply walk away and start fresh.

As you restart your online marketing, there are a few crucial assets to maintain.

  • Your Domain Name – if you have a long-time domain name, don’t get rid of it!
  • Your Brand – closely tied to your domain, your seasoned brand may still offer value.
  • Your Social Media Accounts – again, seasoned accounts are important for your brand.
  • Your Local Citations – don’t get rid of your profiles just yet, even if you have poor reviews.

Some experienced companies mistakenly get rid of these valuable resources. Hold onto them for now, especially your domain name! It’s a source of credibility and trust for your business. Without it, you will truly be starting over in your online marketing efforts.

Step #2: Reassess Your Strategy

Have you built a solid foundation for your local search performance? Most businesses haven’t, assuming that their marketing company can just flip a switch and enjoy instant success. In reality, real results demand careful preparation, website design, and reputation management. It won’t come by paying another business for mediocre leads either!

Take a sheet of paper (or a digital spreadsheet) and write down every marketing channel you’ve directed funds to over the last year. Examine each channel, and determine whether it’s contributing to immediate leads or long-term business growth. Here’s what your sheet might look like…

Digital Marketing Expenditure Report
Notice the Relatively Low Investment Towards Long-Term Company Growth.

Are you actively investing money towards building up your brand value, or has your marketing been focused on creating immediate leads? Channels like Google Ads and Lead Sales won’t contribute much to your long-term company growth, especially if you don’t have an optimized website to support them! We actually love Google Ads at Roofing Webmasters, but they work best for supplementing your leads, not driving them.

If you think the above report seems a little too highly priced, you’d be amazed how many contractors spend tens of thousands of dollars per month without earning a satisfactory return on their investment. For now, focus on understanding where your funds have been going, so that you can remember which channels aren’t producing good results for your team.

Step #3: Step Towards Success

Now all of this careful planning is wasted if we simply throw up our hands and swear away marketing. Once you’ve gotten a clear picture of the digital marketing channels that aren’t providing real growth for your business, it’s time to start taking steps towards success. Baby steps, mind you!

If you’ve discovered some areas missing in your marketing strategy, now is a great time to fill in the gaps. Here are some extremely valuable actions you can start on immediately!

  • If you haven’t already, claim, complete, and register your Google My Business account.
  • Contact Yelp, the BBB, Manta, and other citation sources and get listed.
  • Start a Facebook Business page and provide your contact information.
  • Train your team on how to ask for reviews after every successful project.

A Google Analytics Showing Upward Growth Trend
Upward Growth Takes Time, But You Can Start Taking Steps Now!

Follow these steps, and you’ll be well on your way towards developing lasting growth for your roofing business! If you need an experienced web design team to help you with your website optimization, our seasoned pros at Roofing Webmasters would love to partner with you. We’ve supported hundreds of businesses across the US, producing better search rankings and higher traffic.

For a free consultation with one of our SEO professionals, call us at (800) 353-5758!

Other Resources From Roofing Webmasters

Related Podcasts and Articles
Roofing, Marketing, and the Truth About Leads (Podcast)
Skin in the Game with Roofer Marketing Dollars (Podcast)
14 Roofing Sales Strategies to Boost Income Potential (Article)

Helpful Services From RW
Roofer SEO Services
– Website Design for Roofing Companies
Online Citations For Roofers

Posted: | Updated: Oct 31, 2019 | Categories: Podcast

Online Marketing For New Roofers (Podcast)

The best way to kick off your online marketing is with an open mind and zero assumptions. Marketing changes year after year, and the strategies that guided roofing professionals five years ago don’t always apply to today’s standards. Thankfully, your first steps toward building your brand and earning online leads are pretty simple.

Below, Nolen and Jason chat about claiming your domain name, setting up your Google My Business account, and earning reviews. Be sure to listen in if you’re operating on a tight marketing budget because most of these steps are either free or very low-cost. Let’s get started.

Helpful Tips for Roofing Online Marketing:

  • Local SEO begins with three key elements: your GMB listing, website, and reviews.
  • Cheap is better than nothing! Even a cheap website can start building equity for your brand.
  • Reviews heavily impact your results in local search, so keep asking for them!
  • Avoid complications later by getting your domain name registered under your business.

Just Starting Out

Even the idea of building your own roofing company is still fresh in your mind. You don’t have any website, specially wrapped trucks, or even a brand. But, you’re in the perfect place to craft a successful, optimized online marketing strategy! It all begins with three simple yet crucial steps.

How to Begin Your Online Marketing

  • Step #1: Pick and Claim Your Website Domain
  • Step #2: Claim Your Google My Business Listing
  • Step #3: Craft Your Starter Website

Depending on the competitive nature of your service area, you should be able to complete these steps for a few hundred bucks (maybe less). First, however, these are tasks you need to nail. So let’s take a little time to dig into each marketing task.

Choosing Your Domain Name

A considerable part of your online branding, the company domain name heavily impacts how easily people find your business. However, so many roofing businesses struggle with the selection process because they’re suffering from outdated strategies. For example, ten years ago, the most powerful domain name you could pick was (city name, plus “Roofer”).

Try employing that same domain strategy today, and you’ll almost certainly fall into the back pages of local search (where no one ever clicks). 

When a potential customer makes searches for “(city) roofer” now, they see results dominated by local guides, lead sellers, and listicle articles dedicated to the most experienced contractors in the area. Unfortunately, Google can’t distinguish these domain names from a general search, dramatically reducing the chances for a company with that name to succeed.

In short: don’t pick your city with a generic roofing term for your domain, or no one will ever find you.

Dallas Search Top Results

Nailing the Domain Name

Aim for uniqueness. If your domain stands out from the established roofers within 50 miles, that’s a serious win. There are a few tactics to distinguish your brand from other roofing companies:

  • Use a distinct personal name. Example: jimbobsroofing.com
  • Pick an uncommon symbol. Example: 7wiseroofingguys.com
  • Try a different domain extension. Example: htownroofing.co
  • Add your state abbreviation for better results. Example: roofingbrostx.com

Your domain name doesn’t have to be funny or clever to succeed. Just make sure that it’s clear enough for people to remember and Google to distinguish from general industry terms. Follow these guidelines, and you’ll have an excellent start for your online marketing!

Claim Your GMB Listing

If you want your roofing company to appear in Google Maps searches, you must claim and complete your Google My Business listing.

All you have to do is fill out all the necessary contact/location info, answer any industry-related questions, and go through Google’s verification process. Your GMB listing information should be the same details you use for all your other citation sources. When you claim a Yelp company profile (for instance), be sure that even your address abbreviations perfectly match those in your GMB account.

When your GMB listing finally activates – this usually takes a week or two – you’ll also gain access to a company Knowledge Graph when people search your business directly. From there, potential customers can access your reviews, website, company number, and much more! You can even create promotional posts in your GMB account specifically for the Knowledge Graph.

Google My Business Website

Build Your First Website

One of the great perks of starting an online website these days is that you have access to a host of great starter templates. While they don’t have the same schema coding or professional SEO of designer sites, you can always start with a free template to get the business going. In addition, a functional website contributes to your domain’s searchability as your business ages and earns new customers.

Start by choosing a color scheme and layout that’s appropriate for your community and client type. From there, most templates allow you to add pages for each of your roofing services. You’ll want to consolidate them under a handful of service categories (we generally recommend sticking with four or less) because this makes it easier for people to find their desired solutions. Next, make sure your pages are keyword-optimized, then craft a company blog post at least once a month.

Cheap Website Template

Looking for an SEO Expert?

Building a sustainable roofing business is a real challenge, especially in more competitive markets. Still, these beginning steps will take your business a long way towards creating a successful brand. As your company grows, you’ll be able to invest in more refined website design, PPC campaigns, and social media outlets.

When that day comes, our team at Roofing Webmasters would love to help take your brand to the next level! Our roofing clients regularly earn page one rankings for dozens of keywords, producing higher traffic and better quality leads. 

Posted: | Updated: Aug 17, 2021 | Categories: Podcast

The Google Homepage For Roofers (Podcast)

Do you ever worry about what shows up when people search your company on Google? While there are all kinds of results that benefit your brand, it pays to pay close attention to local search results! In today’s podcast, Nolen and Jason discuss these topics and other aspects of your Google Homepage. So if you’ve struggled with low traffic or poor reviews, be sure to listen in.

Helpful Tips on Google Homepages:

  • Regular GMB (Google My Business) updates make your site more valuable to Google.
  • Make sure you create enough content that other people aren’t controlling the narrative for your company and brand.
  • Avoid concentrated negative feedback by consistently asking for reviews.

What is a Google Homepage?

When a potential customer searches your company name/brand, the result that pops up is what’s known as your Google Homepage. You’ll see a knowledge graph on the right-hand side that contains crucial information about your company, including contact information. The listings on the rest of the screen may arise from many sources, such as:

  • Your Company Website
  • Your Most Popular Published Articles
  • Social Media Posts or Profiles
  • Citation Companies (Yelp, BBB, etc.)
  • Listicle Articles (“Best Roofers in Dallas” if you’re lucky!)
  • Listings from Lead Sellers (like Homeadvisor)

The sum of all these listings and features is your Google Homepage. From this homepage, consumers or commercial prospects will build a perception of your business. That’s why you must control what shows up when people search your name.

Webmasters Google Homepage

The Knowledge Graph

Think of the knowledge graph as a hub where people can access info on your company without ever stopping on your website. There’s a wealth of contact and location-based information. Potential customers can even contact your team directly from the knowledge graph by phone call or instant messaging. The Google Homepage feature also provides convenient buttons that link directly to maps and your homepage for those needing directions to your office or your website.

Those are just a handful of the features housed in the knowledge graph.

FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

Did you know that your knowledge graph contains a section for direct questions to your business? This handy feature allows local consumers to interact with your company almost directly, learning handy tidbits and history about your brand. While anyone can post answers to these questions, this feature offers one fantastic opportunity.

You can post questions to your FAQ, then answer them! 

Think of some of the most popular topics people bring up about your company. Then, you can proactively answer questions about your roofing team’s services, your experience, and your warranties. Answering questions might encourage someone to investigate your services further or even prompt a call directly from the Google Homepage!

GMB Posts

Google My Business Posts

Businesses can also use their GMB accounts to create posts within the knowledge graph. You can use these posts to promote your latest blog articles further, show off ongoing promotions, or even introduce your team members. There’s only one catch: posts disappear off the knowledge graph after seven days. Consumers can still access them, but they won’t be visible after that period.

Try posting at least once a week if you want to get the most out of the GMB posts. 

You can further improve their functionality by adding pre-programmed calls to action at the bottom of each post. For example, “Learn more” is perfect for segueing into a blog article, while “Call now” is an excellent option for encouraging impulse calls. Again, experiment to see what sort of formatting works with your audience.

How to Enhance Your Google Homepage

Want to take back control of your Google Homepage? Start by reviewing all the materials that Google likes to see for your business. Then, you can start creating positive mentions of your brand through various channels.

Great Listings for Your Google Homepage

  • Better Business Bureau profiles and reviews
  • Facebook Business profiles and recommendations
  • Yelp listings and other citation sources
  • Your company website
  • Popular blog articles from your team
  • Entries in “Top X Roofers” articles

Any of these listings look fabulous for your brand. However, you don’t want negative social media posts showing up because your company hasn’t been active online! Of course, it’s not the end of the world if that happens, but you’ll need to get busy if you want to improve your reputation.

Steps to Improve Your Company Image

Take an active stance on updating your Google My Business account. Start posting regularly, and take some time to upload some quality photos of your work and staff! These create a more personable feeling for your brand, and they look great in the knowledge graph. Be sure to make that FAQ we talked about earlier too.

Next, you’ll want to get start regularly posting blog articles each month. “How To” posts are powerful fuel for website traffic, and you can tackle some pressing homeowner issues. Competent contractors can make these posts travel farther by sharing them on social media.

Finally, be sure your company appears on all the popular citation directories. The BBB, Yelp, and Manta are all great listing companies for roofing contractors. It will make it easier to collect reviews from all your happy fans as you complete your projects.

Posted: | Updated: Aug 4, 2021 | Categories: Podcast