Every business wants to rank on the first page of Google but for local home service businesses competing against the big guys, that can seem like a huge challenge.
But here’s the secret. Local Google search results include Google’s Map-Pack, also known as the 3-pack, and it’s powered by your Google My Business listing. One of the best ways to compete in local Google search and dominate search engines is to rank in this pack. The map-pack accounts for 30-40% of all clicks on Google. And you as a local contractor may have an advantage over the larger companies because your business has one or more local locations and an optimized business listing.
Ranking in Google Maps is the easiest way to increase leads for your contracting business. Here's why.
Seventy-six percent of consumers who conduct a local search contact a business within 24 hours, and 28% of those searches result in a purchase of a service. In a world where people want answers right now, searchers are becoming increasingly “lazy,” for lack of a better term. And this need for ease and immediacy of solutions particularly applies to the home service industry.
Picture the following situation.
It’s 95 degrees outside, your A/C isn’t working, and you don’t want your living room to be as sweltering hot as it is outside. What do you do? Most people pull out their smartphone and search “A/C companies near me.” You spot a business in the map-pack at the top of Google Search and you click-to-call from your smartphone.
These “near me” searches increased by over 900% in the past 2 years. The nature of the home services industry is that you solve consumers’ home problems, and these problems are, more often-than-not, time-sensitive. Great Google My Business visibility is key to seeing success in your local SEO efforts and being the company customers click-to-call.
Here are a few tips on getting your contracting business to rank in Google Maps.
1. Claim and Optimize your Google My Business Listing.
All of your physical locations should be claimed & verified. And make sure your GMB Listing is optimized correctly for proximity, keywords, and NAP (Name, Address, Phone number consistency). Check out SEM Rush’s Ultimate Guide to Google My Business for more details. In addition, make certain that the address and phone number on your website is an exact match to the address on your Google My Business listing.
2. Get more online reviews and respond to them.
Online reviews play a big role in where you stack up in the 3-pack. And, as customers are deciding which business to use, they look for social proof that a business will provide the customer service and results they seek. Encourage your technicians to ask for reviews when they’ve completed a job well done. You can also email customers satisfaction surveys with a convenient link to your GMB listing to ask for reviews. Or you can integrate an automated review solicitation program into your back-office software.
As a business owner, responding to those reviews can be as important as generating them. Designate someone in your company to read and respond to these reviews. Check out Google’s My Business Help for tips on reading and replying to these reviews.
3. Create location specific service pages on your website.
Create pages on your website that speak to the markets your company serves. For example, if you service the greater Atlanta, GA market, build out pages on your website for the multiple suburbs outside metro Atlanta that fall within your service area. This provides Google the opportunity to serve your company up in the map pack when a potential customer is searching for your services in that particular location.
Ranking in the map pack takes work but pays dividends.
Ranking in the map pack happens organically over time. But keep in mind that it’s also a competitive space — you and your competitors all want to be there but simply can’t all be there at the same time. If you occupy a map pack position, that’s one less spot for the competition.
You have to roll up your sleeves and put in the time, energy, and effort to show Google that you are a relevant business online. If you can do that, the leads will come! Your customers have a computer and/or smartphone at their fingertips. When a problem arises, they are going to Google & call someone to fix it.
Make sure customers can easily find and call you over your competition. And if you need help, reach out to a digital marketing agency. We at Bell Media specialize in Home Services and help contractors like you everyday gain new business through search.