This isn’t going to be a promotional blog, but we will draw from our experience at 411 Locals since we have been working with remodeling companies for over 12 years. One of the main concerns that our new clients with remodeling businesses have is not just getting leads, but getting BETTER leads. Is that the case with you? Do you want to get remodeling leads that have a high chance of becoming your customers?
Then this blog is for you.
Understanding Your Target Audience’s Online Journey
You know it better than anyone, leads are what make your business run. They are its lifeblood, and a single lead can bring in hundreds of dollars in revenue. So, before we give you some of our top-performing strategies, you first need to know how to acquire remodeling leads.
The process generally involves three main steps:
- The lead finds your business (a.k.a. you get found)
- The lead notices your business (a.k.a. you get noticed)
- The lead converts (a.k.a. you get leads)
The first step in acquiring a lead is often considered the awareness phase in which a prospect will find you during an online search. The result they see can be an organic result from a well-optimized page or a pay per click ad of your business. This is the stage where a potential client learns of your existence, but that’s about it. They are not yet considering your service.
The second step comes after a person knows about your business and recalls it when they start searching for your type of service. The prospective client will be checking and comparing companies at this stage, which means you need to make sure your offer stands out. You can achieve this through a better-made website with enough useful information, or by being the top online result for the industry in your area (a.k.a. Local SEO), or with a good price-quality proposition, or all three!
The third step should be the natural continuation of steps one and two. Once the prospect knows about your business and has understood your unique selling points, it is only logical that they will contact you for a quote. This is how you turn people into remodeling leads with good chances of converting.
Step 1: Optimize your website both for user experience and for SEO
Each month, people and businesses in the U.S. make hundreds of thousands of searches for remodeling services online. Imagine how many of those searches relate to jobs in your area. So, how are those people going to find your remodeling business?
The short answer is: SEO!
You may have already heard that certain attributes matter more to ranking higher on Google while, in fact, there are more than 200 of them, and they are all important. So, if you want to take full advantage of your online presence and the number of leads it can generate for you, and not just deal with keywords and landing pages, you may want to consider investing in small business SEO services. Before you do that, however, it is best that you understand what that investment in SEO is all about.
It’s not all about search engines, it’s about people, too. So, how do you optimize for great user experience?
#1 Be a Trustworthy Source
You have to assume that your potential clients already have an idea of the type of remodel they want. They have already seen designs they like on Pinterest and have searched the web for other ideas. So, you need to add to their research experience by keeping a well-organized blog page on your website. You need to have articles that can help inform people while making them notice your remodeling company at the same time. Stay away from overly promotional blogs, as they tend to have the opposite effect on readers. If writing isn’t your strongest suit and you aren’t paying an agency to take care of your SEO and digital marketing for you, you might want to at least consider hiring blog writing services for this part of your strategy.
#2 Post High-Quality Photos of Your Work
You know how people are visual creatures! In industries related to home building and remodeling, it is best to follow the “show, don’t just tell” philosophy because nothing makes you more credible in the eyes of clients than the outcome of completed projects.
#3 Include Meaningful Details in Your Content
So many companies are overusing phrases like “attention to detail,” “premium quality service,” and “highly-experienced,” that they mean less and less to the consumer. One way to stand out and make a good impression is to mention specific details about your work, such as:
- How many projects have you completed so far? For what kinds of clients?
- Do you use sustainable materials, or what are some of the reputable brands you use in the course of your work?
- What are clients saying about you (testimonials)?
- What is your company story?
- Are there available discounts or limited-time offers you can provide?
#4 Keep Your Call to Actions Clear and Consistent
Many industry professionals will tell you that you need to optimize for conversions. Great, but what does that mean exactly? It means you need to make it very clear to readers what type of action you want them to make. Is it to give you a call, request a quote, visit your shop, order a demo, etc.? And, once you have your call to action, you need to keep it consistent and repeat it frequently, so people know what is expected of them. You want to avoid confusion and multiple-meaning calls to action!
Step 2: Start a PPC Campaign
A study by Clutch made for 2018 showed that nearly half of all small businesses in the U.S. (companies with less than 50 employees) actively invest in PPC ads. If this is the first time you are hearing the term PPC, here is a brief overview.
If you want to advertise on Google, their platform for managing your advertising campaigns is called AdWords. You need to dedicate a budget for a particular ad (or ad group) that will be displayed in front of a specifically chosen audience, and each time a person clicks to check your ad, you will be paying Google. This is essentially how pay per click advertising works.
There are many different techniques you can use to target your remodeling leads, and the benefits of PPC, when done well, are undoubtedly great. Since PPC has a high lead-generation potential, you might want to consider turning to a professional agency for that.
Step 3: Leverage Your Online Reviews
Since remodeling often is a significant investment to most households, homeowners do careful research before choosing a service provider. Put yourself in their shoes, wouldn’t you want to get as much feedback as possible for a company you’re about to hire to work on your home?
This is why online reviews matter across all your platforms. This includes your social media profiles, your website, and the online directories your company is on (Yelp, HomeAdvisor, Angie’s List, and the likes).
Rule number one: leveraging your online reviews is an ongoing process. Some 85% of people won’t even care for reviews that are older than three months, and half of them only look at reviews your company received in the last two weeks. If your last review is from three years ago, that would be suspicious, and it can discourage many of your remodeling leads from contacting you.
A very common concern among business owners when they first learn the importance of online reviews is that they don’t have enough of them to display. There are two things you can do to improve that:
- You can use a review collection platform — these help in making your positive reviews more visible, which can encourage other clients to leave you their testimonials as well.
- You can stimulate your clients to share their feedback from your service. This can happen in a variety of smart ways, and your goal should always be not to bribe people in return for a review. This means, you should not pay for reviews or offer unrealistic discounts to those who leave their testimonial. It will make you seem desperate, and that can hurt your business in the long run. Encouraging people can be as simple as merely asking for their feedback, sending a feedback form, or offering a feasible discount on their next service/purchase.
Step 4: Explore Email Marketing & All It Has to Offer
Before we continue, let’s get one thing very clear: email marketing can work for all kinds of businesses, including solopreneurs and small to medium-sized companies. It is not something that only brings leads to large businesses. If you know how to leverage email marketing, it can be a powerful lead generation tool for you.
So, how can you tap into the pool of email marketing opportunities out there?
For starters, don’t send out emails for the sake of doing it. That is where many companies do it wrong. You need to understand that email is about re-engaging past and current clients and building a lasting relationship with them.
- Keep your emails on point and easy to read. You must assume people won’t just read huge chunks of text, so the essence of your emails needs to stand out.
- Make sure your emails are mobile-friendly. Everyone is on their phones these days, and 68% of all emails are opened from a mobile device. That means you must design your email to appear just as good on a smaller screen as it would on a desktop computer.
- Create a newsletter where you share important discounts, offers, industry news, your latest blog posts, company announcements, and so on. Keep it interesting and to the point. Don’t include things in your newsletter because you have no better material to use. No material is better than the wrong material!
- Keep an eye on your competitors. Subscribe to the email lists of your main competitors so you can track where their strategies are going and whether you can steal a smart idea or two from them. Even if you are doing way better than them at this stage, it is really important that you keep track of any changes they make.
- Don’t hide the unsubscribe button. This is a desperate move that many rookies in email marketing do because they think it is a way to effectively keep their email list. Well, think about the last time you wanted to unsubscribe from something. Once you have made up your mind, the harder they make it for you to do it, the more agitated you get. Your business surely doesn’t need that kind of negativity.
- Stay away from the temptation to purchase an email list. It will do you no good, and you might as well throw some money to the wind instead. Having many subscribers with just 1% of them reading your emails is in no way efficient.
- Don’t ignore your subject lines. Even the best, most original, and engaging email won’t see the light of day if the subject line is flat and uninspired. Make sure your subject lines aren’t misleading, but rather pointing to the topic and leaving the reader curious, so they click to read the whole thing.
- Don’t be over promotional and pushy. No one likes being pushed into doing things, so don’t expect that to be any different for your newsletter subscribers.
- Avoid spam words at all costs. You may or may not know this, but there are spam filters that look for heavily promotional language and words like “cash,” “free,” and “sale.” If you have these in your subject lines and content, your emails might easily end up in the spam folder of the receivers.
- Unbranded or anonymous emails are a big no-no. Email marketing, even though it happens in a digital space, is all about keeping things personal and unique. If you don’t show some of your company’s personality and your emails are unsigned or unbranded, it will all fall flat.
Step 5: Invest in Having a Good Blog
It is still surprising how many businesses are missing out on this great opportunity. Driving quality traffic to your website is the way to get reliable remodeling leads. The highest quality traffic you can get is from people who need something you can provide — industry knowledge and services.
So, if people aren’t coming to your website to book a service, they might come because you frequently post educational articles they may be interested in. Some topics you can start with are:
- The latest trends in kitchen remodeling for 2020
- What is the difference between porcelain and ceramic tiles
- The pros and cons of hardwood floors
- The best season to renovate your home
- Basement refinishing ideas you never would have thought of
These are all topics that are related to your job. They don’t serve to promote your service but rather answer common questions your clients typically have. Being a credible source of information is essential in converting a reader into a lead.
What is more, blogs are great for helping your website rank better in search engines. In fact, having a blog can increase your chances of better ranking by more than 400%!
Step 6: Stay Active on Social Media
It can be extremely tiring if you are doing it yourself and juggling other tasks, but social media is a massively important part of lead generation. Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Houzz, and other industry-specific channels all require your attention.
Take Pinterest, for example, it is estimated that around 60% of users of the platform, turn to Pinterest for home design and remodeling ideas. What if they find the pictures of your freshly completed project on there and wish to have the same thing made for their own homes? What if they want to hire you to do it? Pinterest can be a great pool of reliable remodeling leads that wouldn’t have found you otherwise.
We don’t have time to cover all social media channels today, but this article might help you in selecting with ones are right for your remodeling business.
In this blog, we covered the topic of how to get remodeling leads for your business by suggesting six basic steps. These include:
- Search Engine Optimization (both for people and for search engines)
- PPC Ads
- Online Reviews Management
- Email Marketing
- Social Media
However basic these steps may sound, they are far from easy to implement and may require professional help. That choice, however, rests entirely with you and your team. For those who don’t fancy the idea of trial and error on the path to generating leads, there are other affordable options.