March 8, 2022
When somebody needed a plumber in times past, or an HVAC specialist, electrician, garden landscaper, or garage door installer they asked someone they knew. Nowadays, they are more inclined to look for feedback on social media and review sites.
But there’s a catch to relying on these supposedly independent opinions. Visit any freelance content writer site and you may see advertisements for people to write social media comments and reviews as customers.
Fortunately, there are reputable sources for home service leads that take precautions. Here we think of Facebook and Google advertising, Home Advisor, Angie’s List, and newspaper and radio advertising.
However, it’s a fact of life that customers seldom place orders based on that limited information. They want to test a few more touch points before committing themselves to an order, including calling the company for more information.
But they will also ten-to-one visit the home service business website to make sure they are genuine. That, in a nutshell, is why any small business needs a digital home on the internet in the form of a modern, professional website.
A small business providing artisanal services to private homes, can gain significantly from having an internet presence that confirms the impression of quality work. Yet it’s amazing how many laminate and carpet installers, deep house cleaners, and handyman services to mention a few still don’t realize how critical this is.
If they had a decent website they could track their visitors from those lead sources we mentioned, and discover how many paying customers used their website as a touchpoint on their purchasing journey.
In fact we could say an internet presence – or the lack of it – was the discriminator that kept some going in the pandemic while others failed. Far fewer people will visit high street stores, now social distancing and ecommerce made such a deep impression.
Okason Software helped numerous home services businesses establish their digital presence at that time. Many of these entered the process fearing they were not sufficiently technically-savvy to maintain them. Visit our virtual showroom and see what we achieved together.
A customer’s home is far more than a site to provide a home service. It is a place called home to them, where they come to relax after a busy day. They have feelings and emotions they attach to home and contents and they have huge ownership over them.
It follows they are not going to readily admit a stranger to work there, particularly if they are not there at the time. That’s why converting home service leads from those lead sites is first-and-foremost about establishing a relationship of trust.
A professional website goes a long way to establish a home service business’ credibility. Properly done, it could make your company stand out from the competition as a solid presence that clearly communicates quality information.
Leads may question your credibility, even lawfulness if your presence is little more than a white van. However, after they visit your website they should be open to a marketing call, where they will believe what you say, and agree to the deal.
Those franchises you compete with spend large sums of money establishing their brands. Those images you see in advertisements become the products they represent in customer’s minds. Think Mr. Handyman and Footprints Floors and what do you see?
Of course, those are just marketing promises and their customer experience sometimes falls short of the mark. Nonetheless those customers keep coming back again and again. That’s because the brand carries the stamp of trust.
So where do we go from here? Your home service business is your brand, but it needs a visual presence before your market connects. A professional website is the perfect place to showcase your service with visuals and videos of jobs that make you proud.
A professional website with the stamp of quality establishes your presence on the internet, and speaks proudly of your success. Representing who you are sets you apart from your competition. And gives your leads reasons to choose you over the rest.
A professional website is optimized from a customer’s point of view. It uses keywords they are likely to choose when they search for your home service, and it performs equally well on their laptop, tablet or phone.
But that’s not all. A professional website is there to convert those leads. It understands it is one of many, and it must stand out by being fast and efficient to use. A customer with an urgent need will go elsewhere if their first impression is flashing images.
It stands to reason your leads want your digital home presence to explain your service, quickly and efficiently. They arrive in ‘perhaps maybe’ mode. You have one chance to convert them to an order. A website can help do this for 24/7 no matter where you are.
When people visit you online from one of those lead websites, they are already interested in your product. An efficient website provides answers through words and images. After they realize you are what they are looking for, they will go to the next stage.
There were once two traditional ways to attract business. The first one was to put up a billboard or hand out fliers. While the second was opening a brick and mortar shop, and waiting for customers to arrive. Nowadays the internet is better and faster if you do it right.
Ecommerce largely developed along similar lines, because that was what early e-shoppers wanted. So we have two ways to attract home service leads on the internet.
A professionally made, SEO website has a high chance of showing in search results, and moving up the ranking as more people visit it. You supercharge this process by inserting a link from your social media posts. If you keep at this, it may take less time than you expect!
When people search for your product on Google, they start naturally (organically) discovering your digital home page. You can’t achieve this, and increase your customer base unless you have your own website.
If you were to open that brick-and-mortar store we mentioned, you would find yourself answering the same questions time and time again. Some people might even visit to ‘steal your ideas’ and do the job themselves.
That helps pass the time if you are a clerk at a franchise store. However, as a home service business owner you have better things to do with your time! Phone calls are just as bad, and it can be difficult to end a one-sided conversation.
When you sum up the total of all that wasted time, you discover having a store costs more than rent and utilities. Moreover genuine customers are ‘cut off’ outside business hours. A professional home service website helps you attend to queries right around the clock.
America’s home owners are cottoning on fast to the idea of gathering information without a store clerk piling on pressure. This all adds up to providing a more professional service, that’s there when it suits the customer’s timing.
A website can easily become your digital home presence where customers come for exciting news. One sure fire way is updating your special offer page once a week, and announcing this on social media with a link. Everybody loves to get a bargain that’s actually a fair price!
But you can take it further than that, by publishing regular blogs with tips for customers. Few American homeowners ever get around to doing home improvement jobs themselves. But they do enjoy knowing what to expect when a contractor calls round.
People love getting something for nothing, especially valuable information that interests them. But deep down inside this ‘upsets their scales’, and makes them more likely to repay the favor with an order.
And finally, for this section posting regular blog content tips Google off you are an active business. It repays you by improving your ranking everytime someone clicks through. Now you know why you have to have a website, what’s next?
Digital marketing – online marketing is the same thing – promotes brands to potential customers using the internet, social media, messaging and email services. Naturally, you need to be smart about this, and share information as opposed to sending spam.
Most Americans visit supplier websites at some time in every purchasing journey, to learn about providers and their products. If those websites don’t show on Google, quite soon those businesses will no longer exist, especially in cities.
It really is case closed on the question why your website should be the digital home of your home service business. Not having one is like being ‘up a creek without a paddle’. Having one is like being in business 24/7, for the 7 reasons we explained.