The plumbing profession is growing at a faster than average rate, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Between 2018 and 2028, the employment of plumbers is projected to grow by 14%.
An inflow of plumbers into the field means competition between plumbing professionals will increase as well.
To be blunt, being a skilled plumber is not enough. You also need to be visible to people in search of your services. Today, visibility means showing up on the first page of search engine results.
That is what this article is all about. We’re breaking down what local SEO is, how search engines determine your website rankings and the power of plumber directories in boosting your digital presence.
Read on to learn how a plumbing directory can lift your website in search engine rankings.
When someone in your area is in need of a plumber, they crack open the phone book to find a local listing.
Just kidding. It’s not 1998.
The person will turn to search engines online to find a local plumber. Since 92% of people will pick a business that appears on the first page of Google results, your plumbing business needs to be there. And the way to get there is with the help of a specific form of search engine optimization— local SEO.
Local SEO refers to certain practices that increase the chances of your plumbing company showing up in both Google Map results and the primary results page.
For instance, when we search “plumbing in Scottsdale”, three companies appear in the top results of the SERP (search engine results page).
Let’s search the same phrase “plumbing in Scottsdale” in Google Maps. As you can see, the options are more plentiful in this section. There are more spots to fill in this area, so more plumbing businesses have a chance to rank. But the three plumbers that appeared in the earlier search results are still ranked above the other options.
Want to understand what improves your chances of ranking at or near the top? Let’s take a closer look at one of the top plumbing companies to find out. When we click on Scottsdale Plumbing Company, this information-filled card pops up.
The business name, address, phone number, and other details are readily available for customers to see. There are also reviews and an array of photos posted by both Scottsdale Plumbing Co. and its customers.
These important details about the business don’t just appear on their own. They are part of a Google My Business (GMB) profile. All the top ranking plumbers on the list have a GMB profile. Why?
We’re so glad you asked.
Google My Business is the bedrock of a local SEO strategy. Thanks to this free tool, smaller plumbing companies can compete against larger franchises to rank in top spots on search engines.
If you don’t have a profile, set one up as soon as possible. Simply visit the Google My Business website and select “manage now”. From there, you will be prompted to either sign in or create an account. Making an account is a straightforward process. Input basic business information like your business name and location.
You must verify the location of your business before you have full access to your Google My Business account. There are many ways to do this including mail, phone, email, etc.
Let’s get down to the nuts and bolts. Here are the three factors that influence your company’s local SEO ranking.
Our search for plumbers in Scottsdale produces business with lots of information, including reviews, photos, hours of operation, and other relevant details. It’s no coincidence that all the top GMB profiles provide such detailed information. The more information Google has about your plumbing business, the more likely it is to pull your profile into the results. So if you want to increase relevance, fill your profile up with data about your company.
Looking for a deeper dive into Google My Business? Check out these 15 easy steps to optimizing a GMB profile.
Local searches are local for a reason. A potential customer searching “plumbing near me” or “plumber in my neighborhood” is looking for someone closeby. Search engines understand this and produce results that are close to the searcher. Make sure that your address is updated so local residents can find you.
Well known locations and businesses have an advantage when it comes to showing up in local search results. You can’t rise to prominence overnight. But there are steps you can take to improve prominence over time. Having a lot of reviews is one method. The high number of reviews signals trustworthiness to search engines which can contribute to a higher local SEO ranking.
If you want to soar in local search results through prominence, you’ll need to increase the number of mentions of your plumbing business across multiple websites. To do this, we turn to the small but mighty citation.
Picture Montauk Services, a pipeline and pigging service in New Jersey. As more people mention Montauk, the becomes more well known and its list of customers grows.
But word of mouth isn’t guaranteed. What if Montauk can’t afford to wait around for it to help grow the business? No problem. The company can grow brand mentions digitally using citations.
Citations are mentions of your brand name on websites, plumbing directories, and other online platforms. The basic components of a citation include your business name, address, and phone number (NAP).
According to Google, prominence is influenced by information about your business including links, articles, and directories that can be found across the web. As your name and links to your website appear in other places around the web, your plumbing business gains increased authority in the eyes of search engines.
Here is an example of a plumbing directory listing for an Arizona-based plumbing company.
So far, we’ve discussed why local SEO is necessary and how search engines determine your plumbing business’ ranking.
Here’s the cliffnotes version:
- As you gather citations, you increase your rankings in local searches.
- This increased visibility leads to more searchers clicking through to your website.
- More website visitors lead to more plumbing clients and jobs scheduled.
A quick way to accrue brand mentions online is to get your business listed in plumber directories. Here are 10 different directories to consider:
Best Plumbers is a free directory that lists plumbing professionals across the country. Once your listing is up and visible, you can access your dashboard to manage leads and reviews. There are different membership tiers available that offer perks to increase your reach in the directory.
The Plumbing Heating Cooling Contractors Association (PHCC) was founded in 1883. According to the association’s website, PHCC members “work in the residential, commercial, new construction, industrial and service and repair segments of the construction industry.” The “find a contractor” tool acts as a directory for plumbing professionals and those in similar fields who are members of the PHCC.
While this is not exclusively a plumber directory, Home Advisor does have a dedicated plumbing section on its website where searchers can sort plumbers by location and browse reviews. To get listed, create a free account on the website and enter your business information. Once you are screened and verified, you will be added to the Home Advisor Pro Network.
Instead of applying to one plumbing directory at a time, streamline the process with Bright Local. Bright Local is focused on building quality citations for plumbers in order to aid in local SEO efforts. You can manage multiple listings and analyze feedback from multiple sites all in the Bright Local the platform. There is a free trial option if you want to test out the platform before paying for its services.
Houzz Pro offers management software for home remodeling professionals including contractors and plumbers. It is a modern, technology-driven company offering lead management services and premium profile options. The basic Houzz Pro directory listing is free.
My Zip Plumbers allows consumers to sort through plumbers and find the top-rated professionals in their zip code. The platform offers advertising packages that allow you to promote your business in the top results when users search within your zip code.
A trusted and well-known directory for all things home improvement, Angie’s List is a great place to list your plumbing business. The directory screens its professionals AND customers to make sure both sides of the transaction have a positive experience. Testimonials from satisfied businesses on Angie’s List speak about the great customers that they obtained through the platform.
To gain credibility and trust, consider getting accredited by the BBB. Once you are accredited, your business will be added to the BBB’s Accredited Business Directory. When consumers search for your business, having the accreditation helps your business stand out. It also serves to signal your trustworthiness to potential customers.
Thumbtack is dedicated to generating leads for professionals in many different lines of work. What makes Thumbtack special is the customizable features it offers to professionals. You can set the parameters for the types of jobs you want as well as the days and times you are looking to work. You post your services on the app and customers can reach out to you. Additionally, customers post jobs and you can reach out to them.
Another directory that is not specific to plumbers is Merchant Circles. The website’s claim to fame is the massive amount of searchers that are drawn to the platform. According to merchant circle, millions of visitors come to the site each month to find professional services. This is a great place to increase exposure. Merchant Circles also offers a space for merchants to connect and converse.
Juggling jobs while managing marketing and your online reputation can be overwhelming. If you need a strong marketing plan but don’t have the time to learn through trial and error, partner with an SEO agency.
Local SEO is just one facet of search engine optimization that benefits your business. At Markitors, we understand the many components of SEO needed to lift your plumbing business in the search results. Our mission to connect small businesses to customers is at the heart of everything we do. It’s allowed us to help plumbing and construction businesses gain prominence. If you want to know more about our services and how we can help you, schedule a consultation today.