The topic of discussion today is SEO, and how those of us in the HVAC industry can properly use search engines to our advantage to get more traction and traffic to our websites. I have utilized this technique and have seen some great results when seeing the data and noticing the growth in organic traffic.
Understanding How Search Works Today
To best understand how to fully utilize search to get visitors to your website, we must understand a few things about search.
Personalized Search: Search engines like Google are trying to deliver the best results to their users. They care about this feature more than their advertising platform. If you and your friends did a search you might populate different results because Google is trying to decipher exactly what you are looking for.
For Example, I am a giant sports fan, so most of my searches throughout the year will consist of searching up player performances and team news. My friend who may not like sports at all will not get the same results for some specific searches. I tried this out when my friend and I both searched the vague term “Brooklyn.”
My search results: Brooklyn Nets: NBA Basketball Team, Info about the Nets are the top results
My friend’s search results: he will get results about Brooklyn the city, and the top results will reflect trying to acquire information about the city of Brooklyn.
Search is trying to determine what results we are looking for without us having to mention it in detail using the search bar. The goal for the search engine is to provide a seamless and intelligent answer.
This concept of search is important to know for any industry.
How To Improve Traffic To Your Website – Organically
When I talk to my colleagues about buying services like SEO, we come to this discussion on what we are paying for. Many companies try to sell you rankings for specific keywords, which is a bad sign. No matter what anyone tells you, nobody can promise you rankings for words, and if they can, those are probably not words that will drive you traffic, leads, or any business. Buying keyword rankings is a flawed concept but many people fall into this vicious sales pitch.
What Should You Be Buying?
If you are planning to improve your positioning on search, it is best to buy into a company that is selling you a practical and technical strategy.
But What Does This Mean?
Taking into consideration the customers’ needs: Sometimes in something as technical as HVAC we do not understand that our customers do not understand the technical aspects of their heating and cooling systems.
A lot of SEO companies will try to promise you positioning on fat head terms like
- Air Conditioning Repair [ City Name ]
- Heating Repair [ City Name ]
- Furnace Repair [ City Name ]
- Boiler Repair [ City Name ]
This is not a bad strategy to start off with, but a person who is only promising you this is not being realistic when coming up with a strategy to optimize for search.
These terms are good to have, but nobody can promise you rankings for these specific terms. There are only ten slots available on Google’s first page results, and these generic terms are usually occupied by 3rd party websites like Yelp, Yellowpages, Homeadvisor, and Thumbtack. The realistic picture is, for these search terms you only have 3-4 slots to rank on the first page.
This is due to:
- Authority of 3rd party sites
How Do We Reach Our Customers With Search Engines?
The answer that I have discovered to work is developing content that speaks to your audience.
Your audience has more questions to ask than just air conditioning repair.
They want to know why their air conditioner is not working, they want to see exact matches to their concerns, and they want to know if they call you, you know what you are doing.
Long form content is the best way to tackle your customers’ concerns, and this can simply be done in the form of a blog post.
Examples of this might include:
- Why is my air conditioner leaking water?
- Why is my air conditioner leaking water?
- Why is my air conditioner not blowing air?
- How do I clean my air filters?
- How do I clean my furnace?
These are some examples of targeting specific customers and their problems.
What Are The Benefits Of This Strategy?
- These terms are less competitive: If you know who your competitors are, and you do a search for these specific technical issues, you will notice the results are drastically different from when you were just searching for broad search terms like “air conditioning repair.”
- They will rank better in search: Because these terms are less competitive, they are more likely to do better in a national and local search.
- Tie this in with the concept of personal search: As I discussed earlier this concept of tackling low competitive content will directly benefit your customer’s personal search results. If you can make that initial interaction between the searcher and your website, that visit is logged into their history. This means that Google will know they have visited your website in the past, and it will populate results for broader terms that are more competitive because it knows you got the answer you were looking for from a different search query.
Understanding SEO is a tall order, but you can always simplify any form of marketing to just tying together the goals of the business and the needs of the customer.
Reach out to your customer, make content that will answer their questions and you will set yourself up to position yourself as a company that understands the industry, and be recognized as a trusted technician.
The more pages you produce, the more chances you have to generate more traffic. I highly recommend an HVAC technician to write about the needs of their HVAC customers, because we are on the front lines. We understand the customer, and we want to help them.
Make a list of your most common repair requests, and then make a list of requests you believe are rarely called in for. Reform these requests in the form of a question, and write a piece of content that will respond and answer the question. Make your page easy to navigate to the correct service, and have your phone number visible to call for service as well as other information like savings or coupons that can be clearly seen to convert the customer.
Content is the key to conquering the much-confused topic of SEO and in the technical place of HVAC we need to reach out based on our understanding of how the customer views their heating and cooling systems.
About The Author: Chris Maderazzo is the owner of the heating and cooling company Easy Air and Heat. He has also established himself as a well-known and widely respected professional in the electrical contracting and service industry. His attention to detail along with superb leadership qualities has what helped him be successful in all his business ventures for the past 20 years.