- Competitive Analysis
- Search Engine Optimization
- Pay Per Click
- Website Design
- Tracking & Analytics
- Email Marketing
- Social Media Marketing
- Video Marketing
- Franchise Marketing
- Case Studies
- Case Studies
- Home services
- Home Design & Remodeling
- Commercial Services
Your business depends on sales, and your sales depend on leads. For most remodeling company owners and marketers, the big questions are, “How do I get more home remodeling leads?” and, “How can I generate more sales?” Here’s the answer: with the diligent, strategic, and data-driven marketing actions described here. While a lot of virtual ink has been spilled over this issue, most resources are either too vague to be helpful, outdated, or simply wrong.
We have identified 6 foolproof ways to get remodeling leads based on our experience with our measurable marketing methods with remodeling clients in 2017 combined with industry insights forecasting the trends and areas of emphasis in 2018.
Get Found, Get Noticed, Get Leads
Before getting into the specific, actionable items that will get you more leads, let’s go over the simple 3-step process of process of actually acquiring a lead. The first step in acquiring a lead is to “get found”—this is part of the awareness phase of the modern customer’s journey (shown in the image below). For example, you could be found on a search engine results page either from organic search or pay-per-click advertising. At this point, a potential customer simply knows that you exist, but they’re not seriously considering your services.
The next step is to “get noticed.” This comes after you’ve been found and is a part of the “consideration” phase of the buyer’s journey (below). What enables you to “get noticed” is usually something that makes you stick out from the other links, profiles, or companies a prospective lead is checking out. Something in the consideration and research process has got to make them interested enough in what you have to offer for them to reach out and become a lead.
Both getting found and getting noticed are essential parts of the process to get more remodeling contractor leads. The important thing is this: you can’t neglect getting found OR getting noticed.
Some companies focus on their search engine rankings but have a terrible website design and user experience. They’ll get found (but probably not for long—more on that later), but they won’t get noticed.
Conversely, other companies may fixate on every detail of their website, painfully deliberating over every phrase or picture at the expense of their search visibility. Again, this is a problem. If more people were able to find them, their site and other marketing assets would help them get noticed—but they’re simply not being found. So, keep this entire process in mind when crafting your digital marketing strategy for 2018.
1. Start a PPC Campaign—With a Professional
Pay-per-click ads are a good way to get traffic and leads to your site. The recommendation here is pretty straightforward: in-house PPC savants are rare, so we recommend working with an agency that has PPC expertise. If you are doing PPC in-house, ask yourself these three questions to figure out whether or not that’s a good approach and a responsible way to spend your money (spoiler alert: it probably isn’t).
When selecting a company to manage your PPC campaigns, you want to make sure that you will receive ownership of your Google AdWords account in the event that you cancel services. We believe that any company that doesn’t do this is either stupid or malicious.
But there are other things you’ll want to ask and research about a prospective PPC management agency. While the best practices of PPC are widely known, agencies differentiate themselves by their diligence, efficiency, and attention to detail. The up-to-date industry knowledge and experience of a good agency is a powerful tool. You want to make sure that your PPC account is being optimized in the best way possible.
2. Optimize Your Website for SEO & User Experience (& Lead Generation)
Outdated SEO practices suggest that sites contain certain content that is met primarily for search engines and other content primarily for the actual users. Cloaking is an extreme example, but things like keyword stuffing or content that is not useful or relevant for the consumer are more current, relevant examples. We see companies and agencies employing these subtle, but bad, strategies all the time.
But guess what? SEO and user experience really shouldn’t be separated in your website optimization strategy or process! Google values user experience for rankings now more than ever. In fact, if your rankings are great but your user experience is terrible, it is safe to say that your rankings won’t remain strong long term.
There are practically limitless ways to optimize for SEO and user experience, but here are four specific, important ways to optimize your site that will help you get more remodeling leads in 2018. Many of these are geared toward getting noticed.
- Be a resource. People increasingly tend to know what they want and are able to articulate their taste. For example, a potential lead has almost definitely searched the web, Pinterest, or Houzz to get an idea of the remodel they want. So, you want to be a resource that’s a part of the process. Write a blog about the pros and cons of marble counters. Show them examples of your work so they can easily see how you can make their dream a reality. If you’re trying to get more bathroom remodeling leads, name and show specific popular features and styles. A gallery page and a page describing your process (everything from the design phase to timeline of different jobs) are essential for your site
- Take and post high-quality, professional photos. The adage “show, don’t tell” is especially true in the remodeling industry. You can talk and write ad nauseam about the high quality of your work, but nothing will convey that message quite like high-quality photos of your work.
- Mention details that matter. How many companies say things like “high-quality work,” “experienced,” “attention to detail” or “affordable?” All of them? So many people use these phrases that they become meaningless as a competitive differentiator. You want to make sure you’re mentioning specific, unique things that will carry value in the mind of the reader. For example, provide specific testimonials; tell a story in which one of your contractors showed remarkable attention to detail or commitment to client service.
- Optimize for conversions. While it seems obvious, it is easy for many companies (and even marketing agencies) to overlook the need to optimize for conversions. The formatting, placement, and frequency of calls to action on your site can make significant statistical differences in your conversion rate. Additionally, it’s essential to have a contact form on your site. Everything else on your website could be optimized to perfection, but if you’re neglecting conversion rate optimization than you’re simply letting leads slip through your hands.
SEO is immensely important for getting found, getting noticed, and getting leads. Without good SEO, customers won’t be able to find you!
3. Leverage Your Reviews & Keep Getting More
Competitive differentiators are a huge part of getting noticed and getting the best home improvement leads. Reviews are an increasingly important competitive differentiator. Many people would prefer to hear what customers have to say about a business, rather than what the business has to say about itself. Check out these stats on reviews:
- 79% of customers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations
- 78% of consumers have ended a transaction due to bad service
Hopefully, you have a significant number of positive reviews. (Don’t worry if you don’t, we’ll cover that, too). You’ll want to leverage these to make sure your reviews are as visible as reasonably possible. One way you can leverage your reviews is with review schema markup, which makes your average star rating display under your URL in the search engine results page for your website. Check out those glorious stars!
If you don’t have a significant number of reviews (or enough positive reviews), we’d suggest using a review collection platform, like Review Us Now. Not only will this help you increase the number of reviews you have, it will also help increase the visibility of your positive reviews.
4. Be Strategic with Email Marketing
Plain and simple, email marketing can get you more leads to grow your business. It is absolutely NOT only for large companies. We’ve written a lot about email marketing for remodelers, and I’d recommend checking out these eye-opening email marketing statistics. I’ll give you my favorite here: when it comes to purchases made as a result of receiving a marketing message, email has the highest conversion rate (66%), when compared to social, direct mail, and more. Email is perhaps most valuable for staying in touch with previous customers and getting them to come back for more.
But don’t simply send emails to send emails! You’ll want to pay careful attention to your email marketing strategy. Here are four important tips (with links to read more):
- Make your emails easy to digest and skim.
- Make your emails mobile friendly.
- Don’t ignore your subject lines!
- Don’t purchase an email list.
Here’s one powerful example of the value of being strategic with email: we had a remodeling company who wasn’t getting much traction on their email marketing when they first started with us. They were consistent and promoted content from their website, but their email marketing just wasn’t as strategic and thoughtful as it could be. For example, they only shared about seasonal topics or highlighted vague project capabilities.
We changed their email marketing strategy to highlight finished projects, complete with anecdotes from the clients themselves and lots of details about the work. This type of email consistently received much more engagement than their old format: clicks to their website nearly doubled! In the first three months of the new format, their email campaigns received 92% more clicks than in the previous 3 months of email campaigns.
Additionally, because your email list is likely full of existing customers, it can also be used successfully to get reviews.
5. Make Your Blog Smart
This is a part of optimizing your website for SEO. Sadly, this is so important and yet so often done incorrectly that it needs its own section! Blogging has been a digital marketing buzzword for a long time. Unfortunately, it’s not always discussed with the necessary clarity and precision. The purpose of your website is to get qualified traffic and leads. Naturally, your blog should support this goal.
However, it’s quite common for companies to blog with no discernible goal other than to “post blogs.” Other times, a company is quite focused on blogging to generate traffic, but they neglect the qualified part of “qualified traffic.” Without qualified traffic you won’t get leads. It’s quite possible to blog for years, generate significant traffic, but get ZERO leads from all of that. (Note: it’s okay to have a lower conversion rate on your blogs than other pages on your site, you just don’t want a nonexistent conversion rate on your blogs.)
A couple of ways to avoid blogging without generating traffic and leads:
- Pick strategic target keywords or key phrases for your blog content. You don’t want to try to get traffic from general search terms that will have a TON of search volume and competition from huge websites (think, a blog focused on the keyword “Kitchen Remodeling”). Make your target keyword(s) more specific and long-tail like, “kitchen remodeling on a budget” or “kitchen remodeling ideas in San Francisco.” At the same time, you don’t want to make your target keyword(s) so specific that the blog won’t drive any traffic to your site; make sure your content’s target keyword(s) has some search volume. Try to tailor the content to your service area as well, so you will get visits that can turn into leads. Finally, you will want to keep search intent in mind for whatever your target keywords are.
- Track stats & tweak your approach accordingly. We firmly believe that you need to be able to track and quantify the results of your marketing efforts (it’s the cornerstone of our business). Make sure you’re monitoring your blog performance using Google Analytics.
6. Stay Active on Houzz While Using Best Practices
Because of Houzz’s popularity and photo-centric experience, it’s pretty much necessary for remodelers to have a presence on the platform. Houzz is a powerful tool for boosting your brand authority and building brand awareness—just read these stats to see why. Additionally, it can also be helpful for working with clients during the sales process. Here are just a few of our top Houzz best practices and tips:
- Upload high-quality photos of your work.
- Follow other professionals.
- Use idea books.
Don’t Pay for Leads You Don’t Own!
AVOID HOME IMPROVEMENT LEAD GENERATION COMPANIES
We’ve covered the six ways to increase remodeling leads in 2018, but we’ve got to mention this big thing NOT to do. We strongly recommend against depending on lead generation sites like Angie’s List and HomeAdvisor. We don’t view them as viable solutions for these three reasons:
- You don’t own the leads generated.
- You have no control over the types of leads you get.
- You aren’t nurturing long-term client relationships.
Read more details on why we advise against using lead generation sites for contractor lead generation.
Embrace the Grind
Don’t confuse “foolproof” with “quick and easy.” While PPC ads should give you the quickest turn-around for receiving leads, just about all the other methods described take time to develop and cultivate. That doesn’t make them less valuable; in fact, I’d argue that it makes them more valuable because of their enduring value and staying power. It just means that you have to be patient while building up your digital marketing efforts.
How do I get more home remodeling leads? By sticking to the digital marketing best practices articulated here. Anyone who says they can get you free home remodeling leads is lying. The process of increasing leads and customers takes time and work.
With that being said, your marketing efforts should be yielding a significant, positive ROI. We are obsessed with seeing our clients’ business grow as they get incredible returns on their marketing budget.
Ready to Start Getting More Remodeling Leads?
So, are you still wondering, “How do I get more remodeling leads?” and, “How do I increase my customers?” If you want to see more leads and sales for your business in 2018, the digital marketing steps outlined above are a great resource and roadmap. If you don’t know where to start or want to have an experienced professional manage your marketing, don’t hesitate to reach out to you today! For more information on how our team can help you get more leads this year, give us a call at (800) 250-2101 or send us a message online.
About The Author: Kevin is an SEO Analyst in our Charlotte, NC office. When he's not optimizing campaigns or writing for clients, he's playing with his two sons, reading, hanging out with friends, or doing anything music or sports related.
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