Search Engine Optimization for Your Plumbing Company
No matter how many backed-up toilets a plumber can repair in a day, his company wouldn’t be able to sustain its business without plumber SEO. According to a report by ISIBWorld, the plumbing industry currently has a market share of $124 billion and it is only continuing to increase.
This means even more plumbing businesses will be popping up in your neighborhood and in search engines. While this is a great thing for potential customers who can exercise the power of choice, it forces your business to compete for foot traffic and online traffic, which can impact lead generation severely.
This plumber SEO guide will tell you everything you need to know to stay in the game and flush out local competition in search engines.
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What is plumber SEO?
Plumber SEO, or search engine optimization (SEO) for plumbers is the ongoing process of techniques used to propel a plumbing company’s online visibility in search engines.
These strategies consider how search engines operate to improve the quality and quantity of website traffic. For optimal results, SEO must continuously be updated and improved upon to keep your plumbing business competitive in search results for relevant plumbing keywords.
There are four types of search engine optimization:
1. On-Page SEO
One-page SEO, also known as on-site SEO, refers to a series of components on your website that can be optimized to increase its online visibility to optimize your website. This can range from enhancing your content to updating your plumbing website’s HTML source code.
2. Off-Page SEO
Off-page SEO refers to all of your plumbing company’s SEO efforts that take place outside of your website to positively impact your company’s search engine ranking, trustworthiness, and overall credibility.
Before the internet, most small plumbing companies sustained business from word-of-mouth and directories, such as the Yellow Pages. But now that Google search engines have risen to its position as the modern-day Yellow Pages, potential customers are shifting from print listings to directories on the internet.
3. Technical SEO
Technical SEO is a form of on-page SEO. It refers to the process that ensures all of a website’s technical components are accurate, so its search engine ranking can increase. Technical SEO makes it easier for web crawlers to scour your web pages to understand what they are about, then rank them better in search engines, as a result.
A couple of examples of technical SEO tasks that you may come across are:
- Improving your plumbing website’s page speed
- Implementing HTTPS on your plumbing website
- Adding schema markup or structured data
- Updating an XML sitemap
4. Local SEO for Plumbers
Local SEO is centered around all of the SEO efforts your company implements to increase its visibility amongst local prospects. According to SEO Roundtable, 46 percent of all searches have a local intent.
With local SEO, every time a user searches for “best plumber near me”, it is an opportunity for your website to rank in local search results. These types of searches use the IP address of a user to obtain their location, and prioritizes search results based on proximity.
If your web pages are optimized for local SEO, there are two different areas it may appear in search results:
- Organic search results – These results are ranked and listed on the search engine results page (SERP) based on relevance, intent, and how well your plumbing SEO satisfies Google’s algorithm.
- The Local Pack – Often called the Local 3-Pack, these results have a space reserved at the top of organic search results and appear in the Google Maps section. There are typically only three spaces available and Google determines which plumbing companies will be listed there based on relevance, proximity to the user, and star rating. All businesses in the Local Pack or Local 3-Pack must have a Google Business Profile in order to be displayed.
How can SEO help your local plumbing company?
Some of the biggest goals SEO can accomplish for local plumbing companies like yours is it can help increase its search engine ranking, help attract potential consumers through brand awareness, and improve your lead generation strategy. The higher a website ranks in search results, the greater the potential to increase its leads. According to a report by HubSpot, 61 percent of businesses stated that SEO and organic traffic can generate more leads than any other marketing initiative.
With this in mind, many plumbing contractors rely on the power of SEO to create a consistent flow of incoming customers that can promote bottom-line growth.
What Plumber SEO Isn’t
On your quest to learn more about plumber SEO and how it can benefit your plumbing company, you may come across several myths disguised as facts. In order to get the most out of your SEO efforts, it’s important to decipher the SEO myths from actual realities you should know.
One of the biggest myths ever told about SEO is that it is a one-time thing.
That is certainly not the case. Between Google’s constant algorithm updates and other local plumbing companies working tirelessly to step up their online search visibility, your search engine ranking will fluctuate.
It is up to your business to either hire a plumbing SEO expert that has the capacity to take your SEO on for you, or dedicate the necessary amount of time to manage your SEO efforts on your own. If you are willing to take on the task yourself, it may help to get an idea on how much time you may be allocating towards your site.
According to Search Engine Watch, you can expect to spend the following amount of time estimated for each task listed below.
Time spent on SEO tasks (weekly)
|Ongoing Monitoring & Troubleshooting||Content Development||Off-Site Syndication & Relationship Building||Local Optimization & Peripheral Strategies||Measurement & Analysis|
|3 – 12 hours||3 – 50 hours||5 – 25 hours||5 – 15 hours||1 – 2 hours|
Another common misconception about SEO is that it doesn’t work.
The key to successful plumber SEO is assuring that you are doing it right. Most businesses that have failed SEO attempts can attribute it to either improper implementation or poor maintenance. SEO for plumbers is ever-changing, which means keeping up with search trends and algorithm updates can be critical to your success.
If you are having issues successfully launching your own SEO efforts, consider hiring a qualified marketing and SEO agency that can help you get started.
Lastly, there is a misconception that SEO is a waste of money.
We’ve all seen a handful of websites appear high in search results that have not been optimized. Although it can happen, if you decide not to invest in your plumber SEO, the chances are slim. By implementing SEO, your business is increasing its likelihood of being seen.
Advertisers spend billions of dollars on billboard advertisements and often end up completely unaware if it resulted in a conversion or not. SEO, on the other hand, allows you to track your SEO efforts using tracking codes and monitoring your website traffic using tools, such as Google Analytics and Google Search Console.
If you can see the metrics and the plumbing leads coming in, it can allow you to determine on your own just how valuable plumber SEO could be for your plumbing company.
Ranking Factors for Plumbing Company SEO
Google uses over 200 ranking factors to determine your plumbing website’s hierarchy in search engine results pages (SERPs). Ranking factors are the components that search engines consider when determining where to place your website in search results.
Below are some of the most important ranking factors your plumber SEO will entail:
The quality of your website is an important SEO ranking factor. Plumbing websites with an intuitive design, make it easier for users to find the information they need much faster. Not to mention, a well-designed website that also considers how search engines operate and knows what Google’s web crawlers look for has a greater chance of ranking higher in search engines than those that do not.
Speed is also a very important component that both search engines and users will consider. According to HubSpot, nearly 70 percent of consumers admit that page speed impacts their willingness to do business with a company. StartUp Bonsai states that the average first-page website has a loading speed of 1.65 seconds. Anything slower than that can have a negative impact on your leads and or conversions.
Mobile and Desktop Compatibility
Your website’s user-friendliness is also a major ranking factor. Google’s algorithm currently places a large emphasis on mobile compatibility. This is largely due to the fact that users typically prefer mobile searches over desktop.
According to Statista, 96 percent of Google’s organic search traffic in the United States comes from a smartphone. Plumbing websites that understand where most of its customers are coming from and which devices they are using can optimize their website for an overall better user experience.
Google’s algorithm currently relies on the mobile version of your plumbing website to rank and index your website. However, in February of 2022, it plans to roll out a page experience algorithm that will also be considering your desktop website and if it agrees with Google’s Core Web Vitals.
When it comes to plumber SEO, content is king. Whether it’s freshly published content or newly repurposed content, both the quality and the quantity of a plumbing website’s content is a ranking factor that can determine how high or low it may appear in search results. For optimal plumbing & HVAC SEO, we recommend completing the following tasks:
Publish intent-based content
Develop content that satisfies users and search engines. According to Semrush, the average word count of a Google first page result is 1,890 words. These lengthy articles should be easy to read, discuss a relevant topic in depth, address user concerns, and most importantly, provide solutions to critical questions users generally have in your industry.
With this in mind, the best plumbing websites have long-form content on its blog that informs users based on the intentions of their Google keyword searches.
According to Moz, 1,000 words or more is the average length of successful content. Articles around this length are typically called long-form content, which can be as short as 700 words to as long as 2,000 words or more. Long-form content is lengthy enough to be rich in plumbing keywords and it also reads well for humans and search engines alike.
Another way long-form content has proven to be beneficial for plumbing company websites is because it can increase the length of a time a user stays on the page. According to Neislen, users typically leave a web page within 10-20 seconds. By creating quality, long-form content, your plumbing company can increase the average user session by five seconds or more.
Optimize your content
An unoptimized web page with no SEO has a very low chance of ranking high in search engines. Before you begin to optimize your content, you should have a list of plumbing keywords that are relevant to your business. These keywords should:
- Be low competition and high volume
- Include long-tail keywords, or keywords that are three or more words long
- Be relevant to products and services offered at your business
After you’ve identified these keywords, they must be included in specific parts of your website. Web crawlers typically scan areas like the meta description, title tags, headers and body copy to determine what your web page is all about.
Plumber SEO focuses on long-form content, which is easy to repurpose. Reusing and repurposing content is a great practice that should also be employed in your content strategy for optimal results. According to Backlinko, refreshing an old blog post with new content and images can boost organic traffic by as much as 111 percent.
Publish content consistently
Consistency is key. If you are new to the world of content creation, you are probably wondering how many times a week or month you should be publishing it. The answer, however, can vary based on your goals and the intent of the content itself.
So how often should you blog? According to HubSpot:
If your goal is organic traffic
- It is recommended that your website publish as much content as you can
- For small blogs: 3–4 times a week (new posts)
- For large blogs: 4–5 times a week (new and updated posts)
If your goal is brand awareness
- It is recommended that you offer a variety of content types, yet keep it informative
- For small blogs: 1–2 times a week (new posts)
- For large blogs: 3–4 times a week (new and updated posts)
Off-site optimization ranking factors enable your plumbing business to rank higher in search engines, listings and directories, and more. This is because unlike on-page optimization that focuses on elevating your website’s ranking in search results, off–page optimization is focused on building your brand’s reputation as a credible and authoritative business in your industry.
According to a study conducted by Moz, off-site SEO-related factors can carry more than 50 percent of the ranking factor weight. There are several strategies plumber SEO employs for off-site optimization, such as:
A Strong Backlink Strategy
According to Ahrefs, backlinks may be one of the most important ranking factors. Backlinks, also known as external links or inbound links, can be defined as hyperlinks from other websites that have been placed onto your website and can direct traffic from one page to another. These links refer relevant traffic to your website, which can help increase website traffic. They also help verify the credibility of your company’s content, similar to a co-sign.
One very important thing to remember about backlinks is that all backlinks aren’t created equal. High quality backlinks, or links that come from a website with a high authority, have the power to positively impact your plumbing website’s online visibility. Low quality backlinks, on the other hand, can have a negative impact on your plumber SEO.
According to a report by Ahref, 55.24 percent of pages don’t have one single backlink. A strong backlink strategy can help your plumbing company remain ahead of the competition and earn quality backlinks much faster.
Citations and Directory Submissions
Citations are listings of your business name, address, phone, and site (commonly referred to as NAPS). These listings give search engines and directories accurate information about your business’ location and contacts. In the past this was a much more important item for local businesses to focus on. But with Google Business Profiles and a handful of major sites, you can ensure proper information is available without buildings tons of low quality citations.
That said, directories are still an important data source to ensure accuracy of your plumbing company’s information. Directory submissions allow businesses to submit their website URL and other important information, so it can appear in specific categories online. These can help strengthen your plumbing company’s reputation by contributing positively to your backlinks and off-site SEO strategy. Local directories (relevant to your service area) and plumbing and home repair specific directories are a valuable citation source.
Some of several popular online plumbing listings and directories include:
Google Business Profiles (formerly known as Google My Business) is a free tool offered by Google that enables businesses to manage their online reputation and how they will appear in Google search engines. While conducting local searches, Google Business Profiles are more likely to appear in the top search results than other types of listings.
According to research conducted by BrightLocal:
- 5 percent of GBP listings result in a website click, call, or direction request
- 96 percent of local businesses are viewed at least 25 times per month in Search results
- 16 percent of businesses receive more than 100 calls each month from GBP
2. Angie’s List
Angie’s List is a paid business directory that provides users with trusted reviews and verified ratings. It is well-known for connecting its users to local plumbing companies offering quality products or services in their area.
According to research conducted by Expanded Ramblings:
- Angie’s List offers more than 10 million verified views in more than 700 categories
- Over 55,000 participating service providers and 720 services are available
- Over 60,000 reviews are submitted to Angie’s List on a monthly basis
Yelp is one of the most popular review platforms in the United States. It is a customer review-driven social platform where users are free to access and share reviews on local bars, restaurants, businesses, etc.
According to research conducted by Writers Block Live (WBL):
- 97 percent of users purchase a product or service after visiting Yelp
- Almost 45 percent of online users check Yelp before visiting a business
- Businesses can see an increase of 5-9 percent in revenue for every star gained
HomeAdvisor is a “Humans as a Service”, or HaaS, that connects homeowners with pre-screened, local companies in three different ways:
1. Instant Connect connects homeowners with a professional they can speak with ASAP
2. ProFinder enables homeowners to share details about their needs so they can be linked with four qualified professionals
3. Instant Booking instantaneously secures your consultation with a professional
According to an article by Forbes:
- Almost 25 percent of all U.S. homeowners have signed up for HomeAdvisor
- Its TrueCost Guide entails over 300 different kinds of projects containing data that is updated in real-time
- HomeAdvisor has over 3.2 million verified reviews
Porch was founded in 2013 as a home services app and now it has several services that aim to simplify moving and home improvement. This app connects users with local plumbing companies, empowering them to compare rates, and more.
According to research conducted by Oyelabs:
- Over 8,000+ small and large businesses use Porch to connect with their customers
- Porch engages with around 2 out of every 3 homebuyers every month
- The app has over 2.8 million professionals for homeowners to choose from
Thumbtack is a home services online directory that connects its users to a variety of home improvement-related products and services. Some of the best plumbers in the area can be discovered on Thumbtack.
According to research conducted by Expanded Ramblings:
- Thumbtack has over 10 million users
- There are over 2,500 active professionals on Thumbtack
- More than five million projects are requested by customers each year in 1,100 unique categories
Customizing online directories and listings
It wouldn’t be possible to improve your online presence with inconsistencies in your company’s online listings and directories. Some listings, such as Google Business Profiles and Yelp, may automatically generate listings for plumbers.
These listings typically display a company’s address, hours of operation, website, reviews, photos, and more. In order to update incorrect information listed, these accounts must be verified and claimed by your company. Lack of accuracy can potentially cause search engines to decrease your search engine ranking.
Build trust with Google search engines by filling out your Google Business Profile. Some of the most important areas to complete are your service area, address, and be sure to add your list of products and services. Google Maps extracts this information to determine if and how your business may appear in local results. It also relies heavily on its accuracy to provide the correct information to online prospects.
DIY or Hire an Agency?
While the choice is ultimately yours to either hire a plumbing SEO company or start managing it on your own, it is essential to know the benefits and disadvantages of each option before you ultimately make your choice.
For starters, you should know that your results may vary depending on your decision. This could be why a busy company may see it as less risky and more cost-effective to hire a plumbing SEO agency, instead of trying to do it on their own.
According to Ascend2, 84 percent of companies say they outsource all or part of their SEO implementation to specialists. While this can run you up to $1,500 a month, hiring an SEO expert can save you a great deal of time and frustration. Even better, you can rest assured that when new algorithm updates emerge, your plumbing website will be covered.
Plumber Search Engine Optimization FAQs
If you’ve made the decision to outsource your plumber SEO, it’s critical that you find an agency with experience. At Dagmar Marketing, SEO is our core service. Every package is customized to fit the unique needs and goals of our clients and we’ll go above and beyond to help your business achieve the results you want.