Internet marketing promotes a company and its products or services through online tools that generate leads, drive traffic, and boost sales. Also called online marketing or internet marketing, this relies on internet channels to distribute promotional messages.
Internet marketing is a general term that covers a wide range of marketing strategies and avenues. From emails, search engines, social media posts, and blog articles, there’s one common theme among these tactics: They all focus on delivering content. With content marketing, the days of hopeful sales pitches and traditional marketing are gone.
Who prefers dripping piping and water pools in their houses? No one! This is why plumbers are your go-to individuals in this situation. Plumbers ensure your sewage system is set up and functioning correctly in both business and residential environments. Can you imagine not having safe, drinkable, clean water for a day? Plumbers are experts in maintaining and repairing your home’s water systems, so you will not have to worry.
Plumbing services for homes and offices range from small to significant repairs. Your plumbing system may have leaks and obstructions, necessitating plumbing experts to unclog or adjust the valve to prevent it from dripping.
Using internet marketing for your plumbing business can be a breakthrough for your business. With internet marketing, businesses can now target their audience with pinpoint accuracy and provide helpful information that resonates. This is perfect because that’s exactly what today’s consumers want. People don’t want to hear about products and services that don’t interest them.
This article will throw more light on the following;
- What is Online Marketing for Plumbers?
- Types of Online Marketing for Plumbers.
- How to measure Online Marketing results.
WHAT IS INTERNET MARKETING FOR PLUMBERS?
Internet marketing for plumbers promotes their company or brand to connect with current and future clients through internet means. An internet marketing campaign can include SEO, PPC, web design, email, social media, SMS, and more. Nowadays, most modern plumbing companies employ some form of internet marketing in their daily routine business activities.
TYPES OF INTERNET MARKETING FOR PLUMBING COMPANIES
Internet marketing is as expansive as the internet marketplace, which means its limits are unknown. However, plumbers can focus on some of the most common forms of internet marketing when launching their 2023 campaign. While new marketing techniques emerge each day, creating a process to scale and expand your plumbing business is a good place to start. Let’s take a look at some of the most common types of internet marketing for plumbing businesses:
1. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
SEO is a popular internet marketing service for contractors because it can help you get free business through Google. Unlike paid ads, organic search results require no payment to Google. Ranking #1 in your local service area requires an investment in both time and resources, as SEO requires patience and execution. Some plumbers prefer to advertise because it works faster, but SEO provides a better long-term ROI.
To become visible in the online space, you have to put in several strategies to achieve this. You can consider the following:
Offsite Factors & Reviews:
One of the most important factors contributing to any business’s success is customers’ responses and views about the business. This is similar to the plumbing service business too. Customers are fond of sharing their concerns about what you say about your business. This can be about what you’ve displayed in your physical office or website. As a result, you must be able to generate five-star reviews on Google My Business and other places on the web to create a winning plumbing SEO strategy. You must also earn high-quality backlinks from other relevant and authoritative plumbing websites. This is why you shouldn’t take your customer service for granted.
What your customers say about your business can give you much information about what you’re doing right or wrong. At the end of the day, your customers interact with more people than you do, and so they hold power to bring you more customers depending on what they think about your business.
This is also known as content marketing. Content marketing is a unique marketing style that concentrates on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and keep a defined set of customers. Ultimately, its goal is to cause customers to take action on the services you provide.
It is evident that traditional marketing needs to yield the desired results compared to the past. This is why for your SEO strategy to give you the required results, you must be forward-thinking to employ this means of making every page unique and exemption.
Research has shown that most marketers use content marketing in several industries, and the plumbing industry isn’t an exception. It’s handled by little businesses and individually owned enterprises around the world. This is simply because this method works.
Site Code & Structure:
Here we talk about how well your website is organized. It’s true that most websites are now constructed with the help of a web content management system (CMS).
This is a good tool that doesn’t make you see the details of the code that makes up your site. However, it is still important to have a firm know-how of basic codes and principles. For example, one just cannot become a good musician without being able to read music. In the same way, one’s inability to read musical charts will be a lifelong impediment to becoming a great musician. It’s the same with web technologies: much of the foundational concepts and abilities of the web will remain a mystery to you if you don’t understand at least basic HTML.
Hence your ability to fix this will allow search engines to quickly locate, crawl and rank all your web pages on your website through coding. Remember that your website must be fast, secure, and mobile-friendly if you want your site visitors to stay on for a long time.
2. Pay Per Click Advertising (PPC)
PPC is very popular among local businesses because it can generate fast leads. However, PPC comes at a high cost to plumbers. Unlike SEO, PPC requires a payment for each click on Google, and even a substantial budget can disappear quickly. While PPC does deliver quick results, the long-term ROI is less than you might think. If you choose to invest in a PPC campaign, ensure that you properly allocate your budget for maximum cost efficiency.
There are several places on the web where plumbing businesses strategically place pay-per-click ads. These are the most popular forms of PPC campaigns that increase the visibility of your brand:
Search ads are the most common form of PPC strategy. In search ads, companies bid on specific keywords to promote their ranking on SERP for those queries.
Advertisers choose keywords that they want their ads to show. They then tell Google Ads what ad copy they want to show when a user searches for their keyword and input the maximum amount they are willing to pay if their ad is clicked.
PPC search ads use an auction system to decide which order the advertiser paid appears on the page and how much they should pay. The auction considers how much the advertiser bids on the keyword and other quality factors.
To run a profitable paid search campaign, it is helpful to know the various formulas PPC managers use to carry out tasks such as bid optimizations and budget forecasting.
Display ads can appear on various websites as banners that pop up over the content. Businesses can strategically host display ads on sites where users are likely interested in their products.
Display advertising is quite different from PPC search advertising. This is because, with a Search campaign, your ad can appear in front of users currently searching for your product or service. With Display advertising, the advertiser’s ads appear in front of users who indicate that they may be interested in your product or service. Therefore, Display advertising tends to have a lower conversion rate than PPC search advertising. However, Display advertising often has much lower click prices than PPC search advertising.
Google asserts that it has over 2 million sites on the Google Display Network and reaches over 90% of people on the internet. Display advertising is often used to increase awareness of the advertiser’s brand. So, if you have a relatively unknown product that you want to build awareness of, then Display advertising could be your option.
Social media ads:
This type of ad blend into feeds like an organic post. Most social media platforms collect data to personalize user experience and will help you target plumbing PPC based on demographics and online activity.
Advertisers who are considering Instagram PPC can easily do this within the Facebook PPC advertising section. This is because Facebook is the owner of Instagram and therefore allows advertisers using Facebook ads to extend their advertising reach by easily adding Instagram as an additional placement in their advertising campaign.
Paid social allows for several types of PPC advertising campaigns to be created. You can opt for a re-marketing campaign on a paid social platform or a prospecting campaign on a paid social platform where you target new potential customers. Paid social media also offer various ad types with varying sizes. Many paid social ad platforms will allow you to create both video and image ads.
A remarketing campaign shows ads to people who have visited your site previously. As the user has already shown some interest in your business, a remarketing campaign is a very profitable PPC campaign. It is often used to bring customers close to converting back into the sales funnel, upsell, or cross more products to your existing customer base.
Here are some examples of audience lists that can be created and targeted via a Google Re-marketing campaign; All previous users, Previously purchased from the site, Signed up to the newsletter, Watched the business’s YouTube videos, Cart abandoners, Spent longer than x amount of seconds on site but did not convert.
Often a re-marketing campaign using Google Ads will involve showing image ads to users while they browse websites that are part of the Google Display Network. However, you can also use image or video ads for re-marketing to users.
Google Ads is a top-rated advertising platform that Re-marketing agencies use. However, there are also other options for advertisers wanting to use Re-marketing. Adroll and Criteo are popular platforms for re-marketing. You can also create a Re-marketing campaign on paid social platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
Video advertising is increasingly becoming an important part of internet marketing. 85% of businesses use video as a part of their marketing efforts, and 92% say it is an integral part of their marketing efforts. It is predicted that by 2023, online videos will make up more than 84% of all consumer traffic.
The benefits of paid video advertising over organic video advertising are that you can get your videos in front of people who are not currently aware of your business or following you. You do not have to do the work to build an audience first.
If you’re considering video advertising, then YouTube can be an excellent place to start. YouTube has 2 billion monthly active users. Seeing as though a lot of advertisers using PPC advertising are already on Google Ads, it is easy to start advertising on YouTube. This is because you can use Google Ads to show paid video ads on YouTube.
A Shopping campaign allows ads to show on search engines just like a Search campaign. However, unlike a Search campaign, Shopping ads contain a picture of the product being sold, the price, the title, and a product description. A Shopping campaign can be created by e-commerce businesses that have products and not services to sell.
A Shopping campaign can be one of the most profitable parts of a business’s PPC advertising efforts. This is because the user has already seen a picture of the product and the price. They know much more about the product before they click and cut you some money. This means that the conversion rate on a Shopping campaign is often higher than on a Search campaign.
Businesses with a Google Shopping campaign can use a Comparison Shopping Services (CSS) partner to get 20% cheaper click prices.
Amazon has a considerable volume, with 206 million people visiting Amazon every day. Amazon has a vast product range and sells over 12 million products online. In 2016, more shoppers started their online shopping journey on Amazon than on Google. These stats mean that e-commerce businesses should not overlook Amazon advertising.
If you have a business selling on Amazon, with so many businesses on this platform, getting your products to appear in front of your customers can be challenging. Therefore, Amazon offers paid Amazon Advertising where businesses can use a pay-per-click model to get their products in front of people who are searching for your products.
There are generally three types of campaign types on Amazon’s advertising platform.
Sponsored Product Ads:
Show an ad within the search results. Your ad will be shown when one of your keywords has been searched for.
Headline Search Ads:
Show an ad at the top of the page. Your ad will be shown when one of your keywords has been searched for.
Product Display Ads:
Show pictures of your actual products just like with Shopping campaign.
We have seen good results with Amazon Advertising. However, if you are doing paid advertising to your Amazon page as well as to your website, then make sure you look at total sales as well. This is because there is a danger of Amazon Advertising taking sales from your website.
3. Website Design
In 2023, generating leads without a plumbing website is not advisable. Investing in website design can enhance your lead quality and volume. Some plumbers still pay 3rd party brokers for their leads, but having your branded website stimulates company growth and encourages repeat business. When consumers find your plumbing business online, they are more likely to trust your business and become regular customers moving forward. Robust websites have appealing graphics, logos, calls-to-action, and fast loading speeds.
Here’s how you can create a plumbing website in 5 simple steps;
Register your domain name:
Your domain name is the URL where your website lives online. Before you can start your plumbing website design, you need to register your domain.
You can either use a registrar like GoDaddy or (in some cases) register your domain name during setup with the site builder you use.
Design your website:
You don’t need to hire an expensive agency to create a professional-looking web design. Many affordable and user-friendly website builders (like WordPress, GoDaddy, or Wix) let you choose pre-designed templates to get started quickly.
Use the same template to create each one of your web pages and add them to your main navigation.
Write content for your web pages:
Use the web page outlined above to create content for your website that tells visitors who you are, what you offer, and how they can contact you to schedule a service.
Then add images of your team and completed project to show potential customers what they can expect when they hire your plumbing company.
Optimize for search engines:
Designing a beautiful website is only half the battle. You need to make sure your website gets seen by potential customers. To do so, SEO for plumbers is key.
Building a website that is mobile responsive and user-friendly is a great start—but here are a few more tips to optimize your website for search engines:
- Create a Google My Business profile and include your contact information, website, services, and images
- Follow up with happy customers and ask for a review
- Include keywords customers would use to search for a specific plumbing service, like “drain cleaning,” water heater repair,” “plumbing emergency services,” or “24-hour plumber”
- Include keywords customers would use to search for a plumbing company in their neighborhood, like “plumber near me,” “New York plumber,” or “professional plumber in Chicago”
Track your performance with Google Analytics:
Monitoring your performance with Google Analytics tells you how customers are finding you, and how many are visiting your plumbing website.
Sign up for Google Analytics by following the prompts. Then add the tracking code to your website to start measuring your results.
4. Email Marketing
Getting prospects in your sales funnel is great, but email marketing allows you to take advantage of your contact list by promoting services through email. It is important to follow regulations to avoid getting banned from inboxes but create appealing and urgent offers through email will deliver results in most cases. Consider promoting discounts or specials based on seasonal needs, and don’t be afraid to set up automated emails based on responses and behaviors.
Some advantages of Email Marketing include;
Creating personalized content:
With email marketing, you can customize your campaigns and create targeted content.
Personalization can be as small as including a contact’s name in the email. Emails that include the recipient’s first name in their subject line have a higher click-through rate than those that don’t.
On the other hand, you can also create individualized content based on segmenting your audience, so you send the right emails to the right customers. For instance, you may want to send an email marketing campaign to returning customers and a different one to one-time customers.
One of the main benefits of email marketing is that your content can be highly personalized to your audience’s needs. To increase your engagement, your emails might have variations, including different images or subject lines. You can even create segmented lists based on geography or engagement levels.
To have a successful email marketing strategy, you must send the correct email to the right people at the right time. That’s where segmentation and personalization can help.
Collecting feedback and surveys:
Keeping a pulse on the customer experience is very valuable if you want customers to continue to interact, engage, and purchase from your brand.
This is one of the best ways to calculate your Net Promoter Score (NPS). This score helps you find out the percentage of customers who are brand ambassadors and the ones who are detractors. With this information, you can come up with strategies to improve your customer experience.
While email marketing is an excellent marketing tool, it can improve your sales as well.
Email marketing campaigns can feature products or services, encourage customers to purchase after abandoning their cart, or deliver special offers to your customers.
Your email marketing campaigns can easily incorporate messages to encourage a purchase to an audience that’s more likely to buy from you because they’ve opted-in to your messages and updates.
Additionally, you can use email marketing to automate part of your sales process, which can help increase sales as well.
For instance, with HubSpot’s free email marketing tool, you can automate sales drip campaigns and send automated messages to prospects your salespeople want to follow up with.
Communicating with your audience:
As a marketer, it’s always important to improve communication with your audience. When your audience feels like they can talk to you, they’re more likely to become loyal to your brand.
Just think — people appreciate good emails. Think back to the last time you received a marketing email from a brand you love — was it disruptive or did you enjoy looking at the latest news? If it’s a brand you like, you probably enjoyed the experience and it kept you in touch with one of your favorite brands.
With email marketing, you can reach more of your audience and easily communicate with brand ambassadors. Plus, these emails keep your audience engaged every time of the year, whether it’s a slow or busy season.
Generating traffic to your site:
When you produce great content, how do you disseminate it to your audience? Most likely, you send them an email.
With email marketing campaigns, you’ll send traffic to your site and improve your SEO. Plus, you’ll keep your audience engaged with your brand and your site.
For example, many of you might have reached this page from a marketing email from HubSpot. That’s because email is a great way to provide value to our audience, and we do that by sending our content in our emails and generating traffic.
When you’re creating an email that links to your content, keep in mind that each email should contain a call to action (CTA) so readers can click through to your site.
5. Social Media Marketing
Most of your current and future customers are on social media in some capacity, and you should aim to meet them there in 2023. Whether advertising on Facebook or posting an Instagram Story, you can connect with your customers on their preferred platforms. Facebook Ads are similar to Google Ads in that you must pay for people to click on your page or website, and the money can add up quickly. With that being said, strategic ad campaigns can deliver fantastic results on Facebook in 2023.
Some advantages of Social Media Marketing include;
Increased Brand Awareness:
Social media is one of the most cost-efficient internet marketing methods to syndicate content and increase your business’s visibility. Implementing a social media strategy will significantly increase your brand recognition since you will engage with a broad consumer audience.
To get started, create social media profiles for your business and begin interacting with others. Get employees, business partners, and sponsors to “like” and “share” your page. Having people interact with your content will increase brand awareness and build your reputation as a business.
Each shared post will be introduced to a new network of individuals, which can lead them to become potential customers, and the more people who know about your business, the better.
By investing only a few hours per week, over 91% of marketers claimed that their social marketing efforts significantly increased their exposure.
There is no doubt that by simply having a social media page, your brand will benefit, and with regular use, it can generate a broad audience for your business.
More Inbound Traffic:
Without marketing your business on social media, your inbound traffic is limited to your usual customers. The people familiar with your brand are likely searching for the same keywords you already rank for. Without utilizing social media as part of your marketing strategy, you’ll have much more difficulty reaching anyone outside of your loyal customer circle.
Every social media profile you add to your marketing mix is a gateway to your website, and every piece of content you post is another opportunity to acquire a new customer. Social media is a melting pot of different types of people with varying backgrounds and behaviors. With different people come different needs and different ways of thinking.
Syndicating your content on as many platforms as possible allows these individuals to organically reach your business. For instance, perhaps someone in an older demographic of consumers will search for your website using a particular keyword on Facebook, but a millennial could begin their search by using a different social media platform entirely because they search for products differently.
By marketing on social media, you can effectively open your business to a wider variety of versatile consumers all over the world.
Improved Search Engine Rankings:
Although posting on social media might get your business some site traffic, more effort than that is required to see significant success.
Search engine optimization is very important for achieving higher page rankings and obtaining traffic to your business website. While social media doesn’t directly increase search engine rankings, Social Media Examiner states that more than 58% of marketers who have been using social media for one year or longer still see improved search engine rankings.
Being able to rank in the top positions for your keywords will revolutionize your traffic and continue to generate positive results for your business. Let’s face it, everyone uses Google to find information, and they likely won’t navigate past page 1 because their answer normally is on the first page of results. If your business website isn’t ranked toward the top of search engine results, you should probably adjust your search engine optimization strategy.
To give yourself the best chance of ranking better through social media, create high-quality content that integrates your targeted keywords. Content such as blogs, infographics, case studies, business information, and employee photos will make your business’s social media profile intriguing and credible. Once you begin posting quality content, you’ll begin to build a social media community where followers will “like” and “share” your content.
Most importantly, it gives you more opportunities to get in front of industry influencers who will write about your business and provide links back – which will help to directly increase search engine rankings.
Higher Conversion Rates:
With increased visibility, your business gains more opportunities for conversion. Every blog post, image, video, or comment may lead viewers to your company’s website and increase traffic.
Social media marketing gives your business a positive impression through a humanization factor. Brand interaction by sharing content, commenting, and posting statuses on social media personifies a brand. People prefer to do business with other people rather than companies.
Over 51% of marketers claimed that taking the time to develop relationships with consumers showed positive results in sales. The better impression you make on a visitor, the more likely they are to think of your business when the need for your product or services arises. Studies have also shown that social media has a 100% higher lead-to-close rate than outbound marketing.
When a brand is interactive online, consumers who follow your brand’s accounts often begin to trust the credibility of your business altogether. People use social media platforms to stay connected to their friends, family, and communities. Since people are already talking, why not throw your brand into the mix? More likely than not, they’ll mention your brand to a friend when your products or services are needed, overall providing your business with social proof of its quality.
As reported by Social Media Examiner, about 66% of marketers saw lead generation benefits by using social media platforms at least 6 hours per week. Putting your brand in an atmosphere where people are sharing, liking, and talking, can only improve the conversion rates of your existing traffic.
6. SMS Texting
In 2023, consumers expect immediate responses when seeking services. You should set up a chatbox on your website and have the ability to respond through SMS text messaging immediately, whether automated or manually. As we know, texting is the preferred form of communication for most Americans, and it feels more personal to your potential clients. They must voluntarily submit their phone number through your chat box so you know that their interest is genuine.
Here are some benefits of using SMS for your plumbing business;
As far as delivery goes, SMS is pretty quick, and it’s also efficient – taking only seconds to reach a vast audience. It’s rare to get such a quick and fast personalized message to an audience with that kind of speed.
You will instantly be able to see those who have received it, along with other analytical data such as those who have opened it, read it and of course, the important one, which is those who have responded.
Because it’s directly sent to each client, SMS is a very personal message. Mobile phones are very personal devices, so people will often respond with more personal immediacy. You can improve this still further by delivering it as a personal message to each individual. This is sure to grab their attention.
Potential customers are far more likely to give you an email address than they are their mobile phone number, so yes you need to keep an email list too. But this demonstrates how personal most people take their phone numbers to be. Once you have a phone number, customers will likely be more responsive to your messaging because they invited you in.
Text messages are cheap especially if you buy them in bulk. No other marketing method provides such affordable results, particularly if compared with traditional marketing methods, such as TV, radio, or print media.
Simple and easy:
Due to its simplicity and reach, SMS has become a globally adopted communication channel. Everyone knows how to open, read and text a message. Moreover, thanks to the limitation in length (160 characters), messages are small, direct, concise, and go straight to the point. And who doesn’t like it sweet & simple?
MEASURING INTERNET MARKETING RESULTS FOR PLUMBING CONTRACTORS
Every internet marketing campaign should have a purpose, and you should measure results. Using tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console, you can document your internet growth and appropriately attribute campaigns to leads. But before you can measure anything, you must first identify your goals as a plumbing company. For example, you want to generate x amount of leads per month while spending x dollars. The ROI will be x, and the quarterly revenue will be y. Also, the best internet marketing agencies will provide these reports on demand.
Google Analytics is a free tool that allows plumbers to track website visitors, behavior, and engagement. You can learn how to set up Google Analytics here, which every plumbing company should do immediately. Once you set up your GA account, you can begin creating goals and tracking your success over time. For SEO in particular, it is essential to wait at least six weeks before reacting to the accumulated data.
Google Search Console
Search Console is Google’s other free tool to track search engine performance and monitor technical errors with your website. Through GSC, plumbers can see which queries attract the most traffic to their website and which pages are most common for search engine users. Based on GSC data, plumbing companies can adjust their website content to meet user intent better. For example, if a query has many impressions but few clicks, you may want to change your page’s title to attract more clicks.
Google My Business Insights
GMB Insights provides plumbers with an in-depth portrait of how Google Maps users find their business. For example, it shows which queries (ex. plumber near me) lead to users clicking on your Google My Business listing and how frequently the user then calls your business through the GMB profile. Depending on your results, you may want to enhance your GMB listing with more pictures, Q&As, and Google Posts.
Facebook Audience Insights
Facebook Audience Insights provides plumbing companies with detailed information about followers and general Facebook users. Based on the data, plumbers can create more relevant content for their Facebook page, increasing engagement and contributing to sustainable business growth. The insights from this platform can also help plumbing companies grow their social media presence and gain more followers in 2023.
Do You Need Help from a Digital Marketing Agency for Plumbers?
There are several plumbers out there who don’t know these great internet marketing tips, but that doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of these strategies outlined here. If you’re looking for further explanation on implementing these strategies, schedule a time to talk with Electric Marketing Group to map out a suitable internet marketing pathway for your plumbing business.
We can help you determine how well you’re using these methods in your marketing strategy or even help you implement some of the strategies you read about here. Contact us now and let’s work together to lift your business to the next level this year.