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Online Marketing for Plumbers


Advertising for plumbers has traditionally taken place in classified directories such as the Yellow Pages. The advent of the internet has changed that. When was the last time you wanted to find a product or a service and you looked online? Furthermore, given that younger people will favour a web search than the tedium of looking through a paper directory; online marketing provides a great opportunity for switched on plumbers to get new business.

While there is a huge amount of information online about online marketing, the reality of the situation is there are 2 fundamental parts to your online presence. One is your website – i.e. the information and general user experience you provide when a user comes to your site. The other is traffic, getting qualified prospects to your site is what defines a successful online campaign. To illustrate by way of an example, if you are a plumber in Chicago, it’s very unlikely that a prospect from New York is going to be as likely to turn into a client as someone in your local area. In a nutshell, your online strategy needs to get the right people onto your site and then assuming your services are a good fit with their requirements get them to make contact. The best part is that it’s not as hard as you think. A successful web strategy can work for you on autopilot 24 hours a day bringing you new clients every day.

If you don’t have a website, the good news is the prices of websites have come down tremendously. A simple, nicely designed website is relatively inexpensive and when you consider the cost against the potential number of new clients it can bring you it’s simply not something you should be without. Added to that, you can and indeed should use your website in all your marketing – get your website put on your truck, on any paper based advertising etc

On the subject of web design, it’s important for you to remember you’re not trying to create the next Google, but what you do want is an online calling card which says who you are, what you do and what makes you special. Don’t procrastinate because you are worried that your site won’t be the best site on plumbing in your area, what’s important is to start the process. It’s always easy to spend more money in the future when your website starts accomplishing your aims i.e. bringing you new customers.

So, you’ve got your site (or you are about to start the process to create one – I mention in the getting started guide on the next page how to get a free instant site with Google), the next step is bringing in traffic. People obsess about the numbers here, don’t. What’s important is not the number of visitors it’s who they are. Bringing qualified prospects (qualified because they are looking for what you do) to your site is what counts. Guess what? There’s a great way to do that. Google and all the other search engines provide a great way to do this. It’s called pay per click advertising.

If you’re not familiar with pay per click this is how it works. People search on the internet for words (these are called keywords). What’s clear is that the keywords you search for define to some extent the user’s intention. If I search for ‘plumbing contractors in Los Angeles’, it stands to reason there is a very good chance I have some intention of appointing a plumbing contractor for some work. So in effect what we are doing is we are saying to Google – hey, whenever someone is looking for a service that I provide I want you to show my advert. This is their business and they will gladly help you out. So in the event that a user has typed in ‘plumbing contractors in Los Angeles’ you can have a little text advert about your business pop up on their screen. Those little text boxes you see at the top of the page and running down the right hand side are called ‘sponsored listings’. Which means that the companies behind those text adverts will pay Google if a user clicks on that link and visits that companies website.

At this point, Google is happy because they just got paid, the company is happy because they have got a qualified prospect (based on the keywords they were searching for) to their website. What happens now is very much in the hands of the user, do they see what they want? Does it appear you are the kind of company they want to deal with? The user may make contact with the business, then again they might not. But what is important to remember, we are exploring the dynamic of a single click. Let’s say in a day you get 50 prospects to your website, the more people who are coming to your site looking for what you do the more likely you’re going to get a phone call or an email with the possibility of business. To quote Gary Player ‘the harder I work, the luckier I get’. Except in this case, it’s your research on keywords and your website that is doing the work.

That’s the theory out the way. Now it’s time to decide on what kind of keywords are going to bring you the type of prospects you want.

Getting Keywords for Plumbers