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How To Dominate First Page Of Google Search Results

Q: What’s better than ranking #1 on Google?

A: Dominating page 1 of Google by getting featured multiple times!

If you wonder whether ranking high on Google search results is important for a local service business such as plumber, electrician, housecleaning service, or landscaper – get this: 46% of all searches are local while 76% of them result in a phone call!

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Getting mentioned multiple times on Google SERPs (search engine results pages) can amplify your local service business’s online presence and increase its credibility, which in turn will drive more online traffic and attract more high-quality leads.

Here’s an example:

Colonial Carpet Cleaning shows up an amazing 6-8 times on SERPs for “rug cleaning Wilmington MA” and “carpet cleaning Wilmington MA”!

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The chances of this business being seen by prospects that are actively looking for carpet cleaning services and making an impression have increased greatly since it appears so many times.

So, what can you do so your business shows up multiple times on the first page of Google search results?

If you look at a local search results page, you’d notice that there are a few different sections – the local ads at the top (“carpet cleaner nearby”) the text ads, the local pack (with map and links,) and then the organic search results.

By optimizing for all these different components, you can appear multiple times on relevant local search results on Google.

Local Service Ads (LSA)

At the very top of the SERP are the Local Service Ads (LSA). It’s a pay-per-lead platform by Google for local service businesses.

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These ads are shown on all devices and display key information that helps increase conversions, such as star ratings, business hours, and phone number.

Since it’s an independent product, you can run LSA alongside Google Ads without them interfering with each other’s ranking or effectiveness.

To set up your LSA, simply visit the LSA website, follow the online instructions, estimate the ad spend, and create your profile.

Make sure to submit your business license and insurance details for Google to verify your information. The “Google Guaranteed” badge will then be added to your ad to increase credibility and drive more traffic.

Local Pack

Many SERPs for local service inquiries (e.g., “near me” searches) display the search results on a map with the businesses’ locations and website links.

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The local pack is shown on both desktop and mobile search results and is a very effective way for capturing the attention of high-quality leads that are ready to hire a service provider.

To get listed on the local pack, you need to claim your Google My Business (GMB) listing and optimize your GMB profile by filling out as much information as possible, including a client-attractive description, and using GMB posts to boost your visibility.

Star ratings and customer testimonials are particularly powerful for increasing your credibility and attracting more clicks. You can put client testimonials on your website and then use schema markup so they show up on organic Google listings.

In addition, monitor your GMB listing regularly to ensure that you’re responding to queries and comments in a timely manner. Keep in mind that anyone can update your GMB listing so log onto your dashboard regularly to make sure that the information is accurate.

Google Ads

Text ads are still one of the most effective ways to reach prospects that are located in your geographic area and have high purchase intent. These ads are simple and easy to create, not to mention Google is always adding new features to help advertisers optimize results.

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Google has access to a tremendous amount of user data. With the help of AI-driven technologies, it’s now possible for small businesses to tap into that wealth of information.

Leverage the granular targeting options available on the Google Ads platform to help you reach the highest-quality leads. For example, you can choose targeting segments based on demographics, in-market users, custom intent, similar audiences, and remarketing.

Use Google’s automated bidding feature to optimize your bids, which uses machine-learning technologies to tailor the right bids for every single auction.

In addition, Google often introduces new ad formats to help advertisers improve results. For example, by using ad extensions (e.g., call extensions, location extensions) you can provide additional information and increase the “real estate” your ad occupies on SERPs so you can capture more attention at no additional cost.

Last but not least, optimize your ad copy to include relevant long-tail keywords and a call-to-action to drive targeted traffic.

Organic Search: On-Page SEO

While ads are becoming more prominent on SERPs, it’s not to say that organic search isn’t important. In fact, many consumers still prefer to click on organic search results instead of ads.

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As more consumers are using their smartphones to search for local service providers, it’s becoming even more important to get ranked high on the first page so your link can be seen with minimum scrolling.

On-page SEO is one of the most effective ways to improve your ranking on SERPs. Here are a few things you can do:

  • Mobile optimization: since Google introduced mobile-first indexing, websites that are optimized for mobile devices are given priorities in search engine rankings.
  • Site speed: reduce load time by optimizing assets (e.g., images) and cleaning up the code.
  • Navigation and usability: simplify your website structure so users can find the information they need quickly and easily.
  • Long-tail keywords: optimize your content for long-tail keywords, which helps you rank high in relevant search results and attract visitors with high purchase intent.
  • Visual content: leverage the power of images and photos to increase engagement. Use alt tags with the proper keywords so search engines can index the content.
  • Videos: post videos on YouTube (which is another great way to get listed on the first page of Google) and then embed them onto your website.

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Third-Party Review Sites and Local Directories

Many third-party sites (e.g., Yelp, Google) have high domain authority, which Google uses as a signal for trusted sources. By listing your business on these sites, you can leverage their “SEO juice” to get extra spots on the first page.

Listing on these sites also adds backlinks from high authority sites, which can help improve your website’s ranking.

Make sure to complete your profiles and include your website URL so you can increase your reach on the review sites and drive more traffic back to your website.

Online reviews, especially on your Google My Business listing, is another signal Google uses to determine ranking. A 5-star review will add credibility to your local pack listing or LSA and attract more high-quality prospects.

Conclusion

While it’s important to show up on Google first page so you can drive more website traffic, your website also needs to be optimized to effectively capture leads so you can turn them into customers.

That’s why here at 99 Calls, we combine the latest SEO best practices with a lead generating website to maximize your marketing ROI.

Learn more and see how we can help you dominate Google first page here.

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How To Design and Use a Logo To Market Your Local Service Business

There are many things to juggle when you’re running a local service business (e.g., painter, plumber, electrician, cleaner) and designing a logo may not be at the top of your to-do list.

However, a well-designed logo is a key component in your marketing toolkit. It helps you establish a consistent presence in the community and become instantly recognizable to prospects and customers.

Here’s what you should know when creating a logo for your local service business:

Why Should You Have a Logo?

In today’s crowded marketplace, a standout logo design can help you capture prospects’ attention while communicating your brand value and expertise effectively.

Here are some benefits of using a well-designed logo in your marketing:

  • Create a strong first impression: Americans are exposed to 4,000 to 10,000 ads each day and brands have just 2 seconds to pique prospects’ interest. A visually appealing logo builds brand awareness and increases brand recognition so you can stand out from your competition.
  • Deliver a consistent customer experience: a logo creates a sense of familiarity that builds trust and fosters customer relationships. A consistent brand presence also helps improve customer loyalty and retention for your service business.
  • Enhance brand recognition across customer touch points: most prospects and customers will interact with your brand online and offline. When you use a logo on the various online platforms (e.g., website, social media, online directories, review sites) and offline marketing materials, you can establish a consistent presence that builds brand awareness and reinforce your brand identity.

DIY Logo Design For Your Local Service Business

If you want to take a stab at creating your own logo, follow these steps to set a solid foundation for the design process:

  • Get inspiration from logos of other businesses in your industry.
  • Consider your ideal customers’ preferences and use design elements that speak to the target market. E.g., what represents “expert” or “trustworthiness” to them?
  • Express your message and brand identity in the logo design.
  • Make the logo clean and functional – it should be scalable, easy to reproduce, memorable, and distinctive.
  • Use production-friendly color options. E.g., a five-color logo may look great but the printing cost will be very high.
  • Consider how your business name affects the layout of the logo.
  • Illustrate the key benefits of your services with graphic elements.
  • Avoid using clip art and trendy looks.

There are many online “DIY” logo design tools you can use to create your logo. When selecting a logo maker, consider its usability, variety of templates and design elements, customer support, downloadable file formats, and the availability of other branding tools (e.g., business card template.)

Here are some of the top online logo design services:

  • Vistaprint Logo Maker – https://www.vistaprint.com/logoMakerService: choose from a variety of general logos and then customize as you wish for only $20.00. Of course, Vistaprint will try to upsell other products, but if you want business cards, letterhead, or even shirts, or pens, this is a one-stop shop.
  • LogoMix – https://www.logomix.com/step1: similar to Vistaprint, LogoMix offers a large variety of semi-customizable logos for $39.95, though they often have promotions to lower this price. And like Vistaprint you can get your new logo printed on all kinds of merchandise.
  • BrandCrowd – https://www.brandcrowd.com/: for more variety, have a look at BrandCrowd. BrandCrowd lets you design logos online starting at $45, or if you wait a day or two, you may get an email for a discounted rate.
  • DesignCrowd – https://www.designcrowd.com/: get a custom designed logo starting at $109. If you know what you want and willing to pay for it then consider DesignCrowd for that custom design.
  • FreeLogoDesign: choose from a variety of logo templates and create your logo with its user-friendly editor. The free plan gives you a 200×200 pixel transparent PNG file and for $49, you’ll get high-resolution files (PNG and JPG), a resizable SVG file, the ability to update and re-download, and the option to add on a social media kit.
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  • Canva: use your own graphic elements, choose from its range of logo templates, or design from scratch with the easy-to-use, drag-and-drop interface. The entire process is free if you use your own images and graphic elements. Otherwise, use Canva’s free elements or access the premium graphics for just $1. You can download the design in popular file formats or invite others to collaborate with you on the platform.
  • Tailor Brands: streamline your branding process with this comprehensive toolbox. Besides logo design, you also have access to business card tool, branded business deck, presentation template, and more. The Basic plan costs $3.99 per month and Standard plan is $9.99 per month. If you cancel the subscription, you still keep the rights to the assets.
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  • 99designs : create a “contest” and choose from a variety of concepts submitted by multiple designers. You’ll then provide feedback and hone your favorites before choosing a winner. The Basic package starts at $299 and you’ll get production-ready files for your other branding projects.

How To Apply Your Logo To Your Marketing Materials

A logo is a “visual shorthand” that helps enhance your local presence and make your brand instantly recognizable to clients and prospects.

Here’re how you can leverage your logo to reinforce a consistent brand image and promote your local service business:

  • Put the logo on your online properties, such as website, email newsletters, and mobile app. Use the logo design (e.g., color palette, font) to inform the look and feel of these customer touch points.
  • Use the logo as the avatar and/or cover photo for your company’s social media profiles, e.g., Facebook business page or YouTube channel, to build a consistent omnichannel presence.
  • Upload the logo to your online directory listings and profiles on third-party review sites (e.g., Yelp, Google, BBB) to increase brand recognition.
  • Put the logo on t-shirts and have your employees wear them when they’re on the job. This will not only make them your “walking billboards” but also reinforce a sense of professionalism.
  • Create items such as magnets, pens, mugs, etc. with your logo and contact information to give to your customers.
  • Apply the logo on decal or vinyl wrap for your vehicles to augment your brand’s local presence wherever you go.

Conclusion

A well-designed logo is a key component in your branding and marketing strategy. It helps you stand out from your competition and attract the right clients to your business.

When used in all the customer touch points, a logo helps you bridge your online and offline presence, stay top of mind, and reinforce relationships with your market.

Don’t forget to leverage the brand recognition you have built up to drive traffic to your website and capture prospect information with an optimized lead-generating website so you can follow up and close the sale.

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How To Optimize Your Local Business Website For Voice Searches

As a local service business (e.g., painter, plumber, electrician, landscaper), you may wonder how you should focus your marketing resources to get more leads and generate more sales.

You probably know by now that most people search online for… pretty much anything! In fact, 97% of consumers go online to find a local business.

SEO marketing isn’t news but here comes the plot twist – voice search!

Did you know that 58% of consumers have used voice search (e.g., Alexa, Siri, Google Home) to find local business information within the last year while 46% of voice search users look for a local business daily?

Not to mention, an increasing number of consumers are using mobile devices to look up local businesses and voice searches now account for 20% of all mobile searches.

In order to get your local service business found by high-quality prospects that are ready to hire a professional like you, it’s becoming more important to get featured in voice search results.

The biggest challenge, however, is that voice searches only deliver the top ranking results. Businesses that can get to “position zero” in relevant search results have a much better chance of being mentioned in voice searches.

It’s, therefore, more important than ever to get your SEO ducks in a row so your website gets top rankings in relevant local search results.

Here’s what you can do to move the needle for your local SEO ranking:

1. Format Your Content For Featured Snippets

Google’s featured snippets (or answer boxes) are prominently displayed in “position zero” of SERPs and used as answers in many voice searches.

To format your content so it’s shown as featured snippets, you should use the appropriate header tags, include relevant long-tail keywords in the headers, use lists or short paragraphs of text, and put data in tables.

Also, keep the content for featured snippets concise – the most common length is just 40 – 50 words long.

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2. Create Content Based On Commonly Asked Questions

Consumers’ search habits have evolved dramatically since the days when users would type a bunch of keywords into a search box.

Today, searchers typically ask the voice assistance a question – just like they would to another human being. Therefore, your content should be written conversationally based on natural language questions.

Research how your ideal customers phrase their queries and identify the long-tail keywords they’d use when asking questions related to your topic of expertise and the services you provide.

For example, you can survey your customers, read social media posts, and look at customer reviews to find out the relevant key phrases to incorporate into your website content.

3. Increase Prominence With Online Reviews

Getting listed on Google’s local pack and having favorable star ratings gives you a better chance of being featured in voice search results.

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Claim your listings in online directories and ask customers to rate your business on third-party review sites (e.g., Yelp, BBB) to increase your business’s prominence. In addition, boost your credibility and improve your SEO by getting your business mentioned in the local press or publications.

Don’t leave your online reputation up to chance – manage it proactively by optimizing your online profiles, responding to comments or reviews, and implementing an online review strategy to get more good reviews.

4. Optimize Your Website For Mobile SEO

Since Google has implemented mobile-first indexing, websites optimized for mobile user experience tend to get ranked higher in search results.

To improve mobile SEO, you should use a responsive website template, optimize all the assets, remove unnecessary images, and reduce site load time. Also, ensure that all the content is legible on the small screen and keep your content concise since most mobile users want to get quick answers while on the go.

In addition, you can leverage mobile-specific features, such as tap-to-call, location services or geo-fencing, and autofill to further streamline user experience while making it easy for prospects to get in touch with you.

5. Include Local Information

To increase the relevance of your content, incorporate local information, keywords, and verbiage to signal proximity to search engines so your website will more likely be featured in voice search results (e.g., when users ask questions such as “[ service ] near me.”

Insert local key terms into the title and meta description tags and use long-tail keywords to delineate the content topically and geographically. Put the local keywords as close to the beginning of a tag as possible to avoid it being truncated in search results.

Keep your website fresh by publishing timely local content. For example, a landscaper can create blog posts on topics related to the local weather conditions and how it affects plants.

If you’re sponsoring or participating in local events, publish a write-up on your blog. You can also piggyback on local news events and share insights related to your area of expertise.

6. Keep Your Content Focused and Simple

Piling on keywords is no longer the best way to get ranked in search results. Instead, focus on a small list of keywords that’d make the most impact on your ranking.

You should also understand the search intent of your ideal customers so you can target search terms that are not only relevant but also match the searchers’ customer journey.

In addition, you can append modifiers to common keywords associated with your services (e.g., “best plumber in [ city ]” or “top electricians in [ town ]”) to match the way many consumers phrase their queries.

Conclusion

The popularity of voice searches presents a great opportunity for local businesses that can rank high in search engine results.

The key is to stay current with the latest SEO best practices so you can consistently improve your website, content, and online presence to get the top rankings in relevant search results.

Also, ensure that your website is set up to turn the online traffic into leads so you can maximize the ROI of your marketing budget.

Sounds like a lot of work? We get it.

That’s why here at 99 Calls, we stay up-to-date with the latest in Local SEO marketing and Local PPC advertising so you can focus on servicing your clients and doing what you do best.

We help local service area businesses, not only get found online by high-quality prospects but also ensure that they have a highly-optimized and mobile-responsive lead generating a website to maximize conversion rates.

Learn more about our Local SEO and Local PPC services or request a demo to see how 99 Calls can help you get more leads.

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Top SEO and PPC Trends For Local Service Businesses in 2019

As a local service provider (e.g., plumber, contractor, electrician, landscaping service) you may find it rather challenging to keep up with the many changes that Google has recently introduced to both its advertising platform and search algorithms.

With limited time and resources for SEO marketing and PPC advertising, what should you do to make the most of your budget?

What are the most impactful tactics you can use to move the needle?

Google has developed many new features to support local businesses and help them get found by potential clients. It’s therefore important to understand the latest SEO and PPC trends so you can stay competitive and stand out from your competition in 2019 and beyond:

1. Optimize Website For Mobile Users

As more and more consumers are searching for local businesses on their smartphones, your website needs to be optimized for mobile devices.

In fact, 88% of consumers that search for local products or services on a mobile device call or visit a business within 24 hours. In addition, Google’s mobile-first indexing gives higher ranking to mobile-optimized websites in search engine results.

To boost your website’s mobile SEO, use a mobile-responsive template, remove interstitial popups, reduce page load time, optimize all assets (e.g., images,) improve the content’s legibility, use HTML 5 for video and animation (instead of Flash), and leverage mobile-specific features such as tap-to-call to enhance user experience.

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2. Optimize Content For Voice Search

50% of all searches will be voice searches by 2020 while 2 in 5 adults are already using voice search at least once a day. Not to mention, voice searches account for 20% of all mobile searches.

Since voice searches only present the top entries, it has become even more important to create content that will rank high in relevant search engine results.

To increase the chances of getting found on voice searches, you should create content based on commonly asked questions, write your copy conversationally, position and format the content to signal relevance (e.g., by using header tags and bullet points) keep the content concise, use long-tail keywords, and include local information or keywords.

3. Create Content Based On Google’s E-A-T Guidelines

Google’s most recent Page Quality Rating Guideline focuses heavily on E-A-T, which stands for Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. It’s used as a ranking signal when determining a website’s position in search results.

Local service businesses can improve their E-A-T by publishing unique high-quality relevant information. You can also leverage relevant user-generated content to signal credibility and share personal experience or success stories to position yourself as the subject matter expert.

In addition, you can increase the trustworthiness of your website by getting listed and rated on third-party review sites, such as BBB (Better Business Bureau) and Yelp. You should also invest in your site’s technical security, e.g., by installing an SSL certificate and including trust seals on transaction pages.

4. Leverage AI-Driven Features To Optimize ROI

AI-driven technologies, such as machine learning and natural language processing, are used by many PPC platforms (e.g., Google and Facebook) to analyze user data and help advertisers optimize ad spend.

Thankfully, most of these platforms are doing the work for you so you don’t have to worry about parsing through an endless stream of data or purchasing expensive technologies.

For example, you can optimize conversion rates and ROAS (return on ad spend) with Google’s automated bidding feature, which adjusts the bids automatically based on real-time data. You can also leverage Responsive Search Ads (RSAs), which use machine learning technologies to optimize ad copy by showing contextual content and increasing the reach of your ads.

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5. Implement Customer-Centric Targeting

Customer experience will become an increasingly important factor that affects consumers’ decision-making process. In fact, 86% of consumers are willing to pay more for better customer experience.

PPC ads and SEO copy need to be audience-centric rather than keyword-focused. For instance, audience targeting (e.g., by geographic location) will take priority while search intent will be used as a factor to help deliver the most relevant information to searchers.

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Customer-centric targeting also gives you the opportunity to go beyond just making a one-time sale. You can also cultivate brand awareness and build brand affinity to stay top of mind – which will help you not only increase conversion rate but also improve client retention and boost customer lifetime value.

6. Don’t Overlook the Basics

Text ads are still one of the most effective formats in PPC advertising. However, one size doesn’t fit all when you’re using today’s sophisticated segmentation technologies, which allows you to deliver a highly personalized experience.

Create copy and tailor the CTAs of your text ads to speak to each audience segment (e.g., based on specific search terms or location) in order to deliver a coherent and highly relevant user experience that will help optimize ROI.

In addition, if you’re using responsive search ads (RSAs), make sure that all the headlines and descriptions can work well together regardless of how they’re combined to avoid a disjointed experience.

7. Use Remarketing Ads

Retargeting ads are highly effective in increasing click-through-rates and conversion rates. They allow you to reach prospects that have already visited your website and shown interest in your services.

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For most businesses, Facebook and Google Display Network offer the greatest reach for remarketing campaigns. Just like any other PPC campaign, your ad creative should be aligned with the objective (e.g., drive conversion, build brand awareness) the users’ previous interaction with your business (e.g., the content of a page they have seen) and the landing page content to get the best results.

For example, for a visitor who has read about a particular service on your website, your ad should mention the same offering. This can help increase your conversion rate by delivering a coherent user experience.

8. Leverage New Features

PPC advertising platforms, especially Google and Facebook, are constantly rolling out new features to help advertisers generate more engagement from their ads.

Stay current with the latest ad formats and audience targeting options so you can increase the effectiveness of your ads.

In particular, ad extensions work well for local businesses. They allow you to include additional links, such as location extensions, call extensions, and site link extensions (e.g., to highlight your services) while increasing the real estate your ad occupies on the search results page without additional cost.

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9. Get Shown In “Position Zero”

Google has been creating more opportunities and offering more features for local business to get ranked favorably in search results.

You can gain more exposure to local searchers who are looking for your services by getting your ad onto “position zero,” which is above the regular text ads and organic search results.

For example, by claiming your Google My Business listing, your information can be displayed in the “local pack” at the top of search result pages. You can also place Local Services Ads (LSAs), which is Google’s pay-per-lead advertising platform for local businesses. It will put your ad at the very top of relevant search results, above other text ads and the local pack.

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Conclusion

Optimizing for local searches is the key to getting found by prospects looking for your services and generating more high-quality leads.

Besides getting your business ranked high on local search results and driving traffic, you also need to ensure that your website is set up to capture leads and generate sales. Otherwise, your SEO and PPC efforts will be all for naught.

That’s why here at 99 Calls, we not only help you rank high in search engine results with a mobile-optimized website and by getting listed on key review sites but also set up a lead generating website that’ll help increase your conversion rate.

Learn more about generating leads for your local service business or request a demo to see how we can help you maximize your online advertising dollars.