99% Of all roofing websites fall into 3 categories and over 90% into 2. We will tell you at the end why this is great news for you:
We at Home Trade Marketing make a living helping struggling roofing websites, turning them into the biggest asset that the company owns.
Yes, the biggest.
A modern-day roofing company website is fully optimised for search and lead conversion will outperform all other modern day marketing techniques and give a higher ROI than any other form of advertising you wish to try.
Because all your potential customers are searching online. Fact!
We make sure our client's websites are found for the searches and services that matter to them.
Now not everybody wants to dive in and work with an SEO company. Some people like to take their time and others like to try to do it for themselves, so, as promised here is the 27 ways to start improving your roofing website now.
A little disclaimer! If you do all of these steps as explained, then you will see a significant improvement in your company’s online visibility. However, be prepared SEO is a bitch! It’s heavily time-consuming, so get yourself a large coffee because these strategies are straight out of our checklist of over 100 implementations we carry out when boarding a new roofing client onto our SEO management system.
The most important factor when it comes to SEO, keywords are what enables your website to be found by the right people and with over a billion websites out there, being found is the difference between your website being a success or floating around in a digital black hole like the majority of tradesmen's websites.
70% of all searches conducted on the internet are "long tail keywords" and this is where you can really make a difference to the performance of your site. "Long-tail keywords are longer more detailed searches. By conducting keyword research, you will know what users are searching for and can tailor your website to match their requirements.
Keyword research should be done at the beginning of the development stage and one of the best ways to discover relevant "long tail" keywords is to simply use the google search box and see what other searches people are conducting. There are various tools at your disposal that can help you with initial research for roofing keywords including:
With all the talk of crawlers and algorithms, it can be tempting to tailor your content towards the robots that determine your ranking instead of the humans who will be reading it. This is a mistake and a common one.
Your content should be informative, flow naturally and be free of mistakes to enhance the user's overall experience. If you write naturally, attract more traffic and insert keywords the robots will take care of the rest.
Having a greater number of pages gives you the opportunity to go into greater detail about all the services you offer and has a positive impact on your SEO efforts, it enables you to use tons more keywords without cramming them all into a few pages.
It also provides a better user experience as the person searching can be directed to the specific service they are looking for, without trawling through everything else you offer.
This is a tricky one, in reality, the more content your website has the better, as it gives you the opportunity to rank for more keywords. 500 words will let you integrate 5-10 keywords, but the way to dominate your local area is to be found for a wide range of search terms and to do this you need content.
However, it is best practice to split this over a number of pages. Having one page that users need to scroll more than a few times to finish reading (especially on a mobile device) will put readers off.
I know what you are thinking " colours, are they really that important in the grand scheme of things" and the answer is yes, they are. I'm not going to go into great detail on the subject of colour psychology, suffice to say, the biggest social media platforms on the planet, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Paypal and a number of the largest banking companies are blue.
Why? People like blue it is said to be the colour that portrays trust, loyalty, calmness and peace, so is this coincidental? I think not.
When choosing the colour scheme for your website it is important as with every other aspect of website development to do some research. The colour scheme should match your branding, services and target audience. For a guide to the best colour choosing tools click here.
In general, it is best practice to keep the body text black it's easy to read and what people are used too. When choosing fonts for your roofing website use standard ones. You want a font that is easy to read on any device so don't start experimenting with fancy and rare ones that will turn people off and have an impact on your bounce rate.
Most successful websites stick to Arial, Times New Roman, Helvetica, Verdana or Tahoma. Of course, you want certain words on your page to stand out headings etc so check out other websites and see what is working for them.
So, you have done your keyword research and have a list of words used in searches for roofing companies, here's the thing; don't make the mistake of cramming them all onto one page, not only will it have users leaving your site in droves, it is frowned on by Google and you could end up being penalised or your site removed.
The optimum keyword density is around 2-5%, however, don't let the fear of Google hitting you with a big stick compromise your SEO efforts use "long tail" keywords and synonyms to achieve the best optimisation.
If you have a website, you will have heard the words "content is king" and yes it is, but there is another saying you should take heed of too and that is "a picture paints a thousand words" having media content on your website will improve your website.
Businesses that include videos on their site see a higher click-through rate, more engagement and an increase in conversions and it isn't too difficult. You don't have to be the roofer's equivalent to Tarantino to implement this powerful tool, one thing to remember is to always optimise your videos and try to include a call to action.
Social signals play an important part in the ranking of your website and everyone knows a high ranking produces more leads. Google look at a number of variables when determining your search engine ranking and social media's importance is increasing because:
Social media promotes your authority within the industry. Google wants to provide the user with the best online experience, the more you are seen as a credible source of information for people. the more likely your site will be the one found. There is no better validation of this than people liking and sharing your posts.
Any roofing company knows that word of mouth is one of the most powerful methods of gaining new leads and more business. Social media is replacing this personal communication and in a recent survey, it was found that 84% of consumers trust reviews online the same as word of mouth recommendations. Therefore, it makes sense to have reviews and the ability to rate your roofing business on social media platforms.
The more quality content you produce and the more you build your business's reputation on social media platforms, blogs etc, the more backlinks you will receive. A backlink or inbound link is when another website shares a link to your page and they help do 2 important things
Any successful SEO campaign should utilise tags, proper use of meta titles/tags will improve the user's experience and help you climb up those infernal search engine rankings.
Title tags (the information displayed above the description, in SERP results) play an important part in the SEO of your pages and creating a great one will put you ahead of the competition, highlighting the relevance of your services, so how do you it?
A title tag should be between 40-60 characters long and although it is aimed at search engines, it should read easily for the user and make sense as a complete sentence. Your most important keyword should be placed at the beginning of the sentence and it must accurately describe the content of the page it refers too.
Always use good quality visuals, using low-quality images on your roofing website will give potential customers the impression that your work matches the photos shabby and unprofessional. Pictures are important and reflect your brand so it is essential you use high-resolution clear images that capture the user's attention and promote your professionalism.
It is also important that you optimise your images.
Google's search engine crawlers can't see the images you use on your website but they can read them so it is vital to give them a title.
For example, you may have an image of a certain type of roofing material named IMG-238956, this will be no use to anyone searching for images of slate roof tiles, so make sure you re-title the image describing exactly what is in the photo.
This will help your image be found and can also help your SEO campaign. Remember lots of large high-resolution images will slow down your loading speed, so it is essential to use the correct sized files.
We are not a patient lot; did you know that 40% of consumers will leave a website that takes longer than 3 seconds to load? So, site speed is important but how do you tell if your website is quick enough and what can you do if it isn't?
There could be several reasons your website is not loading as fast as you would like, from hosting to poor optimisation. As previously mentioned user experience is an important factor for Google and potential customers are more likely to remain on your website if it loads quickly which in turn will improve your ranking.
Obviously, if you use a company like Hometrade to manage your SEO and site they have the capability to manage site speed but if you are doing it yourself there are tools available to check.
Pagespeed Insights provided by Google does exactly what it says on the tin by analysing your site and listing factors that could be preventing it from loading as quickly as it should.
Pingdom is another comprehensive tool that gives detailed information on CSS files, HTML and images that could be hindering your site's performance and also gives tips how to speed it up.
GTmetrix gives insights into your website's performance and recommendations how to prevent bottlenecks and speed up load time.
There are various ways to increase your loading speed such as compressing files, optimising images and enabling caching and the benefits of a faster loading site are worth the effort.
What's so bad about it? I'm not talking about copying and pasting a successful roofing website's content and passing it off as your own that's plagiarism and illegal I'm talking about the correctly optimised well-performing page you have about your company's domestic roofing services, surely you can use the exact same wording for your commercial page and just alter it to suit?
Here's the thing it confuses the search engines they will rank the original copy that was seen first, your commercial page will have no weight at all, it will not feature in the rankings and your website will be penalised as not being a source for reliable, original quality content.
This will affect your overall SEO efforts so it makes sense to have completely different content for each page. Not only will it prevent this happening it gives you the opportunity to be found for many more keyword phrases which can be integrated naturally into the text.
Google reviews are essential for any local business because of their visibility in local search results. If you perform a search for local tradesmen the top organic results will be the one with the best reviews.
Encourage your clients to leave reviews and when they do engage and reply. Having good Google reviews will help you dominate the local competition and see you ranked #1 in your local area.
Many tradesmen resort to stock photos for their websites, while a convenient solution it's likely these photos will be found all over the internet possibly even used by your competitors. They will not tell a true story of your company and can be rather clichéd.
They also tend to be large and too many large files will slow your site down. It is much better to use original images which are more personal and create an emotional connection with the user.
This is often overlooked and yet is an essential factor in your ranking on search engines. Your pages are ranked on their importance and the correct site architecture ensures Google understands this.
Best practice is to link as many of your pages as possible to the home page this results in a better user experience and avoids using sub-categories which will dilute the relevance.
As a roofer, it might be tempting to try one of the multitude of free website companies on the web after all who doesn't want to keep costs low. However, this is a mistake and a false economy.
These sites have a lot of limitations and most are not free at all if you want to access features that are essential to a successful website. Because sites like this host thousands of sites on the same server your website will be slow, bad for users and your SEO.
We've touched on how Google reward originality something you won't have if you have the same templated design as every other roofing company they have on their books. You will also have irrelevant advertisements on your website which distract the user from the message you are trying to convey.
All in all, these sites make you look unprofessional, they have limited pages, bandwidth, do not necessarily support hand-held devices and can shut down your website at any time.
You need your own domain name, simple! They are not expensive and not having one makes you look amateurish. Search engines reward websites with unique domains giving them a higher ranking. It also gives credibility to your company in the user's eyes.
Having a sub-domain means if you decide to change your host you will lose all your visitors and will have to start from scratch building your traffic which will have a huge negative impact on your internet presence.
CTAs are arguably the most important feature of your website and their design and placement should be taken seriously. You need your call to action buttons on every page and they must stand out from your content this is achieved by using negative space around them.
Colour and size are also important, contrasting colours make smaller buttons stand out more while less distinct colours can prevent larger buttons from overwhelming everything else. Covey a sense of urgency with the language you use, keep it simple and easy to read so the user understands exactly what they are getting.
This is an excellent way of staying ahead of the game. By conducting research on your competition, you can see what is working for them and alternatively what isn't. A great strategy for growing your business you can register with Google alerts and RSS feed to see when they are mentioned online.
Keep an eye on their social media campaigns and review sites. You can even use online companies like SpyFu to see exactly what keywords your competitors are using or what Adwords they are buying.
Did you realise 1 in 5 google searches are for local business? This amounts to a mind-blowing 600 million local searches every day with many of these being done on mobile devices so it makes sense to take advantage of this feature.
Having a listing on this platform will provide a brilliant way of gathering customer reviews and achieve a higher ranking for local searches. Don't scrimp on information when listing your business utilise every tool you can to provide as much detail as possible about your company.
Your website is finished optimised properly and looking good surely that is all there is to this internet malarkey isn't it? Unfortunately, not! If you are not updating and creating new content you will be missing out big-time.
Posting blogs, social media updates, YouTube videos will establish you as an authority in your industry, build relationships with potential customers and local businesses, help with local branding, give you the opportunity to rank for more "long tail" keywords and ultimately benefit your SEO efforts driving more traffic to your site and generating more leads.
Is poor design letting your website down? You wouldn't expect a plumber to do your job correctly and to be honest website design is a specialised field. If you have read this far you are probably shocked how some of these issues can make such a difference to the success or failure of your site.
Do your pages have the correct balance of text and images? Are they easy to navigate? Clean and uncluttered? Do they load quickly? A poorly designed website reflects badly on your roofing company and can be worse than no website at all.
Being mobile friendly is essential nowadays, smartphones, tablets and mobile devices are fast becoming the preferred method of searching online and this is only going to increase.
Being mobile friendly is essential nowadays, smartphones, tablets and mobile devices are fast becoming the preferred method of searching online and this is only going to increase.
The internet is constantly changing Google, alone, change their search algorithms around 500-600 times a year and while most of these are minor alterations some can impact your SEO, keeping abreast of changes and regularly updating your site using new, fresh or popular keywords, maintains your influence and keeps you ahead of the competition.
There is no point doing all these things if you have no way of tracking how things are working. Where is the majority of your traffic coming from? Which pages are users visiting the most? What keywords are working? Fortunately, there are tools available which make it easy for you to analyse your website, enabling you to change things that aren't working and do more of what is.
If you’ve read this far you are definitely serious about your business’s marketing efforts.
Earlier we explained why you shouldn’t be too worried if your website is struggling. Rather than look at it as a negative you have to understand it as an opportunity. You’re not alone, as stated over 90% of roofing businesses are stumbling around in the dark when it comes to generating leads online.
Since the fall of the big yellow book and the inability to be able to just buy a full-page advert (and crush the competition) the vast majority of roofing and building companies and contractors are losing the race to being the dominant roofing company in their area.
So how does this help me because I’m the same as them?
Wrong, by getting this far you are miles ahead already. You have the information above which will lead to further great resources. You have the tools and information to steal a march on your competitors with your online marketing.
We are yet to see a local roofing company website that we cannot beat, 99% don’t have half of the points covered above. You just need to take action and get it done.
Make no mistake we want you as a client for Home Trade Marketing and when you’re ready we are pretty sure you will come and talk to us. Online marketing is also a skilled trade and we want to handle this for you, leaving you to do what you do best, which I hope is fitting and repairing roofs. If in the meantime you need any help or advice, contact us, we respond to 100% of all emails and calls so you’re sure to get the expert marketing help you need.
Good Luck, we look forward to hearing from you with any questions you may have.
Husband, father and total fanatic when it comes to lead generation and online search. When I am not buried in a world of testing and analytics I enjoy poker, fishing and catching a game.