What is the best long-term online marketing strategy for my HVAC business?
I’m here to tell you that the best long-term online marketing strategy for HVAC businesses is SEO, or search engine optimization, hands down.
The goal for your HVAC business when it comes to running an effective local SEO strategy is to attract local customers inside your business radius looking for the exact services your HVAC business offers by way of Google to ultimately land on your website’s local-focused service pages that provide the Google searchers (your potentials customers) with the solution to their problems, which are your services.
To break it down in another way because this is some heavy stuff and I bet your head is spinning…
Your first SEO goal is to attract laser-targeted traffic for your business website (potentials customers within your business radius).
Your second SEO goal is to provide an incredible user-experience on your website and to keep people on your site as long as possible while persuading as many visitors as possible to contact your business to learn more about your services.
Beware: the SEO game has changed.
It’s not as easy to “game-the-SEO-system” like we used to be able to do on Google.com 5 or 10 years ago. Google continues to make high-impact updates to their algorithm with a clear focus on kicking weak and most importantly unethical websites to the curb. Many times, these algorithm updates have the power to wipe out tens-of-thousands of websites at a time killing their chances of ever being visible on Google.com in the future. You don’t want that to happen to your business website. It could be devastating for your business.
Now the search engines are adjusting their ranking algorithms from a keyword-centric focus to focusing more on the actually user-experience on your website. The website user-experience ties back into a couple of key metrics found in your Google Analytics account:
- Time on Site
- Bounce Rate
- Pages per Visit
- Interaction on your Site
Another reason why Google has recently made major adjustments to their ranking algorithm was to protect against ‘black hat’ SEO marketers who were heavily participating in massive link farms. Because old school SEO focused on the quantity of backlinks rather that then quality of backlinks acquired for their sites, many times these links were not even related to the main topics of the website. This caused Google to make an adjustment to provide a better experience to its search engine users.
Google then created a couple more algorithm updates called ‘Panda’ and ‘Penguin’ which removed websites from their index, which were showing links from link farms or bad linking neighborhoods. Many business websites lost their page 1 Google ranking and much of their search engine traffic literally overnight.
SEO Marketers scrambled to remove links from link farms and tried to restore their ranking. But if Google blacklisted or ‘sandboxed’ a website and removed it from their index, it was very difficult to restore the ranking of these websites even after the bad links were removed. (This made buying links through cheap overseas link builders no longer a viable option.)
That is why it is critical to be sure that you or the Search Engine Marketing firm that you partner up with only uses ‘white hat’ search engine optimization strategies.
My best advice is to play by the rules. If you do that and engage in only white-hat SEO methods and strategies, you will be good for the long haul and that is what is more important for your HVAC business. Do your best to resist the temptation of doing something unethical that could result in your website getting canned! It’s not worth it.