According to established contractors, the single most effective marketing technique is…
Unfortunately, there isn’t one! There really isn’t a magical lead generation strategy that can bring you dozens of high-quality leads on its own. The competition is stiff when it comes to contracting companies, and contractors wishing to bring more clients on board have to work extra hard.
E-commerce and online retail stores have the advantage of repeat customer sales, but that’s pretty rare in the construction industry. You see, the structure of the property and building industry is such that everyone always ends up working with new people and companies.
In this world where you have to constantly convince property owners about your construction brand, a lead generation strategy is a must-have.
Why is Contractor Lead Generation and Marketing Important?
Simply put, generating leads and bringing in new clients for contractors is contractor marketing. While other types of marketing are challenging in their own right, contractor marketing is a different challenge because of a few reasons.
The first thing to understand is that property owners and managers need to trust a contracting business before handing over construction and home improvement projects. Contrary to popular beliefs about marketing, a paid ad campaign or plastering your company in good light on billboards is not enough to generate leads.
What can help you is a well-thought-out strategy for lead generation along with the assistance of lead generation companies and websites. Using careful strategies, a contractor can successfully convey their ability to get the construction or renovation job done hassle-free and within the budget.
Active steps are required to stand out amongst the competition and grab the attention of potential clients. And contractor lead generation strategies will bring you more qualified leads while simultaneously helping new leads learn about your business.
Top 9 Best Strategies for Lead Generation
1.) Optimize your Google My Business profile
First things first, set up a Google business profile if you haven’t done so already. Apart from generating more leads, a profile on Google Business will help you pop up in the search results of locals around you. Most property owners are looking for local contractors so that communication and visiting the offices become easier.
Thus, if you have a business profile for the construction business, you’re well on the right way to building an effective lead generation strategy. Here are some things you need to know about using GMB-
Use The Right Keywords
Mentioning the right keywords will attract potential leads to your business page on Google. For instance, if your business installs heating and AC systems, be sure to mention relevant keywords like “AC maintenance” and “Heating Systems Installation.” These are the keywords your target market is searching for, so using the same keywords will help them find your business.
Claim Your GMB Listing
If your Google business profile already exists, make sure to claim the business by clicking on the “Own This Business?” link. If there is more than one listing for the same business, you can delete the one with fewer ratings or merge them into one.
It’s crucial to add a phone number so that potential clients can reach out to you for queries and quotes. Additionally, it is best to be as specific as possible when talking about your service on GMB. If your company only renovates roofs, be sure to mention this so that you receive qualified leads and relevant queries.
Upload High-Quality Images
Chances are you’re not the only contractor in the area, and the target audience always has someone else they can compare you with. One way to appeal to customers is by uploading good-quality photos of your previous work. If your business deals with renovating kitchens, uploading a before and after photo of the renovated area can generate interest in potential customers.
2.) Social media presence
Connecting with new audiences on social media has never been easier than today. Using social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest helps make you a familiar brand with your target audience.
Of course, a fair bit of research is required to find which platforms your target customer base uses the most. And making a list of your services with contact numbers and locations can grab the right attention. Also, add a link to your website so that interested parties can check your prices in detail.
Once you find the right platform, create valuable written and video content that encourages users to share the content with friends and family. There’s always a possibility of generating new leads if your social media presence is strong.
3.) Start a referral program
It is no secret that people and local businesses alike prefer to work with a service provider recommended to them by friends. Take advantage of this preference by including a referral program in your lead generation plan. The key point is to deliver consistent results so that clients are more likely to refer to your business.
In simple words, you’ll generate plenty of lead contacts if satisfied clients refer your business to their circle of friends and colleagues. A simple referral program looks like a dedicated page on your website that can be shared with existing customers. Once they refer a potential customer to you, it’s easier to take things forward depending on where the new client falls in the sales funnel.
When the industry does not have scope for repeat customers, one way to sustain a business is to approach past clients for new customers. Of course, if past customers are impressed with your services, they will happily recommend new customers upon simply asking.
Ask them if they or someone they know is planning on a new project anytime soon. Seeing how much competition is already prevailing in this industry, some general contractors provide additional services to those clients who send them referrals.
4.) Take advantage of search engine optimization
The cold truth is that most internet users barely make it past the first page after a Google search. Once they type the keyword that they need, the top few results receive most of the clicks, and those lagging behind barely get any attention. This is why you’ll agree that it’s crucial for your business to rank at the top of search results.
If your website ranking is low, using effective strategies that involve Search Engine Optimization is the key to improving the rank. Mostly, it all depends on the users and what they search for, so looking for the ideal keywords to target should be the main goal here. Apart from finding the right keywords, there are a few other aspects that might need modifications-
Update Your Website
A fresh and easy-to-navigate website can make all the difference in a user’s experience. In fact, it is easy for the modern internet user to decipher if a website is up-to-date with one glance. Thus, in addition to looking fresh and well-designed, your website also needs to reflect the brand colors for quick recognition.
Make the navigation aspect as intuitive as possible so that users don’t have to take too much time understanding the website. Ideally, the visitor should click the link to your site and instantly find what they need to know about your service.
Be Mindful Of The Page Speed
If you click on a website and it takes forever to load, you are bound to get impatient. People don’t like to keep waiting in the quick world of the internet and might leave the page if it takes too long to upload.
Once people click off your page repeatedly, the algorithm learns that your website isn’t of much use to viewers. Thus, it ranks you lower in the searches and pushes up another page that people tend to spend time on.
With plenty of tool options available, you can check how long it takes for your website to load.
5.) Build an online review strategy
The similarity between referral programs and an online review strategy narrows down to happy customers. If you have a bunch of satisfied customers, locking down a positive review becomes all the more simple.
You may already know that customers rarely buy any product or service without looking at the reviews at least once. For most consumers, the reviews and ratings on online platforms give them a general idea of the quality of work to expect.
Thus, it’s not an exaggeration to say that the customer makes up their mind heavily influenced by reviews and feedback from previous clients. To build credibility in the market and retain the trust of clients, contractors should try to accumulate as many reviews from past clients as possible.
Remember that it is rare for customers to proactively provide feedback unless the service is exceptionally good or unthinkably horrendous. Most clients will have an average experience with contractors, and it is them you need to request for feedback and reviews.
Usually, the best way to collect reviews is by emailing customers soon after the completion of the project.
6.) Engage with customers on live chat for conversions
The live chat feature is one that must not be neglected because it is a direct way of communicating with customers. However, since contractor leads aren’t supposed to buy a product right there and then, you can direct the customer to “Book Consultation” or “Request Quotes.”
This means that you can encourage them to set up a meeting so that you can guide them through further steps. The key here is to be the most responsive business in live chat. If the customer finds a competitor faster in response, they may move over to them for quotes.
Hence, there is a lot of potential in investing time and resources to build a responsive live chat team. After all, a survey suggested that 53% of customers preferred to communicate over live chat instead of phone calls. So, the higher your chances of talking to the customer and answering their queries in real-time, the higher the conversion rate.
Another benefit of this tool is that it helps gather insights into the visitor’s needs and expectations. Plus, you can create a set of questions in the live chat feature that can help visitors narrow down the purpose of their search.
Doing this helps you understand if they are the right target audience that can potentially convert into paying customers. In addition, utilize features that encourage users to request a callback at a time of convenience.
7.) Promote using paid ads, in addition to organic growth
Ranking high on searches with organic traffic can take a considerable amount of time. And one thing contractors don’t have is time to spare. Even after optimizing the website and social media connections, it may leave you waiting for the right clients to knock at your door.
To get things up and running at a quicker pace, consider using paid ads to become visible to a larger number of potential clients. Most contractors select PPC or pay-per-click ads to get new leads on websites.
After a while of using a combination of organic growth strategies and paid ads, you’ll find a hike in exposure for your company. This will also result in a higher number of exclusive leads that will increase the number of queries and consultations you receive.
Essentially, customers find it convenient to click the topmost options, and you can get there with this combination of paid and organic strategies.
8.) Generate leads with email marketing
Although it may seem that lead generation for contractors requires active strategies, a mix of old-school methods like email marketing is still valuable. With email marketing strategies, you may not have as many leads generated as, say, social media channels, but they help you nurture existing leads.
Basically, if your business can provide valuable information to the interested target market, they are more likely to keep an eye out for your services. Also, offering useful information in exchange for the visitor’s contact details can help increase the list of potential leads.
These types of resources can range from home and contraction guides to case studies. However, keep in mind that your email content is something that potential customers can use. Ideally, it should be exclusive content that cannot be obtained by a quick Google search.
Additionally, use this platform to promote other social media channels like Instagram and Facebook.
9.) Provide premium content
Speaking of informational content, consider creating free resources for any visitor that stops by your website. It could be an ebook about the know-how of construction, or it could be a how-to guide that talks about the best tips for home renovations.
Providing free downloads for premium content that homeowners can benefit from will create a positive image of your brand. Plus, if you allow for downloads only after entering basic contact details, it can increase the number of leads.
Besides, creating quality content that isn’t freely available online makes you an authority on the subject. This, in turn, helps potential customers to think of you and your content when the need arises. Of course, they will also remember your services and might approach you for business-related queries.
Remember that people more familiar with your business are more likely to convert into paying customers. Thus, you can create content for social media, email marketing, PPC ads, and website content to keep the potential client engaged.
7 Best Lead Generation Websites for Contractors
While we’ve already discussed the strategies you can implement to find new leads, a few sites are valuable sources of new connections. Whether you are starting afresh or already have an established business, these websites are sure to help you get some contractor leads. Check out the best lead generation companies in the online space that are designed to get you new leads-
Out of all the lead generation sites in this list, one of the most valuable ones for contractor leads has to be Google My Business. This free tool allows you to list details about your business with images, reviews, and its location on the map.
GMB is the best lead generation platform for local SEO strategy and targeting potential clients in the vicinity. In fact, you can go the extra mile and sync your business listing to Google Ads and advertise the company.
According to research by Brightlocal, 64% of consumers go to GMB to find the contact details of businesses. With this key point in mind, we think this is one of the ideal starter lead generation companies for contractors.
If you are looking for a lead generation company that allows you, as a contractor, to reach new potential clients, HomeAdvisor is the way to go. This platform uses digital marketing channels and TV advertisements to connect homeowners with home developers or renovators.
Once you register on this site as a contractor, you get access to a network of over 30 million users which is perfect for increasing client bases. It’s perfect for newer companies that need lead generation services to connect them with their first few clients.
In return for access to this large network, HomeAdvisor charges an annual fee for a subscription to the site, along with charging for each lead generated. The fee makes for a good investment if you are able to connect with the target audience and find new leads.
Residential contractors looking for the best lead generation websites should look up Houzz, a distinguished brand in the interior and renovation space. If you are a contractor that requires a lead gen company for interior work, landscaping, and remodeling work, this website can assist in many ways.
With this directory, contractors can choose to sign up for free or benefit from the premium paid plan called Houzz Pro+. The paid plan gives your profile a premium status that is easy to distinguish from the competition, local advertisement, and even a few data tools.
The first thing that comes to mind when we say Yelp is — restaurants, not lead generation companies for contractors. But you must know that Yelp is pretty useful for generating free contractor leads in your area. In addition to listing your business on GMB, listing it on Yelp can improve targeted local advertising and can reach more people in other places.
Yelp as a website ranks well on search engines, so contractors from the home service industry, like plumbing and construction companies, can find plenty of leads. Open a free account and update details about your business; add CTAs, and a verified trade license to your business account.
In addition, some contractors also pay for Yelp ads which could possibly bring new leads to their database.
Another lead gen service that will help you with leads is BuildZoom which is a platform that lists contractors based on service areas. When homeowners or property managers visit this site, they get to choose from all the listed contractors in their area. The fact that this website brings the customer to you for construction projects makes it worth considering.
One thing you need to know about this website is that it falls in the niche category, meaning it’s not commonly used by many people. The lower numbers of potential customers might mean fewer leads, but it also means that the contacts you receive are of higher quality.
Still, you will be matched with the construction projects that fit your profile requirements. After matching, you can read the project specifications and contact the potential client for further details.
Porch is another one of the many lead-gen websites that helps connect contractors with home and property owners. While the other lead generation companies we’ve mentioned might have millions of users, this one has a small market share, mainly due to low search rankings.
Understandably, contractors might want a lead generation website where there are already hundreds of customers available. However, there’s a benefit to using Porch that might narrow down the long search of finding good leads. The thing is, here, you can select which lead to pursue instead of paying for each new lead.
As you may already know, each new lead requires payment to the website, but here you can save time and money by filtering the useful leads. With this website, you can specify the projects you handle, control the travel range, list acceptable payment methods, and select customers based on their requirements.
Final Thoughts on Generating Leads for Contractors
Finding leads and trying to close them is a long journey for a contractor. They usually have to filter through many dud leads before finding one that actually converts into a customer. It is for this reason that a good mix of strategies is recommended.
Hopefully, you’ll start using the strategies we’ve mentioned and build a personalized plan that works for your business. The listings and free directories can give you a leg up if you’re just starting out. However, don’t hesitate to invest in the right type of paid services to get customers fast.
On that note, we’ll see you next time. Bye!