Today, there are 104,237 HVAC businesses in the United States, each vying for a piece of the $88 billion industry.
With more than 72 million homes in the United States with a central HVAC unit, how can your HVAC business stand out above the rest in such a competitive industry?
Here’s what you need to do to make your phone ring:
Put your website to work
There are simple, yet critical elements that every HVAC business website must follow to be successful, these include:
A relevant domain name. If your company’s name is already registered to someone else, simply try to create something similar or play around with the wording.
An easy-to-navigate homepage. Visitors should be able to browse and find the information they are looking for quickly.
Current contact information. Your address, phone number, email, and social network icon links should all be current.
A solid company description of who you are and what services you provide. Remember you have less than two seconds to make a first impression online.
A call-to-action & lead form. Tell your visitors exactly what you want them to do and how to do it. For instance, ‘Fill out the form for a free installation estimate!”
A testimonials page so prospects can see the actual quality of service you provide and all the good things your past/current customers have to say about you in order to gain trust.
Fresh content. Keep your HVAC website constantly updated with fresh and unique content. Blogging adds immense value to your website and business (we’ll touch more on this later).
(RELATED READING: 4 Proven Reasons Blogging Will Grow Your HVAC Business)
Search Engine Optimization. In order for your local audience to find you via search online, your website & Google Places listing must be optimized.
Pay close attention to the last element. It used to be that when people wanted to hire an HVAC professional, they opened up a phone book and scanned the yellow pages for a heating and cooling company they’d seen advertised in a commercial or the newspaper.
Some even used to ask their friends or neighbors for a recommendation, but one thing is for sure - they definitely didn’t pull out their smart phone and searched for “heating repair in West Bloomfield, MI”.
Today’s digital world is a totally different ballgame. If your HVAC business isn’t online, it’s already losing to competition. But, if you are online, you need to be up-to-date with SEO best practices to ensure your website is receiving maximum exposure.
(RELATED READING: SEO Tips & Tricks)
More than 70% of consumer searches on the Internet are for local businesses, so you want to make sure your HVAC website is easily found. With that being said, it’s important you list your business in local search directories. Some are free, and some require a subscription.
Many of your customers use directories like Yelp to find local, credible HVAC businesses in the area. Aside from Yelp, other directors you can get listed on that we recommend include:
Industry specific directories:
Thomasnet.com > be sure to list your business within the appropriate “HVAC contractors” category with Thomasnet.
With every listing, make sure you monitor it. When you receive positive feedback, send a quick “thank you” reply to your customer. If you receive an unfavorable review (it happens, no worries), respond to it promptly, showing your concern to the customer’s issue and a willingness to work towards a solution.
How do you monitor your online reputation and run an HVAC company at the same time? Easy. And it can be done for free through Google Alerts.
Google Alerts is one of the most convenient and easy to step-up tools to monitor your brand reputation. Go to google.com/alerts and fill out the search form with your company name. You have the option of filtering what type of media results you would like, how often you would like to be updated with your results, and so on. Now every time your brand is mentioned online, Google will alert you.
With all your listings, the most important is Google Place for Business (Google Map listing). According to research conducted by Google and research company Ipsos Media, consumers are 38% more likely to visit and 29% more likely to purchase products or services from businesses with complete Google Maps listings.
A Google Maps listing makes it easy for customers to gain quick and relevant information, such as where you’re located, when you’re open for business, and a phone number or email address where they can reach you.
You can even link your Google Maps to your Google+ page. Google rewards businesses that actively manage their Google maps and Google+ pages, so by regularly adding new content, you can boost the ranking power of your listing.
Implement a referral program
Word-of-mouth advertising can help promote your business at a fraction of the cost of paid marketing.
Consider offering your past and current clients a referral credit, such as a $25-$50 for anyone they refer to you. You can even offer discounts not just to the customers who referred someone, but an initial discount to the new customer as well.
This helps generate a lot of happy feelings, providing an even higher level of value. According to Texas Tech, 83% of consumers are willing to refer after a positive experience. With that being said, that $25 dollar credit will come back to you - tenfold!
Complimentary services that can uncover new opportunities
The word complementary might scare some small business owners, especially when it deals with high-cost repairs like a broken furnace.
But, that’s not the point. It’s not about offering a free furnace repair for a new customer. It’s about trying to broaden your service offerings and blend the lower margin services with higher ones.
This technique has been proven to be successful, resulting in additional new customers, sales leads, and even new opportunities discovered such as equipment replacement jobs that you wouldn’t have known otherwise.
Turn needs into leads with seasonal deals
Promoting different seasonal services can generate the following season's sales and revenue.
For example, during the fall months, HVAC businesses have a big opportunity to build their brand and gain more clients. When winter approaches, the need for HVAC starts, and all you have to do is create the right marketing campaign to turn those needs into leads!
You can promote different deals on your website or social media pages to get prospect’s attention. This can be a discount on a furnace tune-up before the winter cold comes or an AC precision tune-up before the summer heat comes. Make sure you’re using seasonal headlines to grab reader’s attention right away and make it about them.
10-year long marketing tactic that works
Did you know that the visual sense is the strongest in most human beings? Wrapping your trucks is a solid way to draw a consumer’s attention and to be easily memorable and recognizable.
You pay for it once, and it can last 8-10 years. If you’re constantly driving around town, people will start to see your trucks everywhere. All you need to do is keep simplicity in mind, and don’t over complicate it. Include fundamental HVAC marketing points like:
Company name & logo
Any small accreditation logos
Basic service offering like “Tree Removal and Tree Stumping Services”
Relevant background images
Your trucks should be a moving advertisement. So take advantage of it!
Need help marketing your HVAC business? Give us a call!
It can be seen that successfully and creatively marketing your HVAC business in today’s world can be a big challenge.
At High Level Marketing, the primary purpose behind everything we do is empowering small business owners like you to understand your options in an effort to make the best marketing decisions for your HVAC business.
We’ve worked with dozens of HVAC businesses across the nation to develop an effective website that drives traffic and convert leads, check out our portfolio here!
Contact us today for more information, we’d love to help!