Any time a remodeler calls us for digital marketing help, they ask the same question:
“How can I get more, BETTER leads?”
You’ve probably wondered the same thing. We get it. Remodeling jobs are big, and good leads are hard to come by. Leads are the lifeblood of your business, and one good lead can net you hundreds of thousands of dollars.
So, to answer your question: You can increase your leads—guaranteed—by following the six foolproof strategies we list below.
We know these strategies work—they’re the same strategies we used to help one kitchen designer increase leads by 486%. That’s not all, either—a custom home remodeler saw the same success with these strategies, netting a 163% lead increase. Follow this guide, and you’ll end the year with more leads and more booked jobs—plain and simple.
Before getting into the specific, actionable items that will get you more leads, let’s go over the simple 3-step process of actually acquiring a lead. The first step in acquiring a lead is to “get found”—this is part of the awareness phase of the modern customer’s journey (shown in the image below). For example, you could be found on a search engine results page either from organic search or pay per click advertising. At this point, a potential customer simply knows that you exist, but they’re not seriously considering your services.
The next step is to “get noticed.” This comes after you’ve been found and is a part of the “consideration” phase of the buyer’s journey (below). What enables you to “get noticed” is usually something that makes you stick out from the other links, profiles, or companies a prospective lead is checking out. Something in the consideration and research process has got to make them interested enough in what you have to offer for them to reach out and become a lead.
Both getting found and getting noticed are essential parts of the process to get more remodeling contractor leads. The important thing is this: You can’t neglect getting found OR getting noticed.
Some companies focus on their search engine rankings but have a terrible website design and user experience. They’ll get found (but probably not for long—more on that later), but they won’t get noticed.
Conversely, other companies may fixate on every detail of their website, painfully deliberating over every phrase or picture at the expense of their search visibility. Again, this is a problem. If more people were able to find them, their site and other marketing assets would help them get noticed—but they’re simply not being found. So, keep this entire process in mind when crafting your digital marketing strategy for 2019.
6 Foolproof Ways to Get More Remodeling Leads and Remodeling Jobs
1. OPTIMIZE YOUR WEBSITE FOR SEO & USER EXPERIENCE (& REMODELING LEAD GENERATION)
When it comes to the best advertising for home improvement and remodeling, SEO (search engine optimization) is key. Why? Take a look at the image below:
Each month, homeowners in the U.S. perform more than 660,000 searches for remodeling services.
How are those searchers going to find your remodeling company? With SEO.
While keywords, title tags, and heading tags still matter a lot, SEO is about more than those three attributes. There are more than 200 actual search ranking signals. Here’s what you should focus on if you want to get your business on page one of Google’s search results in 2019:
Secured sites (HTTPS vs. HTTP)
Webpage content quality
Webpage content length
Social and local signals
Also, you can’t manipulate the search results with shady, black-hat SEO tactics like keyword stuffing and cloaking. We see companies and agencies employing these subtle, but bad, strategies all the time.
Some business owners and marketing managers will say that SEO and user experience don’t mesh well. That’s baloney. Google values user experience for rankings now more than ever. In fact, if your rankings are great but your user experience is terrible, it is safe to say that your rankings won’t remain strong long term.
There are practically limitless ways to optimize for remodeling SEO and user experience, but here are four specific, important ways to optimize your site that will help you get more remodeling leads in 2019. Many of these are geared toward getting noticed.
Be a resource. People increasingly tend to know what they want and are able to articulate their taste. For example, a potential lead has almost definitely searched the web, Pinterest, or Houzz to get an idea of the remodel they want. So, you want to be a resource that’s a part of the process. Write a blog about the pros and cons of marble counters. Show them examples of your work so they can easily see how you can make their dream a reality. If you’re trying to get more bathroom remodeling leads, name and show specific popular features and styles. A gallery page and a page describing your process (everything from the design phase to timeline of different jobs) are essential for your site.
An example gallery page
An example process page
Take and post high-quality, professional photos. The adage “show, don’t tell” is especially true in the remodeling industry. You can talk and write ad nauseam about the high quality of your work, but nothing will convey that message quite like high-quality photos of your work.
Mention details that matter. How many companies say things like “high-quality work,” “experienced,” “attention to detail” or “affordable”? All of them? So many people use these phrases that they become meaningless as a competitive differentiator. You want to make sure you’re mentioning specific, unique things that will carry value in the mind of the reader. For example, provide specific testimonials; tell a story in which one of your contractors showed remarkable attention to detail or commitment to client service.
Optimize for conversions. While it seems obvious, it is easy for many companies (and even marketing agencies) to overlook the need to optimize for conversions. The formatting, placement, and frequency of calls to action on your site can make significant statistical differences in your conversion rate. Additionally, it’s essential to have a contact form on your site. Everything else on your website could be optimized to perfection, but if you’re neglecting conversion rate optimization than you’re simply letting leads slip through your hands.
SEO is immensely important for getting found, getting noticed, and getting leads. Without good SEO, customers won’t be able to find you!
2. START A PPC CAMPAIGN—WITH A PROFESSIONAL
Pay per click ads are a good way to get traffic and leads to your site. The recommendation here is pretty straightforward: In-house PPC savants are rare, so we recommend working with an agency that has PPC expertise. If you are doing PPC in-house, ask yourself these three questions to figure out whether or not that’s a good approach and a responsible way to spend your money (spoiler alert: It probably isn’t).
When selecting a company to manage your PPC campaigns, you want to make sure that you will receive ownership of your Google Ads account in the event that you cancel services. We believe that any company that doesn’t do this is either stupid or malicious.
But there are other things you’ll want to ask and research about a prospective PPC management agency. While the best practices of PPC are widely known, agencies differentiate themselves by their diligence, efficiency, and attention to detail. The up-to-date industry knowledge and experience of a good agency is a powerful tool. You want to make sure that your PPC account is being optimized in the best way possible.
3.INCREASE REMODELING LEADS BY LEVERAGING YOUR ONLINE REVIEWS
Competitive differentiators are a huge part of getting noticed and getting the best home improvement leads. Reviews are an increasingly important competitive differentiator. Many people would prefer to hear what customers have to say about a business, rather than what the business has to say about itself. Check out these stats on reviews:
79% of customers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations
78% of consumers have ended a transaction due to bad service
85% of consumers don’t trust reviews more than three months old
40% of consumers only look at reviews from the last two weeks
Hopefully, you have a significant number of positive reviews. (Don’t worry if you don’t, we’ll cover that, too). You’ll want to leverage these to make sure your reviews are as visible as reasonably possible. One way you can leverage your reviews is with review schema markup, which makes your average star rating display under your URL in the search engine results page for your website. Check out those glorious stars!
If you don’t have a significant number of reviews (or enough positive reviews), we’d suggest using a review collection platform, like Review Us Now. Not only will this help you increase the number of reviews you have, but it will also help increase the visibility of your positive reviews.
4. BE STRATEGIC WITH EMAIL MARKETING
Plain and simple, email marketing can get you more leads to grow your business. It is absolutely NOT only for large companies. We’ve written a lot about email marketing for remodelers, and I’d recommend checking out these eye-opening email marketing statistics. I’ll give you my favorite here: When it comes to purchases made as a result of receiving a marketing message, email has the highest conversion rate (66%), when compared to social, direct mail, and more. Email is perhaps most valuable for staying in touch with previous customers and getting them to come back for more.
But don’t simply send emails to send emails! You’ll want to pay careful attention to your email marketing strategy. Here are four important tips (with links to read more):
Make your emails easy to digest and skim.
Make your emails mobile-friendly.
Don’t ignore your subject lines!
Don’t purchase an email list.
Here’s one powerful example of the value of being strategic with email: We had a remodeling company who wasn’t getting much traction on their email marketing when they first started with us. They were consistent and promoted content from their website, but their email marketing just wasn’t as strategic and thoughtful as it could be. For example, they only shared about seasonal topics or highlighted vague project capabilities.
We changed their email marketing strategy to highlight finished projects, complete with anecdotes from the clients themselves and lots of details about the work. This type of email consistently received much more engagement than their old format: Clicks to their website nearly doubled! In the first three months of the new format, their email campaigns received 92% more clicks than in the previous 3 months of email campaigns.
Additionally, because your email list is likely full of existing customers, it can also be used successfully to get reviews.
5. MAKE YOUR BLOG SMART
This is a part of optimizing your website for SEO. Sadly, this is so important and yet so often done incorrectly that it needs its own section! Blogging has been a digital marketing buzzword for a long time. Unfortunately, it’s not always discussed with the necessary clarity and precision. The purpose of your website is to get qualified traffic and leads. Naturally, your blog should support this goal.
However, it’s quite common for companies to blog with no discernible goal other than to “post blogs.” Other times, a company is quite focused on blogging to generate traffic, but they neglect the qualified part of “qualified traffic.” Without qualified traffic, you won’t get leads. It’s quite possible to blog for years, generate significant traffic, but get ZERO leads from all of that. (Note: It’s okay to have a lower conversion rate on your blogs than other pages on your site, you just don’t want a nonexistent conversion rate on your blogs.)
A couple of ways to avoid blogging without generating traffic and leads:
Pick strategic target keywords or key phrases for your blog content. You don’t want to try to get traffic from general search terms that will have a TON of search volume and competition from huge websites (think, a blog focused on the keyword “Kitchen Remodeling”). Make your target keyword(s) more specific and long-tail like, “kitchen remodeling on a budget” or “kitchen remodeling ideas in San Francisco.” At the same time, you don’t want to make your target keyword(s) so specific that the blog won’t drive any traffic to your site; make sure your content’s target keyword(s) has some search volume. Try to tailor the content to your service area as well, so you will get visits that can turn into leads. Finally, you will want to keep search intent in mind for whatever your target keywords are.
Track stats & tweak your approach accordingly. We firmly believe that you need to be able to track and quantify the results of your marketing efforts (it’s the cornerstone of our business). Make sure you’re monitoring your blog performance using Google Analytics.
6. STAY ACTIVE ON HOUZZ, PINTEREST, AND INSTAGRAM
One of the best bathroom, home, and kitchen remodel advertising strategies is to post your work on social media platforms like Houzz, Pinterest, and Instagram.
Because of Houzz’s popularity and photo-centric experience, it’s pretty much necessary for remodelers to have a presence on the platform. Houzz is a powerful tool for boosting your brand authority and building brand awareness—just read these stats to see why. Additionally, it can also be helpful for working with clients during the sales process. Here are just a few of our top Houzz best practices and tips:
Upload high-quality photos of your work.
Follow other professionals.
Use idea books.
If you haven’t heard of Pinterest for remodelers by now, you’re WAAAYYYYY behind. Pinterest is a social media platform that’s built for visuals—which is why it’s perfect to help you get remodeling leads!
Planning a remodel can be overwhelming, and many homeowners in the market for a remodel use Pinterest for inspiration and to collect ideas—in fact, 60% of pinners use the site for home decor and design ideas.
For remodeling companies, leveraging the use of Pinterest can bring in big-time sales—87% of Pinners have purchased a product because of Pinterest, and 93% of Pinners have used it to plan a future purchase.
Similar to Pinterest, Instagram is a visual social platform built on images, which makes it perfect for remodelers.
Picture this: A parking lot full of parents scrolling through social media on their smartphones while they wait for football practice to end. But while they used to be commenting, liking, and sharing on Facebook, they’re now browsing Instagram.
And here’s the thing: Homeowners are using Instagram as an idea generator for home improvements. Just last week I was at brunch with a friend of mine who is getting a home remodel done, and I asked how she was finding a remodeler:
“I’ve seen a bunch on Instagram whose work I love.”
That is not an unusual conversation for me to have these days, especially since most homeowners in my peer group are at the point in their careers (and in life) where they have the means to make significant updates to their home.
Instagram also works for getting commercial remodeling leads. Just because someone is B2B doesn’t mean they won’t change their research habits—and when it comes to remodeling, social media is a key research source.
Don’t Pay for Remodeling Leads You Don’t Own!
AVOID HOME IMPROVEMENT LEAD GENERATION COMPANIES
We’ve covered the six ways to increase remodeling leads in 2019, but we’ve got to mention this big thing NOT to do. We strongly recommend against depending on lead generation sites like Angie’s List and HomeAdvisor that offer “exclusive” remodeling leads and “exclusive” home improvement leads. We don’t view them as viable solutions for these three reasons:
You don’t own the leads generated.
You have no control over the types of leads you get.
You aren’t nurturing long-term client relationships.
Read more details on why we advise against using lead generation sites for contractor lead generation.
Ready to Start Getting More Remodeling Leads?
Don’t confuse “foolproof” with “quick and easy.” While PPC ads should give you the quickest turn-around for receiving leads, just about all the other methods described take time to develop and cultivate. That doesn’t make them less valuable; in fact, I’d argue that it makes them more valuable because of their enduring value and staying power. It just means that you have to be patient while building up your digital marketing efforts.
How do I get more home remodeling leads? By sticking to the digital marketing best practices articulated here. Anyone who says they can get you free home remodeling leads is lying. The process of increasing leads and customers takes time and work.
With that being said, your marketing efforts should be yielding a significant, positive ROI. We are obsessed with seeing our clients’ business grow as they get incredible returns on their marketing budget.
Still wondering, “How do I get more remodeling leads?” or, “How do I get remodeling jobs?” If you want to see more remodeling leads and jobs for your business in 2019, the digital marketing steps outlined above are a great resource and roadmap. If you don’t know where to start or want to have an experienced professional manage your marketing, don’t hesitate to reach out to you today!