With the cost-of-living crisis meaning homeowners are spending less on home improvements, the working landscape is more competitive than ever for UK tradespeople.
To stand out from the crowd, trade companies can consider investing more time into marketing, and one effective method of boosting your visibility is to create or improve your Google Business Profile.
A Google Business Profile is a free, fast, and effective way to help your business appear in Google search results and on Google Maps. Typically, they appear when someone searches with local intent (e.g. ‘builders near me’ or ‘electricians in East London’). It displays your business name, a link to your website, your phone number, and your reviews.
To help tradespeople improve their profiles, IronmongeryDirect, the UK’s largest supplier of specialist ironmongery, has partnered with My Local Toolbox to analyse thousands of Google Business reviews and reveal exactly what it takes to improve your online presence.
Increasing your number of reviews
There are two things you need to focus on to collect reviews:
- Go above and beyond in your day-to-day work – do a good job and make your customers happy.
- Ask customers for a review. If you’ve done a good job, you’ll find most people are very forthcoming in providing a positive review.
If you’re just starting with your Google Business Profile, ask old customers to leave a review. This can help to accelerate the number of reviews you have in the early stages, which helps to build trust with Google and potential customers.
According to a recent analysis of 10,000 reviews by My Local Toolbox, the traits customers talk about most in reviews are professionalism (42%), quality of work (34%), punctuality (13%), tidiness (7%) and perceived value (4%).
How to climb the rankings
Make sure your profile closely reflects what you offer, as Google is all about relevance. If you’ve set your profile up properly (and in detail), you should be sending all the signals Google needs to understand what you offer and which searches to show your profile for.
Be specific about the areas you serve in your profile, so that you appear in the correct local searches.
3. Reviews and ratings
You will appear higher in the rankings if you have a large quantity of positive reviews, so be proactive in asking customers and give them a polite nudge if they don’t leave a review the first time you ask.
4. Engage with customers
Reply to customers when they leave a review, even if it’s just to say thank you. Acknowledge shortcomings and criticism in a professional and courteous manner. Remember your future customers may read the comments, so it’s important to show yourself in a good light.
Building a great review profile on any platform takes time. Persistence and consistency are key to building a high number of reviews, and climbing the rankings. If you stick with it, you should have a steady stream of enquiries coming through, which will bring lots of benefits to your company.