Google Map Optimization for Plumbing & HVAC Contractors
Now that you have claimed your local business listing on Google, Yahoo and Bing (click here if you haven’t), you need to take the next steps toward improving your placement on the maps in your area.
Optimize Your Google Places Listing:
Log into your Google Places listing at
www.google.com/places (you did claim your Google Places listing last week, right?). Double check to ensure that you have your company name listed exactly as it appears on your corporate records. Don't add anything to the company name (no extra cities or keywords).
List your exact address in a way that will be consistent with your online listings on other websites. Ex. If your address is 107 SW 19 St be sure it's not listed as 107 South West 19 St. You are looking to ensure consistency with your online references.
Look at the categories that are selected. Have you used all five categories, or is only "Plumbing" or "Heating & Cooling" selected? Be sure to add custom categories such as "Water Heater Installation Contractor", "Bathroom Remodeling Contractor", "Air Conditioner Repair Contractor", etc.
Did you upload at least 5-10 photos? Be sure to name your images and videos strategically. Ex. Name your logo "Company Name Logo - Your City Plumber" rather than "Logo". Be sure to add your city name + service to each of your images and photos when you save them. A great way to add geographic context to your images is to upload them to Panaramio.com and then Geo Tag them. For your videos, upload them to YouTube and Geo Tag them.
Is your service area accurately represented? Are your hours of operation listed correctly?
Did you leverage the "Additional Information Fields"? Be sure to add additional information about the areas you serve, the different services you offer, and the types of equipment you repair and install.
Establish a Consistent N.A.P. – You need to establish a consistent N.A.P. profile (name, address and phone number) across the web, on your own website, and on the major data providers (ex. InfoUSA, Super Pages, Yelp, City Search, etc.).
Consistent Name – Pick the format for your name and stick with it. Ex. "ER Plumbing" not "Emergency Plumbing Services".
Consistent Address – If your address is 1267 SW 29 St, Suite 10, you want to be sure that it reads that exact way on other listings rather than as 1267 SW 29 St #10.
Consistent Phone Number – You want to use the same phone number on each of these sites (if you don’t, it will hurt you).
Use a LOCAL number, not a toll free phone number.
Some of the data provider listings that you want to be sure that you include:
Get Reviews – Reviews are a key determinant of placement within the Map Listings.
The number of reviews of your local listing is a key determinant in placement.
As a best practice, you need to request reviews from your customers in order to get them consistently. A strategy that we use takes a three- pronged approach:
Send an initial email to your client database asking them to write a review of your company on Google, and provide them with the URL to your Google Places page.
Keep an open ear for happy customers and ask them if they would be willing to write a review. If so, get their email address at that moment and let them know that you will be sending them an email with the link to write the review.
Have a “Review Us” card printed and give it to your customers after service.
Build out your Places Page – You have the option to upload photos, videos and coupons.
Fill your Places page with quality content. Add all ten photos with pictures of the office, the staff, the company logo, coupons/special offers, your trucks, equipment, etc.
Upload videos. These videos don’t necessarily need to be high definition or professionally produced. Use your digital video camera or even your smart phone and take a few choice shots. Record yourself (the owner or manager) explaining who the company is, what you do, and what your unique selling proposition is.
Select the Right Categories – You have the option to choose up to five categories. It is very important to select the appropriate categories and/or add new custom categories as needed.
Increase your Citations – All things being equal, citations are a key determinant of placement. Just like in SEO where in-bound links determine placement with Local Listings, citations determine placement. He who has the most quality citations wins.
Citations or listings across the web that contain your N.A.P. profile (name, address and phone number) with or without a link.
In order to build up your citations:
Add yourself to the local directory sites where you are not currently listed.
Search for “your industry, directory”
Search “your city, directory”
Look at the listings of the people who have Spot A, B and C on the Map for your services, and look at their citations. In many cases you can go out and get those same citations!
Want more details on how to optimize your Google Places listing for page one placement? Download our FREE Google Places Optimization Guide.
If you are looking to obtain page one placement on Google, Yahoo and Bing for the Plumbing or HVAC related keywords in your city, we can help.
Watch the videos below. It will be well worth your time.