Ever wonder why your competition gets the top spot in Google search results, but you’re stuck underneath them? Maybe you’re trying to figure out how to even show up at all? The key to winning Google’s ranking race is called SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) and the prize for a podium finish is a huge visibility boost for your business.
There’s a lot you can do when it comes to SEO, but there’s only a handful of things you must do to show up. This article will focus on the basic must-haves for your trade business. If you do any SEO at all, make sure it’s these three things.
Short on time? Skip ahead:
1. Create a simple website
A fast-loading and easy-to-read website is critical for any successful business, including contractors & tradespeople. Fortunately, it’s super easy these days to build a simple website that works well.
List your services clearly
The most important thing you can do is make it crystal clear how you can help people. If you offer a range of services, all of them must be listed on your website. Add a few sentences about what each service includes, and how to get in touch for a quote.
Use real imagery
Try to stay away from obvious stock photography on your website. It’s best to use real photos of you, your team, and your work. Real photos build trust with potential customers and increase the odds that they reach out.
Make sure it looks good on any device
With so many different mobile, tablet, and desktop devices being used, it’s important to check that your website looks good no matter the screen size. You can test this yourself by visiting your website from different devices or use a tool like Responsive Web Design Checker.
If it doesn’t look quite right to you, try editing the images or tweaking words to fit better. Above all else, make sure your main ‘call to action' stands out. That’s the button people need to click to get in touch with you.
2. Use Google’s free tools
While Google doesn’t often reveal specific algorithm secrets, they are very clear about what their overall goals are for Google Search. There’s no quick hack for ranking #1, but looking to Google for information is a good place to start. To help you out even more, they also offer a range of free tools you can use to enhance your Google visibility.
Set up Google My Business
If you don’t have a website, you should at least have Google My Business. Even if you’ve never heard of Google My Business, you’ve definitely seen it. Any time a business listing appears in Google Maps, or in the sidebar of Google Search, it’s because they’ve set up Google My Business. It’s also the hub for those all-important Google reviews.
Check out our guide on ‘How to Set Up Google My Business for Trade Businesses’.
Set up Google Search Console
If you have a website, you need to connect it to Google Search Console. This free tool is your look into how Google views your website. You can use it to give Google extra information about your site and also track results from Google Search over time.
While not a Google tool and not as popular as Google My Business, it’s still worth the effort to create a Bing Places listing as well. It’s not as refined or feature-rich as GMB, but Microsoft's answer to Google reaches a unique audience that only uses Bing — meaning there's often less competition.
3. Put your links everywhere
Once you’re set up with a good website and your Google review link, you’re pretty much good to go. You just need to put those links in as many places as possible. All potential customers should be able to find or see your website link, while any previous or existing customers should be getting the link that asks them to write a review. This work is ongoing, try to keep an eye out for any linking opportunities.
- Review links in emails to customers.
- Website links on your social media profiles.
- Website links from friends/business partner websites.
Make sure to add your website link to any online directories you use:
- Small Business Directories for UK Trade Businesses
- Small Business Directories for AU Trade Businesses
- Small Business Directories for NZ Trade Businesses
That’s everything you need to get your trade business showing up in Google. If you’re starting from scratch it may take a few weeks, but be patient. You’ll soon see results.
To take things to the next level, start learning some advanced SEO or investigate more digital marketing for trade businesses.