The heating and cooling business has seen great changes over the past few years. Not too long ago you were installing 8 SEER units left and right. This week you most likely installed several 18 SEER units with a zoning system. Over time you have done a great job of keeping up with your ever-changing industry. How often have you considered advancing your business? Fortunately, there are some steps you can take today to take your HVAC business to the next level and increase your market share.
For a small business owner, social media may seem pretty far down the list of things that might make a positive impact on your revenue stream. Most people today have their faces in a smartphone. They are looking at Facebook, Twitter, and Yelp. More importantly, people are sharing posts they find relevant to their lives. The previously mentioned social media platforms are the ones you need to utilize today. Best of all, these are free to join and maintain.
Here are some tips for creating a likeable social media account:
• Post photos of your technicians so customers can see your staff.
• Post photos of newly installed units.
• Post relevant incentives to push sales.
• Offer exclusive incentives to your social media followers.
How else can you increase your business with available technology? The answer is online reviews. Websites like Yelp are how today’s word of mouth is finding its way around your city in an online world. You need good reviews to help potential client conversion. A potential customer is more likely to use their phone and call the best reviewed HVAC business in their area. Sites like Yelp use a star rating system. When a user searches for an HVAC company in their area they get a list of businesses ranked by average user rating. You want to be sure you are at the top of that list. Also, you want to ensure that your Google Business page has all of your up-to-date information and new photos.
Here are some tips for increasing your average rating:
• Encourage your current customers to go online and rate you.
• Incentivize current clients to leave a positive review.
• Offer a coupon or discount to users who find you on a review site.
• Purchase ads on review sites so your name appears before the listings.
Right now you want to be considered the authority on heating and cooling in your market. A great way to prove that you actually are the expert is with an online blog hosted on your website. Obviously you care about blogs because you are reading this one. Customers care about them too. Blogs do not have to be long or technical. Sometimes a simple 300-word post on how a ductless mini split system works will encourage a customer to pick up the phone and call you. And the more information you give a potential client, the more likely they will trust you with their business.
Enjoy these tips on blog posts:
• Keep your posts simple and concise.
• Show off your knowledge and your expertise.
• Choose blog topics on market trends to show you are relevant.
• Update your blog frequently; once a month is a great start.
Remember the days when you bought huge phone book ads or named your business A-1 HVAC so that you would stand out in the Yellow Pages? Those good old days have left us. The new way customers are seeking HVAC companies are by online searches. How do Google and Yahoo! match a search with your business? It’s called SEO or search engine optimization. In short, Google crawls your website to find key and relevant terms and ranks your site with searches. The better the SEO you have, the higher up on the listings you will climb. You always want to make sure that your site is on the first page of an online search and at the top.
Here are some things to know about SEO:
• Choose your words wisely throughout your site.
• Header tags are very important to web crawlers.
• Content is king, remember those blog posts (e.g., HVAC Resource Guide).
• Make sure SEO is the cornerstone of your website.
At the end of the day the lesson your grandfather taught your dad and he taught you still applies; the customer is always right. Outstanding customer service is becoming rare. You can win over the hearts of your customers and keep them coming back season after season. Teach your technicians how to approach the front door. Create a script for your office staff to answer the phone with. Reward returning clients with discounts on service and parts. All of those lessons in customer service your company has learned along the way will pay off. That is truly what makes you the best in your market. All you need to advance your business is help telling folks how to find you.
Here are ways to show off your great customer service:
• Post a great customer interaction on social media.
• Write a blog about how customers come first.
• Utilize the great reviews on sites like Yelp.
• Take photos with your happy clients and share them.
Taking your HVAC business to the next level is going to take time and patience. But these tips will help you grow your market footprint, increase your sales, and give you the basis to develop your business to become the market leader.
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