Warmer weather represents the unofficial start of the summer and the swimming pool season. This is normally a busy time for small pool service companies, but this year could see an increase in customer demand. With people spending more time at home during the coronavirus pandemic, pool owners are eager to have their pools in tip-top shape for the summer.
With over 10 million U.S. residential pools, as the owner of a small pool service company, you have the opportunity to grow your business, provided you dive in with a smart online marketing approach. Here are five ways to make an impact and lap your competitors.
Because you do such a great job, the pools you service are clean, gleaming and inviting. Your website, the hub of your brand, should look the same. It is the first impression most customers have of your business and keep in mind that most website visitors will form an opinion about your brand in less than a second upon seeing your homepage. Remember, you never get a second chance to make a first impression.
You want to look professional while communicating value and helpfulness to homeowners who need assistance maintaining their pools. Make sure your website has complete information about your company and services. In addition, be sure there is an easy way for customers to contact you, either by phone, email or through an online contact form. All this information should be prominent on your homepage.
Social media can be a real springboard to your success, allowing you to directly connect with pool owners who need your services. It is also an affordable way to increase the overall awareness of your company. Because pools are visually appealing, image-based content on Pinterest, Instagram and Facebook can be very effective. Think about what your customers and potential clients want to see on social media, and craft your posts accordingly.
How about pictures of projects in the works or pools that have been completed? Here are some examples of good uses of pool imagery on Pinterest. Encourage new customers to post about their pools and request they tag your company in their posts. Social media is also an outstanding way to develop relationships and cultivate leads. Offer discounts in your social media posts for free inspections and discounts on pool cleaning and maintenance.
In today’s digital world, potential customers look at online reviews to get an authentic snapshot of what your business is all about and has to offer. Reviews are highly influential in the customer decision-making process – nearly 90 percent of customers factor reviews into their purchase decisions. How do you get consistently good reviews? You earn them. Remember every customer is a potential critic and reviewer. Impart the message to your pool team that you must truly exceed expectations. There are no shortcuts when it comes to customer service.
Follow-up calls and emails are the best way to ask for feedback and reviews. For example, send an email that states: “How was your experience with us?” Set up email threads that send customers to a review site if they liked you, and a feedback form if the experience was less than positive. Also, keep up with what customers are saying about your business online by utilizing tools like Rating Score Checker.
Finally, no matter how hard you try, negative reviews can happen. This U.S. Small Business Administration article outlines the Essential Steps to Handle Negative Reviews.
Like everyone else, your customers are online and when they want to hire a pool service company, they will go to Google or Yelp to find a local business. How can you make sure they find you? Be sure to use search engine optimization (SEO) keywords in your website content. This will capture the attention of search engines and will help your business rank higher in online directories where customers are looking for your services. For example, if someone goes to Google and clicks on “pool cleaning service,” your company is likely to pop up in the search.
Be sure to also take advantage of online resources like Google Places, an online directory for local businesses and Google Listings which helps customers find your office location. Being highly accessible and easy to contact are highly important in your line of work. Web.com can help you develop an SEO strategy that helps you stand out from your competitors and keeps your business top of mind with customers when they are looking for help with pool maintenance.
By its nature, your pool service business can be highly seasonal and you should adapt your marketing strategies accordingly. Be sure to promote your pool service in the spring and throughout the summer. In the fall and winter, highlight your availability for any deep cleaning, tile work or pump replacements that may be needed. During the off-season, think creatively. Many municipalities need assistance maintaining and cleaning city fountains, and don’t forget about hot tub and spa customers who require year-round services.
Consider an email campaign to reach out to these customers and include discount incentives to help them take action. Creating a blog can also establish you as a leader in your industry and help customers learn more about your services. Do everything necessary to stay top of mind with prospects and customers. Web.com can show you how with a complete array of online marketing tools and resources.
Swimming season is here, and business should be brisk for small pool service companies. Pool owners will definitely be looking to relax and have fun in their pools. Your services will be needed, and our online tips will help you make a big splash all summer long.