How to Attract More Customers for Your Service Business
A key part of being successful in your field - be that product or service related - is how you leverage promotion (getting the right product in front of the right audience).
However, the road from the conception of a strategy to execution is longer than you’d think.
There are many differences between selling a product and providing a service. Let's face it, it's one thing to advertise what a product can offer its consumers and another to market yourself and your team’s ability to get a job done.
It's more than possible to attract new customers to your service with proven low-cost practices and get real results ... interested? Read on. In this article we’ll show you how to optimise your marketing strategy to rank higher on search engines and generate measurable results for your service business.
Your Business’ Website is important!
Having a well-designed website speaks highly of you and your brand. This combined with up-to-date social media accounts can have a direct impact on your sales.
According to a recent research study by Forrester, 71% of users begin their customer journeys by using a search engine to discover new products and services, and 74% reported using a search engine for consideration and purchasing. People are constantly on the hunt for reputable and reliable service providers - all you need is to do is make sure they find you and connect with your business.
An effective way to establish legitimacy and authority in your industry is to give prospective customers a solid first impression of your business.
An important question remains: how do you get the right people on your website in the first place?
Depending on the size of your community, there could be many other options for services just like yours. So how can you stand out from your competitors and increase your customer base? The answer is unfortunately not so simple - but it is very effective.
The answer? consistently implement SEO and general online marketing optimisations to your website.
This will earn you better quality traffic and a subsequent increase in sales.
A couple of general principles to follow as soon you decide to create a business website should include:
Register your own domain name;
Host your website on a reliable provider (sometimes the cheapest does not mean the best);
Make sure your website loads as fast as possible;
Make sure your website is mobile friendly;
Make sure your web content is targeting the right keywords in the right way.
After your website is all set (make sure to check out our article on web design here for more information), comes the next step. Coming up with valuable content tailored specifically to your niche.
Are you producing ‘valuable’ content?
Of course quality content can mean different things to different people.
In one instance, some people might find short ‘to-the-point’ content to be very well valuable, while others might prefer long, very detailed posts presenting a well-reasoned point of view.
These approaches have a very important thing in common: they consider the company's audience.
A successful content marketing strategy is tied to the channel through which communication takes place - i.e. the content you share on your business instagram should probably differ from your website. Choosing the right marketing channel is key.
Be it as it may, your job as a marketer or even business owner is to find out who your potential customers are and how to effectively communicate with them. In this process, it is important to have a clear idea of the message you wish to pass - which should always reflect back to the service being offered - and how to deliver this message.
Choosing keywords that will resonate the most with your audience (and make it easier for Google to understand what your website is all about) also plays a very important role in producing the right type of content.
By regularly providing high-quality content, you create a relationship of trust and loyalty with your visitors. This influences their behaviour on your website, possibly spending longer periods of time entertained by the information displayed, or even performing conversions online.
This change in user behaviour automatically tells the search engine that your website counts on highly relevant content - and therefore should be more visible to other users with similar interests.
In other words - by efficiently integrating social networks and a business website into your marketing efforts, even a new business can rank high on the SERP and become a reference in domain authority.
Show you're an expert in your field
Interesting ways of showing your audience that you are an expert in your field include creating webinars, workshops, informative blog posts, podcasts, speaking in events, etc. By doing so, you communicate with your prospect customers on an informational level - rather than purely transactional.
This change in tone & intention can be beneficial to you in various ways, i.e. creating brand loyalty, communicating to users on different stages of the purchase funnel, increasing traffic - and the list goes on.
When doing so, make sure to build an email list (more on this later on) and keep a close track of your audience's engagement - how many people shared your content? How many comments? This information will play an important role in your marketing strategy.
Get the most out of your community with Email Marketing
Email marketing can be a highly effective way to reach and engage with your audience. More than half of the world’s population uses email as of 2019, and this number is expected to increase up to more than 4.3 billion by 2023 (https://www.radicati.com/).
This represents an opportunity for all businesses to improve their reach, allowing them to engage and convert more leads more consistently.
This marketing channel allows for more personally crafted messaging based on customer behaviour. By segmenting your audience, you can ensure that the most impactful information reaches the right people at the most efficient times.
Of course, it is important to keep in mind that email marketing, while it has the potential to be highly effective, it cannot work alone.
91% of people unsubscribe from newsletters and email lists.
For this reason, make sure to select very carefully which message you send to which users - and combine your marketing efforts with other mediums as well.
Don’t Forget To Get Online Reviews
Transparency is becoming more and more relevant for consumers. Due to increasing access to information, it is not uncommon for potential customers to research a business before purchasing products or services.
According to recent statistics, local Google searches convert transactions 28% of the time, and effective SEO practices provide businesses with a conversion rate of 14.6%, vs 1.7% from traditional tactics.
Simply put, what people say about your business online matters. A lot. We recommend to first and foremost, make sure to provide a consistent service and customer service - and make sure to encourage clients to share their reviews on platforms such as Yelp and Trust Pilot.
In the case of negative reviews, address them openly and politely so that any bad PR doesn’t hurt your brand.
Customer ratings are especially important for service providers. They are a major determining factor for which businesses are placed on Google’s ‘top 3’ most relevant businesses for any given search.
Better reviews also mean that once you are ranked, you’re likely to receive more clicks. 54% of people visit a website after reading positive reviews about the business, and 84% trust reviews as much as they trust a personal recommendation. (https://www.brightlocal.com/research/local-consumer-review-survey/)
Partnerships To Efficiently Connect With New Audiences
In order to successfully market your services to the right people, a good strategy can be to partner up with non-competing businesses whose target audience overlaps with yours.
By doing so, you increase the number of quality backlinks directing new customers to your landing page - which according to Google’s ranking criteria, adds to your domain authority, or in other words, contributes to your online exposure.
One real-life example of this could be for a catering business to collaborate with an event organising business. This way of advertising leads to a win-win situation for both parties involved, as it can lead to networking, new customers, increase in authority and exposure.
Leverage Search Engine Advertising To Amplify Your Message: Try Reeling in Customers With Incentives
Everyone wants a good deal - and special promotions are a great way to satisfy that want, and stand out from the competition. By investing in search engine advertising (SEA), you could get prospect customers’ attention to great deals through display campaigns which will attract them into your website (and increase your sales).
A successful promotion might cut into your profits in the short term, but at the same time (by attracting new clients) this investment often proves successful. Just remember to preserve the balance between your pricing needs and your customers’ perception of a good deal. Google Ads offers marketers a wide range of advertisement opportunities in the SEA field. These include classic text ads, product listing ads and display ads.
It is also often interesting (depending on the service industry) to offer a free sample of your work before an official commitment. One real-life example of this could apply to psychologists. By offering the first 3 consultations free of charge, not only there is a higher chance for a prospective client to feel inclined to commit to the service, but also this might result in positive reviews, word-of-mouth advertising, and numerous new clients.
If you're a service provider and think the internet might be the right way for you to ignite your business - you are 100% right. There is much to gain from adapting your marketing strategy to the newest trends. And the cherry on top: there is a lot you can do without any cost!
We highly encourage you to consider implementing search engine optimisation measures to your marketing efforts. Stand out from your competitors, strengthen your brand, generate more traffic and ultimately increase your profit.
What are you waiting for? Get in touch with us, we can find the best way to get started.