grow your hvac company

Websites 101: What Your HVAC Company Website Needs and Why

More than ever, consumers are going online to learn more about products and services. The more money a consumer intends to spend, the more likely she is going to start her buying journey online. While many successful HVAC companies recognize this, we are always amazed that some are continuing to do business without a website! Some companies believe that their Facebook page or other social media account is enough to get the word out. However, many consumers are not searching for product or service information on Facebook. Your website is a much better opportunity to tell customers about your company and why they should do business with you.

Tell the world what you want them to know about your company with a website. It doesn’t have to be flashy, but if you believe that it represents you and your company, you can attract the right customers for the right reasons.

We recommend the following essentials to get started, using the Chicago Heating & Cooling 1 Corp website as an example.

Include clear contact information

Your website should clearly display your company name, address, phone number, and contact email address – ideally on each page. Consumers should have a clear idea of who you are and how to get in touch with your team. A “Contact Us” button is a clear and easy way to direct them:

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Contact Form

A contact form is a great way for customers to get in touch and describe what they are looking for when they are unable to call or outside of business hours:

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Top-level navigation

Consumers have become accustomed to finding a menu of options at the top of the page. We recommend following this best practice to ensure that your prospective customers – and search engines – can easily find the information they need:

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Mobile responsiveness

It’s critical to ensure that your site is mobile-friendly. With mobile search overtaking desktop traffic, your company’s website must be read with ease by customers on the go. Ensure that click-to-dial is enabled for mobile users every time your phone number is listed:tumblr_inline_nzgrsovM7X1tc2y6v_500

A menu of services

Consumers need to gain an understanding of your services to determine whether you’re the right company to solve their problems. Make this easy to find by including your menu of services in the top-level navigation menu:

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Customer reviews:

Include customer reviews on your website to build credibility and earn trust from prospective customers. We recommend using the word “Reviews”, rather than “Testimonials”, to improve your presence in search:

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About us page

Personalize your company website by including an “About Us” page. You may also want to include information about your service area here or on your contact page.

Use photos wherever possible to match faces with the services you provide.

Photos of your service vehicles are also a good idea, as consumers like to recognize your company’s van when it pulls up to their home for the first time:

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These essentials will serve as the foundation for a great HVAC company website. As your online presence grows, consider adding a blog, special offers, or a career page, as necessary. When customers call, ask how they found your company. Your website will serve as a powerful marketing tool and ultimately drive more business for your company.

This week’s post was co-authored by Anastasia Harold of Coolfront. Coolfront is a zero-cost flat rate pricing mobile app for service companies. Want to grow your profit, get organized and be more efficient in the field? Sign up for your Coolfront trial.

grow your client list

Broadly Q&A: Kilgore & Co. Accountancy

Broadly Q&A features our small business partners. This week, we are featuring our conversation on referrals, web presence, and yelp with Randall Kilgore, Owner, Kilgore & Co. Accountancy of Sacramento, CA:

What makes Kilgore & Co. Accountancy stand out? Why do clients choose to work with you?

Our goal is to reduce the taxes of our clients. We try to be conscientious and aggressive in looking for deductions, while at the same time minimizing audit risk. I’ve been doing this for 30 years, and we have learned to achieve both of these goals pretty well. At the same time, we have the experience of audits. It’s no fun, but that’s the world we live in, and I think it helps us be better tax preparers when we have to defend our work from time to time.

We have a really good staff, and our clients really like them. They like Stephanie, Katie, Jay, they like our dogs (we have 3 in our office). For the most part, the dogs help our clients relax. Some people come in with a lot of anxiety, and the dogs help with that.

How has your practice traditionally attracted new clients?

In the past, we relied heavily on referrals – strictly by referrals.

What made you decide to partner with Broadly?

My wife is a shareholder and also works here. She has said for years that we didn’t have any significant web presence. People looked for us and couldn’t find us, or they had an old address. Tiffany called from Broadly, and made a proposal to improve our web presence. We only wish we had done it sooner.

How are clients finding your practice today?

Now, the referral is the exception. It’s much more common if somebody calls and says ‘I heard about you from Yelp.’ The reviews are getting to Yelp, and the referrals are pretty good. So far, we haven’t even had one bad one.

How do you know that the Broadly program is working? Can you measure your ROI?

I’m delighted by the way our website ended up looking and how it incorporated my art pieces. We could probably attribute about $40,000 in gross sales over the next ten years, which I think is a pretty fantastic return on investment. Of course, we still have some modest marginal costs and we have to earn the fees by doing the tax returns and all that, but still! I can’t say enough how much I appreciate what Tiffany and the Broadly crew have done for us.

google business

How Google Changes Affect Your Business Page

In mid-November, Google made changes highlighting its community features on Google+. This has made streamlining the appearance of local business pages pervasive online. While the update does affect how a Google+ page looks, it does not drastically affect how a business should manage its presence on Google.

To start, here’s a closer look at a page (before, left, and after):

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The previous design (above, left) includes the following business information: a business description, the number of page followers, pageviews, a map, a review summary, photos, review details, and posts.

By contrast, the new design (above, right): a larger image area, the number of page followers, and posts. It no longer includes: contact information, a map, a business description, a review summary, and reviews.

At first blush, businesses may now think it’s less critical to maintain their pages and manage Google reviews, but we disagree. Here’s why:

Star ratings and contact info appear in category searches.

For instance, a search of ”Furnace cleaning St. Paul” shows the following initial results, with a star rating and contact info prominently displayed:

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Business details and reviews appear in business name searches

A search for “Twin Cities Furnace Cleaning” will show the business details on the right side of a Google search (example below, left). Selecting “Google reviews” will give users easy access to all customer reviews:

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Business details and a review summary appear in Google Maps

Searching for “Twin Cities Furnace Cleaning” shows the location or service area and highlights business details with a review summary:

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Remember, consumers overwhelmingly pick Google to search for and learn more about local businesses. Following this update, it’s just as important to stay current with your business’s contact information and manage your customer feedback.

As of now, users must opt in to see updated business pages. However, we envision these changes will become the default view in the future.

If you’re a current customer and have questions, call your account manager or write to support@broadly.com. If you’re considering partnering with Broadly, please get in touch to learn more.