Google My Business Plumbing Customer Journey

Understand the journey a customer takes when choosing your plumbing company over the competition on Google My Business.

 min read
Understand the journey a customer takes when choosing your plumbing company over the competition on Google My Business.

Understanding the Google My Business Plumbing Lead

Google My Business for plumbers and all the optimizations that come with it starts with Dan.

Dan is new in town. Dan bought a new house about a month ago. But Dan has a water heater problem. Dan has no idea what's wrong with the darn thing. And why should he, he's not a certified, licensed, professional plumber like you are. So what does Dan do? He's going do what every other Dan does across the country. He's does a local search for water heater repair on Google.

Up until now, Dan doesn't know your plumbing business from a hole in the wall. He knows what his problem is - cold water is cold but so is the hot water - but he doesn't know who to call to solve it.

Eventually, Dan settles on a couple of options. He sees a few local plumbing companies and their Google My Business profile. After scrolling past all the fake plumbing GMBs, Dan sees a couple legit looking businesses and is now singing  the original GhostBusters theme song; Who you gonna call?.

At this point, Dan could end up choosing somebody who's going to rip him off or not be able to finish the job. And Dan's got to go to work tomorrow! He needs a plumber, and he needs a plumber now!

In 2021, your Google My Business profile is more important than that if it helps decide whether the customer should or should not do business with you.

How can we get more out of our Google My Business profile?

Everyone is talking about GMB management and optimization. And everyone has their own suggestions on what is going to help your plumbing company rank.

What plumbing business owners forget is the power of communication and the effect it has with your prospect during the plumbing customer's GMB journey and optimizes for this.

There is a ton of business intelligence available for most plumbers if you look at user-generated content that's left on your Google My Business profile.

What does user-generated content left on your Google My Business listing mean?

It's the context and content left in reviews of your previous customers who have had an experience with you.

Google My Business For Plumbers

Get more out of your Google My Business profile with Rooter Marketing
Get more out of your Google My Business profile with Rooter Marketing

Plumbers should take a look at the types of images that are being uploaded to your Google My Business. These things can really help your company get more out of Google My Business, and at the end of the day, help your customers make the right choice by doing business with you.

How do plumbers improve their Google Map rankings?

There are many ranking factors when it comes to Google My Business for plumbers, but what you really should focus on is the CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE. Focus on this from the initial search to the follow-up once the job is completed.

Here are just some of the GMB ranking factors:

1. Your GMB plumbing company name

2. The GMB service category

3. Linking to a well-informed plumbing website

4. Google My Business Reviews

Now let's take a look at a plumbing customer's GMB journey and your role in their  decision process:

1. They Don't Know – A plumbing customer does a Google search. They don't know you or your service. They don't know anything about you or your competitors. Not only that, they don't know what makes you different.

2. Problem – Your prospect has a problem but has no idea how to solve it. They're not calling you at this point in the journey. But the more Google My Business visibility you have, the more your prospects will consider your plumbing business as he or she moves on to the next stage.

3. Solution – The plumbing customer now knows the service they need, but they don't know if your plumbing company provides it. How you optimize your profile, at this point, is crucial. Do you have products and/or services filled out on your GMB? Optimize everything to answer any questions the customer might have.

4. Service – At this point, the plumbing customer knows what services offer but isn't sure if it's precisely what he or she needs. This is crunch time. This is decision-making time. They know what services you offer, but are they convinced? Here's where reviews and Google questions and answers are so important. Most customers will read your most recent reviews. They will also read the replies and look carefully at the content. If you're not analyzing these reviews, learning from them, and replying to them, then you're leaving a bunch of money on the table.

5. Ready – Now, the question that every plumbing customer loves to ask but every plumbing CSR hates to answer: how much? But this is good. It means they are ready to schedule. Pricing is a subject for another day. But as of now, your customer is at the bottom of the funnel. And your plumbing team is ready to close!

Google My Business Reviews For Plumbers

Google My Business Reviews For Plumbers - Rooter Marketing
Google My Business Reviews For Plumbers - Rooter Marketing

Here’s captain obvious with an expert Google My Business tip: reviews are VERY Important for plumbing companies. Beyond optimizing and updating your GMB profile, GMB reviews are one of, if not the most essential features.

When a customer wants real-world information about your plumbing services, they go directly to your Google My Business Reviews. Whether it's you, the business owner, your GMB experts at Rooter Marketing (self-promotion there), or a potential customer - reviews define your reputation.

The majority of prospective plumbing customers will read local business reviews making the phone call. And if your rating is under 4 stars, forget about it. Unless every other plumber in town with 4 stars or more is busy, your phone is not ringing. So as your local SEO expert, I'm assuring you that this Google My Business optimization is very important.

But, and that's a big but, your Google My Business rating isn't everything. Here a few other points Google deems relevant to the plumbing customer?

  • How long ago was your last review?
  • Are your reviews left by real customers?
  • How many reviews do you have?
  • Are your reviews written out?
  • Did they mention the type of service (keywords)?*

(1) Free local SEO tip in that last bullet point.

Date and quantity helps with ranking in Google Maps.

If plumbing customers (and Google) are expecting frequent reviews, then you're going to need to strategically ask for them. You won't get a customer review unless you're doing something unique or terrible.

Getting Google My Business reviews, I mean getting the customers to actually leave you a review, all depends on what works best for your customer:

  • Is it when service is completed, and the tech is about to leave?
  • Is it by email when the job is completed?
  • Is it by text message when the job is completed?

Having a successful review generating strategy means you will have recent reviews on your profile, showing consumers you're active and ready for more business. Plumbing business owners who partner with Rooter Marketing have a solid game plan to keep on top of this process (there's my last article plug).

Is the opinion positive or negative, and if negative, did you respond empathetically to the customer?

Customers are looking for plumbers that have good reviews and positive feedback in the review text. How can you make sure you get a good review? Provide exceptional plumbing services.

Before you start asking for reviews, make sure you're happy with your plumbing services, your tech's customer service, and anything else that impacts the customer experience. This is an excellent opportunity to see where improvements in your plumbing operation are necessary. Use customer feedback to help improve your business process.

Oh, we almost forgot, be prepared for the 1-star reviews. Don't worry, this happens to plumbing companies across North America. Rooter Marketing has an entire process on how to handle these. It's important here to not get angry. Don't start a Google My Business review war. Just respond calmly and try to address the issue.

And finally, under any circumstance, never, ever buy reviews, incentivize reviews, or make sure only five-star reviews remain. Reviews should be given by actual customers, not your friends, family, or Fiverr.

If all else fails, call Rooter Marketing for your free Google My Business & Local SEO assessment.

Your Google My Business review strategy.

When asking for reviews, make sure to include critical questions regarding your service. Here are some examples:

  • How did we delight you on your appointment/store visit/product/service today?
  • How did you find us?
  • Who provided fantastic customer service to you?
  • Which of our stores did you visit today? (if your business has multiple locations)
  • When writing your review, please think of others and how it will benefit them?
  • How was your service with us? How did it make you feel?

If your reviews contain accurate information, they're more likely to look legitimate and convince new customers you're trustworthy.

Not only will you get more honest reviews, but you'll also get more detailed reviews. Remember the goal here is to help the customer make the best decision of their plumbing life; call your plumbing company.

Plumbing companies should always keep the customer’s journey in mind.

Google My Business Customer First Rooter Marketing
Google My Business Customer First Rooter Marketing

So, yes, local SEO and Google My Business optimization is important. But before going into all the technical SEO details, think about Dan. He needs you! Dan is on a plumbing problem solving mission. Dan needs to see your great reviews, he needs to see the correct services (aka keywords), he needs to trust you. Most importantly, he needs to be saved from those lousy competitors of yours.

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