Each time a pest control prospect searches your business services on Google and types in certain relevant keywords such as “termite fumigation” … that’s where you want to be these days. It’s your moment of truth. Is your business ready?
PPC marketing can be very effective for pest control companies to put you in that spot. But because of costs, you have to be on top of your game. Make sure you track every part of the process to make PPC work for you.
The great thing about Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is that you only pay for it when prospective customers click on your ad. It’s a great way for local pest control firms to increase their visibility online and do it quickly.
Since it costs money to run these ads, it’s important that your PPC ads are continually optimized to get greater ROI. There are a thousand ways to do this. Keyword bids can be changed or revised if they are not bringing in the desired levels of converting traffic. Geographical targets can be adjusted to maximize your ad spend. That’s just the basics…there’s continual ad split tests, mobile bid modifiers, remarketing for search and display, and countless other ways to fine tune your results.
Winning that moment in truth in search marketing is vital for local businesses such as pest control. It happens fast and if you’re aren’t continually winning that…your competition is. To help, we’ve put together some pay-per-click tips to consider for your pest control business:
I. Be quick on following up leads
This is key for pest control businesses. Upon making the first contact with a potential customer, follow up sales leads as fast as you can. While you may think that there’s no problem with getting back to them after a few hours, chances are that your prospect is getting other quotes from multiple competitors. The sooner the follow up is done, the better.
Studies reveal that companies that take more than an hour to give response on online queries are seven times LESS likely to qualify any prospective leads, whereas waiting for an entire day is even worse off. For each passing hour the potential customer may be consulting with another pest control company and one of them is going to close that customer. Clients nowadays expect to get their services quickly and won’t wait long for a business to contact them after making the initial query.
Test your results if you haven’t yet. Take a full week of throttling up your response time as fast as you can and compare your conversion rates to prior weeks.
- Landing pages need to be relevant and effectiveYour landing page is essential to success. We’ve seen considerable improvements in conversions rates for our pest control clients by optimizing the landing page. If you are advertising on a keyword for termites, make sure your landing page obviously addresses termites. Always provide a clear contact form and business number, also ensure the landing pages are easy to navigate and click-to-call friendly on mobile devices (vital for service businesses). Keep that call to action front and center to push them to the next stage of your sales funnels. There’s a reason you see all the language relating to that next step: Sign Up, Try It, Shop Now, See Our Video, Contact Us, etc. Be precise and on-point. Don’t distract audiences with lots of other non-essential information. Our agency has a formula for success with landing pages and conversion rate optimization, but the key ingredient is frequent testing.
III. Monitor the close rates of your sales representatives
Just like your ad copy and keywords, different sales reps will have their own close rates. Track each of them separately. Make sure sales staff is able to learn from each other on what works and what does not. Don’t have an environment where they are competing against each other and not sharing secrets. Work together to improve together.
To establish an effective inside sales team, you must get your in-house data down to showing you both leading and lagging sales indicators. Right now, you may be used to looking at those lagging statistics — total sales numbers for a week or month. If you have a firm grasp on your leading sales indicators (calls taken, forms filled out, site traffic, etc.), you will have a grasp on those lagging numbers before they even happen. Understanding the close rates for your individual sales reps is an important part of that process.
IV. Don’t be afraid of the high CPCs in paid search
While some people may express reservations with the price of cost-per-click ads in the pest control category, they are pricey for a reason — they work. There’s huge competition for online traffic because it converts. This is a good thing. As an experienced agency, we’d much rather see a lot of competition on keywords than no competition. Why? Because we know that traffic is converting into business, and we know that with our skill set, we can do a better job than a lot of those. When there is no one on a keyword, it’s usually for a reason.
Also note that not all keywords aren’t priced the same. Keywords for termites are going to be much more expensive than those for ants. One is worth more to you and that’s why your competitors are bidding more on those.
V. Split testing ad copy is huge
Continual split testing of your PPC ads will improve your results. Do it every day, all day. Dump the poor performers as soon as you can and test new ad copy against your control ad. (Our agency has scripts and software that allow us to make these changes the moment the data dictates it needs to be done.) Ads with better click through rates (CTRs) can pay less than ads with worse CTRs. You can actually appear higher on the search results despite bidding lower than your competition. You don’t want to be on the wrong end of that equation, so split test frequently!
Apart from lowering costs per click, split testing also improves your lead generation prospects. Double that CTR on a top keyword and you just doubled your leads on that keyword.
Speaking of which … choose your keywords wisely and ensure that they are relevant to your company’s services. For instance, “pest control” can mean any number of things, and there’s a huge difference in returns from a call about ants versus another one for termite tenting. If you don’t want to pay for that ant business, then you may want to rethink whether to be on such a generic keyword as pest control.
Also avoid generic terms like “pest control,” if you have a tight budget and put more emphasis on specific, long-tail keywords. Give more emphasis on descriptive keywords that feature location and specific services being offered, such as “termite tenting Memphis TN.”
Also, vary your match types. A broad match keyword will have different ROI than a modified broad, a phrase match or an exact match. Over time, tracking stats for each of these match types can save you a lot of wasted ad spend.
VII. Day Parting
Day Parting is a pest control marketing strategy that allows advertisers to choose to run their campaigns at certain times of the day, when a target audience might be most active or profitable. Set up bid modifications based on the hour of the day or day of the week you are most profitable. It can vary considerably.
Again, if you don’t have someone who can respond to a lead at certain hours, you may want to bid differently for that traffic if it doesn’t convert into business. Or just pause ads during those times.
There are countless other strategies like advanced remarketing techniques, mobile bid modifications, CPA bidding algorithms and many other techniques, but the above should get you headed in the right direction. And if it’s too much to think about and handle, give us a call at 888-885-3996. It’s what we do!