Are you spending too much on Search Engine Optimization (SEO) or not enough?
Interestingly, the topic of how much SEO costs is one of the most frequently searched questions by owners of HVAC businesses. And truth be told, it’s a valid question! As a business owner, especially in one of the most competitive home services trades, it’s critical to assess and understand how much various channels of HVAC marketing cost and where YOUR dollars are best invested.
First, let's explain why we chose to use the word “invested”. When it comes to any business, there is no shortage of things that cost money- office or warehouse rent (or a mortgage if you own your building), utilities, materials, vehicles, your employees, etc. However, there's a distinct difference between an investment and an expense.
Take, for instance, essential components of business operations like rent, utilities, insurance, and more – all fall under the category of expenses. What defines them as such is their consistent presence; irrespective of your business's revenue fluctuations, these expenditures persist steadfastly on a monthly and yearly basis. Although they might not be direct catalysts for business growth, they remain vital for the smooth and effective functioning of your enterprise.
On the flip side, an investment involves allocating funds to a tool, product, or service with the aim of generating revenue. For instance, consider the scenario of an adept heating and cooling contractor. By procuring a substantial inventory of furnaces, AC units, or IAQ products that you retail, you can lower the cost per piece. This strategy enables you to enhance your profits from the sale of these items. While the initial substantial financial outlay might be unsettling, the reassurance comes from recognizing that your present investment is poised to yield greater returns in the future.
How does this factor into the cost of SEO for your HVAC business?
Because Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a long-term investment, NOT an expense. At its core, SEO is the process of continually optimizing your website and directory listings to ensure your heating and cooling business shows up on the first page of relevant search results. And I say “relevant” because as a local heating and cooling expert, showing up on the first page of search results for ‘air conditioners’ doesn’t help you. For your business to effectively attract more customers, it’s imperative that your business is on the first page of results for searches with intent, like ‘furnace repair near me’, ‘air conditioning replacement [insert city here]’, or even ‘emergency furnace repair’. While that last one doesn’t include ‘near me’ or a specific city, Google’s search engine technology is smart enough to interpret a search for emergency furnace or AC repair as one with local intent.
Now, before we get too far into the weeds of the intricate workings of SEO and the multitude of strategies that can be harnessed to catapult your HVAC business to prime visibility in search results, remember this fundamental point: search engines meticulously scrutinize numerous facets of a business to determine its eligibility for top-ranking display. This bears immense significance because the level of work required to obtain a coveted spot at the top of search results hinges on the volume of competing heating and cooling businesses vying for attention within the markets you serve.
The complexities might feel a tad overwhelming, but these variables collectively shape the investment required to ensure your HVAC business shows up prominently in local search results.
How much should you expect to invest in SEO services for your HVAC business?
Simply put, it depends. Regardless of the many tactics a reputable HVAC SEO marketing agency could leverage to improve the visibility of your HVAC business in local search results, the amount of effort required to achieve your desired results largely depends on how many other heating and cooling businesses are competing for the same visibility in your geographical area, as well as how much they have already invested in their own digital marketing. At the same time, it also depends on how well your heating and cooling website is structured, the quality of the content it contains, how often it’s updated, how many backlinks you have, etc. To give you a better idea of how much effort goes into optimizing a heating and cooling business for search engines, see the following list of items that need to be assessed and updated.
Core SEO details that must be assessed and continually optimized to ensure your HVAC business website has the best chance of ranking in the top of search results:
1. Crawling (Can search engines find the pages of your HVAC website?) Instruct search engines on how to crawl your website
Properly set up robots.txt files
Optimize for crawl budget
Define URL parameters in Google Search Console
Ensure search engines can follow your HVAC website navigation
Is your content hidden behind login forms?
Are you relying on a search box?
Is text hidden within non-text content?
2.UX (Ensure your HVAC website is using a clean information architecture.)
Properly set up and submit an accurate sitemap
Eliminate crawl errors (400 & 500 codes)
Implement proper redirects (300 codes)
Avoid redirect chains
3. Indexing (How well do search engines interpret and store the pages of your HVAC website?)
Assess and optimize cached pages
Identify and update pages removed from the index
Properly set up Robot meta tags
4. Ranking (How are search engines ranking the pages of your HVAC website?)
Understand and optimize for the latest iteration of Google’s algorithm
Ensure your HVAC website provides useful answers to searchers’ questions
Create high-quality inbound links (backlinks)
Create relevant internal links
Create and optimize content
Assess, interpret, and make adjustments based on engagement metrics
Leverage appropriate SERP features (ex: Paid ads, featured snippets, ‘People Also Ask’ boxes, local map pack, knowledge panel, site links)
5. Localized Search (How well does your HVAC business show up for local customers?)
Assess and optimize your website and Google Business Profile for
While the above details are not a comprehensive list of every single effort that goes into optimizing your HVAC business to display at the top of search results, it should paint a pretty clear picture of the amount of effort it takes to achieve top visibility. It’s also crucial to remember that achieving top visibility is tough, but maintaining page top visibility is even tougher. Keeping your HVAC business at the top of relevant search results requires regular updates and constant effort to ensure your HVAC website is always providing better answers and value than your competitors.
When it comes to how much you should invest in monthly SEO services for your HVAC business, it all boils down to what your specific goals are.
For example, if you already have a well-established business and all you need is for your website to show up in search results as a customer or prospect searches your business name, then you can expect to invest anywhere from $350 - $600/mo.
However, if your goal is to dominate search results in order to aggressively grow your business, then you can expect to invest anywhere from $2,500 - $25,000/mo.
Keep in mind that the more you invest to ensure your HVAC business' visibility in local search results, the more new business you are likely to attract, so it's important you're realistic about how many customers you can effectively support! This is where partnering with the right HVAC SEO team can help you properly grow and scale your business.
Wondering if your HVAC business is optimized for Google?