Did you know the largest portion of Australian Small Businesses (16.1%) are in the Construction Industry?
Yet, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, only 18% of construction companies have a Social Media presence.
Construction and Mining industries have little social media presence. Source: (Source)
The benefits of establishing a web presence, for organisations or individuals, has been highlighted loud and clear for years. So why do construction businesses in particular fall behind in this department?
There is a widespread belief that doing great work on a job will get new opportunities through word of mouth and recommendations alone, and that’s all that needs to be done.
But even though this approach is tried, true, and timeless, without a decent web presence, there will always be work opportunities left on the table. Look at some of these statistics:
- 92% of consumers look at a company’s website before coming to a decision,
- 63% of customers use a contractor’s website to find and engage with them.
- 30% of consumers won’t even consider a company if it doesn’t have a website
For those contractors looking to grow, or stand out, this lack of technological presence in the industry presents a massive opportunity to carve out their online space in an environment that should (and may one day) be much more competitive and saturated.
Here are 4 simple, free things that can be done to help lay the foundation for construction contractors building a web and social media presence.
1. Have a website
Yes, this is an obvious one. But it is unbelievable seeing just how many subcontractors and plant hire companies don’t have a simple website.
It’s understandable why people hold off. A website can cost thousands of dollars (not including maintenance fees), and if someone isn’t a tech-wiz, it can be difficult putting trust into someone to do this work.
For most up and coming construction companies, a list of services, fleet (if relevant), as well as contact information is really all they want on a website.
If building a website is out of the picture, getting a developer to make something on a ‘web builder’ will make it easier to customise things moving forward, without having to consult them every time a small change needs to happen.
2. Create a Google My Business Page
An example of Google My Business being utilized correctly. (Source)
Google My Business is a free and easy-to-use tool that helps businesses and organisations manage their online presence across Google, including Search and Maps.
With Google My Business, the average business is found in 1,009 searcher per month, with 84% of these coming from discovery searches (Source).
Here is a handy walkthrough on how to set everything up.
Remember to keep active! Businesses that add photos to their profiles receive 42% more requests through Google Maps, and 35% more clicks to their websites than businesses that don’t.
3. Gain backlinks
Another great way to build a web presence is through backlinks. A backlink is simply a link from one website to another.
The reason they are important is because Google takes them into account when ranking search engine results.
A great first step towards getting on Page number 1 of Google for something like, “Sydney Excavators for Hire”, is to establish credible backlinks.
The aim is to get the company’s URL link shown on other websites as much as possible.
Directories are a fantastic place to start. Not only will this approach help solidify your businesses web presence and improve search engine ranks, but 40% of people look at online directories to do research on a contractor before coming to a decision.
Felix Vendor Marketplace gets thousands of visitors each month and allows you to list your company and fleet/services for free on their website. Get your business listed here.
4. Social Media Presence
A lot of business owners in construction are tentative to dive into social media because they don’t know where to start. Like a web developer, digital marketing agencies can be incredibly expensive, but they are also not necessary.
The main thing to understand is something you have probably heard before - Content is King, particularly unique content. This is where construction companies have a massive advantage – most are seeing new sites and/or doing different things each week!
Simply documenting day-to-day activities on site and sharing them across social channels is a great way to build credibility, trust, all while getting the businesses name out there amongst the industry.
Posting and interacting on social media is one of the best brand building strategies out there, regardless of how large a company is.
The online marketplace has grown more than four-fold since 2012. If your company isn’t utilising online outlets as an extension of your sales funnel, then you’re likely missing out on new customers and failing to engage those who have already hired. This affects your customer lifetime value and in turn, you’ll see the monetary impact of that on your bottom line month after month.
Projects are time sensitive and various factors can influence their deadlines. Working within a time restriction can cause a project manager to rethink their approach and determine their ability to deliver when under pressure. A fast track project is not achievable for all businesses and when accepting a contract for a fast track project it's important to be prepared in order to ensure you have the capabilities and resources to get the job done.
Construction professionals who'd rather be ahead of the curve than chasing it would be smart to start including social media as part of their daily or weekly tasks. Social selling is the process of researching, connecting, and interacting with prospects and customers on social media networks -- notably LinkedIn for our industry, but others certainly fit the bill. Through commenting on, liking, and sharing prospects’ and customers’ posts, salespeople create relationships with buyers and boost their credibility by taking an interest in what they’re interested in.
Formerly known as the PlantMiner blog, Felix Project News is Australia's top 10 Construction blog.
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