We have compiled a guide of all you need to know about website SEO for service-based businesses. Use these tricks to make the website for your service-based business SEO-friendly.
Service-Based Business SEO - Why Bother?
Service business SEO, is it worth the hassle, you may wonder. If you want your business to rank higher on search engines, drive more website traffic, gain credibility, drive more leads, and appear on Google Maps, it is worth it.
When comparing SEO with SEM (paid ads), you will find that SEO is way more cost-effective in the long run. A website optimised for search engines will drive organic traffic, while paid ads will only drive traffic as long as the ads run. Ranking high organically will give your business more credibility, and if you are a local business, you will experience a boost in your brand awareness.
If the above sounds like something you want to see for your business, simply follow our comprehensive SEO guide below.
1. SEO-Friendly Website Structure
In general, the outline of an excellent service-based business website includes a home page, separate pages for each service, potentially separate pages for each location, an about page, a contact page and valuable resources (a blog, for example).
We have found that many service-based businesses need separate service pages when performing website audits. It's common to merge the About and Contact pages and not make the most of the critical Home page. We have outlined the ideal structure below to help you create a successful website for your service-based business.
Not every website needs to use this particular structure to succeed, but it is a general recommendation that works across most industries.
Use Separate Web Pages For Different Services
Having a separate web page for each service your offer is one of the most efficient ways of optimising your website.
Cramping your services onto one page, which is very common, will make it too general. You can have one page summarising your services, but it should link to each separate service page on your site. Remember to include the right keywords tailored to each subpage.
Use Separate Web Pages For Different Locations
Are you offering services at different locations in other cities or states? To rank high locally, you can create subpages for each location. These pages can be used to target different suburbs or even neighbourhoods.
Add a Subpage With Contact Details
A separate page with your business address, phone number, email address, contact form and an embedded Google map is always a good choice. Having a separate contact page will make it easy for your visitors to find your basic contact information, and it is one of the most visited pages on a website.
2. Content Strategies For Service-Based Businesses
Identify your target audience
To create content that resonates with your audience and drives engagement, you must understand who they are, their interests, and what content they seek. By identifying your target audience, you will be able to create content that focuses on what they want, need and desire rather than focusing on what you offer.
Remember that when your audience lands on your website, they are most likely looking for a solution to a problem or to answer a question. Your content should give them the answers they are looking for; it should be an essential resource and valuable information that they benefit from.
Create a content strategy
It is essential to have a clear strategy to ensure that your content is relevant, engaging, and consistent. Your plan should outline your content's topics, relevant keywords, themes, and formats and which platforms you will post them on.
Add a Blog / Resources
Many service-based businesses don't focus on content and content strategies - they think it doesn't apply to them. This is incorrect; it's crucial from a user perspective and an SEO perspective that you add relevant content to your website regularly, no matter your industry.
A blog or a selection of relevant and informative resources on your website will also help you rank for more keywords. Remember to use internal linking within your blog/resources. Learn more by reading our article on how to make blog posts SEO-friendly.
3. Local SEO For Service Businesses
Local SEO can boost your performance, reach and brand awareness if you offer services in a specific city or area. Local search engine optimisation can help you rank on Google Maps and make your business easily found by people in the same town, suburb or neighbourhood.
Google Business Profile
The first thing you should do to rank locally is to set up a Google Business Profile. This is your free business listing on Google. Upload your contact details, opening hours, website URL, add your services and collect client reviews. Remember to respond to questions, add photos and upload posts regularly.
4. To Share a Price List or Not
There are different opinions on whether or not a service business should add a price list to its website. You don't need to give precise details; you can share a rough price guide. The benefit of adding a price list to your website is that your clients will get an idea of the price point, and they won't have to contact you unnecessarily.
Ultimately, if the parties interested in your offer don't find your prices acceptable, they won't contact you. It's entirely up to you to decide if you want to display your fees, but if you add it, you should also include links to individual service descriptions.
5. Gather Testimonials
Testimonials and reviews are crucial for service businesses simply because what you're offering is an experience for your customers. Testimonials help build credibility, trust, and social proof, influencing potential customers to choose your business over competitors.
Your most valuable testimonials are about how you solved a customer's problem, how you made them feel and how trustworthy you are. Even better is if the customer can give away their results from working with you, what they gained from it. "Thanks to Sarah, our sales increased by 20% in 2 months".
6. Use Keywords In Your Copy
Choose the keywords important to your business when writing the copy for your web pages, subpages and blog articles. Google Ads Keyword Planner is a great free tool for developing keyword ideas. You enter your URL, and Google will give you ideas on what keywords you currently use and which ones you can add.
Keywords should be used in your headings and throughout the copy. Please don't overdo it, as this can result in keyword stuffing. Your content should be written both for the user and search engines - it can be a fine line, but at the end of the day, your website needs to please the user.
7. How to Use CTA (Call to Action)
A good piece of advice on using CTA for service businesses is to use a solutions-based approach rather than a service-based one. Your potential new customers will want to know how you can solve their problems rather than hear about what you offer.
Use clear call-to-actions and value propositions that tell people what they will get, such as "Call us now to learn how you can get 40% more leads in 40 days". Stay away from vague CTAs, and remember to add a button at the end of each webpage. Only the most dedicated people, who are scrolling down to see the whole page, will see this CTA and may be ready to take action.
8. Website Loading Time
Last but not least, check your website loading time now and then. You'll want your site to load quickly, preferably in under 3 seconds. There is a free tool called GTMetrix where you can enter your URL and get a result within seconds.
Got a Slow Loading Website?
If your website takes more than 6-8 seconds to load, you need to take action to speed things up. If you've got many images, make sure they are in JPEG format rather than PNG, as PNG files are bigger and slower to load. Remove any widgets or apps that are not necessary. The problem can also be with your site host, so consider changing to another platform if you are unhappy with your current one.
In conclusion, SEO is critical to any service-based business's marketing strategy. With the right approach and commitment, you can take your website to the next level, drive more website traffic and position your business for long-term growth and profitability.
SEO Specialist & Web Designer