A Closer Look at Crushing Local SEO Competition

Yesterday, I introduced you to Arrow Moving and Storage, a Colorado Springs moving company that ranks nearly as well as its competition in the search engines without buying AdWords ads. I showed you how they made good use of their blog and social sites. Today, I’m going to explain how they can do even better.

While Arrow already boasts a nice social presence, as I noted in the previous article, they could be doing more. So the question then becomes, what should they be doing? What things can they put into place now to capture more customers and in fact make them the de facto moving authorities in Colorado Springs?

1. This is a somewhat minor point, but the way their page is designed right now, when someone clicks on the “blog” link, the content is actually “below the fold” and it isn’t clear that the page did anything. Their page loads so fast that a refresh doesn’t even look like it happened, and the “Blog” tab isn’t highlighted or anything. You have to scroll to know that you are even at that page, and that confusion is a problem. If someone as “web savvy” as I am had to wonder if I made it to the blog page, then someone else is probably going to get confused and just leave the page.

2. In this case, the word “blog” should probably be changed to “articles” instead.  I would also go one step farther: any post that is content that answers some question they’ve gotten in the past should be added to its own category. Include another tab, “Answers To Frequent Questions,” that links directly to that category.

3.Their blog content is mediocre at best, both in how the content is structured and what it covers. As I stated before, they badly need to show how their content is specifically related to moving. More importantly, they need more content on why I should use a mover at all, instead of just doing the move on my own. Their blog should be what they use to demonstrate extreme expertise over and above their competition. No one should ever have to guess how any piece of content applies to the subject of moving or using a mover.

4. Besides their standard social media icons, they should also be linking to the various local directory ranking pages like Yelp, SuperPages, their Google Places page, and so on.

5. Next, after every single move they should offer a discount if someone will give them a ranking on one of those pages (with a slightly larger discount for ranking on their Google Places page).

6. Also, they should keep some kind of small, cheap video camera and offer another discount to people that will allow them to video record a testimonial.  That testimonial can now be placed onto a special YouTube channel they create just for the purpose (giving them more links). This channel can then be linked to from their site (with a simple “see customer testimonials” for anchor text). Between creating better content, the incredible jump upward in good directory rankings, and the testimonials, they would likely gain multiple first page rankings – and many more sales.

7. Have their movers begin writing down every question any customer asks them.  These should be turned into content for their site (the Frequent Customer Questions I talked about above).

8. Expand their use of video. Occasionally someone should go out with their movers to a customer site and show with video the correct way to do things. They could use the video to demonstrate how people should prepare for a mover, what they should do to help the moving process, and so on.

9. I don’t mean to beat a dead horse here, but there should be videos on why someone should use a mover in the first place.

10. Include content that talks about the differences of using a small franchise mover like Two Men and a Truck versus a larger mover like Arrow.

11. Create comparison videos on insurances, boxes, and so on.

12. Do video interviews or obtain content from folks like painters and carpet cleaners that people might need after they have moved out of a home or office, or before they move into one. Again, this helps to demonstrate expertise, because it shows they understand the full range of things someone might need when moving.

13. THIS IS A HUGE POINT: They need to explain the training that their movers go through. They need to show that they actually teach their people how to pack boxes so that things don’t get broken, how to properly stack them so that they don’t get broken, how to lift and move things so that they don’t get broken … they need to show that their employees are very highly trained. Even if the training is the same as any other mover, so what? It’s still important to talk about training.

14. Go one step farther and have a “certification” process. Have their movers actually show their certification certificates to a customer before anything is even touched. Then have them ask if there are any question. If there are, as I noted earlier, they should be written down for later fodder for the blog.

If they did the above they could comfortably raise their prices, and probably significantly, at the same time that they find more people wanting to use them.

Here’s the thing: I’ve used movers a few times, and each time I have, the horror stories play out in my head. I am nervous the entire time, and I’m watching the people doing the job like a hawk to make sure nothing gets broken. Once things have reached the new location, I inspect everything.

The reason for this is simple: I don’t trust them. I’ve heard too many horror stories of moves that went bad.

What if, instead, a mover went out of their way to demonstrate that they knew what they were doing? What if a mover went to great lengths to demonstrate that they were trustworthy, through a huge and growing number of video testimonials from customers?

The usual fear associated with using movers could be greatly diminished. Trust could be established that would allow their customers to have a much more pleasant moving experience, which would translate into better testimonials.

A mover that would be willing to demonstrate expertise and establish trust would be worth paying extra for … a lot extra for, in fact. This mover could easily charge 30 percent above anyone else, and still have people waiting in line to use them, exactly because they have built confidence and trust.

In the moving market, no one is even trying to build those things, despite the fact that both are in very short supply (again, thanks to all the horror stories).

If Arrow were to follow this advice, they could mop the floor with their competition while dramatically reducing their advertising costs.

For more of my work, please check out http://www.mattgoffrey.blogspot.com/.

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