The 8 effective ways to generate leads for contractors are:
When customers need the services of professional contractors, they often do a quick Google search or use digital marketplaces to find providers in their area. So whether you're a general contractor or a construction business owner, you need greater brand visibility if you aim to gain quality leads.
In this article, we’ll discuss the pros and cons of 7 popular platforms, along with why ranking organically can be the best way to go. For those interested, we have a lead generation coaching program that teaches you how to gain free search engine traffic and how to generate long-term leads.
In any case, these platforms and strategies will help you, as a contractor, build better online visibility that you can't afford to miss out on.
Why contractors need to learn about lead generation
Contractors need to learn about local lead generation because it’s an important marketing strategy. Companies need a constant stream of fresh leads to drive continuous revenue, since they rarely earn from repeat customers.
In general, professional contractors attract new clients looking for one-time home improvement or renovation services. So their business has to be visible to prospects looking to hire their expertise. Using specialized contractor lead generation platforms can result in quality traffic that converts into paying projects.
One of the best ways to learn these tactics is to fully understand the local lead generation business. In local lead generation, we help small businesses get noticed by target customers near their location. We use proven practices to boost your traffic by putting you on top pages of search engine results. In turn, you also get to save on advertising expenses.
How do contractors find leads?
Contractors find leads by combining offline and online ways to reach new lead prospects. Offline contractor marketing strategies include joining trade shows, sending direct mail, cold calling, and print ads, among others. Meanwhile, online digital marketing methods include email marketing, SEO, using lead generation platforms, and more.
Today, qualified lead gen services can provide solutions necessary for contractors to be found by a potential customer searching for their service online.
How to find the best lead generation companies for contractors
Research is key to finding the best lead generation for contractors. There are many specialized lead generation companies out there, so you need to study your options well. You should consider the following questions:
These basic factors will make it possible for you to decide which service is most ideal for your business. As you browse their websites and get in touch with them, you will be able to make an informed decision on which platform is best.
Now here’s a list of 8 top lead generation services most used by contractors today:
8 lead generation tools and technique for contractors
First off, we have Bark. Established in 2014 by entrepreneurs Andrew Michael and Kai Feller, Bark is a “world-leading services marketplace with over 5m customers in 8 countries around the world.”
All professionals are welcome here. Contractors can promote their services to prospects here. In addition, Bark also accommodates other professionals such as accountants, life coaches, magicians, web designers, and more.
You can get local and national leads. Whether you're targeting local or nationwide customers, the platform can send you leads to review and accept in real-time.
The credit system. Bark claims they don’t require commissions and hidden fees. However, they have a credit system. Some users say these credits run out fast.
Customer service isn't their strong suit. In fact, a quick Google search shows the company gets a lot of complaints about their customer service - such as failure to resolve issues or refusal to respond to refund requests.
Considered by many as Microsoft’s equivalent to Google My Business, Bing Places is a lead generation service that allows local businesses to find online leads.
Bing Places is free and easy to use. Contractors can easily create a free profile by claiming business listings or adding new ones in the Bing Places directory. Details include business name, address, phone number, website, hours, and a short description. You can gain interest from local clients by keeping your business information updated.
Many Bing users are older and high-income earners. According to statistics, 70% of Bing users are 35 years of age and older while 38% have a household income of over $100,000.
The market is not saturated. Bing’s user base is not as massive as that of Google’s. The low competition allows you to get noticed faster when customers look up the search engine for local contracting business options.
Fewer users means fewer leads. As a December 2022 Statista report indicated, Bing only attracted around 9% of global search engine users while Google had 84%. The low number of users can also work for the disadvantage of contractors. For example, the obvious drawback is that fewer users can mean meager opportunities for your business. While it's a good idea to sign up on the platform, you can't expect to get high leads from Bing Places.
The features aren’t as advanced. Bing’s search algorithm also isn’t as modern, compared with Google’s. Loading high quality photos even takes a while, contributing to dissatisfaction among users. It's also worth-noting that Bing updates do not generate much buzz among the SEO community.
BuildZoom has over 4 million US-based contractors in its database. Since 2013, the company has been offering opportunities for contractors to grow their businesses by matching them with prospective clients.
You can establish greater credibility. Their database stores relevant information about contractors including your contractor license, customer reviews, photo gallery of past projects, work history, and more. Building your profile and having these details readily available can encourage a potential client to use your services.
Good performance can lead to big projects. Initially, BuildZoom connects you with your first clients. The platform rewards you with more leads when you perform well and get positive reviews.
A standard fee after closing a deal. While most platforms charge you with each lead, BuildZoom only requires a standard 2.5% cut from the total cost when you close a deal.
Tough competition. As with similar services, competition can be fierce in BuildZoom because they have an extensive database. New and smaller contractors will likely have a hard time gaining market attention, compared with bigger, established businesses.
Additional fees. As mentioned, BuildZoom charges contractors per project. You also need to pay other fees for an upgraded experience on the site. Advertising, for instance, costs $99 per month.
Google Ads is Google’s advertising platform you can use to promote your service business. When you run a Google Ad, your link will appear on the top and bottom part of relevant search results.
Instant exposure. Google Ads gives you immediate results by boosting your business visibility. As your target market uses Google to look for local contractors, your ads are placed strategically so people immediately notice your brand. This can result in significant traffic increase.
You’re in control of your budget. Google Ads offers flexible pay-per-click pricing, allowing businesses to decide how much they want to spend. You can set limitations for your keywords’ cost per click and the service only charges you for each click.
Flexible campaign options. You can adjust your campaign, depending on what works for your business. For example, you can run ads based on certain keywords this month and then change those keywords in the next. You can then decide which strategies bring better results for your company.
Temporary exposure. Any exposure you get from your Google ad is temporary. Once you decide to stop using their service, your business will no longer appear on the top results.
The pay-per-click model. You will need to pay whenever a Google search engine user clicks your ads. This means it will cost you money whether or not the traffic converts into actual sales.
There is a learning curve. It’s important to research and experiment which keyword campaigns are best for your business. This can be a challenge for new users of the platform.
Home Advisor has been around since 1999. Homeowners use the company to connect with service professionals whenever they need to repair, improve, or maintain their houses.
HomeAdvisor has a loyal customer base. The platform has 45 million users and attracts 4 million unique visitors per month. So far, HomeAdvisor has matched 11 million homeowners and professional contractors.
It can boost your Google presence. Your business gets improved visibility online, particularly on Google search results.
You can receive badges. HomeAdvisor grants service professionals with different badges such as Top-Rated Pro, Elite Service Pro, Best of HomeAdvisor, Seal of Approval, and more.
You can display these badges on the platform and your own business website to stand out from your competitors.
You pay for every lead. While homeowners can use the platform for free, contractors are charged $15 to $100 for each lead, whether or not they make the sale. This can be a challenge, especially for businesses with limited budgets.
Lead quality can be an issue. HomeAdvisor sends leads to multiple contractors - even if some of these leads are simply window shopping for affordable services in their area.
An all-in-one lead and project management tool, Houzz Pro helps contractors and design professionals to “attract and win better clients.” Established in 2009, the company was founded by husband-and-wife Alon Cohen and Adi Tatarko.
Client management and tracking. Among its interesting features is the client dashboard. Contractors can monitor their leads, allowing them to potentially convert casual contacts to actual projects.
Advanced features and tools. Regardless of the type of premium account you get, Houzz Pro offers features such as invoicing, QuickBooks integration, financial reporting, mood boards, 3D room planner, and more.
Fixed pricing. Premium account users can sign up for Starter ($65 a month), Essential ($95 a month), Pro ($149 a month). Houzz Pro offers a free 30-day trial period for all these packages. In addition, the all-inclusive Ultimate membership package costs $399 a month.
The full program for lead generation is exclusive to Ultimate users. Contractors who sign up for an Ultimate account users only get access to one area, standard exposure on tools such as preferred directory placement, lead generation program, and target advertising. Unless you’re willing to pay for this, you’ll have to settle for basic features.
Poor customer service. While a GetApp reviewer described it as a great software, Houzz also has frustrating customer support. “Sometimes when you just need a quick answer, you cannot reach anyone at Houzz over the phone,” the person wrote.
Launched in 2004 by co-founders Russel Simmons and Jeremy Stoppelman, Yelp is an online directory used by people to find reputable local businesses. Although mostly known for restaurant reviews, the site has a “Contractors” section under its Home Services category.
People trust Yelp reviews. Users prefer businesses with higher Yelp ratings. You have bigger chances of gaining new customers if you have a good number of positive reviews.
Wide reach. Yelp boasts over 178 million visitors per month across its desktop, mobile, and app platforms. 70% of its users are above 35 years old.
Signing up is free. Yelp allows users to create a page and post your business photos for free. You can also respond to reviews, plus send and receive messages.
Bad reviews can damage your reputation. You can't do anything about it when people leave negative, fake, or unfair reviews on your Yelp business page.
Upgrading can be costly. For example, Paid Ads CPC is at $5 to $10 per click while Paid Ads CPM can cost you as much as $600.
Ranking a website & Google Map listing in Google
Finally, organically ranking a website & Google Map listing in Google is a terrific technique for attracting the best leads.
Google and Google Map ranking can attract more quality leads. With more people using Google and Google Maps than the other platforms, contractors gain a greater number of quality leads for their businesses.
Lasting results. Good ranking can bring leads to your business for years.
It costs nothing. Unlike paid ads and marketplace options where you’ll have to spend for every lead or click, organic traffic on Google is free. With good ranking, you can save money and increase your earnings at the same time.
You can’t expect quick results. You’ll have to work hard before your website can enjoy organic traffic from top search engine ranking. This means you’ll need to learn and use the right strategies before you can see significant results from your lead generation efforts.
You need to stay updated with algorithm changes. Search engine optimization is highly dynamic so you’ll need to comply when there are updates and changes.
Expert advice: The best lead generation for contractors is…
The best lead generation for contractors is free traffic local lead generation. As your business website organically ranks higher on Google, your company will be visible to more potential clients in your area.
No wonder 1/3 of 1,600 marketers surveyed by HubSpot admit they focus their efforts on lead generation. In addition, organizations say they generate about 1,877 leads on a monthly basis.
Can you generate leads organically?
You can generate leads organically for your business. Organic lead generation will require time and effort because you’ll need to do constant research and content creation. When done right, however, the results are comparatively more long-lasting than paid advertisements. Besides, Google is still the #1 platform that people use when they need to hire local services - and more people trust organic search results than ads or digital marketplaces.
So when a Sacramento-based user needs to look for a concrete driveway contracted in the city, they’d type those words in Google or Google Maps to find relevant local results.
SEO (or search engine optimization) makes it possible for your business to rise above your competitors. If you can place your Maps listing or website at the top of Google, you can generate organic leads from free local traffic. If you’re good at SEO and understand how the algorithms work, you can rank your contractor website and gain more leads than anyone else.
Also, it’s worth mentioning that most price-conscious clients turn to digital marketplaces (HomeAdvisor, Yelp, etc.) to potentially save on expenses. They want to pick the cheapest company out there and so they use the platforms to compare contractors and ask for price quotes.
With Google, searchers aren’t usually as price-conscious. They simply want to find legit contractors they can hire asap. This means better quality leads for contractors because they won’t have to waste time providing quotes for people that won’t choose their business in the long run.
How can you generate more leads as a service contractor?
You can generate more leads as a service contractor by implementing proven market practices. For example, you can consider the following ideas:
- Starting and/or maintaining an optimized contractor website
- Building a strong social media presence
- Listing your business on Google Business Profile (formerly known as Google My Business)
- Engaging in content marketing by producing informative content (blogs, podcasts, YouTube videos, etc.)
- Collaborating with other local businesses in the community for partnership marketing
- Asking potential client referrals from your current customers
Of course, it's crucial that you maintain a solid track record. More people will trust and hire your company as you prove your worth. As a result, happy customers will spread positive word of mouth - which can bring more opportunities for your business.
That said, choosing the right contractor lead generation company can play a big role in your overall marketing strategy. The best service can help you gain qualified leads by expanding your customer base.
What are good leading indicators?
Good leading indicators, otherwise known as key performance indicators (KPI), allow you to measure the results of your online lead generation campaign efforts. Among the most important metrics to monitor include:
- Website traffic (the volume of users that visit your website and/or specific pages)
- Bounce rate (the volume of site visitors that immediately leave without taking any action)
- Engagement (the likes, comments, and shares of your social media posts)
- Lead quality (the volume of leads that convert into sales)
- Lead value (the total sales value resulting from leads)
Having access to and regularly studying these indicators will allow you to understand which of your strategies are yielding the best results. You can then implement necessary adjustments to direct your campaign towards achieving your business goals.
As modern contractors make the most of effective lead generation models, they can look forward to growing their contracting business. Again, keep in mind that each platform has its own pros and cons.
The bottom line, of course, is that organic lead generation strategy turns over long-term results that can benefit your brand for years. So it's best to concentrate your efforts in this area.
For those interested to learn the ins and outs of lead generation, we’re here to help. Our lead generation coaching program is perfect for anyone who wants to make money from home generating leads for contractors and service providers. Additionally, contractors can also benefit from signing up. We’ll teach you how you can do lead generation for your own business. We’ll simplify everything so you can understand the entire process. That way, you no longer have to hire people to do it for you.