It can be quite a challenge to find the best way to market your pest control company in this day and age. To begin with, pest control is what you might call an “old school” business. By that I mean that the industry has been around for a long time, and it hasn’t changed all that much. I mean, bugs are bugs, and houses are houses, and they’re pretty much the same as they were ten years ago, or even fifty or a hundred years ago. Cockroaches, for example, are not only one of the most ubiquitous pests today, but they’ve also been around, in basically the same form, for about 300 million years. That means that they existing, long before humans walked the earth. In fact it places them right about the same time as dinosaurs.
The Changing Face of Marketing
The pests you’re trying to control may have remained unchanged since the Jurassic Period. But that doesn’t mean that you need to be a dinosaur when it comes to marketing your business. Roaches and other insects may not have changed, but people certainly have, and marketing techniques that worked a generation ago are completely obsolete in today’s world. There was a time, and it wasn’t all that long ago, when all you needed to do to drum up business was put an ad in the yellow pages. People who found that they had termites, or roaches, or some other sort of pest would simply take that huge phone book off the shelf, look up “pest control” or “exterminator” in the alphabetical listing, and make a phone call or two to hire a service. If your ad was reasonably catchy and well-placed, you’d have a good chance of getting a fair share of the business.
Today’s consumers don’t generally even think of print ads when it’s time to shop. Instead, they look online.
Times have changed, though, and the once reliable old yellow pages ad is no longer as effective as it used to be. As more and more consumers turn to the internet as the first stop when looking for just about any goods or services, the yellow pages may be sinking into oblivion. Verizon has stopped distributing the book to every household, only providing a copy upon request in some areas, and there’s been talk of doing away with the publication altogether. It’s true that there is such a thing as a yellow pages search online, but that’s losing popularity too. In the time period from June 2015 to April 2016, the number of unique visits to yp.com on a monthly basis dropped from 321,000 to 101,000.
Today’s consumers don’t generally even think of print ads when it’s time to shop. Instead, they look online. And, of course, this is not just happening when they’re sitting at home and using their computers, as almost everyone carries a smartphone or tablet with them everywhere they go. A staggering 89% of consumers surveyed search for local businesses on their phone at least once a week. If you want to catch today’s consumer, you need to be visible in those searches. And that all starts with a high quality marketing website.
What makes a good website?
As you know, there are all sorts of websites, ranging from those that only provide static information to those on which you can make purchases and other transactions. The type of website you build is dependent upon your goals and objectives for that website. Those informational websites are sometimes called “brochureware”, and honestly, they’re not too different from an old school printed brochure (or that old yellow pages ad we were talking about earlier), and won’t really serve your purposes here all that well. When we talk about a website to market your pest control business, the objective is simple and straightforward: to attract prospective buyers of your services, and convert them into paying, satisfied customers.
You can think of your website as a lead-generation machine. It’s almost like a salesperson in and of itself. It may be helpful here to understand the concept of a “sales funnel” which is used to describe this process. Your website should attract a large number of prospects (at the top of the funnel) and lead them through a process by which some of them will reach the bottom of the funnel as qualified leads, and eventually closed sales.
...the objective is simple and straightforward: to attract prospective buyers of your services, and convert them into paying, satisfied customers.
Here at Rhino, we’ve long been advocates of content marketing, which uses valuable, engaging content to attract buyers who need exactly what you’re selling. This is most often written words, like blogs, whitepapers, and eBooks, but could also include videos, graphics, and other types of media.
Content and SEO
At this point, I’m hoping that you’re still with me and understand the objective of a marketing website for your pest control business. But I suspect you may still be wondering what kind of “engaging content” you can use for this purpose. Admittedly, pest control is not a “sexy” business, and it may be difficult to envision what sort of content would attract people to your website. It may be worth noting some examples of other “boring” businesses who have come up with unique content marketing solutions.
...you need to understand the mindset of your prospective customers.
More importantly, you need to understand the mindset of your prospective customers. In inbound marketing, we call this your buyer persona. In order to reach them, you need to understand their pain points and what they’re looking for, and then make sure that you’re highly visible when they go to search for that information online. This is part of a larger process known as Search Engine Optimization (SEO). A perfect example of this is the fact that many searches related to pest control occurred after midnight, and the most common search term was “bed bug pictures”. Since you’re in the business, I’m sure you’ll immediately understand that folks were getting bitten in the middle of the night, and searching to find out whether they indeed were infested with bed bugs.
Other Elements of a Pest Control Marketing Website
In addition to using relevant, valuable content to attract prospects, here are some elements that you should not overlook when building your pest control website. It should be easy to navigate, so visitors can find what they’re looking for quickly, lest they get frustrated and turn to a competitor’s website. Make it attractive without becoming cluttered with excessive design elements. Animated graphics, for example, were a great additional to websites in the late 1990’s when web browsers began to support them, but in 2017, they seem like more of a distraction and may use too much of your visitors’ valuable resources and bandwidth. Most importantly, modern websites should be responsive, meaning that they’ll look good and perform properly on any type or size of device, be it a computer, phone, or tablet.
Make it attractive without becoming cluttered with excessive design elements.
If we’ve gotten you interested in building a website to market your pest control company, take at look at the case studies of companies who we’ve helped ramp up and increase their business in leaps and bounds: one serving the Central Valley, and another in Northern CA. Why not give us a call today, and see how the marketing experts at Rhino can help you achieve your goals for the next year?