Roofing leads. There are only so many of them to go around, and every roofing company in an area wants them - especially the big projects.
For the top roofing companies, though, getting those leads is never an issue. In fact, some roofing companies pull in so many leads that they enjoy the luxury of picking the projects they want to work on and turning away the rest.
So what’s their secret?
Well, let's start with what they don’t do: they don’t take a hands-off approach that banks on seasonal ebbs and flows, nor do they count on referrals and word of mouth exposure. And it’s not even a case of these companies burning through massive advertising budgets every month, either.
The difference is the way they set up and optimize their lead pipelines.
In this guide, you’ll learn:
- How to think about your roofing company’s lead pipeline
- How 4 aspects of digital marketing reinforce that pipeline
- How you can optimize your pipeline with that knowledge
A Top-to-Bottom Approach
Now, if you’re a business owner of any kind, the concept of the lead pipeline isn’t novel or revolutionary. The difficult part is understanding how to support that pipeline so you’re getting not just a high volume of leads, but a high standard of leads as well.
Roofing businesses with lead pipelines that accomplish those goals are mindful of customer behaviour and expectations at every level:
- They get on people’s shortlists
How? By being easy to find and immediately looking like a credible, trustworthy business.
- They’re relevant and persistent
They give potential customers what they’re looking for, then stay top-of-mind as customers consider who to work with.
- They turn leads into projects and projects into more leads
By thinking about the user experience, they create a self-reinforcing cycle of lead generation.
Build Your Credibility Through Reviews
Think about the last time you were looking into a new product or service. At some point during the process, you probably looked for those five little stars on the product page or search results to help guide your decision. And if you were really being diligent, you even read a handful of good and bad reviews for context.
That’s a snapshot of the modern consumer process. As many as 88% of consumers say reviews are a critical part of their final decision - and as a roofing business, it matters even more for you. Why? For three reasons:
- There’s no “try before you buy” for roofing
Prospective customers can’t preview your workmanship on their home or business in advance - they have to make a decision based on your credibility.
- Roofs can’t be returned or exchanged
A roof isn’t like a phone or jacket that can easily be returned at the store if something goes wrong.
- Working with another company is expensive
Roofing work is a major expense for most people - they can’t afford to just call another company to redo their roof if something doesn’t work out.
For potential customers, there’s a lot on the line and very little information they can base their decision on. That means - unless they have a word-of-mouth recommendation - they have to lean into the only measure of credibility and service they do have: your reviews.
How to get more online reviews
Ask for them
Obvious, right? And yet so many businesses don’t do it, expecting reviews to just pour in on their own. You can - and should - invite customers to leave feedback on their experiences with your roofing crews anywhere your business has a presence. On your social media profiles, your website, your emails - wherever.
Make it easy
Leaving a review should be simple and easy to complete; don’t try to squeeze in a survey or collect a lot of extra information at the same time. Platforms like Google, Facebook, and Yelp provide review links so you can make things as direct and streamlined as possible.
Make review collection an automatic part of your project workflow. You can have a dedicated review email set to go out after a job is completed, or include a review invitation at the bottom of an existing customer receipt email.
Use SEO to be More Visible and Relevant
All the review credibility in the world won’t count for much if potential customers can’t find your roofing company online.
With SEO - that’s short for search engine optimization - you increase the chance that your business will appear in the results when a potential customer searches for a service you provide.
Now, before we go any further, I should clarify that “SEO” is a very broad term that includes not just what you see on your website, but the way it’s built, too. For now, we’re just going to be focusing on the kind of optimization that you can readily see and recognize on your website, which is what’s known as “on-page SEO”.
Stick the landing (page)
Narrow down to a single keyword
When a person searches on Google for something like “flat roofing”, Google’s search algorithm recognizes that as a “keyword”, then makes a decision about which pages to show in the search results.
Keywords have a significant impact on page rankings, which is why choosing the right ones and optimizing your pages around them is so important.
Let’s say your roofing company provides service for flat roofs, steep-sloped roofs, and metal roofs, and you detail all of those services on a single page.
When Google’s algorithm looks around and tries to understand which pages to show in a search for “flat roofing”, it’ll look at your page and think, “well...this page talks about flat roofing, but it also talks about steep-slope roofing and metal roofing, so it seems less relevant than this other page which only talks about flat roofing”.
Does that guarantee your page won’t rank ahead of the other page?
Not at all - Google’s algorithm looks at more than just keywords in deciding how to rank pages. But it does put you at a disadvantage, and it goes against best practices for lead generating landing pages.
Generally, every landing page should be based on just one keyword.
That’s better for Google, for advertising purposes (which we’ll talk about later), and for your site visitors, too.
You can get keywords for free with Google Ads Keyword Planner, or upgrade to paid tools like Ahrefs and SEMrush that’ll give you more data and built-in tools for competitor comparison and performance tracking.
Use headings for relevancy, clarity, and structure
Headings aren’t just a way to make words pop out on a page - in the world of SEO, they’re Google’s way of understanding the structure and content of the page.
Using flat roofing as an example keyword again, a well-optimized landing page might also have headings for “flat roofing repair”, “flat roofing installation”, and “flat roofing conversion” on the page. You’ll notice that each heading is related to the main keyword, but also able to stand as an individual section on the page.
Remember to optimize the page title and description
Every search result on Google consists of at least two parts: a title and 1-2 sentences just below it called a meta description.
After all the work they spend optimizing on-page content and pushing for a spot on the first page, it’s amazing how many people treat the content that will actually occupy that spot as an afterthought.
SEO here is simple: you should always include the focus keyword of the landing page in the page title (the one that appears in the search results). That’s it.
Everything else is precious billboard space to play around with - so take full advantage of it by writing an attention-grabbing title and value-packed meta description. You worked hard to get your page to rank, so you’ll want to do everything to make it count.
Don’t be One-Dimensional about Advertising
As powerful as SEO can be, it comes with an element of uncertainty.
Your competitors will always be jostling with you for organic rankings, and Google’s adjustments to its search algorithm will affect your online visibility too. SEO is more about building up a strong online profile of relevancy and credibility than it is about achieving immediate results.
Paid advertising, on the other hand, is all about bringing in relevant traffic and leads immediately.
But without the proper setup, you’ll just end up flushing money down the drain. That’s what so many roofing companies do when they pick a bunch of keywords off the top of their heads, lump them all into a single ad group, then send them to the home page of their website.
The anatomy of a good roofing ad campaign
Ads in the right places
Bing, Google, Yahoo, Facebook - there are a lot of places where you can choose to place your ads. But once you think about how people typically look for roofing companies and roofing-related services, the answer is pretty simple: Google Ads and Bing Ads.
Again, it’s about customer behaviour. Most people aren’t looking for roofing services while they’re on Instagram or Twitter, so - at least at the beginning - you’re better off by avoiding spending your dollars there.
Ads for the right people
When a person specifically searches for metal roofing services near them, what are the odds they’re interested in shingle roofing services in a nearby city? Presumably not very high, otherwise they would have used that search term instead.
But if you put all your ads in a single group, that’s what’ll happen. To avoid that, you should always create ad groups based on your services, then match each of those ad groups to a corresponding service page on your website.
This way, your ads will be more relevant to both the ad platform and the people you’re targeting, which translates into lower ad costs and a higher likelihood of successfully getting a lead.
Ads with the right message
Quick, why should someone work with your roofing company over all the other roofing companies in your area?
Whatever your answers were, those are the highlights you should be including in your ads. Make sure your top headlines are relevant to the specific service group, then use the remaining text to concisely convince people that a visit to your roofing company’s website is worth their time.
If you’re stuck on ideas, here are some to start with:
- Third-party awards/accreditations from consumer groups along with manufacturer certifications
- The number of years your company has been in business, or the number of years of experience you have (whichever is higher)
- Notable manufacturer warranties and/or workmanship guarantees
- Freebies and/or promotions
Ads with the right budget
As the old saying goes, you have to spend money to make money - and that’s how you should think about your ad budget. What matters most is your net ROI: if you spend $2000 on ads in one month and that brings in profits of $8000, your upfront cost for the ads is worth it.
Competition level varies between cities and communities, but as a general rule you’ll have to pay more in a larger city and less in a smaller city.
While your budget is ultimately up to you, you should be spending $1000 or more per month on advertising; anything less and your ads won’t be appearing often enough for you to assess and fine-tune their performance.
Provide an Intuitive Mobile Experience
If you’ve been following along, you should now be set up to get more traffic from both organic search results and paid advertising.
But traffic and leads aren't the same thing.
To get leads, you need people to be directly contacting you to schedule roofing jobs, get estimates, or ask questions. Some of those leads will come in by phone, but a big chunk of them will (or should) be delivered through your website, which brings us to the next step of lead generation: mobile optimization.
People search for roofers on their phones
According to the latest industry data from Google, 92.8% of roofing-related searches from the past quarter were conducted from a mobile device.
That sends a clear message - when people look for roofers, they’re doing so from their phones.
The money you spend on ads, the time you invest in building review credibility - all of it goes to waste if people visit your site on their phones and can’t easily take action or find relevant information.
Mobile optimization ensures that your site loads quickly, looks good on a phone, computer, or tablet, and is easy to use. It helps you convert traffic into leads, plus it has the added benefit of improving your site’s ability to rank well.
At the end of the day, you want your site to be well-optimized in Google’s eyes, so it makes sense to use Google’s assessment tools.
If you’re just looking for a simple answer, then you’ll want to start with Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test. All you have to do is enter the address of your website and it’ll let you know whether your website is optimized for mobile.
Assuming there’s room for improvement (or maybe you want more insight into the evaluation), the next step is to dive into Google Search Console’s Mobile Usability Report.
It’ll give you a page-by-page breakdown of Google’s assessment, and it’s a great way of making sure any work that you hire a web developer to do actually accomplishes what they say it does.
User experience optimization
While technical optimization is a must-have, a technically good mobile website isn’t necessarily also a user-friendly one. For your lead pipeline to run at its best, both aspects need to be working together hand-in-hand.
Pull up your website on your phone and go through it as if you were someone looking to find a roofing company.
Roofing websites typically don’t have hundreds of pages, so you should be able to view most - if not all - of the pages that potential customers would look at. As you do, watch out for:
- Screen-length walls of text
Make sure key information is clear and concise; people tend to skim through long sections of text outside of articles and posts.
- Broken or misaligned elements
This looks unprofessional and - depending on what’s wrong - can potentially make conversions impossible if a form or button is disrupted.
- Lack of direction
Every page should include one or more calls to action (CTAs) that clearly guide the page visitor to do what you want them to do on the page, like fill out a form or call you.
- Small annoyances
Literally! Small text can be difficult to read, and overly small buttons on forms can be immediately off-putting - both of which may cause visitors to leave and fail to return.
When a person arrives on your page, they should be able to immediately recognize that it’s relevant, easily find the information they’re looking for, and then take action.
The Recap: Your Roofing Leads Pipeline, Supercharged
Do you feel like Indiana Jones or Lara Croft?
You should, because you’re now in possession of a priceless treasure: the key to an endless pipeline of quality roofing leads. Let's recap:
- Smart advertising strategies will immediately bolster your pipeline, helping you cost-effectively bring in quality leads.
- With rave reviews and a strong foundation of SEO, it’ll be easier for your roofing company to gain online visibility and stand out as a local option in the long-term.
- Finally, with a great website - inside and out - the traffic you bring to your website will be compelled to take the next step and reach out to your company.
No, it won’t transform your roofing business overnight - but it will give you a foundation for business success that’ll let you weather rough patches, seasonality, and encroaching competitors.
You’ve got the information - now it’s time to get to work.