Utilizing Search Trends for the Home Service Industry

by on July 20, 2018

search trends for the home service industry

VitalStorm is unique in the marketing field, because we solely focus on the Home Service industry. As a result, we can recognize market trends as they relate to our client’s businesses. When you know what to expect out of Pay-Per-Click (PPC) services throughout the year, understand the peaks and valleys of search traffic in general, and cater to searchers’ habits, you can make more informed decisions for your business.

Search Trends for the Home Service Industry:

Mobile Use

Google reported in 2013 that about 43% of all searches occurred on mobile devices and estimated that more than half of all search volume would come through mobile phones by 2015. Using VitalStorm internal data, we found that that the home service-related searches for our PPC campaigns hit 50% of all searches on mobile phones with full browsers in 2017. So far in 2018, mobile phone searches vary from market to market, but are falling around 55- 60% for all PPC search traffic through VitalStorm PPC campaigns. Searches conducted on tablets with full browsers range from 5-7% in both 2017 and 2018.

Catering to search traffic habits is the name of the game here at VitalStorm. To accommodate this shift in market trends over the years, we’ve ensured that our PPC landing pages and websites are mobile responsive. We also include a mobile bid adjustment and call extensions for all PPC accounts to help drive more phone calls from mobile users. Plus, we implemented “near me” searches over time to cater to mobile users.

“Near Me” Evolution

Let’s dig more into these “near me” keywords. Over the past few years, the use of “near me” keywords has evolved from people trying to find physical locations near a specific location, to finding multiple products or services available near a relative location. As users adapt to technology, their preferences change. Google Consumer Insights shared that “near me” mobile searches containing different versions of “can I buy” or “to buy” have grown more than 500% over the last two years and 200% growth in mobile searches for “open near me.”

VitalStorm is on top of this trend as it relates to home service consumer habits and have been adding more specific “near me” keywords to our PPC accounts. While an “electrician” keyword can match with “electrician near me” on its own, the benefit of adding the exact “electrician near me” keyword is that we have a better chance of paying less for it than bidding on just “electrician.” That means more bang for your buck.

Seasonal Trends

We know how people are motivated by weather fluctuations, so naturally HVAC Google search traffic is the most influenced by the change in weather seasons (link to this blog: http://vitalstorm.com/slow-ppc-traffic/). People will search for HVAC terms when the temperatures are mild during the fall and spring seasons, but they are less motivated to act if they can solve their problem by opening a window or putting on a sweater. When temperatures are very hot or very cold, people start searching more for AC or furnace repair- related terms and are more likely to click and call.

According to data provided through Google Trends, these states have the highest air conditioning-related searches:

  1. Florida
  2. Louisiana
  3. Oklahoma
  4. New York
  5. Rhode Island

By contrast, these states have the highest heating and furnace-related search terms:

  1. Michigan
  2. Minnesota
  3. Colorado
  4. Washington
  5. Ohio

Google Internal Data showed that HVAC isn’t the only home service line of business that has seasonal trends. Google reports that between October and February the most plumbing searches occur more than any time of year, which makes sense considering the likelihood of pipe bursts due to freezing temperatures and shifting topsoil layers. Home Security searches peak during the holiday season, from November through December, when people are taking extra precautions against holiday theft. When the bugs come out every spring, from February through May, is when the pest control-related searches increase. And moving and lawn care service searches peak during the spring and summer months.

DYI Video Insights

While we strategically avoid Do-It-Yourself (DIY) searches for PPC — because those searches can absorb clicks and drive up costs without producing bookable leads– displaying for DIY searches through social media can benefit a company’s brand. Google Consumer Survey on the DIY Shopper from 2013 reported that 50% of DIY shoppers watch online tutorial videos, and 62% of those shoppers are more likely to purchase from a company that provides helpful videos.

By producing simple and in-house videos with DIY tips of the trade, companies can engage more with their audience via social media channels, building trust and top-of-mind brand preference with your current customer base and community. While VitalStorm creates and curates social media content and writes weekly blogs to help showcase our clients as the preferred local and trusted home service experts, we recognize that in-house videos showcasing your brand’s personality and expertise generate more organic engagement.

VitalStorm is here to help with your digital marketing needs. From social media management to PPC, we strive to serve our clients by utilizing the tools that Google provides and the years of industry expertise that have come from serving the home service industry.  To learn how we can help your business, contact VitalStorm at 1-877-311-5695.