Running a service-based business and looking for ways to enhance your SEO strategy?

You landed in the right place. My team and I have been helping people with search engine optimization for two decades...From companies in highly competitive industries to local SEO. Plus, running a digital marketing agency is also a service business.

Now, if I tell you that there is one strategy that works for everyone, that will be misleading.

So, I'll share with you the 4 key elements we focus on when doing SEO for service-based businesses. Your job will be to use the insights from this blog post and improve your visibility in search engines.

Let's get straight to the point.

Google Business Profile

Let me start by clarifying something. Many folks still think that Google Business Profile is something available only to service-based businesses with physical locations. That's not the case.

Here is what Google states in its business FAQ:

Yes, you can have a profile if your business doesn't have a physical address as long as you make in-person contact with customers.

It doesn't matter if you run a small-town auto repair shop or a roofing company serving the whole state. Detail the areas you serve, and your business will appear in local search results.

That looks like a clever way to name your Google Business Profile! But it only works if that's your actual legal name, which is the case with this company.

google business profile optimization for service based businesses

Service Business Profile Optimization

Once you've claimed and verified your Google Business Profile, it's time for some enhancements. Here is how to help your potential customers find you.

Nail the Basics: Make sure all your info is accurate. Business name, address (for local businesses), phone number, links, and especially your service area.

Describe What You Do: Write a concise business description. Include all types of keywords people would use when looking for your services in Google.

Pick the Right Categories: To get the right customers to find you, choose categories that best suit your business. Some research on your competitors will help.

Show Off with Photos: Include high-quality images of your team, your work, or any visual proof of your services. Making a great first impression is a must.

Get Those Reviews: Encourage satisfied customers to leave positive reviews and ask them to use relevant keywords if possible. Respond ASAP.

Post Regularly: Treat your Google Business Profile like social media. Post updates, offers, events, etc. You gotta show people and Google that you're a real business.

Online Directory Citations

Getting citations is beneficial for any local business trying to increase online visibility. Online directory citations have helped us achieve higher rankings in Google Maps for all of our clients. When we talk about service-based business SEO, building citations is also a must. Here is why:

  • First, your target audience will discover you when they search for services on online directories.
  • Citations will also signal to Google and other search engines that you're a legitimate business.
  • Having your business info across multiple platforms means appearing in more local searches.

What Are Good Citations and Where to Get Those?

Naturally, you're now thinking about where to get citations. There are dozens of platforms, but the more places your business gets listed on, the harder it is to manage those listings. So, here is my advice:

Choose quality over quantity! A few listings on reputable directories will get you better results and less headache...especially if you're doing the service business SEO on your own.

where to get citations for your service based business

Start with the big players like Yelp. Then, get listed on a major data aggregator like Foursquare. Finally, consider a couple of platforms specific to your industry or location for boosting local SEO efforts.

Of course, social media also counts, so get your Facebook and LinkedIn accounts well-optimized.

Website Service Pages

I won't lie to you. No matter the SEO efforts, your service pages will hardly drive any organic traffic (unless you have no competitors.) Does that mean writing 100 words describing all your services on a single page is good enough? Nope!

Each one of your services is unique, and it must have a dedicated page. These will be your individual sales pitches. You'll send people there through social media ads and/or paid search campaigns.

By the way, if paid search advertising is part of your digital marketing strategy, check out these tips on how to get more for your buck.

Let me give you an example of why you must have a page for each service.

Imagine you need a portable spot cooler. You click on a Google search ad that says, "Portable A/C Spot Coolers." You end up on a page and scroll through 20 different portable options until you get to a spot cooler. All you see is a small image, the brand, the price, and that there is a 1-year warranty.

Would you buy it or go back to Google and open the next ad or site in the search results?

Okay, that was an example of a product page from a client's website who hired the wrong SEO consultant, but you get the point...Your service pages must convert. To achieve that, you need to make your visitors' lives easier by creating a one-stop shop for the exact service they need.

Look at the above the fold screenshot from Vibrant Media Productions. They have most of the elements we'll discuss.

seo optimization for service pages

Here is what we do when creating SEO-optimized pages for service-based businesses:

Headlines That Hook

You must grab the reader's attention right away while clearly stating the service. Try to be as specific as possible. You might even use some local keywords, but your headlines should not exceed 5-6 words.

Benefits Up Front

Be sure that your potential clients will understand all the benefits they'll get. What makes your service the best solution? How do you stand out from the competition?

Appealing Visuals

Use high-quality images or videos related to the particular service. Let them see you in action or include some before-and-after photos (if applicable).

Customer Testimonials

Showing social proof makes a big difference. People are used to it, and its absence can be a deal breaker. Just don't fake it. Get genuine testimonials.

FAQ Section

The FAQs are also something people expect to see. Imagine you're a salesperson who specializes in just one service. Answer all the questions to seal the deal.

Calls to Action

I see many websites having a single call to action towards the end of the page. Not everyone who lands on your site wants to read. Some people are ready to buy, so don't waste their time. Include a few CTA's throughout the content.

Here is our SEO Services page as an example. You can see how we have a call to action in the middle of the content.

call to action on a page for SEO services

Now, you might wonder how long the page should be. There is no perfect length. Provide all the information your customer would expect to see and be concise. No one will make a buying decision based on word count. Write for humans, not for search engines.

Blog Content for Service Businesses

Nowadays, educational blog content is part of every successful SEO strategy. This is how your service-based business will get the most out of search engine optimization.

I talk more about the 3 actual benefits of SEO in this article.

You may target local customers for a landscaping business or a global web design company. It makes no difference...People want to know what is the best way to spend their hard-earned money, and they ask search engines.

importance of informational blog content when doing seo for a service business

Create content that answers queries related to your services, and you'll start appearing more often in search results. Providing value through educational content wins trust, and when people trust you, they'll likely buy from you.

Here is what it takes to create content that drives high-quality web traffic:

Doing a Proper Keyword Research

It all starts with finding the phrases that people use when they want to learn about your services. I'm sure you know some of those.

However, proper keyword research is important because it allows you to find exactly how the questions are worded. These will be your SEO-optimized blog post titles.

Matching the Search Intent

Now that you've found the exact phrases, type them into the search engines and check the articles on Page 1. Your goal is to write something better but without any fluff. Your content should be straight to the point. Otherwise, visitors will bounce out.

Not matching the search intent is one of the most common SEO problems leading to poor results. There's no two ways about it!

Create as much informational content as you can. Connect it through internal links so people can find additional information. Introduce the readers to your services wherever you think is appropriate.

Final Words

These are the key elements you need to focus on when doing SEO for your service business. If you want to get real results from organic and not just paid search, you need to do everything right.

Creating, updating, and optimizing content, maintaining a high technical SEO score...all these tasks require constant attention and some paid professional tools.

Many business owners don't have the time for that and opt for professional services. If that's something you consider, here is what you need to know before hiring an SEO agency.