Stop me if this sounds familiar: you figured it was time to start marketing your mechanic shop online, but aren’t much of a computer person. You got on yelp, did some digging, and found this “SEO” thing and figured you’d give it a shot.
But between really jargon-y words like “link building,” “page authority” and “penguin” (whatever the heck that has to do with SEO), it got a little confusing.
Never fear. This post will cut out the garbage and help you get this SEO thing down so you can focus on more important things – like cars.
Search Engine Optimization for Mechanics
SEO stands for “Search Engine Optimization.” This basically means all you’ll be doing is getting your website set up so whenever someone asks Google (or Yelp, Siri, Bing, you name it) for a mechanic, your shop pops up among the top players.
To do that, there’s a few steps you need to take.
Step 1: U-N-A-P (getting your ducks in a row)
The first step is making sure essential information is all correct across all the different sources search engines use to get information.
In SEO-land, that essential information is called “UNAP” – which stands for URL, Name, Address, Phone Number. The idea here is to make sure nobody is accidentally giving out false information.
Search engines also reward you for having all your information synced across all the data sources. That’s called a “ranking factor.”
You can use this tool to check basic data sources to make sure your’e good to go. Just remember that Moz shows some, but not all the data aggregators. Crunchy Links will take care of all 40+ mechanic specific data sources for you.
Step 2: Make sure your website is fast and mobile friendly
There are a ton of tricks to this. But if you just check Google’s page speed tester, it’ll tell you exactly what needs to be fixed.
We’re much better on desktop than mobile., according to Google.
So how exactly do you get your website super fast? Here are some of the most important things to do:
- Properly size images
- Simplify your code
- Enabele text and image compression
Talk to your developer about how to get all that done.
Step 3: Make sure you're using the right keywords.
This one is pretty crucial. Keywords are nothing more than the words your customers use when searching in Google or Yelp.
Your mission (should you choose to accept it) is to find out what kinds of words people are using that match with what you’re selling.
Here’s an example.
Let’s say you’re a mechanic who specializes in fixing European cars. Your customers might be searching or “european car mechanic near me” or even “bmw mechanic,” or quite possibly “certified porsche mechanic.”
Conversely, if you’re a mechanic that prides his (or her)self on value, you might try “cheap mechanic near me” or “best mechanic near me.”
It all depends on what you want to be known for and what your customers are looking for.
Step 4: Build local authority
- Sponsor a few local non-profits and ask them to place a link on their website
- Ask a few local car blogs if you can write a unique blog post for them, and include a link to your website
- See who’s linking to your competitor, and ask websites like theirs to link to you
- Offer free services to people in need, then ask websites with resource pages to place you there.
Step 5: Add Schema to your website
First of all, what’s schema? Schema is a type of code that tags your website and helps search engines learn more about what’s on your webpages.
A great example for mechanics would be to have “local business” and “auto repair” schema on your website.
This task requires a developer or a website platform or content management system with the right plugins or built-in options.
Step 6: Encourage Reviews
Having positive (and many positive) reviews is a huge ranking factor for search engines. This shows that customers love what you do.
Make sure to encourage honest reviews of your business on both Yelp and Google.
An easy way to do this is to give a discount for an honest review. When your’e done with someone’s car, just give them a small business card with your information on it, and 10% off if they leave a review.
One last note on reviews: if you (for whatever reason) get a negative review, the best thing you can do is reply in a positive way. Most people just want to be heard, and potential customers will appreciate you taking the time to address any concerns.