McIntosh Electrical have been operating in the greater Sydney area since 2002. The team first adopted digital technology when they launched the McIntosh Electrical website in 2005, and they haven’t looked back since. Now, after two redesigns, and extensive work in social media, they are one of the forerunners of digital uptake in the electrical industry.
To coincide with the recent relaunch of their website, co-owner Jenny McIntosh commissioned a search engine specialist to help improve the website’s ranking in engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing.
Jenny cites their web presence as a major source of income for the business and as such understands the importance of ranking highly in search engines. She does however, admit that the process of developing their search engine optimsation (SEO) plan wasn’t easy. Only now, after two years of “aggressive” development, are they beginning to see the top ranking results they have been working towards.
“We initially looked at pay per click advertising using text based ads, but we wanted our website to come up organically and not through third parties. I think the time it takes to develop the website and our search engine optimisation strategy was a huge challenge for us, but in the past six months, we’re seeing great results,” says Jenny.
For Jenny and the team at McIntosh Electrical, their search engine strategy is as much about finding the right specialist as it is understanding the rules and regulations of search engines.
“I found our specialist through a networking group that we’re part of. I was happy with the results I saw for the websites they had worked on, so we engaged their assistance,” she says.
“It has helped us to understand exactly what it is that search engines are looking for. Ultimately, it’s about focusing on creating quality content as per search engine standards.
“We update the website constantly, at least once a day via the blog, and that’s one of the reasons we’re so successful in Google Maps; they’re slowly recognising us and looking at what we’re doing.”
Aside from constant website updates, Jenny also notes the significance of social networking in developing search engine rankings.
“They all recognise that there’s interaction between you and your fans on social media, and that helps to add an authoritative voice to your website. And that’s the end game; search engines want to rank websites with authority higher, so you need to build that,” Jenny says.
“In our industry, where local directories are so important, it’s vital to get reviews on Google Plus. Again, this automatically gives you authority. We leave our customers with details on how they can review us on Google, right from creating a Google Plus account, to connecting with our page.
“Testimonials are a large part of this industry, so we want to make sure they’re on our website and our social media accounts.”
Advice from their specialist has definitely helped in building a strategy; Jenny now works in collaboration with their specialist to deliver updates and create content for the website and social media accounts.
“It’s really important to avoid doing anything considered dodgy by the search engines. Their crawlers can see everything you’re doing in your code, and they will penalise you if you do anything wrong. And it is very hard to get your ranking back once you have been penalised.
“After that, it’s really about measuring your website hits, and tracking where they are coming from. We quantify everything, and can put a dollar value on our web leads.
Jenny says that the time is takes to develop an effective – and legal – search engine optimisation strategy may seem daunting, but it’s worth it in the end.
“Getting a first page ranking is definitely the end game. It can seem like a lengthy process, but it’s worth its weight in gold to be on that first page, or even better, in the first three ranks,” says Jenny.
“It’s all about working for the long term.”