What Should A Remodeling Contractor’s Website Look Like?
Brandon Schmidt | Nov 5, 2019
What are some of the top home remodeling companies doing to get more leads? Find out through this study of their websites.
As more homeowners turn to the internet to research and evaluate home remodeling companies, contractors are finding the need to stand out among their local and regional competition online. And many contractors are finding that the website they had built a few years ago is slow, dated, and not nearly as compelling as other remodeling websites.
Want to know what leading remodeling companies feature on their website? Join us as we deconstruct 50 home remodeling websites to find what works and doesn’t work.
About the Research
This research is based on Remodeling magazine’s Big50 for 2019, a prestigious list of leading remodeling contractors from across the United States. Our team looked at each company’s website, evaluating it on the basis of design, trends, features, and digital marketing best practices.
Components of a Great Website for Remodeling Contractors
1. Clear Message
When a customer visits your website, they should know what you do. While it may not be the first time they are interacting with your brand – that may come on social media, through word of mouth, seeing an ad, or finding you on Google – there should be a clear message on your homepage as to who you are and what you do.
Denny+Gardner combine beautiful imagery of past projects with a clear message (“Transforming Space into Sanctuary”).
The homepage for Rebath tells you exactly what they do: “Bathroom Remodeling Made Effortless”
2. Social Proof
By nature humans are social creatures; we want follow others and avoid the feeling of being left out. Savvy marketers have used this psychology for decades in what we call social proof.
Home improvement companies can use stats, maps of projects, and other impressive numbers to show the wisdom of the crowds. By highlighting social proof, you can show that you are an experienced contractor that hundreds, if not thousands, of homeowners have trusted for their home remodeling project.
Nu Look Home Design highlights their customer satisfaction score, which is from thousands of clients.
Golden Group Roofing shows impressive numbers on their homepage, to show they are a large, established company.
3. Trust Symbols
Another form of social proof is a trust symbol: a certification, membership, award, or other visual proof that this company is reputable and trustworthy. Adding logos from local trade associations, regional awards, national memberships, recognition from manufacturers, or customer service awards can go a long way in highlighting your expertise and experience.
Cedarbrook features icons from trade organizations they are a part of, including NADRA and NARI.
The homepage for Sunshine Contracting highlights recent awards they have won.
4. Client Testimonials
You can only say so much about your brand; get your clients to say great things about you and feature it on your website. Many of the Remodeling Big50 websites have client testimonials, including videos, photo essays, and written quotes.
The homepage of Metro Building and Remodeling Group has a rotating gallery of reviews, with a link to futher reviews.
A client can explain the experience of working with you, like this client does for Janacek Remodeling.
5. Highlight Your Team
Your company is made up of local tradespeople who are passionate about creating new spaces in a client’s home. Make sure you put names and faces to your team so that potential clients can get to know you before you ever step foot in their home. It doesn’t need to be every person on your crew, but at least the ownership and client-facing team members should be acknowledged.
Cornerstone Remodeling puts photos of their team right on their homepage.
Since the company has his name, it is important for Patrick A. Finn to have his photo on the homepage. If your owner/partners are active in the business, or you are a family-owned business, embrace it.
6. Define Your Service Area
Most contractors have a defined service area – a territory in which you prefer to work. You may define it as a certain mile radius from your shop, a whole town, or a defined region. Make sure your service area is clearly presented on your website, so potential clients immediately know if you are a good fit for them.
Visitors to the website of Couto Construction knows exactly the communities they serve in Cape Cod and southern Massachusetts.
The Recent Projects map for Krumwiede Roofing also explains to visitors the areas they serve; in this case it is the Chicago suburbs.
7. Highlight Past Projects
Remodeling is a very visual industry. Make sure you are investing in professional photography of your best projects and featuring those projects on your website.
A popular method is adding a project gallery. Potential clients can browse a gallery to see your style and capabilities. This will help you build more trust and rapport with them, so when the time comes for a meeting, they really want to work with you.
Custom Decks has a robust project gallery broken down by project types.
The project gallery for Denny+Gardner is tagged with community names, which is great for SEO.
8. Create a Clear Next Step
If you are like most remodeling businesses, your website exists for one key reason: to generate qualified leads. Sure, getting more traffic or having awesome project photos are great, but they serve to meet your bigger goal: generating more business.
At some point, a potential client needs to reach out to you. Call this a design consultation, quote, or on-site inspection, it requires them connecting with your team by phone, email, or chat. How well is your website at sending people to the next step?
For many of the Remodeling Big50 websites, there are strong calls to action on the site. This is either a phone number that is prominently placed in the main navigation, or a quote form that’s easy to fill out. You don’t want to ask too much information; you’ll have plenty of time to get all that info once they become a client. Instead, just ask for enough info to move the conversation offline and into an in-person meeting, where your sales staff can shine.
This quote form on the Ottawa General Contractors website is concise and easy to understand. I love the explanatory copy underneath!
Areas of Improvement
All of the websites we studied reflected positively on the companies featured in the Remodeling Big50 list. Plus, with some slight tweaks, these companies could see an increase in search visibility, improved engagement, and better customer satisfaction.
1. Invest in Mobile-Friendly Design
As more people are using their mobile devices to research and evaluate potential companies for their next project, contractor websites need to adapt to that reality. Large photos, navigation, and content all need to be resized to the size of the screen your audience is using.
2. Make It Easy to Contact You
This form asks for 12 points of information from a potential client. Do you need all that info right away? Make it easier for people to reach out to you; you can get the rest of that info during follow up conversations.
3. Improve the Main Navigation
This website features 2 levels of navigation, with duplicates between the two. Which one is a client supposed to click?
4. Clarify the CTA
For this website, there are several competing calls to action at the top of the page: giveaway, feedback, and contact us. We recommend focusing on just one that is the most important.
5. Ditch the Stock Photography
Getting the right photos for your website’s hero image can be hard and expensive. Yet the alternative – using stock photography ‐ has its own disadvantages. In an industry where visual appeal is important, you want to showcase your best work, not featuring an image that another contractor can use.
If you do need to use stock photography, we recommend using it as a background, so that you are not giving the impression that it is your own work.
Invest in Your Company’s Online Presence
Your remodeling company’s website is one of the most important marketing assets you have. Be sure to invest in a properly-designed website to ensure your brand is properly being highlighted, your capabilities and recent projects are easy to see, and that potential clients can contact you to start a conversation.