The Ultimate Guide
Your website is so much more than just a place to showcase your portfolio.
If all you do is upload photos of projects you’ve worked on, your site will look pretty, but it won’t accomplish much.
That’s why you need search engine optimization.
With SEO, you can transform your website into an ultra-valuable asset. You can demonstrate your expertise to the world and build your prestige to new heights.
In this article, you’ll get a deep-dive look at SEO for architecture firms:
- Why SEO is crucial for architectural firms
- The difference between National and Local SEO and which you should focus on
- Four ways to improve national SEO for architects
- Four SEO tips to improve local SEO for architecture firms
All given in an ultra-practical way, so you’ll have immediate steps to take to start improving your website’s rank right away!
Why Architects NEED SEO
Before jumping into how to improve SEO, it’s important to look at the why first.
Why do architects need search engine optimization?
- Thousands of people are searching for architects online
- SEO builds prestige for architects
- SEO helps you expand to new markets
Let’s take a look at each one.
1. Thousands of People are Searching for Architects Online
Ever wonder why getting to the top of search results is such a big deal?
That’s because thousands of people are searching for “architects” on search engines every month – 20,000 to be exact.
Also, the keyword “architects” brings in 25,000 clicks to various websites. Without SEO, none of those clicks will go to you.
That’s why you NEED SEO.
You’re missing out on many potential clients if you don’t rank on their search results.
2. SEO Builds Prestige for Architects
Prestige is vital for architectural firms. People don’t want nobodies to design their projects. They want an architectural firm that they can trust to get the job done beautifully.
That’s why once people see you as an industry expert, you’re going to get a bunch of new projects.
However, your beautifully designed website won’t help your name much without SEO. You can showcase all your best work, but if hardly anybody finds your site, what’s the point?
With SEO, you can turn that around. A lot more potential clients are going to see what you’re capable of doing.
Plus, when your website is one of the first to pop up when people search for architectural keywords, this will give your name a big boost. People will see your architectural firm as one of the leaders in the industry.
3. SEO Helps You Expand to New Markets
What type of buildings do you specialize in?
Are you planning to expand to other types soon?
If so, SEO will help you get your first client in that branch of architecture.
Even if you have nothing in your portfolio to show, you can demonstrate your expertise by writing about the projects you want to work on.
For example, an article like “20 things to consider when designing a school” is a great way to show people you know all there is to know about designing schools.
This article will bring people who are planning to build a school to your website. And when they read through it, they’ll learn a lot from you – so much that they may just want you to do the designing for them.
National vs. Local SEO – Which Should Architects Use?
There are two types of SEO architects should know of, national and local SEO.
National SEO, or traditional SEO, deals with any keywords relating to architecture. Local SEO, on the other hand, deals with keywords with a location on it.
Traditional SEO deals with making sure your website ranks as high as possible. This way, any time someone types in an architectural keyword, your site will be the first to show up.
Local SEO, on the other hand, helps you find potential clients in a certain area. Keywords like “architect firm in Phoenix” or “architects near me” are local keywords.
If you are working on projects only in a certain area, local SEO should be your go-to strategy.
On the flip side, if you want projects all over the country (and world), national SEO should be your focus.
However, the best way to succeed for architectural firms is to work on both national and local SEO.
National SEO can build your prestige and show your expertise, while local SEO can bring in new clients in your area.
Do both well, and you’ll grow your firm tremendously.
How to Improve National SEO for Architects
There are four critical steps for architects to improve their SEO:
- Create a User-Friendly Website
- Write Architectural Content
- Build High-Quality Links
- Fix Technical SEO Errors
Let’s have a look at each one.
How to Improve National SEO for Architects Step #1: Create a User-Friendly Website
What’s the most important thing when creating a website?
For a lot of architects, the answer is the design.
Architects are artists. They want to give their site visitors a taste of their unique style.
Unfortunately, too many architects do this without paying any attention to user-experience. And that is a HUGE mistake for SEO.
They put up the most creative websites ever and leave their visitors confused about where to go to find what they’re looking for.
When people can’t find what they want, they’re going to click the back button and get out of there.
Now, you can show your style through your website, but NEVER at the expense of user-experience.
You want visitors to be happy they are on your website, not at a loss. You want them to find what they’re looking for right away.
Also, you want your visitor to know what you specialize in as soon as possible. If you specialize in designing commercial buildings, let people looking for commercial building architects know they’re in the right place immediately.
When you do this, they’ll stay longer – and when they stay longer, the higher search engines will rank your website.
How to Improve National SEO for Architects Step 2: Write Content and Target SEO Keywords for Architects
There is no way you can rank your website without content.
Quality content spells the difference between a website with no visitors and a website with new people coming in by the thousands.
However, you shouldn’t just write any content. Your content should always do one of two things: build credibility by writing about your projects or build traffic by talking about architectural keywords.
Writing About Your Projects
Aside from uploading pictures of your work, you should also add text.
Let readers know the challenges you faced while designing that project and how you overcame them. This will not only show what a masterful designer you are, but it will also help your SEO.
Remember, the longer visitors spend on a page, the better it will be for your page rank.
Write it in an entertaining and easy-to-read manner. Try to get readers to read to the end of everything you write.
Writing About Architectural Keywords
Besides writing about projects you’ve done, you should also give detailed articles on architectural keywords that people are searching for.
Do some keyword research to find what people are asking and then write the best and most comprehensive blog post on that subject.
This is known as content marketing, and it is one of the most effective ways to advertise your business and get to the top of search results.
When you give in-depth insider knowledge on keywords for architects, you’ll get a lot of new traffic. People are looking for these answers, so it’s no surprise that they’ll flood to your website when you provide it.
With content writing, you can also target only people looking for an architectural firm like you. If you write about school designs, only people who are already planning to build a school will read it.
And when they see how much you know on the subject, you’ll be the first on their minds when its time for them to hire an architect.
How to Improve National SEO for Architects Step 3: Build High-Quality Links
Google doesn’t have a guy who reads all web pages and manually ranks them. Instead, they have a complex algorithm that tells which websites are trustworthy and which ones aren’t (trusted websites go to the top of the rankings, of course).
One way to position your website as trustworthy is by getting quality links.
Whenever another website links to yours, this shows search engines that you are trusted. However, there is a difference between bad and good links.
A link from an unrelated boating blog won’t do you any favors. But a link from a well-known and reputable construction company will give your rank a good boost.
How can architects get links? Here are a few ways:
1. Link Outreach
One of the simplest ways to build links is simply to ask for them.
As an architect, you may find your name or firm name mentioned on another website. Perhaps from a press release on your project, or a mention from a partner company.
Any time you find your name with no link to you, reach out and ask them to link to your website. You’ll get a lot of good links this way.
2. Guest Blogging
Is there a big website that you want a link from?
One way to get it is through guest blogging.
Write a blog post that will be ultra-valuable to that website’s readers, and pitch to have it guest posted.
The more relevant your article is to the website you’re pitching it to, the bigger the chance you’ll earn a link.
3. Write Informative Articles and Case Studies
Once again, content is vital for success in search engine optimization.
When you write informative articles, you won’t only get a lot of new traffic, but you’ll also gain plenty of links.
If you give information that can’t be found anywhere else, don’t be surprised when people start citing it all over the place. You’re going to get a bunch of new links with these, which is great for your SEO.
Another thing you can do to up your content is to create videos and infographics. These visuals keep people on your page longer. Plus, they’re also easily shareable on other websites and social media, giving you even more links.
How to Improve National SEO for Architects Step 4: Fix Technical SEO (or Hire a Web Developer)
User-experience, great content, and quality links will all fail if your website is ridden with technical errors.
The worst part?
Finding these is not easy.
Crawl errors, schema markups, page-speed, broken links, mobile-friendliness, these are all errors that you can’t detect without some audit tool.
That’s why we recommend hiring a web developer, getting SEO services, or at least having a professional have a look at your site.
Want a personalized, in-depth website audit video from TheGallasCompany? Click here to find out how you can get one for free!
Dealing with technical errors isn’t the dream job of an artist. But if you’re the rare architect that enjoys coding and working on template files as well, then go ahead and fix up your technical SEO.
This must be done since you can never rank well on search results with technical errors all over your site.
How to Improve Local SEO for Architects
Good national SEO will give your website a strong domain rank.
But if you’re looking for projects in your area, local SEO is what will bring them to your doorstep.
Here’s how to start being found locally right now.
How to Improve Local SEO for Architects Tip #1: Sign Up for Google My Business
One of the biggest goals of local SEO is to get into Google’s 3-pack – the little map with three businesses that shows up when you search “Architects” or “Architects in ______” on Google.
Getting into the 3-pack makes it super easy for everyone looking for an architect to find your firm.
But to get there, you first have to create a Google My Business profile.
Doing this is super simple, head over to Google.com/business, and fill out all the information they ask you for. Once you verify your address, your profile will be up and running.
However, there is a difference between an okay profile and a great one.
To optimize your Google My Business profile, give as much information about your firm as you can. The more you give, the better this will be for your ranking. This will also make it super easy for people to learn about your firm.
You’ll also want to add some images.
Google will guide you on which images you should upload (such as your logo, banner, and office). Aside from those, it’s also a good idea to upload 3-4 more of your office and maybe your team.
Finally, sprinkle in some SEO keywords in your business description. Let people know what branch of architecture you specialize in. These keywords will help the right people find you.
How to Improve Local SEO for Architects Tip #2: Get Citations from Directory Sites
Another way to boost your local SEO (and get your firm to the 3-pack) is to get citations.
Citations are any place on the internet where your NAP (name, address, and phone number) appear.
The easiest way to get more citations is by listing on directory sites. Sites like Yelp, Yellow Pages, and Houzz are great places for architects to sign up and place their NAP.
Make sure that your NAP is 100% consistent everywhere it appears. If not, it won’t count as a citation.
If you find your firm already listed on a directory site, claim it, and edit the information.
How to Improve Local SEO for Architects Tip #3: Get Customer Reviews and Reply to Them
Customer reviews are a big help when trying to get into the 3-pack. When search engines see that your customers are satisfied, they rank you higher.
That said, you need to get customers the proper way.
You should NOT try to incentivize leaving a review. This is against Google’s policy, and your SEO could suffer if you’re caught.
Instead, ask your customers for reviews. Send them a short email asking for one. You’ll be surprised to find that many people want to help out.
Pro Tip: When you get customer reviews, it’s good practice to reply to them. This shows the human side of your firm.
When clients are happy, thank them for their business. If they’re unhappy, tell them you’re sorry and try to fix the problem.
Even if you can’t fix it, you will at least show other readers that you are a company that cares about its customers.
How to Improve Local SEO for Architects Tip #4: Target Local SEO Keywords for Architects
Last but not least, you’ll want to write local content. Choose a local keyword, and write an article around it.
For example, you can write about “How to Choose an Architect in Austin.”
Articles like these won’t get as much traffic as national keywords. However, everyone looking for an architect in Austin will find this article tailor-made for them. So do some local keyword research.
At worst, these readers will see your firm as the authority in the Austin area – at best, they’ll become your client.
Ready to Take Your Architecture Website to the Top?
SEO is a long-term strategy.
Don’t expect to see floods of traffic the moment you publish a blog post, or your phone to ring endlessly when you set up your Google My Business.
SEO takes weeks, even months to bear fruit.
But once you’ve followed the 8 steps listed in this article, you’ll have a solid foundation in place. From there, your online presence will grow and grow organically.
Before you know it, you’ll be getting far more traffic than you ever imagined. And your architecture firm will be positioned as an industry leader.
So get ready to work hard. Work hard because the results are going to be well worth it.
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