SEO for Solar Companies
Enterprise SEO & Link Building for Solar Energy Companies
The solar power industry has had an incredible couple of decades. The cost of solar energy has sharply declined, and once coupled with government-sponsored discount programs, it becomes more affordable than ever for businesses and consumers alike to install solar panels. On top of that, fears of climate change and general eco-centric thinking are prevailing, resulting in lots of new business opportunities in the solar industry overall.
However, you can’t depend on these factors to carry your business to success. You’re facing hundreds, if not thousands of competitors, all of whom want to earn more online traffic (and more business), and many of them are relying on the same tactics you are.
Search engine optimization (SEO) and by extension, link building, is one of the most popular online marketing strategies in the solar industry. But why is it so valuable, and what steps can you take to climb to the top of the search engine results pages (SERPs)?
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Solar SEO: Why Rank Higher in Search Engines?
Let’s start with a primer on SEO, in case you aren’t familiar. Every day, millions of people search for terms related to the solar industry, like “cost of solar panels,” or “solar energy companies near me.” SEO is a series of strategies you’ll use to increase your likelihood of ranking above the fold when those web users conduct these searches.
There are several benefits to be had with this approach, including:
- Brand recognition and reputation. The higher you rank in search engines, the more often your brand will be seen. Your content will be consumed and shared more regularly, and soon, your name will be synonymous with the solar industry. In other words, your brand will become much more visible, and your reputation will likely get a massive boost.
- Organic traffic. Most solar companies gravitate toward SEO because of the potential for organic traffic. Organic traffic simply refers to the number of people who visit your website after discovering one of your links in a search engine results page (SERP). The higher you rank, the more likely people will be to click your links, and the more keywords you rank for, the more people you’ll attract. Ultimately, that means more visitors, more leads, and more sales.
- A competitive edge. Competitors in the solar industry are already leveraging SEO strategies to improve their visibility and attract more traffic. In this way, SEO serves as a competitively defensive measure; if you continue pushing, you can eventually get a competitive edge, outranking your biggest competitive threats.
- Scalability. You aren’t going to see SEO results overnight, but there’s no upper limit to how much you can grow. All your SEO efforts will compound on each other, growing in influence and power over time. Accordingly, you’ll stand to see many years of beneficial results—so long as you’re willing to continue investing.
How Link Building Helps Your Solar Company Grow
One of the most important elements of any SEO strategy is working with a link building agency. When determining which sites to rank and how to rank them, Google and other search engines consider two big-picture categories of factors: those pertaining to relevance and those pertaining to authority.
Relevance refers to whether your content is appropriate for the topics that web users are seeking. For example, if someone is searching for “how solar panels work” and you have a detailed article that explores the science of solar panels, your work will be considered highly relevant.
Relevance alone isn’t enough. Google also wants to prioritize content that’s trustworthy, so it employs a system for measuring the relative “authority” of each domain, and each page on those domains. This is largely based on a system known as PageRank, wherein Google evaluates the number of links pointing to a location and the quality of those links. Basically, the more links you have pointing to your domain and the more reputable those links are, the higher your authority will grow—and the higher you’ll rank in SERPs.
Link building is the process of earning and placing these links, so you can take charge of your own perceived trustworthiness. There are three main benefits to this strategy:
- Authority. Earning more links will increase the authority of your entire domain, as well as the page-level authority of your individual pages. This will make it much easier for your content to rank highly in search results.
- Brand visibility. Getting a link to your site featured on a high-profile publisher can increase your brand visibility (and your reputation) as well.
- Referral traffic. Links can be clicked, too, of course. If you place your link intelligently, with a compelling reason for readers to click it, you’ll earn some extra referral traffic—in other words, even more people visiting your site.
Link Building 101 for Solar Companies
If the above section makes link building sound straightforward, you might want to temper your expectations. The basic premise of link building is easy to understand, but if you want to be successful, you need to be smart about how you build links. Not all links are of equal value, and if you’re not careful, you could be accused of participating in a link scheme—and get your site penalized as a result.
Your overarching goal should be building links that appear to be natural, and as valuable to web users as possible. You can do that with attention to three main areas of consideration.
First, you need to think about the overall value of the link you’re building, both to your site and to the people encountering that link. The best links are ones that are housed in the body of relevant content; they aren’t spammed in the form of comments or improvised add-ons, but instead serve a specific purpose within a well-written article. This also demands that the link you build have a function; for example, it might cite an important solar energy statistic, or link to a piece of content on your site that expands upon your main argument.
Your link also needs to be placed in a natural way. It should be one of several links in the body of your piece, and your other links should point to other authorities in the industry. Your anchor text should be inconspicuous, and relevant to the content you’re linking.
The higher the domain authority of the linking site, the more authority you’ll gain from the link, so keep that in mind. High-DA publishers should always be your priority, and it’s almost always better to build links on new sources than to build subsequent links on existing sources.
It’s also important to consider how your links play into your overall campaign. Ideally, your strategy will include ample volumes of strong, well-written onsite content; that way, you’ll have a good reason to build links, and your links will be more likely to stick. You may also optimize your campaign to focus on specific keywords, which you can use as anchor text for your links (so long as that anchor text remains contextually relevant).
High-Level Strategy and Balance
It’s also important to keep your link building strategy balanced, high-level. You don’t want to build too many links, or build them too quickly, and you don’t want to rely exclusively on a small handful of sources. Instead, you want to build links on a wide variety of sources, in a carefully controlled manner, targeting sources that are both high in DA and accessible in terms of guest publishing.
The 7 Elements of Link Building Success for Solar Companies
If you want your link building strategy to be a success, there are several key elements you’ll need for your solar company:
- Unique onsite assets. It’s nearly impossible to build “good” links to your site unless you have content on your site worth linking to. Detailed blog posts, whitepapers, and case studies work well, so make sure you have an archive of unique posts you can use in these categories.
- Patience. SEO is a long-term strategy. It often takes a minimum of several weeks before solar businesses start to see results from their efforts, and several months before your ROI ramps up to ideal levels. Slow and steady is the right approach.
- Expert advice and direction. It’s possible to learn the nuances of link building and SEO on your own, but it’s inadvisable to rely on yourself to execute the majority of your campaign. There are simply too many tasks to accomplish, and too many things that can go wrong. Instead, it’s better to rely on expert advice and direction.
- Initial niche focus. The easiest way to get started with link building and getting your content published on offsite sources is with niche targeting. You’ll focus on publications specific to the solar industry, and possibly publishers in your local area. This way, it’s easier to get accepted and start building your authority.
- Prioritization of publisher needs. The most successful solar link builders prioritize publisher and audience needs; they’re willing to make content compromises and go the extra mile if it means getting published and earning a link.
- Competitive differentiation. Thousands of solar companies are already engaging in SEO. If you want to succeed, you’ll need to differentiate your approach in some critical way.
- A plan to scale. Link building and SEO work best at high volume, and in a long-term context. You’ll need a plan to scale your efforts over time if you want to make the most of these strategies.
Should Solar Companies Outsource Their SEO and Link Building?
It’s a good idea to work with an expert in your link building campaign, but does that mean hiring someone full-time, finding a contractor, or outsourcing to a link building agency?
You may be tempted to hire someone in-house so you can have more transparency and control over your campaign. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it can be expensive. On top of that, a single “generalist” SEO expert is unlikely to have as many resources or as much experience as the collective power of a team in a link building agency.
Freelancers can be a good fit, and an inexpensive one, but they’re also unreliable. There’s no guarantee they’ll follow up with their mistakes, or that they’ll be able to stick with you as your solar business grows.
Instead, the best option for most solar companies is to work with a link building agency. Agencies have more authority and more resources than any other option, yet are often the least expensive when you compare their costs to their results.
Finding the Right Fit for Link Building
That said, not all agencies are equal. When searching for a link building partner in the solar industry, you’ll want to consider the following:
- Link building experience. The best link building companies have been in business for a while; they’ve gotten incredibly good at building links and troubleshooting.
- Industry familiarity. To write good content for the solar industry, you need to understand the solar industry. Work with a link builder with experience in solar, or the capacity to learn important subjects in the field.
- Content quality. No link building strategy can survive, or even begin to take off, without strong content as its backbone. Make sure your agency prioritizes content quality.
- Reviews and testimonials. Instead of trusting what the agency is saying, look to their online reviews and testimonials. What do their past clients say about them?
- Transparency and approach. Unfortunately, link schemes are prevalent. If something seems shady with this provider, trust your gut. The best link building agencies offer full transparency, and a reasonable approach to the strategy.
- Pricing plans. Obviously, you’ll need to consider what you’re paying. But be warned: if a service seems too good to be true, it probably is. Good link building is time and effort intensive, and the pricing should reflect that.
- Flexibility. Good link building agencies build custom plans for their solar clients, and are willing to adapt to changing needs. Find someone you can collaborate with, and who’s willing to grow with you as your business grows.
- Customer support. What happens if something goes wrong? Do you feel confident communicating with this link building provider? If you’re not satisfied with the links and content you received, is there a way to get your money back? Customer support is critical.
Why Work With SEO.co?
If you’re interested in taking your solar energy company to new heights with the power of link building, consider working with us. At SEO.co, we have decades of combined experience, and have helped solar companies like yours drastically improve their online visibility. Everything we do centers on our development of valuable, high-quality content. With it, we build high-DA links to your site, earning you referral traffic, higher domain authority, and ultimately, more traffic and warmer leads.
On top of that, we work with complete transparency, giving you insights at every stage of our development process. Our work is completely tailored to your brand and your industry, and if you aren’t satisfied with our work—for any reason—we’ll give you your money back.
Ready to get started with a free assessment? Contact us today to learn more!