Get More HVAC Leads With These 11 Low-Cost Ideas
Establishing multiple sources for new HVAC customers is a must, whether you’re just getting your business off the ground or trying to grow it.
If you know where to look for homeowners in need of HVAC services and how to communicate with them, you can even compete with big-budget HVAC companies.
We’ll help you choose the most effective ways to get potential customers—and ways to help them find you organically—with examples from experienced HVAC business owners we know.
Here are 11 low-cost strategies for generating HVAC leads through digital marketing, word of mouth, and traditional advertising.
Here are the best ways to get HVAC leads:
Figure out your unique selling point
Make online booking easy on your website and social media
Use HVAC lead generation websites
Improve your free Google, Bing, and Yelp listings
Advertise on Google
Use SEO to appear on Google results for free
Collect positive reviews from customers
Get referrals from existing customers
Try social media marketing
Use email to advertise your services
Use QR codes on all your marketing materials
1. Figure out your unique selling point
What makes your HVAC business different from the other businesses in your service area? The answer is called your unique selling point (or USP).
Your USP may be your:
- Number of years in the business
- Level of HVAC certification
- Target customer base in a specific category
- Special service guarantee
Here’s one in action: Furnace Pros Niagara puts this statement at the top of their website to tell visitors they offer a 5-year certified warranty on installations.
Once you’ve decided what your USP is, include it in all your marketing materials (like your flyers, website, and social media profiles) so potential customers know why they should work with you.
2. Make online booking easy on your website and social media
Adding an online booking form to your HVAC website and social media pages helps homeowners book you at any time of day for emergency HVAC services.
Use an online booking system that lets customers book you for emergency HVAC repairs at a time that’s convenient for them—without having to call or email.
With Jobber, you can include descriptions of all your bookable HVAC services, as well as estimated prices and durations.
You can also set a maximum drive time between appointments and allow longer buffer times between appointment bookings to give your techs enough time to prepare for the job.
To increase your chances of getting leads from your online booking form, you should:
- Add a booking button with an eye-catching color to the very top of your website and Facebook Business profile.
- Use action-oriented text on your booking button, like ‘Book Now’ or ‘Get a Free Estimate.’
- Keep your booking form short by only asking the questions you need to book a job.
- Make your unique selling point clear on your homepage so people know why they should choose your business.
3. Use HVAC lead generation websites
If you’re willing to spend a bit more on lead generation, websites like Thumbtack, Angi, and HomeAdvisor can help you get more leads by connecting you with homeowners actively looking for HVAC contractors.
Here’s how to get the best HVAC leads from lead generation sites:
- Choose the best lead generation site for your business.
- List your full range of services and your service area on your business profile.
- Respond to messages quickly to win more HVAC jobs.
- Ask every new customer to leave a review once the job is complete.
Many HVAC contractors start with Angi or HomeAdvisor, two popular lead generation sites that match you with residential and commercial HVAC leads in your area for a small fee per lead.
Thumbtack is another option—you can join it for free, and you only pay when a new customer reaches out directly to you.
4. Improve your free Google, Bing, and Yelp listings
The more places your business is listed online, the more leads you’ll get. Here are the most popular places for HVAC companies to create online listings:
- Google Business. A free Google Business Profile (formerly Google My Business) is the easiest way to help local searchers find you. Fill out your company contact info, add your services, and share photos of your work. It’s also a place for your customers to leave reviews.
- Bing Places. Claim your HVAC company listing on Bing—the second most-used search engine in the world—and add contact details, photos of your work, and a call to action button (like ‘Contact us’) that sends leads to your website.
- Yelp for Business. When a potential customer finds your Yelp listing, they can call you directly, click a link to your website, or request a quote directly from the listing. Once you verify your free listing, get even more leads by running Yelp Ads.
The more positive reviews you have on these online listings, the better. When you finish an HVAC job, send a text or email with a link from Google, Bing, or Yelp that instructs customers to leave a review.
5. Advertise on Google
Google is the first place that many homeowners look to find HVAC contractors. There are two low-cost ways you can advertise on Google: Search ads and Local Services Ads.
Create pay-per-click Google Search ads
Google Search ads let you pay for advertising space at the top of Google results. When people search for your preferred HVAC keywords, like “miami air conditioning repair” or “24/7 furnace services,” they’ll see the top paid right away.
Google Ads runs an auction to choose which ads it shows. You and other HVAC businesses need to bid for advertising space.
These are pay-per-click ads (PPC ads), meaning that you pay when a lead clicks on your HVAC ad to learn more about your business or to book your services.
To create a Google ad that stands out from the rest, come up with a few three- to four-word headlines that include the unique services you provide.
Run Google Local Services Ads
The main difference between Google Search Ads and Google Local Services Ads is that Local Services Ads only target people in your service area, and you only pay for leads that contact you.
Local Services Ads appear above Google Search ads and unpaid results. These ads include your contact information, operating hours, and an average rating from your customers.
For example, a potential lead who searches for “furnace repair in Chicago” may see something like this:
You also get a Google Guaranteed badge, which shows every HVAC lead that you’ve been vetted by Google as a trustworthy business.
When a lead clicks on your Local Services ad, they’ll see all your business details, reviews, and a ‘Call’ button that lets them contact you directly from the ad:
6. Use SEO to appear on Google results for free
Wondering how to get free HVAC leads from Google? If you already have a website, you can use search engine optimization (SEO) to get your business’s website to appear on Google without paying for ads.
To increase your chances of showing up at the top of searches like “air conditioning repair” and “furnace maintenance,” follow these SEO tips.
Don’t have a service website yet? If you’re ready to build one, use beginner web design platforms like Wix and Squarespace. Or, you can hire a professional web developer to make one for you.
Cover your SEO basics
- Make a list of search terms (aka keywords) that people would search to find your business. Start with region-specific keywords like “AC repair chicago” so you’re competing with a smaller, local pool of companies.
- Write these keywords into your page titles and meta descriptions. Only use them where they make sense—stuffing your keywords everywhere doesn’t increase your chances of appearing on search engines.
- Add your contact information to every page of your website, including your company name, address, and phone number. On top of helping customers contact you, this tells search engines you’re a legitimate business.
- Keep your website design simple and make it easy to navigate on desktop and mobile.
- Create location-specific pages to attract website visitors from the areas that you service. Service pages (like one for your ductless split installs or furnace repair) attract more leads looking for help with one specific task.
All these basic SEO practices will show search engines that your website—and by extension, your business—is legitimate, trustworthy, and helpful to customers.
Write useful content for your customers
To attract even more leads to your website through Google, create content that customers would want to see from an HVAC company.
By writing informative articles that help customers solve common HVAC problems, you can attract more leads to your website—this is called content marketing. Here’s what that looks like:
This article from Thomas J. Fannon & Sons, an HVAC business in Virginia, appears on Google when you search “why is my furnace leaking water”:
This page showed up on Google because the article does a great job of answering the question. It’s also because the company’s website is full of other helpful content.
After the article answers that question, it indicates that Thomas J. Fannon & Sons is “a trusted provider of ductless split systems.” In that sentence, they include a link to their ductless split systems page where customers can request a free estimate.
If your website provides enough value to keep visitors on your website, customers will consider your business a trusted source of information—and a trusted place to hire an HVAC contractor from.
Successful content marketing takes a lot of work. Consider investing in a freelancer or agency for SEO services to help you create helpful content and generate HVAC leads.
7. Collect positive reviews from customers
When positive, detailed reviews from your customers are on display, you show potential customers how great you are. And most homeowners want proof that others have had a good experience before hiring you for HVAC work.
Try all of these methods to ask for a review and get higher-quality responses:
- Email or text your customers when the job is done to check if they’re happy with your HVAC service.
- Automate your review request process. Jobber helps you collect more positive reviews—and paired with NiceJob, you can automatically request reviews once a job is finished.
- Respond to reviews—even the negative ones—to show you’re attentive and care about customer satisfaction.
- Add a testimonials page to your website to showcase your glowing reviews.
- Share positive reviews on your social media profiles, flyers, and all your other physical and online marketing materials.
8. Get referrals from existing customers
Your current customers are the best spokespeople for your business. Creating a simple customer referral program that rewards customers for spreading the word can get you higher-quality leads than any other strategy.
Follow these steps to ask for referrals and reward your customers:
- Create a standard follow-up email you can send to every HVAC customer asking if they’re happy with the work.
- At the end of the email, write one or two quick sentences explaining how the customer can send a referral and what reward they can get.
- Offer your customer a reward for booking your services, like a service discount, gift card, or a donation to their favorite charity.
You could also build referrals into your invoicing process. When you send an invoice with Jobber, your customer will see a button they can click to refer a friend.
Then, your customer can easily share a referral link with people they know and help you get a new HVAC lead.
Jobber automatically prompts your clients to share a booking link with their friends and family, so you never miss an opportunity to get great leads.
Whether you choose to focus on Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, or Twitter, create posts regularly so that potential customers can see you’re active.
To show you run a reliable and knowledgeable HVAC team, you could post:
- Photos of your HVAC techs at the jobsite
- Before and after images of HVAC installs
- Advice videos that help homeowners solve simple HVAC problems
- Short vlogs of your typical workday
- Relatable HVAC memes to show your sense of humor
Why not just promote your services? Posts that are informative or fun are more likely to keep customers coming back to your profile—and they show, rather than tell, why your business is great.
Just be sure you include a link to your business website or online booking tool somewhere on your profile.
Run social media ads
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn all offer advertising options that let you target your ideal clients, control your budget, monitor your results, and make quick changes.
Here are the types of ads you can launch on each major platform:
- Facebook helps you choose the best kind of campaign to run based on a specific objective (like filling an online booking form on your website). From Meta’s Ads Manager, you set a budget and target audiences based on interests, location, and more.
- Sponsored posts on Facebook and Instagram will expose your existing posts to new audiences. Pick the posts that have the most engagement (likes, comments, and shares), then start with a small budget (like $5–$10 per day) and see how effective they are at attracting leads.
- Twitter offers 20+ ad formats. You can customize your ads for different goals, and also choose your audience and budget just like on other platforms.
10. Use email to advertise your services
Email marketing is a great way to get more revenue from existing customers. Your email marketing campaigns can promote new services, inspections, maintenance, and special offers to get new job requests from your existing customer base.
To make your email marketing campaigns more effective, use these tips and tricks:
- Target email campaigns to specific groups of customers. For example, group customers based on their past services, like air conditioning repair, maintenance, or upgrades. This will help you send emails that are more relevant to these groups.
- Keep selling to a 1:5 ratio. For every five emails you send, only one of them should be a sales pitch. Instead, provide your customers with valuable information to keep them subscribed and engaged.
- Write a compelling subject line. Convince your customers to open your email with a strong subject line, like “Want to save 25% on your utility bills?”
11. Use QR codes on all your marketing materials
Putting QR codes on all your HVAC marketing materials is an easy way to send potential customers to your website and turn them into leads.
Without having to search your company name on their phone, a lead can scan the QR code to instantly visit your website and book you for work.
Here’s where you should add your QR code to get new leads:
- Your HVAC business cards
- Email signature
- Flyers, door hangers, and brochures
- The back of your truck or van when you create vehicle wraps or decals
Use a QR code generator to create a code that takes leads to the work request form or contact page on your website.
Getting HVAC leads takes a lot of work and experimentation—but it’s easier when you understand your target customers, focus on your existing customer relationships, and advertise on the right channels.
Start out small and see what’s working best for your business. Once you know how to get HVAC jobs consistently, you’re set up for success.
Originally published in May 2021. Last updated on November 15, 2023.