Watch out Yelp! Here comes Thumbtack! YEOW!
Getting listed in local directories is a must for all local businesses if you want a good place in Google Places, but here’s one that gives you more than just a listing. Thumbtack actually vets and verifies your listing which adds credibility to your business. AND it personally connects you with customers requesting your services through their site.
Here’s how it works.
First, you, the business owner, creates an account.
Thumbtack gives you more than enough space to describe your service, as well as plenty of space for your pictures and video if you have one. Here’s a link to Kat & Mouse’s Thumbtack listing: San Jose Search Engine Optimization. I’m still working on my listing, but I had to stop midway the application process to provide a link to their service on my website which is why I decided to write this blog. I’ll get back there and finish the listing when I’m done here.
A sample picture of one of their listings is below.
Note the “Trusted and verified” box.
And this is what the customer will see when he clicks on one of the links.
This feature alone might be enough for Thumbtack to become the favorite local directory over others such as Yelp.
But there’s more. You have the ability to import your email contacts and get access to other marketing tools like flyers. But the best part is at the end of my application process I was given the option to request testimonials from my customers! They get sent the following email.
If they follow through, you then get sent an email asking to approve it before it goes live. Very nice!
Thumbtack goes beyond a simple search. Customers can actually request a service.
Unlike Yelp, YP, MerchantCircle and others, customers looking for you can sit back and let Thumbtack’s fingers do the walking for them. All they need to do is fill out a service request. I’m waiting for them to reply to my request for a piano mover. After I sent my request I searched through their listings and didn’t find one, so I suspect they’ll get back to me with bad news, but we’ll see.
Here’s the email I got from them after I made my request.
And now the very next morning, here’s what I found in my inbox.
Customers can compare results side by side to find the highest rated
I discovered Thumbtack from a client of mine. He asked me to post an award on his site that Thumbtack gave him for being highly rated (another plus for listing with Thumbtack). When I clicked on that award, it landed me here:
Note the various options for sorting at the top. This is a really great feature for consumers; I just wish Thumbtack made it easier to find that display. The only way to get to this listing is to click the little tiny city link under “Similar services in your area” under the email subscription box. This is a usability problem I hope they correct.
Note the sharing
Like everything else these days, your Thumbtack listing has sharing with social media sites built in, but it takes it a step further. Interested consumers can also sign up to receive email updates. When you create your account you can import contacts, so I can only assume you also get to send newsletters and updates through an email service they provide. That part is not real clear, but when I finish my listing perhaps I’ll find out more.
Manage appointment online
Finally, Thumbtack says you can manage your appointments online through a simple click-and-drag interface. Since I’m new at this I’ve not been able to see this in action and they don’t provide any more information on their site than that. I’ll report back later when I get more info.
Get a badge
As if that isn’t enough, Thumbtack gives you even more. Check out the widgets you can add to your site.
My favorite is the testimonial widget and have placed it on my own site to the right so I can display verified reviews and ratings right where I need them at the place I make conversions.
Something missing though
I’d say Thumbtack is amazing, brilliant in fact. They only missed one thing. We all know how hard it is to get our customers to take the time and trouble to leave a review. If Thumbtack would include a link to LEAVE a review in the Testimonials widget, then I’d say Thumbtack is pretty close to perfect.
So I say…
Thumbs up for Thumbtack!
All in all, this directory looks very impressive. As a search engine optimization specialist I also have to say I’m VERY impressed with the way they make their listings crawl-able by the search engine robots via their breadcrumbs. I suspect we’ll start seeing these listings show up in SERPs (search engine result pages) very soon if they aren’t already. And since validity is high on Google’s list when it comes to giving preference to local business listings, I suspect that if you have a verified and vetted listing in Thumbtack, Google’s going to love you that much more. Thumbtack may just give your site a boost in the Places.
So what’s not to love about Thumbtack. I give it a big thumbs up.
So what are you waiting for? CLICK HERE to sign up at Thumbtack NOW!
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