You wake up, throw on some pants, and put your furry little companion into their backpack. This is your day to make some cash—you have no problem bending down and scooping up some doggy doo-doo  if you have to. But maybe business is slow right now and you could use a few fresh canine faces to add to the bunch. What to do?

What if you could get a ton of new leads for your dog walking business?

For some businesses, it’s easy. They have a product or service that can be sold to the general public on store shelves or through a creative TV ad. But what if you own a dog walking business? How do you get leads and prospects? As a dog walker, you’re probably wondering if there’s a better way to get new leads—and the answer is yes! When you take advantage of the tips and tricks that we’re going to discuss below, you will see how your neighborhood dog walking business can grow to a furry friend empire.

Keyword research for Dog Walking related phrases

Keyword research is so simple to do and yet it is an extremely powerful tool that can be used to boost your online presence, drive more traffic to your website and generate more leads from your dog walking website.

It is not enough to just know the keywords that you want to target, you need to know how many searches per month there are for those keywords (search volume), where they will be found (source), the type of people searching for those keywords (target audience) and how they will find you (medium).

For example, if you want to rank in the number 1 position on Google for the keyword “dog walker” there are over 2 million searches every month with 835,000,000 results on Google alone (and this doesn’t include other search engines or mobile devices). That’s a lot of competition! It’s clear, people are searching for dog walkers rather consistently and that there’s a hefty amount of competing websites already vying for their attention. However, all hope is not lost. There’s still a way for you to carve out a piece of that 2 million monthly searches for yourself.

There are three main things you’re looking for in keyword research:

  1. Searches with buying intent
  2. Location-specific searches
  3. High search volume

Searches with buying intent means that the user is past the education phase, where they already know what “dog walking” is, and they’re now ready to pursue a solution to their dog walking needs. A searcher who has buying intent may search something like “dog walking services for senior dogs” rather than a searcher with low buying intent who may simply just search for “dog walker”. High intent searchers are specific about what they need and whom they’re looking for to fulfill their needs. Low intent searchers keep their queries shorter or more general which doesn’t provide us with enough evidence that they know what they want yet. Typically a good rule of thumb is that searches with more specificity in their search queries have a higher intent to purchase. 

Utilizing location within your keyword research is extremely important for local service-based businesses. After all, your business is local and requires you to physically be within the general area of your clients in order to service them. Getting website traffic from dog owners in Seattle doesn’t provide you with much benefit if your service area is limited to Boston. This is why optimizing your website and other online profiles to include location specific keywords is critical for attracting the right audience. An example of a location specific search would be “dog walkers in Baltimore” where “dog walkers” is the subject and “in Baltimore” is the location specificity we’re going after. Simply switch the “in Baltimore” piece to reflect your own city or town to see how popular a search like that may be for your local market.

Lastly, a keyword is not useful to optimize for if it’s not being searched. This is why we look towards search volume as our primary metric to define if a keyword phrase is worth targeting or not. For example, the search “dog walking services for puggles” is searched for 0 times each month, which is a shame because puggles, the cross between a beagle and a pug, are adorable and deserve more hype. Regardless, it would be unproductive to optimize your website for dog walking services specific to puggles since no one appears to be searching for that. Instead, we want to utilize a medium volume search such as “boston dog walking” which has approximately 390 searches per month, a reasonable number. Now you’re probably wondering, if something like the word “dog” gets 2.2 million searches per month, why don’t I just optimize for the word “dog” and put that down payment on that private yacht right now? Because while “dog” may be somewhat related to “dog walking” it’s not nearly specific enough to ensure that people searching for “dog” are looking for your services or in your service area. They’re much more likely to be looking for pictures of dogs, or dogs for adoption, or Dog the bounty hunter, or… you get my drift. The trick is to find keyword phrases with a reasonable amount of volume, something more than 10 searches per month but less than 10,000.

Without a lot of Search Engine Optimization expertise, trying to find related keywords can be difficult and time consuming. This is why we use tools like UberSuggest to make the task simpler. It helps provide related searches, search volume, and competition stats to help them make this process easy. UberSuggest is also free for 3 searches a month to get you started.

Write guest posts on dog-related blogs

The best way to get backlinks to your dog walking website is to write guest posts for reputable websites in your niche.

The main objective of writing guest posts is to provide fresh, unique content for your target audience, but doing so by piggybacking on the popularity of an established blog website.

The key is to find the right blogs and websites that are relevant to the niche of your website. Sometimes this can be a challenge as many competitors in the industry may not want to help you out (you are their competition after all). A better strategy is to find blogs that cover complimentary industries and services to Dog Walking where they may not have a vested stake in the Dog Walking space (Dog Toys or Pet Food may be good ones). This way you give their readers fresh content about a niche that’s related but not siphoning customers away from their main products, and you get a chance at capturing new leads.

Once you have identified these sites, contact the website owner and pitch an idea for a guest post that will provide value to their readers.

If you get a positive response, reach out and see if you can write an article every week or at least make it a somewhat regular occurrence. You can rinse and repeat this method with as many complimentary blogs as you’d like, only limited by your time and enthusiasm for this new lead-generation approach.

Guest blogging has been a great way to build relationships with other bloggers and drive traffic to your site. It’s not just a way to drive traffic, though. The relationship-building part is just as important.

Tapping into the audience of someone with an established website can get you both new visitors and new subscribers, but it takes some finesse. You want to impress with the first article you write for them, make sure it gets their attention and their audience’s attention. Once they can see you provide high-quality content that keeps their readers engaged, there’s a good chance you can turn a one-time guest blog post into something more frequent.

Start a Facebook and Instagram page for your dog walking business

Facebook is one of the most popular social media channels today and it’s the number one place where people spend time online. You can transform your dog walking business by creating a Facebook page for your business.

You’re wondering how to get more leads with a Facebook page for your dog walking business, right? Well, you should also know that having a Facebook page will allow you to:

  • Increase Your Brand Awareness
  • Attract New Customers
  • Stay Top-of-Mind with Existing Clients

Here’s how to get more leads from Facebook, once you have created your page. These tips will help attract potential customers and increase brand recognition:

  1. Post photos of your dog walking services on your dog walking business facebook page
  2. Post customer testimonials on your dog walking business facebook page
  3. Encourage user feedback on your dog walking service by asking questions on your dog walking business facebook page
  4. Create and promote specials or discounts for your services

Treat your Instagram page as another marketing avenue for your business, rather than putting all your eggs in one basket. Get creative with your posts and remember to include your website details so people can find out more about you.

Many of the same rules that apply to a Facebook page can be used to make a business’ Instagram account look professional. Take some time to plan out the themes you’ll be regularly posting about (I like to make a plan where each day of the week covers a different theme or focus). One thing you absolutely cannot overlook on Instagram is making sure the images or videos you post are top quality. 

BONUS TIP: Start a facebook group for your neighborhood to discuss issues with dogs and dog owners. Keep the group name obvious and relevant like “Dog Owners of {insert town here}”.

Get Leads By Utilizing Your Community Gathering Spots

Here are some ideas on how to get leads from your local community:

1. Talk to your local Church or Synagogue and offer to give constituents a discount in exchange for ad placement in their newsletters and space on their bulletin boards.

2. Place some flyers at your local dog parks

3. Find areas of the community that may have a stronger need for your service, like retirement communities or assisted living buildings where residents may have mobility issues and require a dog walker to help exercise their pups.

You want to be the “go-to” dog walker in your town. I’m sure you’re thinking, what does it take to get there? The first step is to be a part of your local community, and the real key here is to get yourself out in the community. You want to be popular among influential community members.

The way that you do that is by participating in community events and volunteering for local organizations. It’s important to add value to this community by helping out others, and people will start to know you and respect you for it. Additionally, it provides you with great connections and avenues to casually chat with local residents about your business and the services you offer.

So what are some specific ways that you can help? Well first off, you should make an effort to attend events (or maybe even organize one) or volunteer at your local dog park or pet store. You can also offer free or low-cost services like providing water bowls at local parks (slap a few stickers of your logo and phone number on a few and see if that generates any leads) or hosting dog-friendly events at your home. By doing this, you’re not only meeting new people but also building up good karma!

BONUS TIP: Get Reviews or Referrals from your Community Members: Remember all those people you just met and networked with while participating in community events? You can ask them to provide you with either an online review on your Facebook or Google My Business page or ask them if there’s any friends they know of who need dog walking services. Google My Business reviews don’t just have to be from past customers, they can be from anyone. They shouldn’t include any falsehoods or try to pose as past customers, but rather these reviews from your network can simply be character references to tell the world how great you are. Ultimately, when you’re a small service-based business like a dog walker, people are doing business with you because you are the business.

Befriend Your Neighbor’s Mailboxes

Once you’ve got your list of prospects, it’s time to consider how you want to contact them. Many small businesses look towards digital channels as the only option, but you have another great option right in your front yard: the mailbox.

Take advantage of the opportunity to print up postcards and mail them out locally. It’s a more expensive approach as each mailer may cost around $0.50, but with the right target audience (dog owners around town), the return on investment could be fantastic.

Postcards work best for local businesses as they can be hyper-targeted by household demographics and yet still remain affordable pieces of media. With a cold advertising strategy like physical mailers, remember that the consumer likely doesn’t know you or your business yet, so they’ll need lots of trust factors to be present on the mailer to take the next step with you. 

Find yourself a local print shop with an online mailing service. If you want to keep things simple and affordable, then this is the way to go. An online printer will allow you to design your own postcard without the need for any programming skills (or possibly help you design it), and link up with their mailing service so they take care of the addressing and shipping on your behalf. This can be a great option if you have some other marketing materials you’d like to send out such as business cards or brochures as well.

EXTRA: Get Friendly With The Local Veterinarian: 

Contact veterinarians and groomers in your area and let them know about your business and the dog walking services you offer. Veterinarians see overweight pups all the time and wouldn’t it be nice if they threw your name out there when the prescription is an extra walk each day? This may also be a great time to expand into complimentary services such as pet sitting, drop-in visits, or even pet transportation in case someone needs extra help looking after their dog while they’re out of town.


The thing about websites is that they’re not always easy to get traffic to. It can feel like you’re doing everything right, but visits are just not coming in. What’s the solution?

Be patient!

Don’t give up on your website too quickly. You might be discouraged if you’ve put a lot of time and effort into a dog walking website only to see it not performing well in terms of traffic. However, don’t give up quite yet. You might just need to try some different tactics or change the way you approach your website. Don’t be afraid of trying new things and explore the various keyword research and lead generation strategies we’ve discussed in this article.

Everything below this line is just extra information I may turn into another blog post or social post on Search intent. Please don’t do anything with it yet as I’m not 100% decided. 

Search intent is a very important concept in SEO, because it explains how people use search engines. There are two main types of queries that people use: informational and navigational.

Informational queries are made when someone needs to get information on a topic, such as “Why do my pants keep falling down?” or “How do I play the guitar?” With informational searches, the searcher is still unsure about the topic and simply wants more information in order to make a decision or solve a problem. For example, if someone is seeking out “dog walker,” it’s likely they’re researching services and comparing them before making a decision.

We want to target search queries with buying intent because people who are searching for products based on what they want rather than what they’re looking to compare are more likely to convert. Think about it – if someone is searching for “dog walker” and not “dog walker vs dog sitter,” then it’s likely that they know what services they want, and aren’t just looking for more information before making a decision. 

Navigational searches are made when someone knows what they want, such as “Where’s the closest coffee shop?” or “Where can I find information about child tax credits?” With navigational searches, the searcher already knows what they’re looking for and just wants to be directed to it. If someone is searching for “dog walker vs dog sitter,” then they’ve already thought about this decision and know exactly what services they want. This means that they’re almost ready to convert.

You can also optimize your listings with location information so that Google knows exactly where each listing is located. Showing up for local queries will give you more visibility among others. People who search for dog walkers in Seattle do not want a walker based in Boston. Therefore, it’s critical to optimize your website content to reflect your location and service area to make sure your site shows up for searches of walkers in your local area. 

You can also optimize your listings with location information so that Google knows exactly where each listing is located. Showing up for local queries will give you more visibility among others. People who search for dog walkers in Seattle do not want a walker based in Boston. Therefore, it’s critical to optimize your website content to reflect your location and service area to make sure your site shows up for searches of walkers in your local area. 

For service-based businesses, this is super important to get right. They’re also more likely to be in the earlier stages of the buyer journey, meaning that they haven’t started comparing products or services yet, and are looking to make a decision shortly after their initial research phase (which is prime time for conversions). 

It’s important to always be looking at the search volume of keywords on a page before deciding on how to structure your page. You want to be sure the page has enough searches for organic traffic and that there is a steady stream of traffic, but not so much that it would be hard to get your site ranked. When it comes to local SEO, one of the most important metrics you can track is keyword search volume. You’ll want to know how many times your target keyword is searched each month before you begin optimizing your content or building links.

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