Local businesses are a critical part of our community, and there are many different digital marketing tools that can be used to help them thrive. One of the best tools that businesses can access is Google Local Services ads, or LSAs. These are the ads that appear on top of search results when you initiate a search on Google. What should every small or mid-sized business know about these digital marketing tools?
The Facts on Google Local Services Ads
One of the biggest reasons why businesses invest in these ads is simple—they get results. Whenever LSAs are present at the top of a search, over 25% of the clicks on the page will be on one of them. If LSAs are not at the top of the page, less than 15% of the traffic will go to those sites. To maximize your digital marketing results, investing in Google Local Services ads is a great idea.
You can choose from a list of services that apply to your industry. When someone in your area searches for something in that category, your ad could be displayed. For example, if you offer HVAC services you could select from categories like “install heating system,” “repair AC,” “clean ducts and vents” or “repair heating system.” Google Ads is a little bit different from Google LSAs, as that requires keywords and not only categories. However, LSAs do not require you to pay by the click like Google Ads do.
What is the Google Guarantee?
Advertisers using Google Local Services Ads can also choose to have a “Google Guaranteed” badge displayed near their name. You have to qualify for this guarantee by meeting Google’s standards and completing a review process. Once this badge is on your profile, Google will back your services and reimburse people who book through Google if the job isn’t done properly.
In order to have the guarantee applied to your business:
- Your technicians need to pass a free background check through Google’s provider
- You need to meet all insurance coverage and licensing requirements
- You must update the background check provider as new employees are added or legal issues arise
- You cannot use the badge on your marketing, on your website or anywhere other than your Google Local Services profile
- You must have some remaining ad budget on your Google account
For more information about the requirements, get in touch with the digital marketing professionals at Gauge Digital Media.
Who Will See the Ad?
Even if you are assigned to a category and have ad spend left, it isn’t a 100% guarantee your ad will show up first. Google tailors who the Google Local Services ads are displayed to based on their proximity to your business, your rating and number of reviews and your responsiveness to any contacts that you receive from the ads.
Google also tries to stretch your ad budget as far as possible, so your rank might be temporarily lowered a couple of days into the week if the first few days you received an abnormally high level of leads that used a significant portion of your ad spend.
What Happens When Someone Clicks on Your Ad?
Once a user clicks on your ad, they will be taken to a page for your company. On the page, they will see your photo, a quick overview, your phone number, a biography and a snippet of Google reviews. Unlike other ads that direct to a website link or email, Google LSAs encourage the user to make a call.
As we mentioned above, Google Local Services ads do not charge by the click. Instead, they pay per lead. Google tracks when you receive a text message or email from the customer, you receive a voicemail from the customer or you answer a phone call and speak with the customer. Because sometimes these actions are not an indication of a quality lead, Google works hard to filter out invalid contacts. You can also dispute contacts from customers looking for services that are not listed in your profile, wrong numbers, customers who cannot be contacted to reply, automated recordings and solicitations.
Depending on your industry and your zip code, the cost per lead that you pay may vary a great deal. Some leads are $10-20, while other industries have leads that are over $100. In order to have some control over how much you spend per ad, you can set a maximum bid and average weekly budget and target. Through this, you can maximize your leads by allowing Google to set the bid to get the most leads for your budget, or set a maximum per lead.
What Service Categories Are Available?
The available service categories may change in the future, but they currently include:
- Appliance Repair
- Auto Glass
- Car Repair
- Countertop Services
- Estate Lawyers
- Event Planners
- Fencing Services
- Financial Planners
- Flooring Services
- Foundation Services
- Garage Door Repair and Services
- House Cleaning
- HVAC Services
- Immigration Law
- Junk Removal
- Lawn Care
- Landscaping Services
- Locksmith Services
- Moving Companies
- Pest Control
- Pet Grooming
- Real Estate Services
- Siding Services
- Tree Service
- Upholstery and Carpet Cleaning
- Water Damage Remediation
- Window Cleaning
- Window Repair
What Else Should Business Owners Know Before Enrolling?
Before you sign up for Google Local Services ads, you should double-check your application and information on your business page. The phone number and introduction that you provide will inform what information is in your ad, and you cannot edit them on your own. If you want to use a different phone number or list of services, make sure that you submit this information during the application process.
Ready to Take Advantage of Google Local Services Ads?
Working with a professional digital marketing company is the best way to make the most of your website and all that Google Local Services ads have to offer. To learn more about the best digital marketing strategies for your company and reach a bigger audience than ever before, work with Gauge Digital Media. For a quote or to schedule a call, contact us at (410) 376-7709.