Google Local Services FAQs

Updated March 29, 2020

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

Scratching your head about Google Local Services? These highly targeted, hyperlocal ads pop up at the top of Google Search results, making them a sought-after spot for brands and businesses. By understanding the ins and outs of these ad campaigns, it’s easy to boost your profile in a big way—here’s what you need to know and how to jumpstart your Local Services presence.

What are Google Local Services Ads?

Very simply, these digital ad units are the ads that appear at the very top of Google Search results, specifically when users are searching for local brands, businesses and events. Local Service Ads are simple and straightforward, and include your company’s name, address and phone number plus hours, Google review/rating and, if you qualify, a Google Guaranteed badge.

How much do Local Services Ads cost?

Google only charges per lead and your business can set a weekly budget to ensure you aren’t exceeding your desired marketing spend. Costs vary based on your industry and market.

What’s considered a “lead?”

Again, you’ll only pay for leads generated through these ads. A “lead” means your business:

– Received a text or email from a customer
– Received a voicemail or missed call from a customer
– Engaged with a customer via phone/email/text

That said, some leads aren’t charged or can get a credit issued against them. For example, if a customer calls and asks you to perform a service you don’t currently perform, this won’t be considered a valid lead and you won’t be billed. The same goes for wrong numbers, duplicate leads, or leads that don’t provide enough follow-up information.

How often will I be billed?

You’ll be billed for Local Services Ad leads each month.

What is Pay-Per-Lead Advertising?

Pay-Per-Lead means you only pay for leads related to your business or the services you offer.

Can any business in these markets use Local Services Ads?

Only businesses that fall under certain eligible services can participate. Currently, eligible services include:
– Air duct cleaners
– Appliance repair services
– Auto glass service / Auto technicians
– Carpet cleaners
– Electricians
– Event planners
– Garage door companies
– HVAC providers/contractors
– Handymen companies/providers
– Home improvement/Contractors
– Housekeeping/Housecleaners
– Junk removal services
– Lawyers
– Lawn care/Landscaping
– Tree service providers
– Locksmiths
– Moving companies
– Painting companies
– Pest control companies
– Pet care providers/Groomers
– Photographers
– Plumbers
– Roadside assistance services
– Roofers
– Tutors
– Upholstery cleaners
– Water damage service providers
– Window cleaners/Window service providers

How do I get a Google Guaranteed badge?

To qualify, your business must apply with Google. During the application process, your business will undergo a background check with your license and insurance confirmed.

What insurance/licensing do I need to qualify?

During the background check, your business will need to submit proof of liability insurance and share information on any licenses/registrations you currently hold—i.e. contractor licenses or specialized/regional certifications.

Why do I want a Google Guarantee badge? Is there any benefit to my business?

Once you’re a Google Guaranteed business, you can use the green check mark and prominent “GOOGLE GUARANTEED” in your Local Services Ads. This signals to consumers that you’re a legitimate local business, with Google’s full backing.

Beyond that, though, Google Guaranteed businesses offer an added layer of protection for you and your new customers. If a Local Services lead is ever dissatisfied with your services or products, Google may refund them for up to the amount paid. The lifetime cap on this “insurance” is $2,000 but, still, it’s a good safety net for customers trying out new businesses as well as for businesses driving new consumers.

How are these ads different than AdWords or other search advertising?

Besides premium positioning—again, these ads appear at the top of Google Search results—these ads are designed for immediate engagement and conversion. When a user spots your ad, they can simply click to call or send a message. As soon as they do, you’ll receive an email and notification from the Local Services Ads app. And from there? They’re your lead—now go get them!

Another unique feature? Once a lead converts, Google will reach out for a review. This will help your business build word-of-mouth while enhancing your search profile and organically driving more consumers.

Ready To Get Google Guaranteed?

Ready to get started with Google Local Services Ads? Get in touch to learn more and work with our expert team to maximize your local campaign.