As a local service business owner, phone calls are a critical piece to your lead generation activities.
If you've seen the "guaranteed" ads at the top of any local search, you're seeing Google's local services ads. This is Google newest network designed specifically for local services.
The Google guaranteed program is being given the most valuable real estate on the Google network, and is dedicated to generating more phone calls for your company.
Here we'll discuss how to be part of the Google guaranteed program. What exactly it means, and how get the most calls from the program at the best cost.
When you're ready to talk with an agency to help set this process up for success. Let's chat.
What Is Google Guaranteed?
Google Guaranteed is a local services ad program that's created to generate calls to your business.
It's a completely different network than Google Ads and Search, so it allows businesses to compete with much larger more established brands without the SEO time, or PPC budget required to generate results.
Google Guarantee provides verification service designed to support your local company and to provide some defense against fraudulent services for customers.
This provides extremely high levels of trust to potential customers calling, and results in a very high conversion rate.
The Google Guaranteed badge is given to businesses who pass Google's screening and qualification process.
A Google Guarantee badge means that Google has verified your business and decided it meets high standards for background, liability and insurance checks.
The badge can show up for both paid and organic results. Google trusts its screening process so much that it will actually refund customers if quality standards are not met.
After you pass the Google-Guaranteed review and get your badge, you can now setup and bid for your ads. Because you're only charged with the call exceeds 30 seconds, it's an effective use of your ad spend and highly profitable.
The ad format allows you to show your business name, city, phone number, hours of operation, and customer rating.
Who is eligible for Google Guaranteed?
In order to be eligible for the Google guaranteed program, you have to be providing services in the local community.
You must have a Google Business Profile (also called Google My Business), have a minimum number of reviews, and the score must be above 3.0.
Both the “guaranteed” and “screened” programs require license and background checks.
To become Google Guaranteed, businesses must:
- Pass Google Screening Process: All qualifying and eligible businesses must pass a business level screening process which includes business license and insurance check. Every company also undergoes a background check in order to qualify for Google screened badge.
- License, Insurance check and verification: For certain categories, not only will your business undergo a background check, but each professional in the business must pass license check as well.
All business owners must pass the background check, plus all employees who will be entering customers’ homes.
Once you’ve successfully been verified, you’ll pay a $50 fee each month to keep that green checkmark next to your business name showing the Google guaranteed badge.
This is incredible valuable, as PPC for certain keywords can exceed $100. With Google guaranteed, we're seeing quality calls for $25-30. Of course, this depends on your market.
If you’re a small business owner looking for the moment to break out amongst your competitors, the Google Guarantee program is a fantastic place to start.
Combining this program with SEO and PPC will make sure you’re at the forefront of your market and get you new, potentially recurring, customers.
What is the process for getting the Google Guaranteed badge?
To setup Local Services Ads (LSA), you must have a Google My Business (GMB) account to begin.
When you apply for an LSA account, Google will begin the process of verifying your business for a Google Guarantee badge. If you meet the badge requirements, the badge is placed when your ad goes live.
The process is fairly simple:
What does Google Guarantee Cost Business Owners?
Google Guarantee costs $50 a month to verified business owners; this only applies once you're a Google Guaranteed business.
Running Local Service Ads vary by location, and you'll be charged when you receive a call that exceed 30 seconds.
The Google guaranteed certification positions your business in an upgraded profile within the Google listings. This guarantee insures buyers up to $2,000 (lifetime cap) if they are unhappy and want a refund.
This can cover damages to property, complaints about the service provider’s pricing, responsiveness, or cancellations.
Preparing To Apply For Google Guarantee
To get through the verification process, there are a number of things you can do to prepare your company and to make sure you are in compliance with Google’s requirements. You can always hire a marketing agency like Agile Adz to help get you through this process quicker and easier.
- Collect all your documentation. There is some required paperwork you'll need to submit. Also, make sure employee files are updated and current.
- Verify your licensing and insurance documents are current. If there's a near term expiration, renew early so you don't create an additional delay or risk getting your verification rejected.
- Quality employees is a must. Google Guarantee is very dependent on high-quality customer service. They are putting their money up if you don't perform, so a capable team that delivers is critical.
- Go above and beyond. Your customer reviews impact much more than you think at Google. So providing an excellent service, with a friendly and helpful attitude can help you stand out in a competitive market.
- Make reviews a priority. Build in processes from the first call, to the tech visit, and the follow-up after deliver. By repeatedly asking, you're telling the customer that this is important at every level of your company. Online reviews is a key ranking factor for organic, local map packs, and your Google guaranteed ads.
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Talk About Solutions With An Expert
Have a discussion and get the right strategy for your business.
On our call, we'll focus on:
- How Google Ads can deliver results for your website and business.
- What is the "right" strategy based on your site, content, & competition.
- The best package for your goals, and your budget.
How to Use Local Service Ads
Before we jump into the specifics of this service, it’s important to note that it’s only available for certain small businesses. Specifically, it’s only available for service providers, as they’re going to be the businesses that customers need both locally and quickly.
Companies eligible for this ad program include:
- HVAC (heating or air conditioning) services
- Real estate services
- Lawn care experts
- Appliance repair
- Pest control
- Window cleaners
- Water damage services
- Junk removal
- Financial planners
- Carpet cleaners
Now that you know whether or not your business can utilize the local services ads program, let’s take a closer look at what it really means to not only use Local Services Ads, but to win the auction and get the best results.
For local businesses to be noticed and recommended in a Google search, it all starts with their Google My Business (GMB) profile. Creating a GMB profile for your business is free and, unlike Google Guaranteed, is open to all businesses—not just service providers.
GMB lets you connect with potential new customers directly via their ability to call or message you directly from your GMB profile. It also allows customers to leave online reviews directly on your Google profile, rather than relying on an external site like Yelp.
A good GMB profile will position your company so that you can rank in the map pack, where 70% of local calls begin from.
Google My Business will also provide you with a clean, easy-to-use website builder that will allow you to showcase your business with photos, specials, and other unique aspects of your business, but also create an easy-to-navigate mobile-friendly webpage.
This provides backup and reinforcement to your website, and helps improve your rankings because it's on a Google platform.
Agile helps companies optimize every aspects of their digital marketing, including your GMB page, your ads are focused on an audience proven to get more calls, and getting reviews from customers happy with your service.
Google Local Services
Once you’ve set up a GMB, you're in the game. You'll need that to apply to the Google Guaranteed program, as well as some reviews from previous clients.
There are also additional requirements, such as you will also need to show proof of license, bond or insurance. They are "guaranteeing" your work, so it's only logical they want to ensure you're a legitimate service provider.
While Local Services Ads are a form of paid advertising, you're only charged when you receive a call that lasts 30 seconds are more.
Plus, this new system is separate from both SEO and Google Ads, so it allows you to compete with more established companies and generate a positive ROI faster.
Budgeting isn simple, so you'll be able to control your spend on a weekly basis.
In the HVAC (and Plumbing) space, we're seeing calls for between 25-30 dollars...
...vs. much more than that just for a "click" in Google Ads.
With Local Services Ads, you only pay per leads related to your business or the services you offer. Here's how it works:
- You set an average WEEKLY budget based on the average number of leads you want to receive in any given week.
- You may sometimes spend more on the leads than your average weekly budget in a given week, but you'll never spend more than monthly max, which is your average weekly budget multiplied by the average number of weeks in a month.
- You Can immediately dispute leads that you believe aren't valid. Successfully disputed leads are later credited back to you. (US & Canada only)
- You're only charged when calls exceed 30 seconds.
How you’re charged
You're charged for each valid lead you receive through your Local Services ad.
Lead prices may vary depending on your location, the job type, the type of lead, or your bidding mode, but each lead received will count towards your budget.
Once you’ve reached your monthly max, your ad won't appear for the remainder of the month (unless you adjust your budget).
You can view how much you've been charged for your leads by going to the "Billing" menu in your leads inbox.
Billing for Local Services Ads is managed by Google Ads. Any suspension in your Google Ads account will also suspend your Local Services Ads.
You also have the power to pick and choose what leads you follow and which ones you don’t. Plus, Google will provide price estimates for different services, although these are only estimations and the true price will depend on your own service and local area.
Your Local Services Ad will give customers the information that’s crucial for them to choose your business: the services you offer, the area you service, your hours, and your business’s reviews. How your ad is displayed will depend on if you’ve been Google Screened or Google Guaranteed.
If you do not provide financial planning, real estate, or law services, you don’t need to worry about being Google Screened. In fact, you won’t even be eligible for Google Screening because you don’t provide these services.
However, law firms, real estate, or financial planning businesses need to be aware of the verification process for Google Screening. The screening process involves a background check and license check to ensure that the business is reputable and can be trusted by potential customers and Google.
What is the green tick on Google search?
If you've recently searched Google for a local hvac, plumber, or another local service company, you may have noticed one of these little green checkmarks during your query.
This green checkmark is the Google Guaranteed Badge. It's a significant sign to your community that you're a reputable company that can be trusted.
For company's that want to continue using Google's local services ads, Google guaranteed is one of the most cost effective ways to generate quality calls and leads.
What is an LSA Google?
How to create a LSA:
Here's the simple process to get started:
- Check Your Eligibility. They aren't available for everyone just yet, so the first step is checking your eligibility. ...
- Create an Ad Profile. ...
- Submit Relevant Paperwork. ...
- Complete the Background Check. ...
- Manage Your Budget. ...
- Review Ad Leads.
Is Google local services free?
Local Advertisers will only be charged for valid leads and depending on the job and the market, only cost $6 – 30 per lead.
Plus, if you receive a lead that is either fraudulent, spam, or was a poor match, you can even dispute the charge for credit.
How do I advertise locally on Google?
Show local search ads on Google Maps
- Enable location extensions for your Google Ads account. Learn more.
- Set up or update your Business Profile listing. If you don't have a listing yet, set up your Business Profile listing. ...
- Use location targeting and bid by location. ...
- Optimize your keywords.