Local Service Ads for Service Area Businesses
Brandon Schmidt | Mar 14, 2019
Google has been steadily rolling out Local Service Ads (LSAs) to new industries and geographic areas across the United States. See what these ads look like, how they work, and why they are great for both your business and your potential customers.
What are Local Service Ads?
Local Service Ads first appeared in very limited areas under the name Home Service Ads back in 2015. In 2017 the ads were rebranded as Local Service Ads and started being released in larger cities and in new industries.
Essentially, Local Service Ads are pay-per-lead advertising that shows up at the top of the search results page – above the map pack, organic listings, and even the other Google Ads. If you click on the More Pros link under the ads, you will see a long list of local companies that provide that service.
LSAs have several unique features:
- Star Reviews
- Service Area
- Phone Number
- Google Guarantee label (on some listings)
What Industries Qualify for LSAs?
Local Service Ads appear for specific service industry keywords and within certain markets. All of the industries are service-area businesses that lean towards B2C and home improvement contractors, including:
- Lawn Care
- Pest Control
- Carpet Cleaning
Tom Waddington has compiled a great list of the markets and industries that are currently running Local Service Ads.
Benefits of Google’s LSAs for Local Businesses
1. Shows Up Higher than Google Ads
When an LSA appears in a search result, it shows up higher than any of the other paid ads – regardless of what you bid.
2. Lower Cost per Lead
With the LSA program, you only pay when someone books a service call or schedules an appointment with you. And we’ve seen on average that this rate is significantly lower than the cost per lead you would see in Google Ads.
3. Google Guarantee
Top listings within the LSA program have a Google Guarantee icon. This means that the company has passed Google’s background, liability, and licensing checks and their work is backed by Google. For the consumer, this is huge as they can complain to Google and receive compensation for unsatisfactory work.
4. Enhanced Reviews
Google provides greater features to request and receive reviews from customers that have hired you from a Local Service ad. These reviews will affect how high your Local Service ad shows up in the future.
How to Apply for LSAs
Applying for the Local Service Ads program is much more involved than other Google Ad products. Here’s a list of the steps you need to take:
1. Check to See If You Can Apply
Google is still rolling out LSAs across the country, so not every market has all the industries running. If LSAs are currently running in your industry and market, you should apply immediately. List of LSAs Currently Running >
There are some ways to find out if Local Service ads are coming soon to your area. If you want to know when LSAs are coming – before your competition does – contact YDOP to find out.
2. Background & Business Checks
To get the Google Guarantee badge, your company must undergo certain checks and approvals, which vary per industry. For most industries, you need to show proof of liability insurance, any applicable license, and the business owner(s) must undergo a verification process. In addition, some industries (specifically HVAC, plumbing, and electrician) must have their service technicians undergo a background check. All the background checks are free and are conducted on Google’s behalf by Pinkerton.
3. Set Budget
Once you get approved for the program, you can set your budget. Since this is cost-per-conversion, your budget is directly tied to the number of leads you want from this program. And it is fairly easy to turn the ads off, so you can have better control of how many leads your business is getting on a weekly basis.
4. Set Job Type
Within your industry, there can be a dozen or more individual job types. You can control which jobs you want to run ads on.
5. Select Service Area
Selecting your service area is as simple as choosing the target cities and zip codes you want your ad to appear in. You can be as specific as you’d like.