LSA provides many advantages to contractor business owners and consumers alike. For businesses, the promise of a flat fee paid per lead should be music to their ears. Currently, Google charges $25 per actual job quote — not just clicks!
Consumers can enjoy the confidence of seeing reviews and third-party verification for each entry displayed. They also get a guarantee, backed by Google, that the job will be performed correctly. Otherwise, they can get the total cost of the service refunded, up to $2,000.
While Google Local Service Ads may seem like an unremarkable combination of AdWords and Google Maps services, the consequences are actually much more significant for service-based businesses.
Why? Because no one looks in the Yellow Pages for services anymore, especially not if they’re driving around town. 97% of people look up local business services online when they need something. Seeing a mixture of positive reviews, prominent search results placement and a guarantee of service quality can all dramatically reduce the time needed to find and book essential services.
Consequently, being displayed on Google LSA will help local businesses win more customers and provide them with a huge competitive advantage. As the program expands to encompass other industries, all business owners should be eager to get onboard at the ground floor.
How Do Google Local Service Ads (LSA) Work?
There are a few essential things to know about Google LSA.
- The program only applies to certain home-oriented service industries in certain markets. Current industries available for LSA include: Plumbers, Locksmiths, HVAC technicians, Electricians, and Garage Door Specialists. More industries could soon be on the way! The program is currently available in 17 cities and will expand to 30 metro areas by the end of 2017.
- These are paid advertising slots. Your company must opt-in and sign up with the service in order for your company listing to be eligible for display.
- Participation requires verification. Google wants to assure search users that your business is legitimate, so they will work through third-party verification services to establish your credibility and quality as a contracting business. Verification takes about two weeks to process.
- Customer reviews are displayed. Consumers generally expect 4-star reviews or better.
- Each LSA listing links to a business profile. This profile displays relevant information about your business, including qualifications like trade certifications.
- Users will be able to place a call or request a quote directly in search. Businesses are charged a flat rate only for these direct leads generated, not just clicks or views. The current rate is $25 per lead.
- Anyone not satisfied with your services will be eligible for a refund, backed by Google. Details on this program are scant, but we predict it will be similar to a performance bond. Google may potentially turn around and request money from the business owner and could penalize their ranking, too. We will update these speculations with actual details as they emerge.
Why Are Google Local Service Ads So Important?
Google’s LSA program is a direct response to two needs.
On the business side, businesses needed a streamlined way to get their services in front of an audience of search users. Channels like AdWords tend to have lower performance compared to Google “three-pack” map listings, so now paid advertising businesses can benefit from hyper-local placement at the top of search engine results pages (SERPs).
For consumers, they needed a way to cut through the noise and not get scammed. Searches like “Locksmith in Gwinnett, Georgia” most often seek to book a service in response to an immediate need. No one wants to go through a third-party lead generation service or get deceived by an illegitimate service provider. Google Guaranteed businesses provide them with added trust and, more importantly, a money-back guarantee to give them 100% confidence.
All these factors combine to create a powerful formula for online lead generation. Having your business displayed as part of the LSA results at the top of the SERP gives you privileged access to potential customers. A guaranteed cost-per-lead also gives businesses predictable marketing costs that sit as a set percentage of business generated, providing easily measured ROI.
Altogether, LSA will revolutionize the way people find and book essential services for their home.
Need Help Setting Up Google Local Service Ads or Improving Local SEO?
Getting onboard with LSA and raising your chances of being a top listing requires careful planning. You must cultivate good reviews through online reputation management, optimize your Google My Business entries, and maintain contact with leads who request quotes but ultimately do not book.
In short, LSA success requires a well-oiled digital marketing machine that fires up any time someone searches for your business.
Get everything you need to find success on LSA together when you contact Optimized Scribes today.
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