Are Local Services Ads Worth It?

By Elin Enrooth

If you don’t have enough time in the day to run your business, let alone running ads, local services ads are the solution. Local Services Ads (LSAs) are Google pay-per-lead ads designed for service providers. The ads appear at the top of the search results page, above all other results. The ads are low-maintenance, so you can focus on running your business.

Are Local Services Ads Worth It?

How Local Services Ads work

When someone searches for a service near them, LSAs appear at the top of the search results. Potential customers can submit a lead through the ad. These leads come in as phone calls, messages and booking requests. You can manage these leads anytime online and through the app.

From this point on, the lead is yours to turn into a customer.

To ensure you continue to receive leads, respond to as many of them as you can. If you fail to answer calls or respond to messages, your ad ranking may drop.

The user sees three ads on desktop, two on mobile, and one result in Google Assistant. The number of ads in a market and within specific categories can vary. It depends on how many businesses are in that market.

Getting started with Local Services Ads

Confirm your eligibility

LSAs are only available for certain industries in select markets.

Before you can start the sign-up process, Google wants to make sure you are eligible. LSAs are not available to all the categories listed in all states yet.

Not every type of business is eligible to use LSAs. Eligible business categories include:

  • Repair services
  • Lawyers and legal services
  • Cleaning services, including junk removal
  • Landscaping, lawn care and tree services
  • HVAC
  • Carpentry, plumbing and electrician services
  • Roofing, siding and garage services
  • Foundation and flooring services
  • Locksmiths
  • Real estate
  • Tax and financial services
  • Pest control
  • Moving services
  • Event planner
  • Painting
  • Pet boarding and grooming
  • Photographers

To find out if your business can use LSAs, use Google's Eligibility Checker tool.

To qualify, your business must:

  • Be licensed in your state
  • Have valid business insurance
  • Meet category requirements

Create your business profile

If you’re eligible, Google will guide you through creating an account. LSAs are separate from the ads you create in Google Ads, so you’ll need to create a new account.

The final stage in setting up your LSAs is creating your profile. Your profile will determine which jobs you’re matched to. Be honest about what services you perform as you’re agreeing to pay for any leads from your Ads.

  1. Create an account
  2. Business details. Next, enter the business name, number of employees, and address. None of this information is public unless you choose to publish it.
  3. Set up your service area. You can expand or narrow your service area based on where your customers are.
  4. Set up your service types. This will help target customers looking for your kind of business.
  5. Business hours. Google asks for your business hours so it can show ads to customers when you’re likely to respond. If it sends you leads and nobody responds it makes for a poor user experience.
  6. Preview your ad
  7. License and insurance. The last step is to upload license and insurance information. You can skip this step, but you won’t be able to run ads until you’ve completed the verification.

You can also add highlights to your profile, which will serve alongside your ads. Highlight attributes and offers to distinguish yourself from others in your industry. Google recommends including two to five in your profile.

If you upload all the required documentation, Google will verify your business.

Earn customer trust with a Google badge

A Google badge promotes credibility and confidence in your service. Users trust Google and its recommendations. You may be eligible for one of two badges: Google Screened or Google Guaranteed.

Whether a business is Google Guaranteed or Screened comes down to the service. Google Guaranteed ads apply to home services, such as plumbers, locksmiths and electricians. Google Screened ads apply to professional services, such as lawyers or financial planners.

Google Guaranteed

The Google Guaranteed badge is a seal of approval for businesses vetted by Google. To receive this distinction, businesses must go through extensive background and license checks. Don't%20Neglect%20Digital%20%283%29 While the badge helps businesses stand out, it's most valuable for its guarantee. If you have this badge and a customer isn’t satisfied with your service, they can request a refund from Google. The guarantee covers refund requests up to $2,000 for work booked through LSAs.

Google Screened

Google Screened helps professional service firms build a trusted reputation. Businesses with this badge go through extensive background and license checks. Don't%20Neglect%20Digital%20%284%29 Though the business has passed the screening, there is no insurance guarantee.

Only pay for qualified results

LSAs are a great way to maximize your advertising spend. Unlike PPC ads, LSAs are pay-per-lead, which means that the cost depends on the number of people who submit a lead.

Google charges you for every valid lead. The cost of the lead depends on location, service, lead type, and bidding mode. Valid leads include:

  • Booking request from a potential customer
  • Text message, call, voice mail or email from a potential customer
  • Missed phone call (without voice mail) but returned customer's message

If you receive a lead that is fraudulent or a poor match, you can dispute the charge for credit.

From your profile, you can manage how much you’d like to spend by raising or lowering your weekly budget. You might go over budget some weeks if a high number of people are searching for services in your area. Google sets a monthly spending max depending on your weekly budget. Once you've reached the max spend for the month, users will no longer see your ad until the next month begins.

When setting your budget, determine the number of leads you want per week. If you’re starting off, budget for at least 20 leads per week to get the most out of your new ads.

Improve Google search rankings

LSAs appear at the top of the search engine results page (SERP). This means increased traffic and better search rankings. Don't%20Neglect%20Digital%20%282%29

How much you're willing to bid isn't the only factor that determines ad placement. Google uses other factors including:

  • Business's proximity to the customer's location
  • Business hours
  • Google badge status
  • Number of reviews and review score. Google’s ranking algorithm is a secret, but we do know that reviews are a major factor.
  • Responsiveness to customer queries. If you want to see your ads at the top of search results, respond as soon as possible.
  • Complaints Google received about your business

Make sure your ad isn't running during times when you aren't able to answer calls. Set an ad schedule to specify whether you want your ad to run all day, during business hours, or choose custom hours.

Are Local Services Ads worth it?

Absolutely.

So, what are you waiting for?

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