In 2016, Google introduced a new feature to its advertising platform called the Google Guarantee, which offers local businesses the chance to stand out from their competition in being “certified” by Google. Businesses with the certification are displayed in Google’s Local Services ads with a special badge next to their name that signifies they are backed by Google.
Here’s how it works: when businesses sign up for Local Services ads in AdWords, they are automatically applied to be Google Guaranteed. Google then investigates the business, performing a background check and other vetting procedures, to verify that it is licensed, insured and pre-screened. If the business hits all the marks, it becomes Google Guaranteed, and the following message appears when their ad is clicked:
This pro is backed by the Google Guarantee, which means they’re licensed, insured and pre-screened. Any job you book with them is guaranteed to be done right, or your money back.
Customers who book services through a Google Guaranteed business may have their money refunded by Google if they are unsatisfied with the quality of work. This, of course, will involve another investigation by Google into the services performed, and the lifetime limit of refund coverage for each business maxes out at $2,000.
When it first was introduced, companies who acted early to become Google Guaranteed found a pleasant increase in business as a result. As it turns out, getting Google to personally vouch for your business proved very effective for marketing. But is it still worth it? By now, any local business with an online ad campaign has–or at least should have–heard of the Google Guarantee. Is it still viable now that its usage has expanded?
The short answer is yes, if you’re a local home service business who is planning on or is already conducting local ad campaigns in Google. In this case, you have nothing to lose by activating and receiving your guarantee, since it is free and only available to businesses who run local Google ads.
When the Google Guarantee first surfaced, it only applied to locksmiths and plumbers in an effort to better vet these popular home services and reduce scams. That has now expanded to allow additional services such as HVAC, electricians, movers, and general handyman services.
Google’s Local Services ads appear on all screen sizes and allow the customer to contact the business directly through Google. In addition, Local Services ads are paid for by the lead, not the click, saving businesses substantial ad pay on cold clicks and impressions.
Another advantage to Local Services ads is that there is no keyword research required. Local ads are served in response to thousands of search terms, provided they are relevant to your business. The ads use information from your Google My Business profile to match with consumers seeking your particular service.
When a user clicks on a Local Services ad, they will be prompted to confirm the type of job and that they reside within the service area. This is another benefit of Local Services that helps weed out incompatible customers.
While not all areas of the US are able to access Local Services ads, they are active in most major metropolitan areas–including Denver, Aurora, and Lakewood in Colorado. Google has expanded the coverage to be nationwide for some home service industries.
Local Services ads also display ratings and reviews (pulled from Google My Business) right within the ad. This, in addition to the Google Guarantee badge, allows the user to get an overall idea of customer satisfaction with your business without doing any investigating on their part.
As you can see, Local Services ads through Google provide many benefits. Competitive home service industries who have already honed their organic search may find that it gives them a significant boost in leads, which they will only have to pay for if it leads to an appointment.
If you’re competing for rankings on search engine results pages, it’s best to utilize every strategy available to you. Many businesses still do not know about the Google Guarantee or its advantages, and are missing out on potential customers.
If you’re a locally-based home service provider looking to expand and instill trust in your local customer base, Google Guarantee can be an excellent tool. To learn more about Local Services ads and the Google Guarantee, contact Sympler today.