Local Service Ads
Local Service Ads

If you are a local business who is working with a PPC Agency Manchester then you will have no doubt heard about Local Service Ads (LSAs) – and if you haven’t then you need to change agencies!

There has been a lot of buzz in the PPC Manchester world recently about Local Service Ads (LSAs), Google Guaranteed, and Google Screened. There have been changes to the platform, new industries added, and various other updates, which have prompted us to talk to our clients about the updates and what exactly it means for PPC.

LSAs, Google Guaranteed, and Google Screened: What’s the difference?

Let’s dive right in:

Local Service Ads are not paid per click ad’s but rather pay per lead. This is a huge change as it now means that we can now bid on a per lead basis rather than paying for clicks – which don’t always turn into engagements. Similar to PPC ads, however, LSA ads are still shown through the normal SERPs (search engine results pages) on mobile, desktop, and tablets as well as through voice search results as well. Google, however, ranks them on proximity to the searcher as well as the number of positive reviews.

Part of the process of signing up for LSA’s involves you having to become Google Guaranteed – more on that below.

Google Guaranteed means that your ad will show a green tick and the words “Google Guaranteed.” This lets potential customers know that your company is guaranteed by Google – up to the value of $2000. This is a bit of a complicated process as it requires background checks, licences, and insurance for both the business and all of its customer-facing employees. It is not right for every business though and tends to be geared more towards tradespeople such as locksmiths and plumbers.

Google Screened is similar to Google Guaranteed in that your business will still have to go through the background check, licence, and insurance for the business and its customer-focused employees, and it must also have a review score of 3+. However, there is no coverage guaranteed by Google for customers’ claims, and so it is aimed at companies such as financial providers and lawyers. The ad will show a green tick and the words “Google Screened” next to it.

Why is LSA’s so important?

LSA’s are really important in PPC because not only are they much cheaper than more traditional PPC ad’s (a typical monthly budget for PPC is around $15000 whereas for LSAs it can be around $5000) but they are also paid per lead – so you only pay for calls that last 2 minutes or longer.

The fact that they are based mainly on customer reviews as well means that it is now as possible for a tiny business to rank as well as a massive business – depending on how well you treat your customers.

What do you need to know about LSA’s?

  • Don’t make the mistake of thinking that because you have reviews on your Google My Business Listing and your LSAs that your Google Guaranteed or Google Screened mark will as well – it won’t.
  • Proximity is key – the closer you are to the user the better the chances are that you will be the answer that Google serves them for their query
  • Not all of your team may have to have background checks – it depends on your industry. Some industries only require the owner to be background checked.
  • To really win at LSA’s you need to respond to leads and reviews quickly and helpfully. Responsiveness is key when you consider the key ranking factors are proximity and reviews
  • You don’t have to have a traditional Google Search campaign running in order to get access to LSAs

So, if you are a local business who are looking for phone leads, and you have awesome customer service instincts, get in touch with SEO MCR (pay per click manchester agency) to find out more about what the best PPC strategy for your business might be.

About the author

Simon is best know for Co-Founding AccommodationforStudents.com, a portal for student accommodation which attracts over 2 million visitors a year. Simon has 17 years online digital marketing experience and has widespread knowledge of building and/or optimising websites in most industries.

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