The Ultimate Guide To Local Service Ads


Joe Troyer: All right. So last but certainly not least, I wanted to talk to you guys about Local Service Ads in Google’s Local Service Ads. And so if you do a search in Google, let’s see, digital triggers, Google local search ads. I’ve been getting a ton of fricking questions about the Google Local Service Ads. Actually didn’t even call that the right thing, but Google found it for me. Thank you Google. We’ve been getting a ton of questions about the Google Local Service Ads. Like what are they aware are they available, what are the niches? Are they important? Should I be telling my prospects and clients to do them? Should I be not? Like Joe, what’s your opinion?

Joe Troyer: And so I wanted to walk you guys through kind of some of the high level details. I’m not going to sit here and read this post word for word, but I wanted to walk you guys through this post a little bit and we keep updating this by the way. So if this is a good resource for you, I would definitely bookmark it, because as we find new locations coming on or new new cities or areas coming on and new niches now rolling out Google Local Service Ads, we definitely update this. And so if you’re looking at it and you see a category that gets rolled out, please let us know so we can keep the list up to date and fresh for you guys.

Joe Troyer: But essentially Google Local Service Ads were called Google home service ads. I believe they’ve been referred to as like Google guaranteed, and simply they’ve been referred to as Google guaranteed because right up here in the screenshot, when you search for Google, these people have the Google guaranteed badge. And so the thing is, this is super interesting, I feel like because they’re front and center. Like these Local Service Ads are above the Pay per click ads. So you’ve got to know and when we got to take away that they’re getting lots of attention. Like they are in the most prime real estate for Google.

Joe Troyer: So that’s what sparks my attention is the opportunity there. And it’s a big opportunity being at the top of the page there. So when you click on one of these listings, ultimately or click from more, ultimately this is what you see as kind of a list of more Google guaranteed vendors, and you can drop down into different categories in zip codes. Like this is what you see for locksmiths. You can say vehicle lockout or building lockout. So the user can get down category wise and then zip code wise. But then that’s really all the filtering that’s available.

Joe Troyer: And so I did vehicle lock out and I believe this is in south beach, this zip code. And at the time of me doing this, there were only two locksmiths available through Google Guaranteed available to do a vehicle lockout in south beach, Miami, like the ultimate tourist destination in Miami.
Speaker 1: So I thought that that was interesting. So then you can see their business information, you can look at their reviews and ultimately this looks like essentially like a mini GMB or Google My business listing at the end of the day. So you can put it in your service area, your background, your licensing info goes in there. Obviously your reviews go in there. They got this new kind of highlights section, so to speak in there as well. And then currently this is the list of all the markets where Google Local Service Ads are live.

Joe Troyer: And so you see that this list keeps expanding at all times. So I’ll make sure whenever we update or upload this YouTube video and this goes on the blog, that we put in a link to this actual post so you guys can see this list as it updates. But what I want you guys to take away is like, this used to be something that was just in a couple of cites, like this is a rapidly expanding. In California, California is definitely one of the earlier adopters. Florida was one of the late adopters, where I live, south Florida. But I mean even look at just in Florida, what’s live and what’s available. I mean the list is getting really big. Like these are … I don’t see Jacksonville here, but besides that, like these are all the major metros almost so to speak in Florida.

Joe Troyer: So definitely something to be on the lookout for. Like this is taking over. First, I was a little resistant to really jumping in myself and learning about Local Service Ads because it was a Beta from Google and they confirmed it was a Beta and they were playing with it. But what captured me and made me really look into it was firstly opportunity, it showing up at the top of Google and then second, like they just keep expanding more and more and more and more locations. It’s getting ridiculous.

Joe Troyer: So I don’t think that this is really a [inaudible] anymore. It’s not in every city, but this is something that you guys should know as marketers. And so as of right now, as of us doing this video and as of our last update, these are the list of niches or categories that are triggering Local Service Ads. So you got a restriction down to particular cities and areas and then you have as well it niche down to a list of different niches. So not everything is available. So yeah, like air duct cleaning, appliance repair, auto glass, auto service, carpet, electrician, event planners, garage doors, HVAC, handyman, home improvement, house cleaners, junk removal and the list, just keeps going as you guys can see.

Joe Troyer: But from what I see so far, most … I would say 99% or more of the people here are really like home service listings. Like home service listings. So at the end of the day, I know that Google has explicitly expressed interest in essentially Yelp or not Yelp in Home Advisor’s type of business model. Like getting into the paper lead games, so to speak. And I think that this is their first stab at doing that. That’s ultimately how this system works. As of right now in Canada, what we’ve seen is that, HVAC locksmiths and plumbers are available, but we haven’t seen any updates up until this point.

Joe Troyer: So again, I believe that the reason that Google is doing this is like companies like Home Advisor and so many more paper lead and paper call companies have leveraged Google for so long and for decades and decades to essentially … Not decades and decades to be realistic, but I mean a decade plus, to get traffic to then do a Pay per lead or a Pay per sale type of platform.

Joe Troyer: Even look at Yelp. Yelp’s traffic forever came from like Google primarily. Like that was the only advertising they were doing. When you look at Home Advisor, it was the same thing. Now that they’re like a behemoth and there’s so fricking big. Now they’re running the TV ads and everything else, but that wasn’t how they got started. They got started from search. So I think that Google’s gotten envious. Like they say that the home service industry alone is a $500 billion industry. And I think that they’ve been seeing all these people in all these sites tapping into their traffic and building these crazy big companies.

Joe Troyer: It seems like they’re just wanting to capitalize on the revenue that Home Advisor and Angie’s List and Amazon home services and everybody else are doing.

Joe Troyer: And from some pattens and from some content that I’ve seen and that I’ve read up on, I think that Google has an even more kind of devious, so to speak, plan longterm. But only time will tell. I believe that Google wants to play middleman and kind of get rid of the companies as well, and be able to go directly to the contractor or directly to the technician, so to speak, and get rid of the contractor. Well, some of the patents that I’ve seen and some of the pieces of content, I don’t know where they’ll go with it, but I think they at least have some really ambitious, and I guess you could say devious plans longterm.

Joe Troyer: Think of the taxi industry and Uber and the big disruption there. I think Google is looking at home services as a potential big play for that level of disruption in the industry, and going directly to technicians versus to companies. So super, super interesting stuff. And if you see it like their acquisitions in terms of technology and them playing in Google home and them trying to be in the house and compete with Amazon Alexa, I can’t help but think that’s exactly where they’re going longterm.

Joe Troyer: So just my thoughts there. So what’s the impact ultimately of Google local search ads? I think that ultimately they’re taking away impression share from everybody else. Look how far down [inaudible] is now. Look how far down organic is now. And obviously they’re shoving down their Pay per click ads as well. So right now it’s getting the attention and local search if it’s available as Local Search Ads. So ultimately impression share and ultimately you could say as well results in clicks and calls for Google ads and for Google maps is ultimately going down because it’s being taken away by Google Local Service Ads.

Joe Troyer: And when you look at it on mobile, it’s even worse. Like this is your mobile screen. That’s it. Quite literally guys that’s it. Like all that I have when I did a search for Miami locksmith on my iPhone. Brand new big screen iPhone is two responses and a call button or two listings and a call button. So when you think about the impact that this is having on local search, like guys, it’s fricking big. So if you’ve seen clients where impressions are down or calls are down in Local Service Ads, that could be a correlation. Or they’re in a niche and city that has … it could definitely be a correlation.

Joe Troyer: So how do you get into Google Local Service Ads, and how does it work as really what I want to transition to and really walk through with you.

Joe Troyer: At the end of the day, you’re either going to get invited to play with Local Service Ads, or you’re going to be sitting on the bench and waiting to join the notification list. Depending on the niche that you’re in and the city. Aka is in your market or the listings available. And Google right now is definitely rewarding first movers. The people that are jumping on this early are doing really, really well. And I’ll share with you guys some case studies. This piece of content, this article in our research here has been linked to by a lot of people out there like like Moz and BrightLocal and Ducttape marketing because we have some really good data on this and how it’s working and how it compares. How much volume can you get compared to Google ads and what’s the cost versus Google ads. So we’ll get into that.

Joe Troyer: But just know that if your prospects or your customers have an opportunity to get in on this, that you should be cheering them on. Because your goal again is to take them from where they are to where they want to go. And there’s a gap. And folks at the end of the day, Google is rewarding people jumping on Local Service Ads in a big way.

Joe Troyer: So essentially what happens if it’s in your market, you’re able to apply and they work with a third party company that they contract to run a background check and they run that backgrounding check on the business owner and all the business employees. And really anyone who’s going to visit a customer’s home or office, they’re going to be vetting and then they’re going to be checking licenses and insurance is getting vetted. So it’s not like a rinky big process.

Joe Troyer: Are there people that are gaming the system? Yes, I do believe so. There are people that are really Pay per call they’re lead Gen people that are getting into Local Service Ads and shouldn’t be. And what I mean by that is, they are definitely not licensed or they’re maybe photoshopping some of their documents because you can tell. So far though, again, like if you have the opportunity to get in here or your customers do or anybody you’re speaking with, please point them to this article or showcase this article, quote this article. I’ve seen lead prices from anywhere from 18 to $45 a lead so far.

Joe Troyer: Now obviously over time, this number is going to continue to grow. Early doctors I believe of this program are going to be rewarded handsomely for jumping on board. Like it’s a bidding system at the end of the day, just like Google ads are in Google AdWords or Pay per click. So the way that Google Local Service Ads billing works is essentially the exact same as Pay per lead is or if you’re running Pay per lead, probably the exact same as your pay per lead business.

Joe Troyer: So essentially you set a weekly budget. Your [inaudible] then is going to fluctuate like crazy and then you’re going to get leads inside of the platform and you pay per lead. That’s it. In terms of the ad ranking process, again here you can see that in this example of Miami, there’s three different listings here showing four LSAs, and it seems like to me so far that based on our research there’s three kind of big ranking factors if you will, to showing up the largest amount of time and that really is budget, proximity, and reviews.

Joe Troyer: Okay. Budget, proximity and reviews like ultimately guys at the end of the day does that sound familiar? That sounds exactly like Google. Those ranking factors, it’s like, yeah, this is what Google wants everywhere. Like customers to have a big budget with their platform, to be a good solution and be in proximity and to have good reviews. So this matches up with everything else that we know about Google. There’s a little bit of mystery in terms of location and how they show the ads as well. Like they say that the location is like the home city that the company is in. But there’s something a little odd going on here. I don’t really believe that because like not all of these companies are in San Diego. They’re going to be in like suburbs of San Diego.

Joe Troyer: So I’m not sure exactly how this piece is happening, but I think that there’s some optimization, so to speak, that’s happening in the location. So that kind of gets you guys up to speed on Local Service Ads in general. But folks, here’s the Mojo and here’s the data that nobody else has. Here’s how it’s working now, here’s why it’s important, and here’s why you guys should know all about it.

Joe Troyer: So I’m really fortunate to have some awesome fricking customers, and customers who were willing to share with me and the rest of you, the rest of our customer base, what’s going on with their Local Service Ads. So first and foremost, if that’s you and you participated and you helped, thank you so much. So one of the biggest questions we receive, about Local Service Ads is like what’s the cost per lead compared to AdWords? Or how much volume is actually available? Like those are the two big things. And so I promised the customer not to share the exact location they’re in and the exact vertical or category of their business, just to give them some anonymity. But let’s be real.

Joe Troyer: Like when I originally did this post, there was only like, I think … I don’t know, like 10 markets or something Local Service Ads where even in, in five categories or niches. So like if you want to be that black hat and gray hat person and put in a bunch of time and research, I’m sure that you can figure out the niche if you dig hard enough. So anyway, I want to share with you guys some data. So when we originally wrote this post cost per acquisition numbers, so Google AdWords or Google paid ads, $50 and 90 cents for a raw phone call. Google Local Service Ads folks, you see that number, 18 bucks.

Joe Troyer: So if you’re talking with a prospect, guys, I don’t really think it’s fair to hold this thing back. Like we got to share. Our job is to help people go from their current situation to their desired situation and to fill that gap. For me, I think that Local Service Ads is one hell of a way to fill that gap. Look at the difference in costs there.

Joe Troyer: So again, I think that it’s not always going to be like this. I think longterm it will cost more than Pay per click ads, because like they’re taking all the complexity out of Pay per click. So one of the followup questions I get then is like, Joe, somebody is doing Local Service Ads, should they be doing Pay per click or should they be doing Google ads? And yes, they should. If they’re still looking for more leads, then yes, it’s a salt to their problem and it’s helping them again, fill the gap between where they’re at right now and where they want to be.

Joe Troyer: So then let’s talk about volume. Like, how does Google AdWords compared to Google local services ads? So when I did this, we did it again for the previous month. So Google ads, 37 leads in a month, Google Local Service Ads 102, and those were billable. That was after Google had already scrubbed and gotten rid of 20 what they would call like bad leads from the account.

Joe Troyer: And so you can see this is kind of a screenshot of those hundred and two leads inside the account. And again, this was December when we did this. And so are Google Local Service Ads worth it? 100%. When you consider the results, at the end of the day, Google AdWords or Google ads was 282% more expensive than Local Service Ads, and Local Service Ads drove 275% more leads than Google ads. So guys, if you have the opportunity to help a customer with this, definitely should be helping a customer with Google Local Service Ads.

Joe Troyer: And again, you guys definitely go check out this article and I definitely think like it’s one of those pieces of content that we’re going to continue to up update and upgrade over time as we continue to get more data and we continue to have more rollouts. And so I would highly recommend that you book mark it as it’s a resource you’re going to want to stay up to date with.

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