Google Local Service Ads (LSA) looks set to be rolling out in the UK & Europe sometime soon as they update their Local Service Ads documentation.
But there are some crucial differences this time, compared to their UK launch attempt in 2018, which they later removed from documentation, until now.
Recap on Local Service Ads
Local Service Ads are a separate Ad Unit that appears above the local pack, listing service area businesses that are Guaranteed by Google to a certain level.
Local Service Ads are a pay-per-lead (not per click). The businesses is vetted before being allowed into the LSA program.
Expanded LSA Country List
Previously this only listed:
- United States (running in versions since 2015)
- United Kingdom (tried in 2018)
- United Kingdom
- United States
In 2018, the guaranteed in the UK was £2,000, this has also changed in updated LSA docs.
- United States – $2,000
- Canada – CAD $2,000
- United Kingdom – GBP £1,500
- Ireland – EUR €1,500
- Spain – EUR €1,500
- France – EUR €1,500
- Italy – EUR €1,500
- Netherlands – EUR €1,500
- Germany – EUR €1,500
- Austria – EUR €1,500
- Belgium – EUR €1,500
- Switzerland – CHF ₣2,000
If you’re backed by the Google Guarantee, and your customers (that came to your business through Google) aren’t satisfied with work quality, Google may refund the amount paid for the service. The following are the upper limits of lifetime coverage for claims.
- The Google Guarantee covers claims up to the amount on the job invoice up to the lifetime cap for coverage.
- Services must be booked through Local Services Ads. The Google Guarantee doesn’t cover add-on or future projects, damages to property, dissatisfaction with price or provider responsiveness, or cancellations.
In 2018 the two UK categories where listed as: Locksmiths & Plumbers. This has been expanded to:
- Appliance repair services
- Carpet cleaning services
- Cleaning services
- Garage door services
- HVAC (heating or air conditioning)
- Junk removal services
- Lawn care services
- Pest control services
- Tree services
- Water damage services
- Window cleaning services
- Window repair services
View Doc – signup link is currently 404’d – this will go live when they have all their ducks in a row and ready to onboard.
Slightly Paired Down from US & Canada LSA Version
In the US and CA versions of LSA calls (from assigned call tracking number) that last longer then 30sec are recorded within the LSA dashboard, which allows the merchant to dispute that this was a lead and get refunded on the charge.
In current documentation some things are excluded from UK and Europe:
- Track your bookings (US & Canada only)
- Dispute charges (US & Canada only)
- Ask for reviews (US & Canada only)
Recording calls is obviously a no no in the Europe, which also removes the dispute element.
They may possible increase the time on call before charge kicks in, but until it opens up, we wont really know.
Why you cant ask for reviews is also unknown.
What will be available to the merchant:
- Receive and manage leads
- Communicate with customers about their requests and record notes
- Track your leads
- View reports about your ad’s performance
- Pause your ad if you’re too busy to accept new leads
- Adjust your budget
Change in Advanced Vetting
In the 2018 documentation they listed Onifido Ltd as the company that would conduct company and employee background checks.
In current documentation, this has been dropped, but still may be assigned because this page still only lists the US and CA as available.
But with a Google Guarantee on the line, there will certainly be vetting involved like:
- Business Checks – I assume this would also involve credit checks in the UK
- Owner and Service Employees Criminal Record (CRB) checks
- Liability & Business Insurance
One thought is that they might increase the partner affiliate programme to ease onboarding and vetting. Off the top of my head they may partner with Check A Trade for example.
The Benefits of LSA
- The top of Google Search Result
- Connect with potential customers who are searching for services you provide and are most likely to book
- Make use of simple tools to help you get started and create a personalised profile
- Bright & shiny Google Guarantee badge
- You only hear from customers who have specifically selected your profile out of all the rest
What To Do Now
Now you wait – signup page is still closed.
I am guessing they still need to get Verification systems in place for each country and possibly building up affiliate partners to handle onboarding.
Follow me @GuideTwit – I’ll undoubtedly tweet when this goes live.
Follow Tom @tomwaddington8 – He has been involved with LSA in the US from the beginning.
Get your business and company details in order – they will be checked.
Speak to us about a Google My Business Consultation if you are unsure about how you have set up your Service Area Business listing/s.