Google Local Services Overview

Google Local Services is slowly rolling out area by area and it’s changing the way ads are displayed for service-based businesses; most of these being plumbing and HVAC companies.

If you want to get your business front and center to attract high-quality leads, you’ll want to implement these ads into your PPC and digital marketing strategy.

Local Service Ads bring a few new things to search engine results.

One of the major features is “Google Certified Listings”. These are listings from companies that Google has verified as high-quality providers for that related service. Companies need to pass a thorough review process that includes background checks and license verification in order for Google to give this certification. Pretty serious stuff!


What’s New?

Let’s take a look at the search results for “Toronto Plumbers”

Right away you’ll notice that things are looking a bit different. At the top are the new local service ads along with the “Google Guaranteed” badge.

We’ve never seen a result in this section that didn’t have this badge so this means if your business isn’t guaranteed by Google, you probably won’t be ranking in these results anytime soon.

Besides the new Google guarantee, these ads show the business name, review score, areas served, a phone number, and the hours of operation. Each ad looks the same as the next.

No more having to optimize multiple complex ad campaigns a/b testing descriptions and titles. It simply lists your business, a rating, and a number for the user to call. Straight to the point.

If we click “more plumbers in Toronto” it will bring us to a new “local services” page with more listings for plumbers in Toronto. The results prioritize the companies with the Google Guarantee, so just like with the main results; if you don’t have that guarantee, you’re going to be left in the dust.

Benefits Of Using Local Services

The two main benefits of using implementing these ads are:

1.) The ads appear at the top of search results.
2.) You only pay for the ads when they work!

This second part is huge! No more having to pay for useless leads that will never convert. Alright, so now that we’ve covered the basics of the new program, let’s talk about submitting an application for your business.

How Much Does It Cost?

On average, it ends up costing about $25-$45/lead, although you should expect these prices to change over time. The cost of the lead usually depends on which kind of service the customer ends up getting. The prices between a clogged drain and a major plumbing project are going to be different costs per lead.

You set a weekly budget that will have a limit the number of leads you want to receive. For example:

Ad Spend: $2000/month — $500/week — $71/day
Median Cost Per Lead: $35
Average Results: 75 leads/month — 14 leads/week — 2 leads/day.

Once your budget is hit, the ads stop running and ultimately your phones stop ringing. If you receive a lead that isn’t legit, you can dispute this immediately through Google. Here are some examples of leads that would be considered invalid:

  • Solicitors / Telemarketing Calls / Spam
  • Someone calls and you don’t service their area
  • The service the customer wants isn’t offered by your business.

How Are Listings Ranked?

Okay so you’re probably thinking this all sounds great, but what if your competitors catch on and just dump a bunch of money into these ads? No need to worry. Basically, the way that Google ranks these listings depends on these main factors:

  • The proximity of the customer to your physical business location
  • Your Google reviews
  • Hours of operation
  • Responsiveness to customers inquiries and requests. *You need to be consistently updating the Google dashboard you’re given access to. When you close leads, you need to let Google know this. I would suggest doing this at least once a day.


Local Services are being implemented in more and more areas every day. If you ignore these ads, you are seriously missing out. We can help you integrate Google local services ads into your marketing strategy. Our team of PPC marketing professionals make it simple to get on board. Contact us today!