How To Improve Your Local Services Ads Ranking

April 11th, 2024, 09:00 AM

Google Local Services Ads (LSAs) are a special type of Google advertising that only service-based businesses can use. Although the LSAs platform is a separate entity from Google Business Profile (GBP), the two are closely related and can be mutually beneficial.

Depending on different search signals, users may see Google Business Profiles, Google LSAs, or both at the top of search results when they perform a local search on Google. 

So, having both a fully optimized Google Business Profile and optimized Local Services Ads can be a good strategy for service-area businesses that want to maximize their chances of appearing at the top of local searches.

Fortunately, some of the strategies for improving your Local Services Ads ranking can also directly impact your Google Business Profile performance, so you really have nothing to lose by implementing a local search marketing strategy that includes optimizing both GBP and LSAs!

How Are Google LSAs Ranked?

Google Local Services Ads are ranked on a number of factors, including:

  • Verification status and Google badge of trust acquisition
  • Bid amount (how much you're willing to pay per lead)
  • Responsiveness to customer inquiries and average response time
  • Context of searches (e.g., time, location, etc.)
  • Relevance to searches (e.g., services provided, business description, hours, proximity)
  • How likely your ad is to result in a lead
  • Messaging and/or booking enablement 
  • Number of reviews and average review rating

These Google LSAs ranking factors are the ones Google itself has disclosed, but of course they don't disclose everything, and their ranking algorithms are always changing, so there may be other factors that influence your Local Services Ads ranking.

In general, however, Google is more likely to rank your LSAs well if they are both highly relevant and high quality — just like with Google Business Profile.

How To Improve Your Google LSAs Performance

Get More 5-Star Reviews

Google LSAs are directly tied to your Google Business Profile, so reviews you get through your LSAs can appear on your Business Profile, and vice versa.

Since we know that the number of reviews a business has and their average rating are important ranking factors for both GBP and LSAs, it stands to reason that one of the best ways to improve the rankings of both is to focus on getting more positive reviews.

For LSAs, you can get reviews by sharing a personalized review link with customers who book your services through an ad. You'll automatically receive this link when you sign up for the Local Services Ads program. In the US and Canada, it's possible to automatically ask customers for reviews through LSAs, so you don't have to manually share the link.

Since reviews from your Google Business Profile can appear on your LSAs and influence their ranking, you can also improve your Local Services Ads performance by asking satisfied customers to leave a review on your GBP. You might do this by sending customers a follow-up email with a link to leave a GBP review, for example.

Expand Job Types and Service Areas

The more services you offer and the more areas you serve, the more searches your LSAs are likely to rank highly in.

Google recommends selecting all the job types you offer and expanding your services areas as much as possible to improve your LSAs performance. For example, rather than setting your service areas using specific postal codes, consider expanding them to a whole county or another larger area.

Select "Maximize Leads" for Your Bid

There are two different ways you can bid on leads through LSAs: "Maximize Leads" and "Max Per Lead." 

If you choose "Max Per Lead," you manually set the maximum amount you're willing to pay for a lead. While this may sound like the most straightforward and safest way to go, you risk falling into the trap of bidding too low and never getting any leads.

If you select "Maximize Leads," Google will automatically set your bid to get the most leads out of your budget. You can choose the minimum number of leads you want per week, and Google will optimize your budget to get those leads. This is the way Google recommends to go for optimal LSAs performance.

Include High-Quality Photos in Ads

You may know that adding high-quality photos to your Google Business Profile can help optimize it — well, the same goes for Local Services Ads.

Examples of images you might consider adding are photos of your team and jobs, either in progress or completed. 

Really, anything that helps showcase the work you do and the people who do it can help your LSAs rank higher.

Enable Message Leads and Booking Leads

Message leads allow customers to contact your business via text message, rather than only by phone. These leads tend to be cheaper, and enabling message leads for LSAs can help your ads rank higher outside of business hours when customers won't be able to reach your team by phone.

Booking leads let customers book a service directly through your LSAs. Enabling this feature can boost your Local Services Ads performance by providing customers with more options and making your ad more likely to result in leads.

Optimize Your Business Info and Bio

A strong business description and detailed business info can also help your LSAs rank higher in local search results. 

Rather than including a short, generic bio and bare-bones information, aim to make your profile as descriptive as possible to let potential customers know what sets you apart from competitors.

Your Google LSAs profile also lets you highlight up to five special aspects of your business that you want to showcase. These highlights could be things like 24/7 service, number of years in business, free estimates, and anything else that's relevant and enticing to potential customers.

Make sure to also keep your business hours and services up to date and accurate if anything changes about your business (on both your Google Business Profile and your LSAs profile). This includes updating holiday hours, if/when applicable.

Respond To Leads as Soon as Possible

Since responsiveness and average response time are ranking factors for Google LSAs, working on improving your response times can also help boost your Local Services Ads performance.

One way to do this is by limiting the days/times that your ads are shown. For example, if you know there are going to be certain days or hours that your team is going to be super busy and slow to respond, consider pausing your LSAs during these times. This will prevent your average response time from dipping.

Or, you might consider hiring additional customer service employees who can dedicate time to responding to leads you get via LSAs.

Wrapping Up

Just like Google Business Profile, Google Local Services Ads are a powerful tool for connecting with more local customers and getting more leads through local search.

Unlike other types of Google Ads, LSAs only require you to pay for actual leads, so they can potentially be a more cost-effective investment for many types of service-based businesses.

Plus, many of the strategies for optimizing your Local Services Ads, such as getting more positive Google reviews, can also help optimize your Google Business Profile, providing you with a double win!

So, if you're the owner of, or doing local SEO for, a service-area business, don't sleep on Google LSAs — they can provide an extra boost to your digital marketing strategy and increase your overall visibility in local search results!

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