Landscaping Businesses Can Now Invest in Google's Local Service Ads - The Edge from the National Association of Landscape Professionals

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Landscaping Businesses Can Now Invest in Google’s Local Service Ads

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Online lead generation for landscaping businesses has reached a new peak. For those planning next season’s marketing strategy, Google has added landscape service categories to its Local Service Ads program!

Local Service Ads (LSA) are triggered when a consumer searches for a local service on Google. These are the paid ads showing up to three companies at the top of Google’s search results, even above standard Google Ads. One reason Google LSA ads are so desirable is that you only spend money when you get a lead. You don’t pay for clicks like traditional Google Ads.

Certain studies have found that LSAs receive almost 14 percent of all clicks and should be considered a key strategy for landscaping companies looking to get higher conversion rates. It’s a way to save you time and money while helping you avoid chasing after false leads.

Some of the new landscape service categories you can appear for include, but not limited to:

  • Landscape design
  • Hardscapes
  • Retaining walls
  • Sod & seeding
  • Walkway landscaping
  • Outdoor water features
  • Driveway or walkway paving

With new categories always being added, it’s safe to say Local Service Ads is the next big thing in paid advertising for digital marketing. Right now, your landscaping business can get in on the ground floor!

How to Start Running Local Service Ads

Your Local Services account will be created once you input your business category and company information. Any company that signs up for the program must go through a license check, insurance check, and background check to become a Google Guaranteed business.

Being Google Guaranteed is a requirement for any business running Local Service Ads. A green checkmark badge is displayed on your ad once you have passed all of Google’s screening and qualification processes.

The entire process of becoming Google Guaranteed takes anywhere from 2-3 weeks on the low end, and up to 8-10 weeks on the high end. Once you are approved, you do not need to repeat this process unless you apply for another service category.

While your application is being processed, you’ll receive access to the administrative portal where you can set up your profile by adding differentiators, photos, hours of operation, and more. You’ll also choose the zip codes you want to target and the individual services for which you want to be shown.

Cost and Payment for Landscaping Local Service Ads

LSAs operate under a cost-per-lead system, meaning you only pay for each valid lead that contacts you through the ad. The number of leads you receive in a week is based on what you’re willing to spend on your ad. The average cost for the landscaping category is usually between $30-$40, but some LSAs can be as low as $20 or as high as $80.

You will set an average weekly budget that can be changed, even as often as week to week, so it consistently matches your business needs.

Some weeks you may find you’d like to spend more or less based on demand, but you’ll never go over your monthly budget. Once it’s exceeded, your business ad will not appear for the remainder of the month. This monthly budget will also adjust every time your weekly ad spend is updated.

Google has also introduced call bidding to their LSA program. Now instead of paying a flat rate, you let Google ads know what you are willing to pay per call.

Junk Lead? Get Your Money Back!

False or spammy lead submissions cost you time and money and deter your attention away from engaging with consumers who are actively searching for your services. LSAs streamline your list of potential leads by only appearing to consumers searching for landscaping services you offer in your designated areas.

A consumer is considered a valid lead by Google and will be automatically charged based on one of the following situations:

  • Your company receives a text or email from the consumer
  • The consumer leaves a voicemail
  • You answer a lead’s phone call and speak with them directly
  • You either call, email, or leave a message for the consumer after a missed call (with no voicemail)
  • Someone books your services through the ad

However, even if one of those criteria are met, it doesn’t mean they were a potential customer or even looking for your services. Google will let you dispute any charges that you feel don’t relate to your business or services. Here are some examples of invalid leads:

  • The job requested is not a service your business offers
  • A customer’s location is not from an area you service
  • Sales and solicitation calls or wrong numbers
  • The lead was not human (e.g., bot or spam calls)
  • You were charged for a duplicate lead
  • You have no way of getting in contact with a customer (e.g., the person left a message but did not provide a valid phone number or email)
  • The customer contacted the wrong business

When you truly have an invalid lead, Google almost always provides a refund after you file a dispute, which is only the click of a button on your phone app.

Consumers Have Buying Confidence Using Google Guaranteed Providers

Above all, being Google Guaranteed can raise the trust and confidence consumers will have when deciding if they’d like to use your services. It also protects the customer from dealing with the aftermath from services that were less than adequate.

If a customer isn’t completely satisfied with the quality of work provided, Google may, at their discretion, reimburse the customer up to $2,000 that went toward the initial service. Google will first contact you if a request is submitted and allow you to work with the customer to try and resolve the issue.

Reimbursement is only available for customers who booked through your company’s LSA and does not apply for any of the listed reasons:

  • Damages to property
  • Add-on or future projects
  • Dissatisfaction with price or provider
  • Service cancellations

Local Service Ads Will Change the Landscaping Game

The green industry is in a pivotal moment of change with the addition of landscaping and other similar categories to the Local Service Ads program. A chance for landscaping companies to increase online lead generation is an opportunity for higher conversion rates and more business!

Don’t miss out on this incredible digital marketing tool! Visit the Google Local Service Ads page for more information!

Tony Ricketts

Tony Ricketts is the CEO of Lawnline Marketing, a digital marketing agency in Apollo Beach, FL. Lawnline Marketing works exclusively with lawn/landscape companies and offers services that include new customer acquisition, upselling, and employee recruiting. Learn more by visiting or calling (813) 944-3400.