Google has introduced Local Service Ads to boost the visibility of independent professionals online.
The Local Service Ads helps people to discover and contact local and trustworthy professionals who are backed by the Google Guarantee badge. This means that potential customers can see the professional’s licence information and reviews from previous customers – from there, they can compare and contact the professionals.
The best thing for small businesses is that they don’t even need a website to use these ads and will only pay if they’re contacted by a customer, though there’s no charge from people clicking the ad. According to 2019 YouGov research, around a third of small businesses in six European countries surveyed don’t have a website.
Searches containing ‘available near me’ have doubled around the world. In the first half of 2020, searches for local services including maintenance and home improvements, increased by over 25 per cent in a year across a range of European countries.
Businesses can also use Google’s Shopping tab
It’s now free for retailers to list their products on the Shopping tab. Available globally in mid-October, search results on the Shopping tab will mainly consist of free listings which will help retailers reach more of their customers, whether or not they advertise on Google. More crucially, it’ll help to increase sales in the run up to the Christmas shopping season.
The scheme launched in the US earlier this year where retailers running free listings and ads got an average of twice as many views and 50 per cent more visits. Small and medium-sized businesses saw the most significant increase.
If you already use Google’s Merchant Center and Shopping ads, you won’t need to do anything to get involved with the service. Your listings will change automatically at no extra cost to you. For those who aren’t already, Google will make the onboarding process as simple as possible over the coming weeks and months.