There have been some crazy updates to the Local pack in the recent weeks, with Home Service ads being one of them.
This post, in summary:
- Home service ads are simply a paid local pack.
- Good features include requesting a quote from a maximum of 3 businesses, all at the same time, and the verification procedures are very thorough.
- Unfortunately, you must use Adwords Express to be shown in home service ads.
Usually, a local pack in search results would be free but Google has introduced a sponsored pack that is displayed at the top of the page. Google are currently testing this out in San Francisco for a handful of search terms, such as plumbers, locksmiths, house cleaners and handymen.
Here is an example:
Wait…Paid Local Results?
Now, many people have said that paid local results would not happen. Below is a quote from someone who commented on a recent blog post of mine, regarding the subject.
‘This would be focusing on large corps and leave the small business in the dust. This will never happen.’
Well, unfortunately, it already has.
Another great feature in the home service ads is the ability to request a quote from a maximum of 3 businesses, all at the same time. This allows users to browse through the different companies and when they are satisfied can then request a quote with a really simple contact form:
This allows users to browse through the different companies and when they are satisfied can then request a quote with a really simple contact form:
One question I do have: will the rankings in a home services ad be based on usual AdWords ranking factors or will local ranking factors play a part in it too? If it is based on AdWords bid amount, the commenter above might be right about leaving small businesses in the dust.
My only other concern is that you must use AdWords express to show in home service ads.
Is it too limited? I have never heard a good word said about AdWords express, so what issues could we expect? Will the ads show for irrelevant searches?
One Feature That Has Really Impressed Me
The process a business has to go through to be shown in a home service ad.
Google require various documents and also complete a background check to make sure the businesses shown are legit and will make the searchers happy with the service. Google also mention a ‘badge of trust’ which I think is a great way to look at it.
Too many companies can manipulate search ads, organic or even local results so it’s great to see a method which should hopefully prevent this from happening in home service ads.
If you do have any questions or need advice, feel free to drop a comment below or send us an email!