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Essential Guide to Use Google Local Service Ads

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Essential Guide to Use Google Local Service Ads

Thanks to the internet, business owners in San Francisco can easily sell goods and services to customers in New York City, London, and Tokyo.

But if you’re a plumber or an HVAC tech, for example, you probably have your sights set a little closer to home.

You don’t need to market your business to people overseas. You need to connect with the folks in your community. That’s what Google Local Service Ads was designed to help you do! Unlike traditional Google ads, they will help you have your ad spend only go toward local customers.

Local service ads, combine your Google My Business Page of your law firm, home service, or other local business with your Google reviews to get you to the top of the list when people search for a local business like yours. Its a key strategy for local seo

Keep reading to learn what Local Service Ads are, how they can benefit home servicelaw firm, or any other local business like yours, and how to create these kinds of ads for your company.

What Are Local Service Ads on Google Search?

Local Service Ads, sometimes referred to as LSAs, are paid advertisements that appear at the top of Google search results for a local business search. According to Google, they’re designed to “help you connect with people who use Google search for the services you offer.”

What do you do if you live in Salt lake City, UT and your sink overflows? You probably pull out your phone and type “plumbers Salt Lake City” into Google, right?

Once you do, you’ll see a list of local plumber who can help you fix your problem:

What_Are_Local_Service_Ads_on_Google_Search.jpeg

Local Service Ads connect your business to customers in your area.

The image above shows real-world Google Local Service Ads. As it turns out, these ads can be super beneficial to home services businesses and operate a lot like other PPC ads that you may have used to get a potential customer. Let’s talk more about that…

What Are the Benefits of LSAs?

It doesn’t matter if you’re a plumber, dentist, law firm, an HVAC tech, or a roofer. Local Service Ads have the potential to supercharge your business. Here are three reasons why:

Only Pay For Local Customers, Not Clicks

Google Local Service Ads operate on a pay-per-lead model, rather than a pay-per-click one.

This means you only pay Google for the cold, hard leads your ads to generate. If someone clicks on your ad, then click away before contacting you, Google won’t charge you a cent. That can greatly improve your ad spend and local customers you are able to pull into your business with Google search.

Build Trust With Potential Customers

Every Local Service Ad is Google guaranteed, and will only show up within your service area.

We’ll talk more about this a little later. For now, know that Google verifies businesses before allowing them to post LSAs on its platform. More than that, Google promises to refund dissatisfied customers who book services via Local Service Ads.

Both of these things help build trust with potential customers and give them the confidence they need to book your services. Win!

Easily Improve Your LSA Rankings

Type “HVAC techs Sacramento” into Google and you’ll see something like this:

Easily_Improve_Your_LSA_Rankings.jpeg

Get more reviews to improve your company’s LSA ranking.

As you can see, Google only displays three LSAs in its search results. To see the others, you’ll need to click the blue link that says “More HVAC pros in Sacramento”.

To get the best results with Google Local Search Ads, your business needs to appear in the top three results as often as possible. That way potential customers don’t have to click the “more” button to find your contact details. (Because many of them won’t.)

Google ranks LSAs based on proximity to the searcher and the number of positive reviews the advertising business has. You can’t do anything about where a searcher lives. But you can do a lot to generate positive reviews for your business, which will improve your LSA ranking.

For more information on Google reviews, read this in-depth blog post.

Get Started With Local Service Ads

Ready to create your first Google Local Service Ad? Great, just follow the seven steps below!

1. Confirm Your Eligibility

The first thing you need to do is make sure LSAs are available to you. You can check here.

Confirm_Your_Eligibility.jpeg

 

Take a moment to see if your business qualifies for Local Service Ads.

As long as your business operates in a Google-approved area, and offers electrical, plumbing, HVAC, moving, roofing, or similar services, you should be good to go.

Once you’ve confirmed your eligibility, move on to step two.

2. Create Your LSA Profile

Now it’s time to create your Local Service Ads profile. The details you give Google will determine who sees your ads and which jobs you’ll get leads for.

Start by typing in basic information like the name of your business and the areas you serve, your business hours and the services you provide, how much you charge, and your phone number. This process may seem tedious. But it will help make sure you only receive legitimate leads.

Keep these two things in mind while you create your LSA profile:

  1. Don’t Lie About the Service You Provide: You shouldn’t offer services that you aren’t licensed to complete, or can’t complete in a satisfactory manner.
  2. Your LSA Profile is Different Than Your Google Business Profile: You must create a Local Service Ads profile, even if you already have a Google Business account.

Make sense? Great, let’s move on to step number three.

3. Submit Necessary Paperwork 

Submit your paperwork to get started with Local Service Ads.

Next, you’ll need to show Google that your business is licensed and insured. This helps prove to the search giant that you’re capable of performing quality services.

To learn more about the documents you need to provide, read Google’s list.

Make sure your paperwork is accurate and up-to-date before submitting. Once you’ve submitted the required documents, you’ll need to undergo a background check.

4. Undergo a Background Check

To protect its users, Google requires all participating businesses, as well as their field employees, to undergo background checks and get Google screened. Don’t worry, it’s super simple…

Pinkerton, a Google partner, will contact you and ask for relevant information, which they’ll cross-check against national registries. As long as you and your team give them valid social security numbers and aren’t on the wrong side of the law, you’ll pass without incident.

These background checks are provided to you at no charge. Once you pass, you’ll be able to complete your Local Service Ads profile , get your Google Badge, and move on to step five for small business local service ads.

5. Create the Perfect Small Business Ad

Congratulations, you’ve just created a Google Local Service Ads profile! Now it’s time to create your first advertisement. Keep these three things in mind when you do:

  1. Personalize Your Ads: Why should someone book your services over another company’s? Are there specific things that you and your team do really well? Answer these questions (and others like them) in your ads and you’ll get more leads.
  2. Include Relevant Details: Make it easy for customers to book your services by giving them plenty of information. Your ads should include easy-to-understand business hours, the exact zip codes you serve, whether your services vary by zip code, etc.
  3. Write in Short Sentences: The shorter your sentences are, the better. Why? Because short sentences are easier to read and understand.
  4. Ensure 100% Accuracy: This is easy to do for your very first LSA. But you may need to check for accuracy down the road. Have you moved locations since you created your ad? Do you offer more services now? Update your ads to reflect changes.

Happy with your Local Service Ad? Great, let’s talk about your budget…

6. Manage Your LSA Budget

Manage your budget to make sure your LSAs are actually helping your business.

As stated earlier, the Google Local Service Ads platform operates on a pay-per-lead model, which means Google will only charge you when they send a legitimate lead your way.

Before your ad goes live, Google will ask you how many leads you’d like to receive per month. It will then give you an estimated budget based on the number of leads you hope to generate. Make sure your home services business can afford this amount!

We suggest starting with at least 20 leads per month. Any less than this and you probably won’t see the results you’re hoping for.

You can change your budget at any time by visiting your Google Local Service Ads portal, or by logging into the LSA mobile app. Want more leads? Boost your budget. Is your schedule completely full? Scale back for a little while. The choice is yours.

7. Review Your Leads

Remember the leads you generate from Local Service Ads are NOT customers-at least not yet. They’re just people who have expressed an interest in your business. You need to review each lead and take action on them by doing one of the following:

  • Reply: Send the lead an email or text message.
  • Call: Call the phone number the lead gives you.
  • Decline: Pass on the job if it doesn’t fit your requirements.

Google will automatically notify you when a new lead comes in. But you can also view leads in your LSA dashboard, or via the mobile app, to learn more about each one.

One final thing: respond to your leads as quickly as possible. If you decide to decline a job, explain why. These things will help you build a better relationship with your target audience, improve your review scores, and boost your LSA ranking in Google.

Pre-Google Badge LSAs

Google does offer some options while you are waiting on your Google Badge and finishing up getting Google screened.

Requirements to go live with Pre-Badge Ads

  • License (or business registration if we do not require you to submit your license)
  • Accepting that you have the appropriate licenses to do business
  • Business registration (in EMEA)
  • At least one review
  • Completed your billing and set your budget

With Pre-Badge Ads, the small businesses Local Services listing will appear in Google search results but be placed under all providers who have completed all onboarding requirements and have obtained the Google Badge.

Build a Better Business With Local Service Ads

Google Local Service Ads will connect you to people in your community, enabling you to build a more successful business for a relatively affordable price. It doesn’t get any better than that!

Need help running successful LSA campaigns? Our team of dedicated experts is ready to help you fill your pipeline with qualified leads. Looking forward to working with you! Get a hold of Scorpion to run your Google LSAs now.


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Next-gen chips, Amazon Q, and speedy S3

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AWS re:Invent, which has been taking place from November 27 and runs to December 1, has had its usual plethora of announcements: a total of 21 at time of print.

Perhaps not surprisingly, given the huge potential impact of generative AI – ChatGPT officially turns one year old today – a lot of focus has been on the AI side for AWS’ announcements, including a major partnership inked with NVIDIA across infrastructure, software, and services.

Yet there has been plenty more announced at the Las Vegas jamboree besides. Here, CloudTech rounds up the best of the rest:

Next-generation chips

This was the other major AI-focused announcement at re:Invent: the launch of two new chips, AWS Graviton4 and AWS Trainium2, for training and running AI and machine learning (ML) models, among other customer workloads. Graviton4 shapes up against its predecessor with 30% better compute performance, 50% more cores and 75% more memory bandwidth, while Trainium2 delivers up to four times faster training than before and will be able to be deployed in EC2 UltraClusters of up to 100,000 chips.

The EC2 UltraClusters are designed to ‘deliver the highest performance, most energy efficient AI model training infrastructure in the cloud’, as AWS puts it. With it, customers will be able to train large language models in ‘a fraction of the time’, as well as double energy efficiency.

As ever, AWS offers customers who are already utilising these tools. Databricks, Epic and SAP are among the companies cited as using the new AWS-designed chips.

Zero-ETL integrations

AWS announced new Amazon Aurora PostgreSQL, Amazon DynamoDB, and Amazon Relational Database Services (Amazon RDS) for MySQL integrations with Amazon Redshift, AWS’ cloud data warehouse. The zero-ETL integrations – eliminating the need to build ETL (extract, transform, load) data pipelines – make it easier to connect and analyse transactional data across various relational and non-relational databases in Amazon Redshift.

A simple example of how zero-ETL functions can be seen is in a hypothetical company which stores transactional data – time of transaction, items bought, where the transaction occurred – in a relational database, but use another analytics tool to analyse data in a non-relational database. To connect it all up, companies would previously have to construct ETL data pipelines which are a time and money sink.

The latest integrations “build on AWS’s zero-ETL foundation… so customers can quickly and easily connect all of their data, no matter where it lives,” the company said.

Amazon S3 Express One Zone

AWS announced the general availability of Amazon S3 Express One Zone, a new storage class purpose-built for customers’ most frequently-accessed data. Data access speed is up to 10 times faster and request costs up to 50% lower than standard S3. Companies can also opt to collocate their Amazon S3 Express One Zone data in the same availability zone as their compute resources.  

Companies and partners who are using Amazon S3 Express One Zone include ChaosSearch, Cloudera, and Pinterest.

Amazon Q

A new product, and an interesting pivot, again with generative AI at its core. Amazon Q was announced as a ‘new type of generative AI-powered assistant’ which can be tailored to a customer’s business. “Customers can get fast, relevant answers to pressing questions, generate content, and take actions – all informed by a customer’s information repositories, code, and enterprise systems,” AWS added. The service also can assist companies building on AWS, as well as companies using AWS applications for business intelligence, contact centres, and supply chain management.

Customers cited as early adopters include Accenture, BMW and Wunderkind.

Want to learn more about cybersecurity and the cloud from industry leaders? Check out Cyber Security & Cloud Expo taking place in Amsterdam, California, and London. Explore other upcoming enterprise technology events and webinars powered by TechForge here.

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HCLTech and Cisco create collaborative hybrid workplaces

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Digital comms specialist Cisco and global tech firm HCLTech have teamed up to launch Meeting-Rooms-as-a-Service (MRaaS).

Available on a subscription model, this solution modernises legacy meeting rooms and enables users to join meetings from any meeting solution provider using Webex devices.

The MRaaS solution helps enterprises simplify the design, implementation and maintenance of integrated meeting rooms, enabling seamless collaboration for their globally distributed hybrid workforces.

Rakshit Ghura, senior VP and Global head of digital workplace services, HCLTech, said: “MRaaS combines our consulting and managed services expertise with Cisco’s proficiency in Webex devices to change the way employees conceptualise, organise and interact in a collaborative environment for a modern hybrid work model.

“The common vision of our partnership is to elevate the collaboration experience at work and drive productivity through modern meeting rooms.”

Alexandra Zagury, VP of partner managed and as-a-Service Sales at Cisco, said: “Our partnership with HCLTech helps our clients transform their offices through cost-effective managed services that support the ongoing evolution of workspaces.

“As we reimagine the modern office, we are making it easier to support collaboration and productivity among workers, whether they are in the office or elsewhere.”

Cisco’s Webex collaboration devices harness the power of artificial intelligence to offer intuitive, seamless collaboration experiences, enabling meeting rooms with smart features such as meeting zones, intelligent people framing, optimised attendee audio and background noise removal, among others.

Want to learn more about cybersecurity and the cloud from industry leaders? Check out Cyber Security & Cloud Expo taking place in Amsterdam, California, and London. Explore other upcoming enterprise technology events and webinars powered by TechForge here.

Tags: Cisco, collaboration, HCLTech, Hybrid, meetings

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Canonical releases low-touch private cloud MicroCloud

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Canonical has announced the general availability of MicroCloud, a low-touch, open source cloud solution. MicroCloud is part of Canonical’s growing cloud infrastructure portfolio.

It is purpose-built for scalable clusters and edge deployments for all types of enterprises. It is designed with simplicity, security and automation in mind, minimising the time and effort to both deploy and maintain it. Conveniently, enterprise support for MicroCloud is offered as part of Canonical’s Ubuntu Pro subscription, with several support tiers available, and priced per node.

MicroClouds are optimised for repeatable and reliable remote deployments. A single command initiates the orchestration and clustering of various components with minimal involvement by the user, resulting in a fully functional cloud within minutes. This simplified deployment process significantly reduces the barrier to entry, putting a production-grade cloud at everyone’s fingertips.

Juan Manuel Ventura, head of architectures & technologies at Spindox, said: “Cloud computing is not only about technology, it’s the beating heart of any modern industrial transformation, driving agility and innovation. Our mission is to provide our customers with the most effective ways to innovate and bring value; having a complexity-free cloud infrastructure is one important piece of that puzzle. With MicroCloud, the focus shifts away from struggling with cloud operations to solving real business challenges” says

In addition to seamless deployment, MicroCloud prioritises security and ease of maintenance. All MicroCloud components are built with strict confinement for increased security, with over-the-air transactional updates that preserve data and roll back on errors automatically. Upgrades to newer versions are handled automatically and without downtime, with the mechanisms to hold or schedule them as needed.

With this approach, MicroCloud caters to both on-premise clouds but also edge deployments at remote locations, allowing organisations to use the same infrastructure primitives and services wherever they are needed. It is suitable for business-in-branch office locations or industrial use inside a factory, as well as distributed locations where the focus is on replicability and unattended operations.

Cedric Gegout, VP of product at Canonical, said: “As data becomes more distributed, the infrastructure has to follow. Cloud computing is now distributed, spanning across data centres, far and near edge computing appliances. MicroCloud is our answer to that.

“By packaging known infrastructure primitives in a portable and unattended way, we are delivering a simpler, more prescriptive cloud experience that makes zero-ops a reality for many Industries.“

MicroCloud’s lightweight architecture makes it usable on both commodity and high-end hardware, with several ways to further reduce its footprint depending on your workload needs. In addition to the standard Ubuntu Server or Desktop, MicroClouds can be run on Ubuntu Core – a lightweight OS optimised for the edge. With Ubuntu Core, MicroClouds are a perfect solution for far-edge locations with limited computing capabilities. Users can choose to run their workloads using Kubernetes or via system containers. System containers based on LXD behave similarly to traditional VMs but consume fewer resources while providing bare-metal performance.

Coupled with Canonical’s Ubuntu Pro + Support subscription, MicroCloud users can benefit from an enterprise-grade open source cloud solution that is fully supported and with better economics. An Ubuntu Pro subscription offers security maintenance for the broadest collection of open-source software available from a single vendor today. It covers over 30k packages with a consistent security maintenance commitment, and additional features such as kernel livepatch, systems management at scale, certified compliance and hardening profiles enabling easy adoption for enterprises. With per-node pricing and no hidden fees, customers can rest assured that their environment is secure and supported without the expensive price tag typically associated with cloud solutions.

Want to learn more about cybersecurity and the cloud from industry leaders? Check out Cyber Security & Cloud Expo taking place in Amsterdam, California, and London. Explore other upcoming enterprise technology events and webinars powered by TechForge here.

Tags: automation, Canonical, MicroCloud, private cloud

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