ULTIMATE Guide to Local Service Ads (and How to Power Them with Local Influencer Marketing)

Alexandra Kazakova

By Alexandra Kazakova
16 min READ | Jun 26 2024

Table of contents

Local service ads are an awesome way to increase your visibility, get more foot traffic, and boost your sales.

Besides, they can help you maximize your marketing budget even better than PPC ads.

This article will show you how to get started with local service ads.

Here’s our unique value proposition:

We’ll use the insights from our influencer platform to show you how some of our clients have used local influencers to amplify their Google service ads.

Let’s begin.


Overview: The article discusses the benefits of using Google Local Service Ads (LSAs) to increase visibility, attract more foot traffic, and enhance sales for local businesses, with a special focus on integrating local influencer marketing.

Google Local Service Ads: LSAs connect local businesses with potential customers through top placement in Google searches and offer a pay-per-lead model, maximizing marketing budgets more efficiently than PPC ads.

Benefits of LSAs:

  • Pay only for verified leads.
  • Eligibility for Google Guaranteed and Google Screened badges, enhancing trust.
  • No keyword research required, simplifying campaign management.
  • Optimized for voice searches, increasing discoverability.
  • Integration with other paid ad efforts for broader marketing strategies.

Setting Up and Managing LSAs:

  • Simple setup process through the Google Local Services page.
  • Weekly budget flexibility.
  • Option to dispute unqualified leads.

Amplifying LSAs with Local Influencers:

  • Partnering with influencers for product launches and driving foot traffic.
  • Using influencer content to boost online sales and lead generation.
  • Local influencers can significantly enhance visibility and credibility in community-focused marketing efforts.

Case Study & Comparison:

  • Detailed comparison between LSAs and traditional Google Ads.
  • Example of a local plumbing business benefiting from LSAs over Google Ads due to better cost-efficiency and targeting.

Additional Tools and Support:

  • Tools for identifying relevant influencers and monitoring campaigns.
  • Free resources like ad mockup generators and marketing calculators provided by the inBeat Agency.

Final Note: The article encourages businesses to consider LSAs enhanced with local influencer marketing to optimize local advertising and customer engagement.

What Are Google Local Service Ads

Google Local Service Ads (LSAs) are a powerful advertising tool designed to connect local businesses with potential customers in their area.

You'll get these leads through phone calls and messages you send within the LSA platform.

Besides, the ads appear at the top of Google search results when users look for specific services.

And 82% of customers click on them.

Pro tip: That means you get maximum visibility for different search queries – even more than with pay-per-click ads, which are displayed as sponsored results below the search bar.

Plus, Google displays all important details about your business, including:

  • Name
  • Location
  • Phone numbers
  • Business hours
  • Customer review score and ratings

However, you'll need a Google Business profile to get started.

That brings us to the next point:

Google Local Services Ads Benefits

This pay-per-lead model optimizes your marketing spend and drives meaningful interactions with local customers.

Here’s how:

You Pay per Lead

We like Google Local Service Ads because you only pay for verified leads, not clicks.

This cost-effective model ensures you get value for your advertising dollars, focusing your budget on real customer inquiries.

Basically, you’re targeting high-intent users actively searching for your services, so LSAs maximize your return on investment.

Pro tip: You can also dispute unqualified leads, so you only pay for genuine potential clients.

You Can Get the Google Guaranteed Badge

81% of customers consider trust as an important factor that affects their purchase decisions.

However, only 34% of people actually trust brands.

Well, the Google Guaranteed badge is a trust symbol awarded to businesses using LSAs.

It signifies that Google has vetted and verified your business.

This badge can significantly increase your conversion rates by providing a layer of trust and credibility.

That means you attract more clients because:

  • You’re giving potential customers confidence in your services.
  • You’re setting your company apart from competitors.

But not everyone can get it.

To obtain this badge, you must pass Google's background checks and verification process.

You Can Get the Google Screened Badge

For professional services, the Google Screened badge is a valuable asset.

This badge indicates that Google has thoroughly vetted your business, including license and background checks.

The Google Screened badge builds trust with prospective clients, assuring them of your professionalism and reliability.

As such, you attract more high-quality leads.

You Enhance Your Other Paid Ads Efforts

Paid search has a 27% ROI, according to Statista.

That means other advertising channels have a higher ROI:


That’s why you should integrate Google Local Service Ads with your other paid advertising efforts to amplify your overall marketing strategy.

LSAs appear at the top of search results, driving more visibility and complementing your existing Google Ads campaigns.

This multi-channel approach ensures broader coverage and maximizes your reach.

The result is you can capture more leads and dominate local search results.

Ultimately, this leads to a massive boost in your business’s growth.

You Get More Voice Searches

Voice searches are incredibly important.

41% of US adults use voice search daily, and there are 1 billion voice searches per month.

Well, Google Local Service Ads are optimized for voice searches.

That makes your business more discoverable through devices like Google Home and smartphones.

As voice search usage increases, LSAs position your business to capture these inquiries effectively.

Appearing in voice search results allows you to reach a broader audience and secure more leads from users who prefer hands-free search options.

No Keyword Research Needed

One of the standout benefits of Google Local Service Ads is that they require no keyword research.

Google handles the heavy lifting by matching your services to relevant searches, saving you time and effort.

Pro tip: Keyword research costs up to $500 per month.

By eliminating the need for keyword optimization, LSAs simplify your advertising process and ensure you reach the right audience without the hassle of traditional ad management.

That means you can focus on delivering excellent service while Google connects you with potential customers.

Local Service Ads Categories: Does Your Business Qualify?

To determine if your business qualifies for Google Local Service Ads (LSAs), follow these steps:

  • Go to the official Google Local Services page.
  • Check available categories. Google lists all the service categories that are eligible for LSAs.
  • Enter your business information, including location and type of services offered.
  • Google may require background checks, license verification, and insurance confirmation to ensure your business meets the eligibility criteria.

Industries That Qualify

Google Local Service Ads are available for various industries and job types, including but not limited to:

  • Tree services
  • Water damage services
  • Real estate agents
  • Air conditioning services
  • Child care
  • Service businesses
  • Garage door services
  • Carpet cleaning services
  • Lawn care services
  • Window cleaning services
  • Dance instructor
  • Driving instructor
  • Aid training
  • Pet adoption services
  • Appliance repair services
  • Pest control services
  • Fencing services
  • Financial planning services
  • Flooring services
  • Foundations services
  • Immigration lawyer services
  • Junk removal services
  • Landscaping services
  • Real estate services
  • Siding services
  • Weight loss service
  • Window repair services
  • Real estate lawyer services

Locations That Qualify

Google Local Service Ads are available in numerous locations across the United States, Canada, and other selected regions.

Major cities and metropolitan areas typically have full access to LSAs.

To check if your location qualifies, visit the Google Local Services website and enter your business address.

Google continuously expands the availability of LSAs, so even if your area is not currently covered, it may be added soon.

Google Local Service Ads Cost

The typical cost of Google Local Service ads is $25 per lead.

Google Local Service Ads (LSAs) operate on a pay-per-lead model, which means you only pay when a potential customer contacts you directly through the ad.

This cost-effective approach ensures you’re investing in valid leads rather than just clicks.

The cost per lead varies based on factors such as industry, location, and competition.

Generally, service industries with higher demand and competition, like HVAC or plumbing, may see higher costs per lead compared to less competitive sectors.

Pro tip: You can use this online calculator to understand your fees.

Let’s say you’re a bankruptcy lawyer in Nashville, Tennessee, and want to get 100 leads per month.

After filling in the details above, click on “Estimate budget:”

If that cost seems too high, there’s good news:

LSAs also allow you to set a weekly budget, which means you get flexibility and control over your advertising spend.

As a result, you can stay within your marketing budget while attracting quality leads.

Pro tip: There’s also a $50 fee to get the Google Guarantee badge.

Local Service Ads vs. Google Ads

Google Ads are also a good choice to get more visibility on Google.

But they’re different than local service ads.

Let’s see how they stack up against each other:

1. Cost Structure

  • Local Service Ads: These are more expensive, but they’re pay-per-lead, which means you pay only for actual customer inquiries.
  • Google Ads: These use the pay-per-click model, where you pay each time someone clicks on your ad, regardless of whether they convert into a lead.

2. Targeting and Reach

  • Local Service Ads: Target users based on service type and location. Therefore, you can optimize for local searches and increase visibility in your immediate area.
  • Google Ads: You get broader targeting options, including keywords, demographics, and interests. This option allows for extensive reach but requires more detailed management to ensure relevance.

3. Ad Placement

Local Service Ads: Appear at the very top of Google search results, above traditional Google Ads and organic results.

This gives you prime visibility.

Google Ads: These can appear at the top, middle, or bottom of search results or across the Google Display Network.

They offer varied visibility depending on the bid and quality score.


4. Trust Indicators

  • Local Service Ads: Include Google Guaranteed or Google Screened badges, which enhance credibility and trust with potential customers.
  • Google Ads: Do not include these trust badges, relying instead on ad copy and extensions to build trust.

5. Management and Optimization

  • Local Service Ads: Simplified management with no need for keyword research or ad creation; Google handles the matching of your services to relevant searches.
  • Google Ads: Requires detailed keyword research, ad creation, and ongoing optimization to maintain performance and relevance.

By understanding these differences, you can choose the best advertising strategy that aligns with your business goals, budget, and target audience.

Local Service Ads vs. Google Ads: Local Plumbing Case Study

Imagine you own a local plumbing business called "QuickFix Plumbing," operating in Austin, Texas.

You offer a range of services, including emergency repairs, installations, and routine maintenance.

Your primary goal is to increase the number of service calls from homeowners in your immediate area, especially for emergency repairs, which are your most profitable service.

You have a moderate advertising budget and want to maximize the return on your investment.

Cost Structure

  • Local Service Ads: Since you only pay for actual customer inquiries, LSAs could be highly cost-effective for QuickFix Plumbing. This is especially beneficial because emergency repairs often lead to immediate calls for service.
  • Google Ads: With a pay-per-click model, you might spend your budget on clicks that do not convert into service calls. This could lead to less efficient use of your budget, especially if emergency services are not the primary focus of searchers clicking on your ads.

Targeting and Reach

  • Local Service Ads: LSAs would allow you to specifically target homeowners in Austin looking for plumbing services, increasing your visibility for local searches. This hyper-local targeting aligns well with your goal of attracting nearby customers.
  • Google Ads: While you can use keywords to target local searches, the broader targeting options might lead to clicks from outside your service area or for services you don’t prioritize, requiring more detailed management to ensure relevance.

Ad Placement

  • Local Service Ads: LSAs appear at the very top of Google search results, ensuring that QuickFix Plumbing has prime visibility when users search for plumbers in Austin. This prominent placement is crucial for capturing urgent service calls.
  • Google Ads: Although Google Ads can also appear at the top, they may sometimes appear in less prominent positions or across the Display Network, potentially reducing visibility for high-intent searches related to emergency plumbing.

Trust Indicators

  • Local Service Ads: The Google Guaranteed badge provided by LSAs would enhance QuickFix Plumbing’s credibility, reassuring potential customers that your business is vetted and trustworthy. This is particularly important for emergency services where trust and reliability are critical.
  • Google Ads: Without the Google Guaranteed badge, you’d need to rely more on your ad copy and extensions to build trust, which might not be as immediately compelling as the badge.

Management and Optimization

  • Local Service Ads: LSAs require minimal management since Google handles the matching of your services to relevant searches. This would save you time and effort, allowing you to focus on delivering excellent plumbing services.
  • Google Ads: Managing a successful Google Ads campaign would require ongoing keyword research, ad creation, and optimization. This could be time-consuming and may necessitate hiring a specialist if you lack expertise in PPC management.

Solution: Local Plumbing Business Case Study

Given the specifics of QuickFix Plumbing’s goals and constraints, Local Service Ads would be the more suitable choice.

LSAs offer a pay-per-lead model that ensures you’re paying for genuine inquiries, have prime ad placement, and come with the added trust of the Google Guaranteed badge.

This aligns perfectly with your goal of increasing service calls, especially for urgent repairs, within your local area without the need for intensive management.

However, if you later decide to expand your services or target a broader audience, you can incorporate Google Ads into your strategy to complement your LSAs with broader targeting options.

You could also reach potential customers across various stages of the buying journey.

How To Set Up Google Local Service Ads

So, if that convinced you to get started, here’s how to set up your Google Local Service Ads.

  • Sign up: Visit the Google Local Services Ads page and click on the "Get Started" button.
  • Create an account: Log in with your Google account or create a new one if you don’t have one.
  • Enter business information: Provide details about your business, including name, address, phone number, and service areas.
  • Choose service categories: Select the services you offer from the list of eligible categories. Ensure you choose categories that accurately represent your business.
  • Set your budget: Determine your weekly budget for leads. Google will provide an estimate of the number of leads you can expect based on your budget.
  • Complete background checks: Google requires background checks and verification processes for certain service categories. Provide necessary documentation such as licenses and insurance.
  • Get reviewed and approved: Google will review your application. Once approved, your ads will start appearing in local search results.

How to Manage Google Local Service Ads

  • Monitor leads: Regularly check your Google Local Services dashboard to view and manage incoming leads. Respond promptly to inquiries to maximize conversions.
  • Dispute invalid leads: If you receive leads that are not relevant or valid, use the dashboard to dispute them. Google allows you to contest leads that don’t meet certain criteria.
  • Adjust your budget: You can increase or decrease your weekly budget based on the performance of your ads. This helps you control spending and optimize lead generation.

Pro tip: If you want to maximize your budget, monitor your cost per acquisition. We’ve written an extensive article on how to calculate and decrease your CPA.

Plus, you can use our free CPA calculator to calculate and compare CPAs across different campaigns instead of crunching the numbers manually:

  • Update business information: Ensure your business details, such as service areas, contact information, and operating hours, are always up-to-date. Accurate information helps maintain credibility and trust.
  • Gather reviews: Encourage satisfied customers to leave reviews on your Google profile. Positive reviews improve your ranking and attract more leads.
  • Track performance: Use the insights provided in the dashboard to track the performance of your ads. Monitor key metrics such as cost per lead, lead volume, and conversion rates.
  • Optimize service categories: Periodically review and update your selected service categories to ensure they align with your business offerings and target market.

How to Amplify Local Service Ads with Local Influencers

As you can see, local service ads are a great way to get more qualified leads that purchase from your company and help you grow.

However, you don’t have to stop at that.

You can amplify your Google Local Service Ads with local influencer marketing.

Here’s how our clients have used local influencers to achieve various goals, from product launches to increased sales and community engagement.

1. Partner with Influencers to Launch a New Local Product

  • Create buzz with teasers: Work with influencers to create teaser posts about your new product. These can include sneak peeks, unboxing videos, or behind-the-scenes content.
  • Host a launch event: Invite influencers to a launch event and encourage them to share live updates and stories. This can generate real-time excitement and attract local customers.
  • Provide exclusive discounts: Offer influencers unique discount codes for their followers. This drives traffic and sales while tracking the effectiveness of each influencer's promotion.
  • Amplify with paid ads: Boost influencer posts using paid social media ads to extend their reach and target a broader local audience.

2. Drive Foot Traffic to Your Physical Location

  • Geo-tag posts: Ensure influencers use geo-tags when posting about your business to target local followers specifically.
  • Run a local contest: Collaborate with influencers to run a contest that requires followers to visit your physical location. For example, a photo contest where participants need to take a picture at your store.
  • Feature influencers on-site: Have influencers visit your location and create content on-site. This can include Instagram Stories, Facebook Live sessions, or YouTube vlogs showcasing your business.
  • Leverage influencer events: Organize events with influencers at your store, such as meet-and-greets or product demos. Promote these events through both your channels and the influencers’ platforms.
  • Use local hashtags: Encourage influencers to use popular local hashtags in their posts. This increases the visibility of your business within the local community.

3. Increase Online Sales and Lead Generation

  • Influencer reviews and testimonials: Have influencers create detailed reviews and testimonials about your services. Authentic feedback from trusted voices can drive more online sales and inquiries.
  • Special promotions and giveaways: Collaborate on exclusive online promotions and giveaways. For example, a discount code or a giveaway that requires followers to visit your website and sign up for your newsletter.
  • Share customer success stories: Partner with influencers to share customer success stories. This builds credibility and can encourage more local customers to choose your services.
  • Create tutorial videos: Work with influencers to create a tutorial or how-to videos that feature your products or services. These videos can be shared on social media.

Kickstart Your Local Service Ads Campaign

If you read this article, you now why Google Local Service Ads are great and how to leverage them.

You also know how to power them up with influencers.

Of course, the struggle is to identify relevant influencers.

You can find local influencers whose audience aligns with your target market using tools like Instagram, TikTok, or local blogs to discover influencers in your niche.

Warning: Make sure your influencers have high engagement rates and clean profiles without any fake followers.

Our discovery platform helps you find content creators with good engagement levels and high profile scores.

Here’s how easy it is to find Amazon nano-influencers in the beauty niche, for example:

You can then use our free toolkit to monitor your campaign.

We have free ad mockup generators, paid marketing calculators, and influencer marketing tools.

So, try inBeat now.

It’s fast, flexible, and has a free version.

And if you need more help building your local service ads campaign from scratch, schedule a free strategy call with inBeat Agency.

We’ll help you build the right campaign plan tailored to your needs.

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