The Google Guarantee: How Local Businesses Can Leverage Google’s New Feature
We all love a guarantee, don’t we?
Whether you’re guaranteed to be purchasing top-quality products, or guaranteed to get a reward in return for an action, knowing you’re definitely going to get something makes life’s big decisions a little bit easier.
This is coming from a person who’ll only ever purchase something online if free shipping is guaranteed.
Trust me—I am that person.
It’s not just us lot who’re itching to see more guarantees—it seems like Google has jumped onto the “we love guarantees” trend.
Unsurprisingly, there’s a twist in the tale: Google is offering guarantees to searchers if they purchase through a selection of their ads.
Since this is a brand new feature being rolled out, there are plenty of questions about it.
What does this mean for advertisers?
How do you get Google guaranteed?
Could this so-called Google Guarantee play a huge role in your quest to find new customers in the upcoming years?
If those questions and more are whizzing through your brain, you’re not alone.
I’m here to guide you through this new feature—starting with exactly what the Google Guarantee is.
What Is the Google Guarantee?
Simply put: The Google Guarantee is Google’s attempt to give customers more trust in a local business who’s using the search engine to advertise.
They’re endorsing the brand, and persuading customers to purchase from them, over someone who isn’t Google Guaranteed.
Here’s what it looks like in practice:
This Google Guarantee is important for all businesses who’re using Google Ads—especially if they’re a local business.
Why? Because it helps to close more sales. If potential customers are guaranteed to receive an expert service (by a brand as trusted as Google), you’re instantly more trustworthy, right?
If you sensed a “but” coming, here it is: Google’s Guarantee is only currently available for a handful of industries and cities, so you might be waiting a while before you’re able to take advantage of this new feature.
What Is Google Actually Guaranteeing?
Now we’ve got the basics covered, I’ll bet you want to know what Google is actually guaranteeing customers who make a purchase from a pre-approved company. Am I right?
Here’s what’s included in a Google Guarantee: Reimbursement of up to $2,000 if you’re unhappy with a service that has been Google Guaranteed.
The $2,000 total is a lifetime cap. That means customers wouldn’t be able to put in a claim for $1,500, followed by a $1,000 claim two weeks later.
Google’s Guarantee only covers the invoice amount for the job fee. If a customer has purchased future projects or incurred a cancellation fee, they won’t be able to claim for that additional cost.
Finally, to qualify, the job your customer is unhappy with must have been booked through a local service advertisement within the past 30 days.
What Makes This Guarantee So Great?
I hate to regurgitate statistics you’ve seen time and time again, but I couldn’t not include this incredible statistic when talking about receiving positive endorsements from trusted figures: 92% of consumers trust recommendations from other people—even someone they don’t know—over brand content:
Plus, just one endorsement can immediately influence an 4% increase in sales.
Putting that into practice, an endorsement by Google—one of the largest, most powerful and most trusted brands in the world—is bound to add some credibility to your site.
What happens then? Well, since you’ve proved yourself (and got Google to back you up), fear is limited and trust is sky high.
I’ll be surprised if that doesn’t get results.
The Google Guarantee: The 2-Step Process to Make the Most Out of Google’s New Feature
Do you fancy giving Google’s Guarantee a chance? It could be very helping in steering potential customers towards conversions.
Well, I’ve got some great news for you: The process isn’t lengthy, and it’s quite easy to get started.
Here’s what you’ll need to do:
1. Sign Up for Local Service Ads Through Google
Firstly, you’ll need to sign up for local service ads through Google’s main advertising platform.
Local service ads are similar to Google Ads (previously known as AdWords), but the concept is slightly different. Businesses who’re advertising pay for leads, rather than clicks or impressions—like a standard PPC ad would.
Signing up is simple—you’ll need to fill out this form which asks for basic details, such as:
- Your full name
- Your email address
- Your phone number
- Your business’ name
- The type of service/s you offer
The form will let the Google team know you want to be involved with local service ads, but you’ll need to already be using Google Ads (or AdWords) to be accepted.
2. Pass Your Background Checks
Once you fill in the form, someone from the local service ad team will be in touch to arrange background checks—both on your business and personal record.
These free background checks help Google to know your business is reputable and trustworthy.
Think about it: They can’t offer a guaranteed great service to their customers if they’re unsure of whether the company is able to deliver it. That’d ruin their own customer experience, and ruin the entire point of a guarantee, right?
Performed at no extra charge by Pinkerton Consulting and Investigations at your business’ premises, these pre-guarantee background checks will take a look at:
- Social Security number validity
- Criminal record history
- Aged over 18
- Professional licenses
- Insurance verifications
- Civil litigation history
Remember: If you’re a business that uses external staff to function, every member of staff who comes into contact with a customer will need to pass the personal background checks. Google says:
“If your business signs up for Local Services ads, every employee, independent contractor, temporary worker, contingent worker, vendor or other worker who will visit a customer’s location must complete a background check. Office managers, clerical workers and customer support representatives (or others that don’t visit customers) don’t need to complete background checks.”
It goes without saying, but you need to pass these background checks in order to get a Google Guarantee.
If you fail, you’ll need to wait another 30 days before re-applying for local service ads, but don’t let that deter you! You’ll receive a report on why you didn’t fit the bill, allowing you to re-jig your business and make sure you’re accepted next time.
So, Is Google’s Guarantee the Future of Online Advertising?
…That’s a question on everyone’s lips, whether they’re a novice marketer, SEO pro or customer on the other end of the stick.
The truth is: Nobody knows where it’s heading. The feature is so new (and still in beta testing), so it’s difficult to predict whether Google’s Guarantee will change the way business advertise—and the way customers buy—online.
But, with the guarantee feature set to roll out to all main industries and cities over the next few years, it won’t be long before we find out.
Bearing this in mind, here’s my best tip for you: Sign up for local service ads, and play around with the platform so you know what you’re working with.
That way, if Google Guarantees become the major trust signal before a potential customer hits “purchase”, you already know how the platform works—giving you a fantastic headstart, and a strong advantage over your competition.
That’s never a bad thing.
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