A few decades ago, businesses relied on word-of-mouth to become known in their city or town. Nowadays, people go to the Internet to find what they’re looking for, and companies have begun using the tools search engines like Google have launched for them.
While having a holistic SEO approach in your strategies will be a game changer, local SEO requires you to take different measures to see results. From Google Business Profile to Google Local Service Ads, marketers have many options to boost their clients’ rankings in local searches.
Consider adding Google Screened to your strategies to ensure your efforts’ results. But what must you do to add them to your client’s arsenal? What’s Google Screened cost? Look below to find out all about it!
First Things First: What Are Google Screened Badges?
Google Screened is a verification badge that the platform gives to local businesses after going through a verification process and getting approved.
You must be mindful of some crucial factors: We’re talking about the world’s biggest search engine, meaning that they consider several things before giving one of these badges to a company. Furthermore, the process takes time, as it isn’t a click-and-done situation. Instead, it can take a few days to see if Google approved your request.
Additionally, it’s essential to highlight that the badge is currently unavailable for all industries. The companies that can opt to get a screened badge are
- Law firms.
- Financial planning companies.
- Real estate services.
- Childcare and preschool services.
Another factor we must highlight is that the badge is currently unavailable for all US states. While these aspects can seem like drawbacks, the benefits a business gets from having the badge surpass them (keep reading, and you’ll see what we mean!). Google Screened Verification Process
The qualified businesses must go through a verification process to get Google Screened, and Google will see your business’ eligibility based on the following aspects:
- Business-level background check: The first step of the process for businesses is to pass a background check. Google will provide the screened pin to the companies that pass this crucial phase.
- Business-owner background check: Furthermore, Google will verify the information of the business owners, too.
- License check: License checks will be required in some instances. Real estate agents won’t need to cover this item since realtors must pass their state’s license requirements, for example.
- Insurance check: Google requires business owners to provide insurance information.
- Staff background check: Sometimes, the company’s staff must undergo a background check.
Do I Need to Pay, Though?
If you’re wondering what Google Screened’s cost is, we’re glad to tell you that you won’t need to pay to be vetted by the search engine.
However, it is crucial to highlight that this feature is part of Google Local Service Ads, which means that while you won’t have to pay to get the checkmark, you must have a budget for the Google LSA. Furthermore, the Ad costs vary per area.
Google Screened and Google Guaranteed Badges
Google Local Service Ads offer other features besides Google Screened. Google Guaranteed is another badge from Google that service providers can receive.
Business owners must go through a screening process to get this checkmark. However, there are some things you must take into account, such as:
- This badge is only available for home services. Other professional services, such as financial planning and the ones we mentioned should opt to get the Google Screened badge.
- A Google Guaranteed business must go through background checks as well. The application process is similar to the Google Screened certification process.
- The Google Guaranteed program helps your business provide a sense of security for potential customers, similar to Google Screened.
- One of the main differences between Google Screened and Guaranteed is that while Screened works to ensure potential customers your business is legit, Guaranteed assures customers they could get reimbursement if needed. However, they must hire the service through the Google Guaranteed program.
How to Get a Google Guaranteed Badge
Follow these steps to get a Guaranteed badge:
- You must have a Google My Business account.
- Next, head to the Google LSA platform. You must select your business category and check its eligibility.
- Following these steps, you must input business information such as phone number and website.
- Now, you must select your service areas, what you offer, and the operation times.
- Finally, start the Google Guaranteed process by heading to the Business Verification badge section. There, you must provide all the extra information the platform requires.
The benefits of Google Screened and Google Guaranteed
LSAs are excellent for boosting your search engine optimization rankings, but being vetted by Google is a game changer for businesses.
These two badges provide automatic trust to potential clients, as most people know the platform does not hand out these verifications to any company. For example, legal services and financial planners know that gaining trust from clients requires an extensive effort based on results, but having these checkmarks will help them be halfway there.
Google Screened businesses will also have the opportunity to show up on top of the search results, boosting visibility.
Professional service providers like air conditioning technicians and pet groomers with a Google Guaranteed checkmark build trust with potential customers almost instantly. Even if the badge is currently used for home services only, professionals must pass a license check (when required), among many other requirements, which ensures clients Google has done extensive research, allowing them to skip steps when searching for home services.
Google Local Service Ads for Local SEO
Before you run Local Service Ads campaigns, you must know the benefits this will have for your business.
For starters, Google Business Profile is an excellent tool for local SEO and one of the most used platforms by SEO experts. Not only does it allow you to provide information about a company, but once you learn how to add another location to a profile (in case the company has multiple locations), it helps you maximize your efforts.
Additionally, the platform provides other ways to promote a business on Google. That’s where Local Service ad campaigns join your strategy. Unlike PPC campaigns in which you pay per click on each ad, this service charges per lead.
Moreover, the platform sets a cost for the campaign, and you can manually set a maximum bid, which ensures your campaign stays within the budget. Also, these ads show up on top of search results, allowing potential clients to come across your business.
It also helps you get more reviews and ratings, which in return boosts your overall local rankings.
The Bottom Line
Google Screened is an excellent tool to stay within potential clients’ radar. While you must have a Google LSAs campaign set up to get the badge, the process is cost-free, which makes it an attractive tool to businesses, as the benefits are tremendously crucial for companies in today’s digital world.
We hope this article helped you learn more about this Google feature and that it helps you take your efforts to the next level. Thank you for reading!