Update 09/17/2020: Tom Waddington has provided more in-depth details related to this new service.
Google Local Services is currently testing a new service that will link your Google Local Services account with your Google My Business listing.
This option is only available for certain companies as Google is still testing the entire process. Currently, HVAC and plumbing appear to be the main test candidates but if you have a Google Local Services account, you may at any point be invited to test out the new service.
First Impressions (shout out to Tom Waddington for breaking the news):
- A monthly $50 reoccurring fee to link the two accounts together.
- When you sign up and connect the two accounts, Google Local Services will be replacing your business phone number that you list on Google My Business with your Google Local Services phone number that Google creates for you when you sign up for Local Services. So the same lead tracking capability that you get with Local Services will now happen when someone calls the number listed on your Google My Business.
- So FYI, you don’t own or control the phone number you are assigned with Google Local Services. That’s been the case since the program started. One of the few negatives of the program.
- You can read more in our review of Google Local Services
- Google Local Services will add their badge to your Google My Business listing.
- No SEO benefits are expected to happen when you link the accounts. Only the phone number change and the addition of the badge so far.
So the real question, should you sign up? At Fred’s Appliance, it’s a hard pass. They already use lead tracking software to track phone calls, so there’s no benefit to adding the Google Local Services phone number to their Google My Business account to track leads.
Even if they did not have the benefit, it’s still a no. Not sure why companies have to pay $50 EVERY MONTH. We already have to pay for the leads we get from Google Local Services. And with no SEO benefit, there doesn’t appear to be anything that will drive more customers to their business for the reoccurring fee. If anything, it’s an indirect way of turning Google My Business into a pay-per-click service for all phone calls… and you pay for it.
Now, these are first impressions and Google hasn’t released an official announcement but Google tends to ask for forgiveness instead of permission when launching new revenue streams so we wanted to give our network a heads up. Things can change and we’ll update this post as new info is released.