Local Services Ads: Partner Updates [January 2021]

Welcome to the January 2021 edition of Local Services Ads Partner Updates, delivered by LocalView! In this issue, we bring you the most important enhancements and changes in the world of Local Services Ads. Here’s what’s been happening:

General Updates

1. Doing Business As (DBA) in Sign-Up Flow Launched

In the self-sign-up flow, service providers can now enjoy the added convenience of adding a Business Registration name, especially if it differs from their business name. This feature simplifies account management and ensures accurate representation.

It’s worth noting that while providers can include this information during sign-up, they will still need to upload a copy of their DBA later for verification purposes.

2. Updating Bids for Multi-Vertical LSA Accounts

For providers operating in multiple verticals, updating bids has become more streamlined. When updating bids for the first time across multiple verticals, providers must confirm bid amounts in each vertical before saving the changes. Some verticals marked as “custom” require manual entry of bid amounts during the initial update. Once the bids are updated for all verticals, providers can subsequently adjust individual vertical bids without affecting others, ensuring clarity and accuracy.

3. BBB+ Rating Accreditation Reminder

Adding a Better Business Bureau (BBB) rating to your provider’s account (under business callouts) now requires additional verification. Providers must also provide the link or a screenshot of their BBB rating to ensure it matches the business details (business name and address) listed in the Local Services Ads Dashboard.

4. Availability for Locksmith & Garage Door Providers

Great news for Locksmith and Garage Door providers! Self-signup and MCC new account creation for these verticals are now available in Local Services Ads. These verticals had previously faced temporary restrictions due to COVID-19 challenges.

5. Depreciation of 16 Verticals

Please take note of the following categories that will no longer be supported on Local Services Ads, starting in February 2021:

  • Architect
  • Event Planner
  • Interior Designer
  • Photographer
  • Videographer
  • Air Duct Cleaner
  • Car Repair
  • General Contractor
  • Handyman
  • Painter
  • Pet Grooming
  • Pet Boarding
  • Towing Pro
  • Tutor
  • Upholstery Cleaner
  • Windshield Repair

Once these categories are deprecated, access to the associated Local Services Ads Accounts will no longer be available. We recommend downloading any data you wish to retain from these accounts before February 3rd, 2021. While some of these categories may be relaunched in the future, we encourage you to explore advertising through Google Ads as an alternative option.

Verifications & Onboarding Updates

1. Real-Estate & Lawyer Professional Services Providers

A change has been made in the background check process for real estate agents and lawyers. As of January 15, 2021, all newly created real estate agent accounts will be routed to Evident for background checks. By the end of January 2021, the same process will apply to all new lawyer accounts.

Please note that accounts created before these dates will still need to complete their background checks with Pinkerton. Access to the Background Check process can be found on the business verification tab for each Local Services Ads account.

2. Recertification of Expired Documents

Google will send emails to providers whose Local Services Ads accounts have expired license or certificates of insurance (COI) documents. These accounts must submit new or updated copies on the Business Verification tabs to keep their ads running. If you’re encountering any issues, we recommend reaching out to Google’s support team for assistance.

Need More Information?

If you have any questions or need further assistance, be sure to check the Local Services Ads on Google Help Page, or get in touch with our Local View team for comprehensive guidance.