More threads by SeoNoob


Apr 17, 2019
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So with the roll out of Google local services, all of the work local companies put into their GMB profiles was pointless? The contractors that show up are not local by any means.

The local 3 pack shows up way down the 1st page even with ad blockers on. So paying Google for leads is the only option now I presume to show up first? I'm guessing the more they pay, the higher up on the list?

I can see that "maintaining" current 5 star rating is important now, but what incentive does a business have to gather more 5 star reviews from here on? I just don't see the point.

And what is this green check mark Google Guaranteed thingy? Something else to pay for? Seriously Google has gone down the toilet with this nonsense.

Google wants to keep growing their revenue each quarter, and one of the ways to do that is to convert organic traffic into paid. Google Guaranteed is partly a response to spam in some industries, but it would be hard to believe that it's not also driven by a desire for more revenue. To qualify I believe you must be signed up with Local Ads, and undergo a fairly indepth review process, including various forms of proof and background checks for every service employee.
Here is an example of GMB Insights in an industry/market where Local Services Ads were introduced last year for a locksmith in Milwaukee. It is kind of nuts to see the activity level that the ads get.

Well it definitely doesn't make work put into GMB pointless. It's not like GMB activity goes to 0 when Local Services arrives in a market. Even with Joy's example showing the impact on a business over time they're still getting a significant amount of activity on the GMB listing. I'd say there are still a lot of people scroll down past the ads to the more familiar local pack and organic results.

Based on your screenshot it looks like there may not be many electricians in Local Services yet, so maybe these aren't right down the street from you but they do serve Toronto.
Google Guaranteed is partly a response to spam in some industries, but it would be hard to believe that it's not also driven by a desire for more revenue.

it is DEFINITELY a revenue move, not about user experience or the business owner. As I've complained about before, google doesn't seem to care much if the ads are actually what a searcher is looking for. If it was purely about spam, it would either be free or just a nominal fee to cover their work screening the businesses. Google is not the business owners friend folks. Google is the shareholders friend.
What everyone else said. Any of the various types of ads definitely hurts traffic to the local and organic listings, but it is definitely not a waste of time to work on seo. Plenty of people skip the ads. Of course every industry is a bit different. And yes, Google wants an increasingly bigger slice of the pie.
@SeoNoob to answer your question - the green check shows next to those that are actively currently paying - if 3 people arent paying at the same time, they'll stick a "freebie" in there to round out the carousel. It basically gets the same visibility of a LSA but isn't paying and isn't covered by the Google Guarantee.
As long as you are getting any number of traffic/leads from GMB, I would think GMB is worth the effort.
Systrix made a study in 2017 for Germany about the share of clicks on payed links aka Google ads with a total of more than a billion clicks. The outcome was that only 6.8% of all clicks went on the ads. This can naturally vary from branch to branch as well as different cultural behaviours between the usa and Germany/Switzerland. But for me and my customers the outcome ege new potential customers is way higher from the 3Pack than from ads.

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