Previously only available to select users, Home Services Ads are now available to businesses providing home services, or more specifically, all plumbers, locksmiths, house cleaners, and handyman services in the San Francisco bay area. Businesses who want to try it out can join the program here: google.com/homeserviceads.
Yep, your organic listing has been taken away and now you must pay to show up in what was the new local 3 pack.
Google calls this an “opportunity”:
Clicks which were previously free may now be very pricey. If you do not know what AdWords Express is, let me sum it up for you. It is basically a bidding process, whoever bids the most gets their ads displayed. I have seen tweets showing bids approaching $200 already.
Everything you need to know about Google Home Service Ads in one image pic.twitter.com/ZTUua6i793
— Andrew Shotland (@localseoguide) August 28, 2015
The icing on the cake is that organic results are being pushed lower as well across the board.
There could be a silver lining here, not sure, it is too early to tell. There are indeed some interesting new ways that customers can interact with you.
I have personally called around and spoken to multiple plumbers in San Francisco and I do know they can not always answer, especially if they are in the middle of a job or speaking to a customer. The new layout may force plumbers to act faster..
At this point we’re not sure if businesses will benefit from this or if it is just one more hand in business owner’s pockets.