If you run a local services business, you want to be able to advertise on Google. However, if you run a locksmith company in the U.S. or garage door company in the U.S. or Canada, there are extra steps you must take before you advertise on Google. Let’s take a look at why these steps are required, how to fulfill the requirements, and what you can expect the verification process to look like.
Why Do I Need Advanced Verification?
Recent investigations of Google’s services have found that there are a lot of fake business listings out there on the platform. A fake listing is an inconvenience if it’s for a clothing store or flower shop, but it becomes a safety concern when it’s for a locksmith or garage door company. Consumers want to be sure that the people they’re hiring to secure their homes are legitimate business owners, so Google is now taking additional steps to verify anyone identifying their business as a locksmith or garage door company.
What Are the Requirements?
The advanced verification process has a number of steps. Google will independently review your Google Ads account. They will check the owner’s professional license validity and investigate the validity of the business registration, plus scan for evidence of a history of fraud or shady business practices. They’ll also conduct a video interview with the business owner.
Things That Can Get You Into Trouble
When going through the verification process, there are a handful of no-nos that will get you in trouble with Google. All of the information you provide must be accurate, particularly when it comes to your pricing information and response time claims.
All pricing must be straightforward, accurate, and inclusive of fees. If you have any deals listed, you need to clearly spell out what services are included in the deal. This should go without saying, but if you lie about your professional licensing or business registration, that is a violation of Google’s policy.
How Long Does the Process Take?
According to Google’s FAQ page, the advanced verification process typically takes two weeks. This is in addition to the regular verification process that businesses must go through when claiming their Google My Business profile.
If you are denied at the end of your initial verification process, you have the opportunity to appeal the results. The appeals process then takes an additional two weeks.
Yes, the advanced verification process takes additional time and energy for businesses in these specific local services categories. But that extra time upfront will pay dividends later. Consumers will feel extra safe turning to your business, knowing that you are the real deal, and you’ll be free from the hassle of competing with businesses who are making false claims about their rates or speed of service.
If you’re looking for help managing your search marketing efforts, on Google or any other search engine, take a look at what we can do for you.