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Considering Google’s Local Services Ads (LSAs)? Already running LSA campaigns? Check out this post for news, updates, and reminders that your firm needs to know about this increasingly popular legal advertising channel.
Google Local Services Ads (LSAs) remain one of the newest and most frequently evolving search advertising solutions for lawyers and law firms. As such, we want to help our readers remain up to date on the latest information coming from Google regarding LSA news, best practices, and advertisement opportunities.
Announcement: New Business Verification Portal Tab for Marketers
If you are a legal marketer running LSA campaigns, then you should know that Google has announced a staged rollout of a new business verification tab in the LSA platform. This change will incorporate several tweaks intended to improve your experience with the platform, including:
- New content and onboarding modules designed to address common questions.
- Detailed explanations and examples of the requirements for a good headshot.
- Additional information regarding insurance documentation, including updated lists of the types of documents that acceptably demonstrate proof of coverage and information explaining the reasons certain documents are rejected.
- More detailed explanations of the background check process, including the distinctions between business entity, business owner, and professional checks (when required).
- Resources to help you better understand how you are charged for your LSAs, as well as the correct budget and bid amounts for your campaigns.
COVID-19 News: Background Check Delays in Certain Areas
One of the key benefits of integrating LSAs into your legal marketing strategy is getting the “Google Screened” designation on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP). To receive this designation, businesses must go through the Google screening and verification process, which may include background checks, business registration checks, insurance checks, and license checks.
In some locations, COVID-19 pandemic-related court closures and delays are slowing the background check and verification process. As such, you may experience slower response times regarding your firm representatives’ background checks during the screening process.
Best Practices Reminder: Background Checks and Screening for Firms Owned by Those Outside of the United States
As mentioned above, you must complete the Google screening and verification process to achieve “Google Screened” status. If the law firm “business owner” is from outside of the United States, but your law firm needs verification in the United States, there are different procedures to follow depending on which background check company you are using.
If you are not a United States citizen and using Evident for your business owner background check, use your Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) instead of a Social Security Number. If using Pinkerton, enter all nines into the Social Security Number field. Then, you will be contacted for further identity verification.
Final Thoughts: Why Do You Care?
Staying up to date on the news, updates, and best practices information coming from Google can help you ensure your LSA campaigns are doing the most work for your firm. If you don’t have time to keep up with the changing landscape of advertising with LSAs or simply want help from experienced legal marketing professionals, our Justia Amplify team can manage your Google Ads campaigns and LSAs for you.