Google is customer-oriented, providing the best to the searchers on this platform, looking to find the most accurate information they seek for. The company had lately introduced a secondary screening program also for professional services lately, which is Google Screened. We already know ‘Google Guaranteed,’ which was introduced some years back in an effort to boost the consumer’s confidence about the providers and services appearing on the local services Google Ads. Following the success of it, this year, Google announced another such program to complement the professional services, named “Google Screened.”
As of now, Google Screened remained a test feature, which is limited to certain categories and markets. Only very few verticals are now covered as lawyers in immigration, estate planning, realtors, and financial planners, etc. in Houston and San Diego. In order to become eligible for Google Screened, the businesses must possess a 3.0 or higher star rating on Google MyBusiness. To enter into it, there is no application fee for the advertisers of Local Services. You can simply enter into the most relevant market and categories. If in the future, Google plans to expand the Google Screened program, there are many subcategories covered including advertising and marketing.
As we have seen above, Google Screened will help the professional services providers to build consumer trust by online reputation building. Businesses with the badge of Google Screened actually go through thorough background checks and licensing compliance checks. Moreover, as seen above, they should have an average rating of 3.0 or above too to be considered. While listing such services, you can see the icon of Google Screened next to the business name, which could be the symbol of trust. As of now, in the trial version, financial planner services are an exception to this as they may still receive the Google Screened badge without customer reviews.
Working of Google Screened
All the businesses which have Google Screened may have passed a professional level background check and Google’s background check for the business owner. Also, each professional in the business also must pass the background check and licensing needs alongside the overall 3.0 star ratings or higher. These background and compliance checks ensure that the clients and professionals working with the providers are vetted thoroughly, and they can offer peace of mind on working with you.
A Google Screened badge will indeed benefit your business. More consumers will be attracted to your business because they know you’ve passed the intensive review, screening, and verification of Google, making you a trusted and legitimate company. It will give your business an added layer of trust and confidence from potential clients.
Coverage of Google Screened
As of late, only those services which offer professional services like Financial Planning, Law, Real Estate, etc. are covered under Google Screened to get the badge. In fact, in the future, we can expect more services including SEO Company, to be added into this pool as all the drawbacks of the beta versions are corrected and the compliance checks are made flawless.
If you have searched for any home improvement services like a plumber or so, sometimes you may have noticed a green checkmark near the listing. This is not there for show, but this sign tells the customer that the business is tagged as Google Guaranteed. This now helps the businesses to build more trust and reputation online and also encourages the customers to avail guaranteed services. If your service business is not already guaranteed, then you can use Google’s SEO tools to try it as the guarantee is now a smart way to improve your online optimization efforts.
If Google Screened is a comparatively new and experimental initiative by the provider, Google Guaranteed is there for quite a while; and is now widely available by covering a big range of services (especially home appliance services) like home appliances repair, HVAC, painting, cleaning, plumbers, electricians, locksmiths among others. If a customer connects to services through Google, this program will also offer a money-back guarantee to the users if they are not satisfied with the service provider (with a lifetime cap of $2,000).
As we have seen in Google Screened, similar background checks are conducted for Google Guaranteed also. Businesses need to clear such background checks and need to have their insurance and licensing info verified to get approval. This background check covers both civil and criminal affairs. However, there is no such money-back guarantee for Google Screened as in the case of
Google Guaranteed of the status of partner-screened is now a basic need to appear on the results of Google Assistant for the smartphone users and the Google Home devices, which feature Google Assistant. This doesn’t extend to the professional services now, so the professionals like lawyers need not have to be Google Screened to get on to the Google Assistant results. However, expert opinion is that this may change more in tune to Google Guaranteed if Google is planning to expand the Google Screened option.
How to get Google Guarantee?
To sign up for the Google Guarantee program, you should prove yourself to be a legitimate business that uses Google AdWords and Google’s Home Service Ads. The procedure for enrolling into the Google Guarantee program is easy as below:
- Sign up your business for the Local Services ads
- Apply for a background check and complete the process by providing all relevant info.
- Everything is easy with Google by following the step-by-step process in signing up and providing the needed requirements as advised.
- Complete insurance and license verification.
The objective of Google Guarantee is to help the users to spot the most trustworthy local online. Unlike Google Screened, the Google guaranteed program is now past the testing phase and made available for the local businesses in different locations, including the Houston area.
So, why should we bother about Google Guaranteed? While both Screened and Guaranteed are useful to protect customers and build trust, there is also a close linkage between the badging programming of Google and the Local Services Ads. In the case of Guaranteed, results and badging are decoupled for the Google Home in an effort to stay the company off from running afoul.
As we have seen, both Google Guarantee and Google Screened aren’t available for all businesses. Only certain local business is specific geographical locations are eligible to set up the local services ads and get through the process to get tagged. However, with the rate of evolution of Google Ads online, we can expect that these will soon become a common practice across the globe where the consumers can check for these badges too while searching for service providers.