Few things in the SEO space are stagnant. It seems as if once one system becomes the standard, another takes its place. Before, it was Google AdWords shaking up the industry. Now, it\u2019s Google Guaranteed ads.\u00a0 So, what gives? Is this new system going to disrupt your Google advertising? And what does it mean for your brand? We\u2019ve got you covered on all that and more.\u00a0 What are Google Guaranteed ads?\u00a0 Guaranteed ads are Google\u2019s answer to protect users looking for home service industry businesses. Its first iteration focused specifically on locksmiths, plumbers, and handymen. The intent? Protecting homeowners from unverified businesses in these fields.\u00a0 According to Google\u2019s site advertising the change, Guaranteed helps brands \u201cearn the trust of new customers\u201d and to show up more noticeably on a Google Search. A green Guaranteed badge signals this trust and looks somewhat like the verified check of your favorite Instagram influencers. But the check also signals Google\u2019s backing. And helps a brand\u2019s information show up even before promoted ads on a basic search. Imagine how that could change your brand\u2019s position on the search engine results page (SERP).\u00a0\u00a0 What does this mean for my brand?\u00a0 If you currently have a brand in the service industry, this could make a big impact on your business. To become Guaranteed, brands need to go through a strict screening process. Once approved, Guaranteed gives added value and protection to your clients through their ability to submit a claim if \u201can issue arises with a Google Guaranteed service provider.\u201d This customer satisfaction has big brand returns. Guaranteed listings increased \u201cleads by 1800% when compared to other companies who are using other forms of advertising.\u201d And that was in the beta test alone.\u00a0 But, for brands who want to take advantage of this new SERP practice, it doesn\u2019t replace other brand listings like Google My Business. In fact, \u201ca complete search marketing plan would include Google Guaranteed listings, AdWords search campaigns, a complete Google My Business (GMB) page, and search engine optimization (SEO).\u201d\u00a0 The Guaranteed advantage Another big advantage for brands that qualify? Guaranteed ads appear at the top of the Search page, going \u201cone step further to ensure connecting searchers to the right advertiser.\u201d Hello brand exposure! But, if your brand is not in the associated industry, your exposure runs the risk of decreasing while Guaranteed ads rank higher than the local pack.\u00a0 For this beta version of Guaranteed, there are a limited number of industries and locations available. So far, services include electricians, event planners, pet groomers, roofers, window cleaners, and tutors. It\u2019s also limited to under 30 cities, including Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Orlando, Pittsburgh St. Louis, and Atlanta. And while it may not affect your industry yet, we want to make sure you know what\u2019s coming. In the meantime, a suggested fix for service area businesses (SABs) in one of the Guaranteed testing areas is to make sure their address is public on their Google listing to avoid losing their hard-earned search results.\u00a0\u00a0 How is this different from other verifications?\u00a0 For those who qualify, you might wonder how Guaranteed differs from other verifications like GoogleAds and Google Screened.\u00a0 Compared to GoogleAds If you\u2019re familiar with anything SEO, you\u2019ve heard of or used GoogleAds (formerly AdWords) and the \u201cbid on certain keywords in order for clickable ads to appear in Google\u2019s search results.\u201d\u00a0 When choosing between Google Guaranteed Ads and GoogleAds, there are a few things you should consider to make the choice easier. First, is your brand local? If not, it hardly makes sense to run a campaign with Google Guaranteed, which is, at its most basic, a local services ad. And if you don\u2019t have previous experience with Ads, Guaranteed could also be much simpler.\u00a0\u00a0 And lastly, Google Guaranteed has a strict approval process. Your brand will have to pass this process before you\u2019re even part of the program. But, for brands who can qualify, the cost per lead seemingly \u201cdoesn\u2019t even fall into the Ads comparison.\u201d Meaning, the price per lead for Google Guaranteed is cheaper with more value for the brand and consumer. But, keep in mind that Guaranteed still deals with a niche market, whereas Ads cover a much broader one.\u00a0 Compared to Google Screened\u00a0 Google Screened is also relatively new and still in the test phase. It\u2019s also \u201climited to a few verticals in a few markets: lawyers (estate planning, immigration), financial planners, and realtors in San Diego and Houston.\u201d When compared to Google Guaranteed, that is a much more precise audience.\u00a0 Both programs need applicants to go through a background check, yet Google Screened does not offer a money-back guarantee. Screened also does not make brands \u201cappear in Google Assistant results on the smartphone and Google Home devices.\u201d Although it\u2019s hard to tell if it will expand to that in the future.\u00a0 Overall, Google Screened is much less developed as a practice than Google Guaranteed Ads and, without the rankings and badges, may seem like a less secure option for brands hoping to reach new clients and build trust.\u00a0 How do you become Google Guaranteed?\u00a0 Okay, so you\u2019ve ticked off all the boxes so far and now you\u2019re hoping to make your brand an official member of the Google Guaranteed club.\u00a0 To start with, your application could take up to two weeks to process and verify, so plan accordingly.\u00a0 First, create a listing on GMB and visit the Advanced Verification section on Google. You\u2019ll need the following info to continue: name, address, phone, hours open, cities, and services. The last step here is to enter your business license number. When done with this, you need to finish your application via the third-party site Pinkerton.\u00a0 From then on, it\u2019s a waiting game.\u00a0 Benefits of the Guarantee\u00a0 If approved, you can celebrate by reading over these benefits to officially becoming Google Guaranteed.\u00a0 Increased brand trust: The green checkmark on Guaranteed ads instantly lets your customers know that Google\u2019s recommendation backs your business. Plus, it\u2019s great at \u201ccatching users\u2019 attention on a busy SERP.\u201d\u00a0 Wider reach: If your brand thrives on local listings, Guaranteed can help you reach a broader audience in its position \u201cabove the Paid Search ads and Organic listings.\u201d A bigger reach could mean higher conversions for your business.\u00a0 Highlighted reviews: If your company survives on reviews, you can use these to your advantage with Google Guaranteed, which makes sure reviews appear on the SERP.\u00a0 The future of Google Guaranteed ads\u00a0 As Guaranteed is still in beta, it\u2019s impossible to know what its future will be. After launching in the U.S in 2015, Guaranteed began in Canada in 2018, although its reach is still confined to specific regions.\u00a0 The practice is likely to continue spreading \u201cto any service that needs a license, bond, and insurance plan to do business.\u201d If your brand fits the bill, it might be time to consider Guaranteed as an extra step in your SEO process.