HVAC, Operations, Productivity

HVAC Google Ads: How Integrating with Field Service Software Helps Close More Leads

May 12th, 2021
9 Min Read

Google Ads (formerly Google AdWords) is one of the most common channels for paid advertising in the HVAC industry, and it continues to evolve as a powerful digital marketing tool for the trades. 

In addition to Google’s Search and Display Ads, they’ve also introduced Local Services Ads which have made reaching potential customers in the moment they need service more efficient than ever (more on this below)

When used properly, they can significantly boost lead generation.

At the same time, increases in leads are requiring HVAC companies to adapt better, more efficient systems for customer relationship management:

  • Handling incoming calls.

  • Scheduling service appointments.

  • Emailing estimates and invoices.

  • Consistently following up with customers.

  • Generating positive customer experiences and online reviews.

To adapt to a fast-paced landscape, more and more HVAC businesses are utilizing field service software for streamlining these customer relationship processes — and making the most out of lead opportunities from platforms like Google Ads.

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In this article, we’ll provide an overview of what HVAC businesses need to know about Google Ads and share the benefits of leveraging them alongside an integrated field service software like ServiceTitan. 

Below we’ll cover:

  • The key differences between Google Search Ads, Display Ads, and Local Services Ads — and why Local Services Ads are so valuable.

  • The challenges of managing incoming leads from Google Ads without a field service software.

  • How our Local Services Ads integration streamlines the booking process with prospects, improves customer experiences, and cuts down on the time it takes to close leads.

Looking to grow your residential or commercial HVAC business? Schedule a call to see how ServiceTitan can help you drive more leads while increasing efficiency across your company.

Google Search Ads vs. Display Ads vs. Local Services Ads: What You Need to Know

There are several different channels available to HVAC businesses in their Google Ads account. In this section, we’ll focus on:

  • Search Ads

  • Display Ads

  • Local Services Ads

Google Search Ads

When most people think of Google Ads, they’re thinking of Search Ads. These are the ads that look similar to organic search results (earned through SEO) when you perform a Google search:

Search Ads are primarily used as a direct marketing channel for reaching customers who are ready to buy.

They allow you to set up separate campaigns and ad groups for reaching different demographics or segments of your target audience. (For example, people searching for equipment maintenance vs. people searching for a new air conditioner.)

For each campaign, you define specific search terms (known as “keywords”) that you want your ads to show up for. These terms are found through what’s called “keyword research.” And choosing the right keywords is key to generating sufficient ROI. 

Note: Great keyword strategies also define “negative keywords.” These are keywords that you don’t want your ads to show up for, like when a person is searching outside your service area. Negative keywords are essential for budget optimization and overall performance.   

Search Ads run on a “pay-per-click” (PPC) ad model, meaning that you pay every time someone clicks on your ad. And they typically lead to a landing page on your website with ad copy that matches the search engine ad and prompts the user to call, chat, or email with your customer service team.

Google Display Ads

Display Ads are the banner ads that you see around the perimeter of websites all over the internet. These ads are intended mostly for creating brand awareness, but they’re also useful for doing remarketing (serving up ads across multiple websites to people who have engaged with your brand through other channels like social media). 

For example, if you’ve ever searched for a particular tool online and then seen an ad for that same tool on a different website the next day, you’ve likely seen a Display Ad. 

Like Search Ads, these are also “pay per click” ads that lead to a landing page on your website that asks the visitor to take action. 

Google Local Services Ads

Local Services Ads are fundamentally different and offer some significant advantages for HVAC and other service companies. 

Here’s what they look like in the search engine results: 

As you can see, the Local Services Ads display at the top of the page. 

Each HVAC ad consists of a “card” that displays your: 

  • Business name

  • Reviews

  • Service area

  • Open hours 

These ads are served up to searchers with high purchase intent — in other words, the ads are displayed for people who are actively looking for HVAC services in your area. 

As a result, they tend to have higher conversion rates and ROI. 

The key difference from Search and Display is that Local Services Ads operate on a cost per lead model. 

With Local Services Ads, you only pay for leads that actually reach out to you about your service. 

With Search and Display, you pay for clicks even when the people clicking never end up contacting you.

Local Services Ads make it simple for you and your customers to connect. Your potential clients don’t need to navigate to your website to learn about your business: they can call to schedule an appointment for a tech to stop by or, if your business is integrated with ServiceTitan, they can instantly book an appointment online. 

And you don’t need to worry about specific keywords, keyword planners, and PPC campaigns.

The challenge with Local Services Ads — along with Google Ads and advertising in general — is that managing increases in incoming leads is time-consuming and can result in lost opportunities if you don’t have a streamlined system. 

For example, for most businesses using Local Services Ads, prospects only have the call option if they want to book an appointment:

When a prospect calls in, your staff has to: 

  • Manually create a record for a new job.

  • Enter the prospective customer’s address and other information (perhaps asking the customer to repeat themselves several times).

  • Go back and forth with multiple calendars to determine an appointment time that works for both your techs and the customer’s schedule.

If the prospect doesn’t actually schedule an appointment on the first call, someone on your team will need to follow up later. If your team doesn’t have a set process for following up, that can also lead to a lost client and a missed opportunity.

This process is often perceived as a poor experience for customers, who increasingly want the convenience of booking appointments easily online, without ever needing to call in and speak to someone.

With ServiceTitan’s Local Services Ads integration, customers can book appointments easily without ever needing to call in. 

In the next section, we’ll walk you through how this works.

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How Our Google Integration Streamlines the Booking Process with Local Services Ads

Many customers would prefer to quickly book a visit with a few clicks rather than deal with calls or emails. 

Scheduling visits manually by phone or email is cumbersome for your team, too: it’s time-consuming and prone to errors in data entry. 

By integrating ServiceTitan with Local Services Ads, you can: 

  • Create a streamlined customer experience.

  • Free up more of your CSRs’ time.

  • Help ensure accuracy of bookings and customer information.

  • Ensure easy and timely follow up with customers who don’t immediately close.

Here’s how it works.

Let’s say someone in your area needs their air conditioning unit repaired. When they search for “AC repair near me” or “AC repair” with their zip code, they’ll see the cards of “HVAC pros” at the top of the search results, along with a prompt to see more cards.  

The prospect can choose to call your phone number (by selecting the phone icon) or instantly book an appointment (by selecting the calendar icon, which is only available for businesses using an integration like ours).

When the prospect chooses to book an appointment online, they’ll be prompted to select the type of issue they need help with.

They will be notified of any upfront costs associated with getting an estimate and be prompted to select a time and date for a visit. 

Google Ads integrates with ServiceTitan to gauge your team’s capacity, so potential customers are only offered appointments at appropriate times. 

Larger shops with more flexible capacity can set the service to overbook to account for cancellation.

Customers enter their name, address, and other pertinent information themselves, allowing you to bypass the time-consuming and potentially error-prone process of having your team manually enter that information during a phone call.

Soon after they schedule their visit, your new customer will receive an automated confirmation email from Google. 

No additional actions are required to schedule the visit, but if you prefer, you can set ServiceTitan to send an automated email from your CSR team, or to prompt a CSR to follow up with the customer by phone to confirm. 

Behind the scenes, a record is automatically created in ServiceTitan and the appointment is entered into your scheduling system. The prospect’s address and other information is also entered into the record for later reference. 

It’s a fast, seamless, and modern experience for the customer — and it saves time and helps ensure accuracy for your team, too.

Why HVAC Marketing with Google Ads Works Best with Field Service Software

We help HVAC business owners use Google Ads campaigns strategically to make the most of their investment in online advertising. 

Integrating Local Services Ads with ServiceTitan is likely to offer the best return on your investment, and should be leveraged alongside Search Ads and Display Ads for the best results. 

Regardless of which Google Ads channels you're using, you need a software solution to manage taking calls, scheduling visits, recording customer info, and coordinating follow-ups. 

Even though ServiceTitan’s integration with Google is specific to Local Services Ads, the software streamlines the same processes when welcoming new customers from Search and Display ads (and other types of advertising as well).

The integration service allows you to bypass cumbersome “phone tag” and get right to scheduling appointments with people who need your services. 

It also provides a modern, pleasant experience for clients who are accustomed to scheduling meetings and conducting transactions online. 

Best of all, new leads are entered directly into your field service software with no effort on the part of your staff. It’s a great start to building a strong relationship with new customers. 

Ready to streamline processes with employees and clients? We offer comprehensive software solutions for residential and commercial HVAC contractors. Schedule a call to see how ServiceTitan can help you instantly book local appointments and improve information sharing throughout every aspect of your business.

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