When potential customers see your Local Services ad on Google, they may contact you either by calling the Google forwarding number displayed on your ad, or by sending you a message request (US only).
You can always sign in to the Local Services ads app or your lead inbox on desktop to see a record of your leads, contact potential customers, book appointments, and get appointment reminders. Using the mobile app or your lead inbox, you can:
- Receive phone calls and message leads generated by your ad
- Receive emails and app notifications about new leads from potential customers
- Respond to leads and manage booked jobs
- Book jobs in the app to get reminders and collect verified reviews
If you don’t yet have a Local Services ad, you can sign up to reach more customers.
Receiving and responding to leads
You can receive leads either as inbound calls or messages from potential customers. In both cases, you'll be notified about new leads through a mobile app notification on your phone (if you have the app installed). Touch the notification to see more details about the lead in the app. You'll also receive an email with a clickable link to see lead details in your lead inbox on desktop.
In addition to receiving emails and notifications, you can sign in to your Local Services ads account and see new leads in the app and web inbox at any time.
The number displayed on your ad is a Google forwarding number. When potential customers call this number, the call will be forwarded to your actual business number. When you get a call from your ad, you’ll hear the message: “Call from Google.” That way, you’ll know which customers your ad is bringing in.Note that all inbound calls from customers via the Google forwarding number are recorded by Google to improve quality and support policies and research (and customers are notified of this by a pre-recorded message immediately before you hear the “Call from Google” notification). Learn more about Local Services data
When a consumer submits a new message lead, you'll be notified through a mobile app notification on your phone and receive an email. You can respond to the new lead in one of three ways:
- Reply to the customer by entering your message in the conversation box and tapping Send. This will deliver your message as an email or text message to the customer.
- Call the customer by tapping the phone icon in the app, or calling the number listed on the lead page.
- Decline the request by tapping the Decline button. If you decline the request, it will be removed and the customer will be notified. You can send a response with more information about why the request was declined. Once declined, requests can be recovered if something changes.
You can change whether to allow consumers to contact you by message lead from the lead inbox on desktop:
- Sign in to your Local Services lead inbox.
- Tap the menu in the top left.
- Select Profile & budget from the menu.
- Tap the message leads toggle to turn the feature on or off.
It may take a few hours before your changes go live on Google Search.
Once you respond to a new lead, it becomes “active." You can see all active leads in the “active” section of the inbox. You'll also receive email and app notifications if there are new customer messages or calls on active leads.
When you send a message, Google doesn’t share your email address with consumers. Instead, Google routes your back-and-forth message communications with providers through an anonymized alias.
Managing response time
New leads stay "new" for only 15 days. After that, they're considered "unanswered" and are moved to the inactive inbox. You may still respond to an inactive lead. However, it is highly recommended that you respond to leads as soon as they come in. Having a consistently fast response time could improve your ad’s ranking on search and increases your ability to receive leads. If you regularly fail to respond to messages or have repeated delays in your responses, the option for customers to send message requests to your business may be removed.
When you do respond to a new lead, the lead becomes “active” and will move to the active inbox. The active inbox contains all leads where you’ve had a recent interaction with the customer — either a call or a message in the past 15 days. Leads without any recent interactions are considered “inactive” and are moved to the inactive inbox. This ensures that your inbox isn't cluttered with old leads.
You can still respond to inactive leads at any time but they'll remain in the inactive inbox.
If you're on vacation, or if you're too busy to receive incoming requests, you can always pause your ad using the ad status toggle in the “Profile & budget” section. You can also schedule your ad to run only when it is convenient for you. If your ad is paused or it is outside your schedule hours, a free version of your listing may be displayed.