How to Create Google Ads for Lawn Care Businesses

Published on October 22, 2020

Google Ads for lawn care businesses are a great way to win more clients while also increasing your online presence and expanding your reach.

Google Ads are a great asset to your lawn care business’ advertising because they give you:

  • Fast results (no waiting to rank on Google)
  • Trackable data (know your ROI and how much you’re spending)
  • Google’s preference (ad space is higher priority than organic results)
  • Leads that are actively searching for a solution to a problem they want solved

Google Ads are different from social media ads because your leads are actively searching for a solution to their problem via your keyword.

Whereas, social media ads are intruding on your leads’ social media feeds.

In other words, they’re not necessarily searching for a solution, so you have to convince them they need it (which is extra legwork).

Even though social media ads can be highly effective, since leads are already actively searching for a solution, Google Ads tend to be more fast and effective.

In general, Google Ads are more expensive than social media ads, and they’re more difficult to navigate because of the additional setup involved.

As a result, many lawn care business owners are either intimidated by Google Ads, or they aren’t maximizing their full potential.

Here’s how to create Google Ads for your lawn care business:

1. Decide What Areas You’re Targeting

The lawn care industry is different from your typical brick-and-mortar business because you’re going to your clients (not the other way around).

As a result, it’s important you choose a radius of potential clients you’d like to win in an area or neighborhood you’d like to dominate.

If you’re in an area with a higher population, then you can get more data more quickly. This allows you to see what’s working and what’s not, and improve your Google Ads fast.

However, keep in mind that if you’re in a highly populated area with higher competition, then your ads will cost more.

If you can, the primary goal is to choose a nearby area that’s highly populated with low competition.

If possible, you want to stay away from low populated areas because it’s going to take longer to see results. Plus, you’ll have less data to work with, so you can’t improve your Google Ads as fast.

2. Determine Your Google Ads Spend Budget

First off, be cautious with your Google Ads Spend until you know what you’re doing.

Once you get comfortable with Google Ads, you can determine your official budget for how much you can spend to acquire new lawn care clients.

While it’s important to stay in a budget that doesn’t overstretch your bank account, you can’t just spend $5 a day on Google Ads like you can with Facebook Ads.

You’re paying to reach leads that are actively seeking solutions, so it’s going to cost you more.

You’ll have to find a budget that’s right for your lawn care business where you’re not overspending, but you also are seeing a Return on Investment.

In general, most lawn care and landscaping businesses spend between $40 to $90 per click, and while that might change in the future, you need to be prepared to spend $750 to $1,000+ minimum a month for Google Ads.

3. Have a Follow Up System in Place

When your leads come pouring in from Google, you MUST have a way to follow up with them IMMEDIATELY after they contact you.

Depending on your Call-to-Action on your website, you need to have a follow up system in place so you’re not throwing away valuable leads.

For example, if you have your clients call for an estimate, you should have an executive assistant or someone to answer the phone and give an estimate over the phone.

By the way, did you know you can complete estimates over the phone using Service Autopilot?

When you use Smart Maps in Service Autopilot, you can easily view and measure properties online and quickly give your clients estimates over the phone.

Plus, you can quickly create estimates using templates in Service Autopilot to create and send estimates in less than 5 minutes!

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4. Have a Basic Understanding of Google Ads

If you’re already familiar with the basics of Google, then you can skip over this step. However, if you’re completely new to Google Ads and don’t understand how it works, then this step is essential for you.

Here’s a quick crash course on Google Ads:

Match Types

Google uses keyword match types (the symbols you see by the search terms) to determine when your Google Ads will be shown.

Here’s a quick explanation of each keyword match type:

Broad Match Modified

Keyword: +lawn care +dallas

Simply put, broad match modified means you only want to show your Google Ads when “lawn care” and “dallas” exist in a search term.

When someone types in these keywords (or something close to it), then your Google Ads will appear.

Broad Match

Keyword: lawn care dallas

This is when you type blank keywords into Google without symbols in the search term.

I don’t recommend using this because it’s telling Google to show your ad to anyone searching anything relating to lawn care in Dallas.

It’s a generic ad, and you’ll only be able to create 4 different ads, which will be shown randomly to anyone even remotely relating to lawn care in Dallas.

This type of ad tends to get diluted very quickly, and it’ll take away from the message you’re trying to send.

If you choose this type of ad, be prepared for decreased Click-Through-Rates and lower overall performance.

Phrase Match

Keyword: “lawn care”

Phrase match means that words can be on the left or right of the phrase, but the phrase you’ve listed needs to be searched for in this particular order.

There can be slight variations on this one, but it won’t be as drastic as broad match modified.

Exact Match

Keyword: [lawn care in dallas]

Exact match means that your ads will only show in searches that exactly search for your listed keyword.

Previously, Google would only show the exact keyword match; however, they’ve since changed this to allow for slight variations.

For instance, in the example I’ve used, if someone searched for something like “lawn care dallas” or “lawn care by dallas,” then your ad will still appear.

The Overall Goal of Google Ads

Your main goal is to choose primary keywords and write ads specific for them so you don’t target the wrong people.

For this reason, you should only be using broad match modified, phrase match, and exact match for the best possible results.

5. Define Your Services and Area

List out all of the lawn and landscape services you offer, and decide on which ones you want to promote in your Google Ads.

Then, you’ll need to list out the subcategories within those services you’ve listed.

For instance:

  • Landscaping
    • Gardening
    • Lawn mowing
    • Landscape design

Finally, you’ll want to list out the lawn and landscape services you don’t offer, so you can define them as negative keywords later on.

For example, if you don’t offer landscape design, then you don’t want your Google Ads showing for searches relating to a service you don’t provide.

6. Choose Your Keywords

In order to complete your keyword research, you can start off by simply using Google’s search engine.

When you type in your services, Google will auto-suggest the terms people are searching for.

You can use these words to target and test which ones are most effective for you (and which ones aren’t).

Coincidentally, this works well for determining negative keyword searches too.

Now, you have a general idea of the search terms you need to research, so you’ll create a Google Ads account so you can access the free Google Keyword Planner.

 By using this free planner, you can research keywords that are specific to your area and find out things like volume, competition, ads spend, and more.

Plus, it’ll also give you additional suggestions of alternate keywords.

As a quick word of caution, since your ads are on a local level, don’t pay too much attention to your keyword volume.

You should mostly pay attention to keyword categories so you can categorize your keywords into groups and create ads around them.

Then, you can test to see if there are any other keywords that perform better.

Pro Tip: Don’t forget to take service intent into account.

In other words, you have to find keywords that show that the person is looking to hire someone for your services.

To name a few examples:

  • Lawn care services
  • Lawn care business
  • Lawn care business near me

7. Use Your Account Structure to Make Your Spending Go Farther

By properly managing and organizing your account, you can increase your performance and future optimization.

Create high level categories of all your services and make each of them their own campaigns.

Then, within each of these high level categories, you have your keywords split up into different ad groups.

As an additional step, you can also break these categories up by match types too. This helps with testing purposes so that you can see what works best.

From there, you can create ads specific to those keywords and include them in the search term.

By including the search term in your Google Ads, you’ll increase your relevancy to leads, which gets you cheaper Costs-Per-Click. In turn, this will increase your Click-Through-Rates.

BONUS Pro Tip: Split Up Your Campaigns by Location

First off, you can do radius targeting, and you don’t have to break up every city like this.

However, by splitting your campaigns up by granularization, you can build data in your account and see where exactly your conversions are coming from.

Alternatively, you can see where you’re getting a lot of clicks without conversions.

If you don’t split up your campaigns by location, then you can’t treat these two factors separately.

Additionally, when you run your Google Ads like this for a year or two, you can choose to turn them off in specific areas and increase your bids in other areas.

As a result, this is a great way to optimize how much you’re spending on your campaigns.

Quick Side Note: You can also do this with your ads schedule too.

Break up your Google Ads times into smaller increments and days so you can see where you’re getting the most results and act accordingly.

8. Decide Where You’re Going to Send Your Campaign Traffic

You need to decide whether you’re going to send your campaign traffic to a landing page or your website.

If you want to send your ad traffic to your homepage, then that’s ok. It’ll save you a lot of extra time and money.

However, you need to make sure that your website looks great and that it’s compatible with mobile, tablet, and desktop.

Also, you need to be sure you have clear Call-to-Actions on your homepage.

Your Call-to-Action can be as simple as “Call XXX-XXX-XXXX” or “Fill out this form for a free estimate.”

While a good website design is always nice, don’t over focus on it. The main thing your leads care about is that their needs are addressed and that they know what to do next.

The main difference between a landing page and a homepage is that a landing page doesn’t have any navigation bar. It has one clear Call-to-Action without any other distraction.

So if you want to make your homepage a hybrid between a landing page and homepage, you can create a navigation bar that’s clickable.

This way, your homepage isn’t over cluttered with a navigation bar, but you’re still able to drive traffic to other places if you need to.

Pro Tip: Take a look at your competitors’ homepages and landing pages to see where they’re sending their campaign traffic. This is a great way to generate some ideas and see how you can do something better.

Earlier, remember when I said that clicks for the lawn care industry can run between $40 to $90 per click?

This is why when you’re researching your competitors, you don’t want to charge them for your clicks. It’s EXPENSIVE.

In order to avoid charging them for your click, right click on the link and click on “copy link address” and open it into a new tab.

You can charge them for your clicks, but they can also do it back to you.

You can blacklist IP addresses, but it’s way easier to be considerate and don’t charge them for your clicks when you wouldn’t want them to do it to you.

Also, don’t forget to look at HomeAdvisor and Thumbtack’s Google Ads to see where they’re sending traffic.

This will give you a good idea of what’s working for them, so you can generate more ideas and implement them into your page.

9. Become a Quick Pro at Copywriting

One of the biggest elements of copywriting is anticipating your website visitors’ needs.

You need to know what they’re thinking, feelling, and looking for on your page and Google Ads.

A great way to do this is to go look at 2 to 4 star reviews of lawn care businesses (including your own).

Most of the time 2 to 4 star reviews tend to be less emotional and more objective. Whereas, 1 and 5 star reviews tend to be more emotional and can sometimes be fake.

When you look at the reviews, pay attention to their concerns… What are they really saying?

As you’re reading reviews, you need to be able to read between the lines.

For instance, when a reviewer says, “I didn’t like how they did XYZ,” what they’re really saying is, “I really value XYZ.”

As you look at these reviews, think of all the different ways you can differentiate yourself from your competition.

For example, let’s reviewers are complaining about how they never got back to them on an estimate.

They explain how they felt like the job was too small or how they feel unimportant to your competitor.

This tells you that if you quickly follow up with your leads, then you’re going to win more clients.

This way, just by saying, “Get fast, free estimates in under 5 minutes,” you’ll get more clicks than your competitors.

As a result, Google will reward you with better bids and place your ads higher on the search results.

By the way, don’t forget that you can use Service Autopilot to create estimates over the phone in less than 5 minutes using our Smart Maps!

This is a great way to impress your clients and beat your competition.


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10. Only Pay for Good Clicks Using Negative Keywords

Not many lawn care business owners do this, but if you want to save money, it’s a necessity.

This step is really simple, and the best part is that you already know what most of these are.

For instance, you don’t want your ads appearing to people searching for jobs or hiring.

Additionally, if you have a small budget, then you should probably add your competitors’ lawn care businesses as negative keywords too.

With a higher budget, this might be a great idea. However, when you’re trying to maximize your spending, you don’t want your Google Ads appearing to people specifically searching for your competitors.

11. Split Test Your Google Ads to Find What Works Best

Split testing is essentially when you change one variable between your Google Ads to see which one performs better.

For instance, you can create two identical Google Ads but with different headlines to see what the difference is.

Though, as a word of caution, don’t change more than one variable between your ads if you’re split testing.

The whole point of split testing is to determine which variable caused a different outcome. If you change multiple variables, then you won’t know which one caused what.

12. Use Multiple Google Ads Formats to Get Better Bids

When your Google Ads have multiple formats, Google will give you a better bid, which saves you money and puts your ad higher on the search results.

In addition, you’ll likely get higher Click-Through Rates because adding multiple formats makes your ads bigger.

Take a look at these two ad formats you can try… 

  • Call extensions
    • Enables visitors to call you directly from the ad.
  • Location extensions
    • While this isn’t necessarily important for the lawn care industry, it shows your lawn care business on the map app with a call button and promoted pin.

13. Set Up Conversion Tracking to Measure Google Ads Performance

The idea here is that whatever is being measured is being managed.

If you don’t have conversion tracking set up, then you shouldn't be running Google Ads because you can’t measure performance.

These are a few types of conversions you’ll want to measure:

  • Phone call
  • Form submission
  • Call extension phone call
  • Clicks on the CTA call button

Additionally, you can use a call tracking software to track and record the calls.

By listening back on these phone calls, you can improve your sales process and hear the quality of leads that are coming from your Google Ads.

Then, if you’re using a lawn care CRM software like Service Autopilot, you can add their name, address, and email into your system for future marketing purposes. Plus, you can tag them with Google AdWords.

Then, you can export every lead you’ve gotten from your Google Ads and manually calculate how much revenue you generated from your Google Ads.

To calculate, simply divide the leads and clients you acquired by the total amount you spent that month.

Grow Your Lawn Care Business... Faster 
(and with Less Stress)​

Instant invoicing

Better scheduling

Manage your clients and employees all in one system

Start Software Tour

14. Analyze Your Google Ads Results

While Google Ads do generate immediate results, it’s going to take several months for you to be able to significantly improve your ads.

Since you're releasing your ads at a local level, you won’t have as much data to go off of, and it’ll take some time to get enough to start significantly improving your campaigns.

In general, it’s a good idea to run your ads for a minimum of 6 months so you can gather enough data to see trends and calculate your Cost Per Lead.

After a few months, you want to see your conversion rate remain steady and your costs per conversion decrease.

As a general rule of thumb, the longer you leave your ads running, the more data you’ll get and the more you can improve your ads.

And if you need a quick step-by-step guide on setting up your first Google Ads campaign, check out this quick tutorial.

Win More Lawn Care Clients Using Google Ads

Google Ads are a great way for lawn care businesses to beat competition and win more clients.

While Google Ads might seem a bit intimidating at first, especially if you’re new to marketing, they’re a great way to start seeing immediate results.

Use this guide for creating Google Ads for lawn care businesses to become a pro at Google Ads and start growing your business fast!

Related: A Quick Guide to Facebook Ads for Lawn Care

Alyssa Sanders

Alyssa is a Content Marketing Specialist II at Service Autopilot. Her bookworming began after she discovered the Harry Potter series. Her love of books evolved into writing and creating content. When she's not writing, you can find her watching a new sci-fi series or shoving her nose into a book.

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