Why You Need to Know About Google Maps Local Search Ads

If your business has a physical location and you want to grow, then it's extremely important that you make it easy for people to find you online when they pull out their smartphone to search for what you sell.

Google Maps ads are designed to help businesses be more visible at moments when consumers are searching online (especially on a mobile device) for somewhere to eat or shop.

Google continues to roll out new types of ads that appear inside Google Maps. For businesses that rely on foot traffic (like restaurants), proximity (like used car dealerships by city), and deliveries, advertising in Google Maps is a no-brainer. Here’s why…

With Google Maps ads, you won’t squander your media budget on wasted clicks from people who are outside your target area, and you’ll increase the chances that the people clicking on your ads are actually eligible to receive your products and services. In other words, Google Maps ads offer your local businesses an efficient use of what may be a limited advertising budget.

Where will the new ads be shown?

Local search ads will appear within the Google Maps app, on the Google Maps mobile, desktop, and tablet sites, and on Google.com in Expanded Maps results.

There are four main ad formats that are available in Google Maps. They are:

  • Promoted Pins (see description below)
  • In-store Promotions
  • Customizable business pages
  • Local inventory search function

In the Google Maps app, which has more than 1 billion downloads, a single ad with a purple ad label will be featured in the top spot above the organic results.

For searches within Google Maps, Google will show a maximum of two ads with a purple ad label at the top of the search results.

For Google.com location-related searches (officially known as Google.com Expanded Maps Results), users who click on the "More places" link at the bottom of the Local 3-Pack will first see a Google Maps ad in the top position with a yellow ad label, above the other map results.

What are Promoted Pins?

These branded pins are designed to help your business stand out to people who are nearby or who will walk or drive right by your business.  For example, if you run a restaurant, your ad might convince someone passing by to grab a bite to eat. Or if you want people to stop at your retail store in a shopping center, your Promoted Pin could convince people to stop in when passing by. Here’s an example:

In-Store Promotions

With promoted pins, businesses are able to feature specials that are happening right now at that location, displaying the in-store promotion below the logo on the map itself.

Customizable Business Pages

Local business pages can be customized with the same goal to increase physical visits to stores. Local business pages will still include essential business information such as operating hours, address and phone number, but can feature in-store promotions previously mentioned and highlight searchable local inventory.

How much will the Google Map local ads cost?

Advertisers are currently charged on a cost-per-click basis for Google Local Search ads. These clicks include:

  • Get location details
  • Get directions
  • Click-to-call

These costs will vary based on your local market and how competitors are bidding on the same keywords. The more competition, the higher the cost-per-click.

You can advertise on Google Maps right now. Just check that all your information in Google My Business is complete, accurate, and up to date. Any inaccurate information will make it that much harder for people to find you when they're ready to buy.
For more helpful tips about Google My Business, check out this article (will link to the GMB blog)

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