It’s a well-documented fact that in the coming years there will be more mobile than desktop users. In the advertising world it is essential that mobile marketing is effective, fast and user friendly. You have just a few seconds to grab consumers’ attention and if not done properly, you can lose potential customers and, ultimately, money.

One of the major advertising platforms is Google which has been doing everything it can to stay on top of the game. In fact, it comes up with so many new methods that business owners can find it extremely hard to keep up. The effort is worth it, however.

Google is launching its next innovation which is designed to help local businesses become more visible to people who are searching for things to buy, drink or eat while they are on the go and to drive foot traffic to physical locations. The new feature focuses primarily on mobile devices.

Until now, it has been possible to search for shops, restaurants and other businesses on Google maps but only by searching for the relevant product or service; this made it very difficult for you as a business owner to get to the top of the list when somebody searched in that particular location.

What can the new Google map ads offer to advertisers and users?

In searching for a place on a desktop, tablet or mobile, people will now see Google local ads in the local finder section first, labelled in purple. Businesses that pay for advertising space will therefore appear higher on the list when people search in their immediate vicinity.

google map ads

Google map ads create a promoted pin using a company logo which means that during searches, shops and restaurants nearby are indicated on the screen without disturbing the visibility of the map itself. Google uses various inputs to determine what pops up. These will vary but include aspects such as location, browsing history and interests.

When the user touches Google local ads, it takes them to a page which you can optimise by showing your business name, exact address, contact number, how to find you and most importantly, any promotions you are offering which are specific to that particular location.

Many people won’t bother even entering a shop if they are unsure whether a particular item is in stock. Google local ads has a feature that enables users to see an item’s availability, further increasing your visitors and potential sales.

Not everyone can advertise on Google map ads. There are certain conditions but this is changing. In the meantime and as preparation for exploiting Google local ads, the most important thing you can do is to create location extensions on AdWords and to ensure that all details are accurate on your Google My Business page. This should improve your chances of successfully exploiting Google maps, both now and in the future.