Yesterday Google announced their new location-aware display ads for mobile devices. The addition is hot on the heels of Google's Places app (a Yelp competitor, also for mobile) and together these two solutions are poised to provide some serious leeway for marketers with on on-the-go consumers in mind.
To activate the option, advertisers simply have to check a “location extension for display” box. Text ads then display according to the consumer's location (nearby stores, restaurants, etc.), and a double arrow for expansion is included just to the right. The expanded display ad features a Google Map overlay with the business conveniently pinned, as well as a "get directions" and "click to call" option:
Google has offered similar solutions in the past; specifically, a little something called “location extension” ads for mobile search, but this week's release is the first time mobile display ads have been included. The company claims location-aware mobile ads see an average increase of 8 percent in click-through rates, while click-to-call mobile ads see a 6 percent increase.
Grounding the ad for the consumer is a pretty big deal, and being able to contact businesses right then and there with a single click is bound to bring in some extra traffic. The addition complements Google Places, the newest perk to Google Maps for mobile. Places tacks nearby attractions onto the usual Maps offerings, honing in on hotels, bars, restaurants, etc.
The feature, which comes with its own icon, doesn't include reviews like Yelp does; however, users can click on the attraction's page to see reviews fed in from other sources, such as Zagat. Check-ins are also missing, but like we said earlier this week, we don't think they're far behind.