Most of us use Google maps across all our devices when we perform a search for something we want from our local area. This gives businesses using pay per click advertising an extra outlet, but it also provides a boost on mobile devices for local ads because you are competing with less results than appear when you are on a laptop or desktop.

The latest version of the mobile device Google Maps app has really taken the user experience to a new level, but it also makes it a ‘must use’ app for advertisers. Google always tries to give the customer what it is looking for in the least number of searches and that could mean your business if it’s relevant to the local search.

Google serves ads un-intrusively, but conveniently at the bottom of the map screen and the growing use of mobile devices means advertisers who are increasingly familiar with the “Get location details” charge on their accounts are seeing much higher ROI. The “Get location details” is a result of someone sliding up the ad that appears at the bottom of the map in order to find out more about the search results.

Google Maps – Good or Bad for Advertisers?

It’s easy to think that Google maps, although highly targeted, could be quite costly if people are curious and slide up the ad for to take a better look at the business before deciding that it’s not for them, but it’s a relative cost. For example, if your target market is in your local area and you have no competitors, you may not need the advert because your business will be the only one that appears as a search result on the map.

However, if your area where your target market exists is saturated with similar businesses then placing your ad at the bottom of the screen before your competitors will boost exposure and conversion rates through the roof. There are extra cost per click actions that a potential customer may take after the initial ad inspection, but there are several useful free ones too.

Free Actions after Viewing the Initial PPC Ad

If a user clicks to call your business then that will count as a CPC action and is chargeable, but they can choose to save your business’ details until later, they can read the address if your page is set up properly and the address and they can share the details with friends all without an extra charge. You only pay for another action if the user clicks to call or if they click to get directions and that’s not entirely a bad thing because at least you know the user is considering becoming a customer.

How to use Google Maps for Adwords

The first thing you need to do is allow ads on Google search partners and you allow ads on mobile devices. Then, if you want people to call and visit your business, you need to add location extensions to your ads. Location extensions contain your address and phone number that Google serves to users when they click to call or request directions.

Those details are also available to users who want to share the information with someone or save the details for later. Remember, a click to call or get directions will incur extra charges. Location extensions are not available for all ad types, but you use them for ‘standard’ and ‘all features’ ads on ‘Search and Display’, ‘Search Network Only’ and ‘Display Network Only’ campaigns.

You only need to check your analytics to see that mobile devices can’t be ignored anymore and when someone is performing a local search, the last thing you want is for your competitor to have a better presence than your business.