Google has announced that local search-relevant ads will be making their way back to the Maps app for Android and iOS, in a new way that is “more attractive for users and more effective for advertisers.”
While the Google Maps overhaul for iOS and Android recently was lamented for cutting out a few older features, one thing that was welcomed and gobbled up in delight was the absence of ads. But it seems the celebrations will have to end early, as Google has announced it is reintroducing ads in the Maps app for both platforms.
Every time you perform a search, relevant local ads will show up at the bottom. They’ll include a title, ad text, and a link to get directions, and if you swipe up from the ad, you’ll get further info such as location details, business address, contact details, photos, reviews, and even shortcuts for sharing these on social networks like Facebook and Twitter. Any further information can be used, saved or shared on the basis of either paid or free click actions. Free actions include saving business information for later, sharing a business with a friend, or starting navigation, while paid actions include the initial ‘get location details’ click, get directions, click-to-call and clicks on the ad headline.
Now, while the idea of ads is usually horrifying, this is one scenario where ads can actually be useful as they’ll be related to whatever it is you’re searching for – for example, those looking for a Chinese restaurant might get an advertisement for a popular restaurant serving Chinese or other cuisine in the nearby area. The only issue here seems to the placement of the ads right at the bottom, which might cause a few unintended clicks and serve to irritate the user (while making the advertiser extremely happy).
But hey, what’s an ad or two in exchange for using one of the best mapping solutions out there, right? It’s not like it’s a new thing, just an old feature served up in a new avatar.