Increase in-store sales with your online ads

May 27, 2021

Shoppers don’t just turn to Google for things they want to buy online, they also use Google to find what they need nearby, in real life. Here are some new ways to reach people nearby that were announced today at Google Marketing Livestream.

New inventory to reach nearby customers

Over the past year, we’ve seen more people use Google Maps to explore something they’re interested in, not just to find where it is located. For example, searches on Google Maps for “curbside pickup” have increased globally by 5,000% year over year.1 To help more people find your business, we’re adding three new ways for Local campaigns to show up on Google Maps.

First, auto suggest ads show your nearby location to users searching for businesses like yours. For example, if a Maps user searches for “oil change,” they may see an ad for an auto garage that's nearby right in their Maps search results.

Example auto ad
Auto suggest ads in Google Maps

Second, navigational ads promote your business while people are using Google Maps to navigate somewhere. Your location can show up along the route for relevant users — and of course, we ensure these ads aren’t intrusive and display in a way that is safe for the driver.

Example navigational ad
Navigational ads in Google Maps

Third, similar places ads allow you to show your business location to people who are searching on Maps for similar businesses nearby. For example, if someone is looking to pick up tacos, but their usual spot is closed, they could see a suggested alternative nearby.

Example similar places ad
Similar places ads in Google Maps

In addition to Google Maps, we’re expanding ways for Local campaigns to display in other places across Google too. Many Local campaigns customers have already added product inventory to their Local campaigns to promote nearby items across your Display and Business Profile ads. Now, you can show your location-specific product inventory in your YouTube ads. Later this year we’ll expand this capability to Search and Maps ads. Similar to your circulars or flyers, you have the control and flexibility to select the products that appear.

Finally, we’re expanding Local campaigns measurement. Later this year, you'll be able to understand sales driven by your Local campaigns via store sales reporting, not just store visits and local actions. This will be followed by the ability for you to optimize your campaign for these store sales.

Highlight what’s available for pickup nearby

Consumers are now much more thoughtful about the number of trips they make to stores and want to know if the items they need are available nearby. In fact, searches for "in stock" have grown globally by over 800% year over year.2 Now in your local inventory ads you can show products that are available for immediate store pickup today, pickup later or curbside pickup. If you are not yet on local inventory ads, you can utilize your existing Shopping ads feed to power pickup later (beta).

Example pickup today and pickup later mock
Pickup today (left) and pickup later (right) in local inventory ads

If you don't have a local inventory feed, independent retailers can use Pointy from Google to get products online and then run local inventory ads. Pointy is free for eligible retailers in the US, Canada and the UK until September 30, 2021. Sign up here to get started. 

In case you missed it, check out the Google Marketing Livestream Offline Sales session on demand or visit the Advertising Solutions Center for more resources to grow sales in your stores.

Posted by Reena Nadkarni, Product Lead, Local Ads



1. Google Data, Global English, Jan 26, 2021 - Mar 26, 2021 vs Jan 26, 2020 - Mar 26, 2020
2. Google Data, Global English, Nov 3, 2020 - Jan 1, 2021 vs Nov 3, 2019 - Jan 1, 2020

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