Drive offline sales with online ads: Google Best Practices
Drive store traffic with location extensions
Tips to help drive foot traffic to your business with Google Ads.
The key to driving store traffic from the web into your physical location is letting customers know you’re close by and that you have what they’re looking for. If a nearby customer is researching for products or services in your neighborhood, your campaigns can help bring them closer (literally) to making a purchase on Search, Display or YouTube. Whether it's providing instant directions to your store or giving folks the option to call you for more information — you want to deliver the most convenient experience possible to your potential customers. With some enhancements to your campaigns, you’ll be able to deliver the right ad to the right customer, based on where he or she may be.
In this section, we’ll show you how to:
- Set up your business locations with Google
- Use location extensions to enhance your ads with locally relevant information
- Develop the best targeting and bid strategy for potential customers who are close to one of your business locations
Running a successful campaign that drives in-store traffic begins with setting up your location. Here’s how you do it:
Show ads with more locally relevant information with location extensions.
- Use the ads preview tool to check on how your ads appear in specific locations. Check that it’s the experience you’d like to provide to a customer close to your location.
- Enabling location extension for Search allows you to feature location information in your standard text ads, and to also show in the local unit on Google.com and local search ads in Google Maps.
- If you have a Shopping campaign, enable mobile Shopping strategies like Local Inventory Ads to highlight local information to nearby mobile users.
You’ll need to link Google My Business to your Google Ads account to start using location extensions. If your business has 10 or more locations, the Google My Business Locations dashboard offers easy bulk management for all your locations. You can edit your business information in one place and your verified locations will update across Google Search, Maps, and Google Ads.
For YouTube and Display campaigns, location extensions will show with your existing ad creative and feature your business address, store hours and Google Maps directions. On Search and YouTube, clicks on a location extension will lead to a location details page with more store information.
Next, let’s set up your targeting so you can bid smarter for customers who are located close to your business.
If you’re a manufacturer who doesn’t own your business locations, you can still help consumers find which nearby retail chains sell your products using affiliate location extensions (available for Search and Display campaigns).
Use location extension targeting to reach folks close to your business.
Let’s say you’ve got a campaign that targets the entire country for your website orders. But when someone is close to one of your locations, you’d like that person to pay you a visit instead. For Search and Display campaigns (not YouTube), you can set a radius around your stores using your location extension addresses. This will allow you to bid higher for potential customers located closer to your business should you find that they’re more likely to convert.
Step 1: Set a radius around each location extension address that makes sense for your business. Keep in mind that a larger radius may be needed for a location that’s based in a more rural area while a smaller radius may give you adequate coverage in a more urban area. Also consider that customers may be willing to travel farther for bigger-ticket purchases like cars or furniture.When editing locations in your campaign settings, you have the option to select “Location extension targeting” so that you can set a radius you’d like to target around each location extension.
For Search campaigns, remember to take a look at the distance report for your location extensions to help find the best radius to target. The report tells you how your ads perform by the distance a customer was from your business when she saw your ad. You can start off by targeting a broader area and then refine based on this report.
If you have multiple store locations that are close to a customer, your Search and Display ads are eligible to show multiple location extensions on mobile. This gives users the ability to choose the most convenient location to visit.
Step 2: Adjust your bids for the radius you’ve targeted around your location extensions.
In your campaign settings, the location extension targets that you’ve set up in the first step can now be used as locations for bid adjustments.
You can also create levels of bid adjustments based on proximity. Going back to the example of a campaign that covers the entire nation: let’s say you find that shoppers located 10 miles from your business are 25% more likely to make a purchase while those within 1 mile are 50% more likely to buy. You can use location bid adjustments of +25% and +50% on searches that happen within 10 miles and 1 mile of your location, respectively.
You can also use ad scheduling with bid adjustments to increase bids during store operating hours. That’s when potential customers can actually make a purchase at one of your locations.
For Search campaigns, ensure that your keywords (e.g., “coffee” or "cafe") are also matching for local searches (e.g., “coffee near me” or “cafe in San Francisco”) by including their phrase and broad match variations. This way, you save time from having to add and manage all possible combinations of keywords and location names.