Google teased several updates for Local campaigns earlier this year. The new features are rolling out over the coming weeks and include new Maps inventory for Local campaigns.
Even with the prevalence of the internet and online shopping, 90% of retail sales still happen offline. Google has focused on building out advertising capabilities for brick-and-mortar and hybrid retailers across its properties. The announcement made on November 12 are a continuation of these efforts.
When it first launched, the sole intention of automated Local campaigns was to drive foot traffic to stores, and store visits were the only conversion mechanism to optimize against. Local campaigns now support other goals, like calls or directions that don’t require store visits measurement to be enabled.
Soon, Local campaign advertisers can upload a local product feed and select a set of products to feature in ads that can run across the Google Display network. The ads feature the store’s hours, a banner image and specific items from available at the nearby location. See the example below:
Using Waze ads (which is owned by Google), in the coming weeks, Local campaigns advertisers can have their locations display when users are getting directions in Maps. The image below of a Dunkin stop along a rout. Users can tap the pin to show the full promoted listing and click “Add stop” to make a stop along their route.
The Buy Online Pick Up In-Store feature that is available for Shopping campaign advertisers that run Local Inventory Ads is getting more granular with “Pick up today” and “Pick up later” offers.
Instead of simply saying “Store pickup” in ads as LIAs can, merchants can highlight whether products are immediately available for “Pick up today” after purchasing online or if they can be ordered now and shipped for in-store “Pickup Later.”
Currently in beta, if you’re interested in taking part in it, contact your Google rep. The store pickup features is compatible with merchants that run campaigns on Google Hosted Local Storefront or on Merchant Hosted Local Storefront Full or Basic.
Google enabled advertisers to use store visits as a conversion metric for smart bidding optimization in Search campaigns in September. In the coming weeks, advertisers running Shopping or Smart Shopping campaigns can add store visits to their smart bidding strategies to optimize for foot traffic.