It seems that Google is running a limited test for local inventory ads (LIA) on mobile that looks like a shopping ad-ification of the Local Pack.
This test was spotted by Mike Blumenthal on mobile when he did a search for “engagement rings Buffalo.” In the results, a map came up in addition to a couple of LIAs below it where the local pack results would normally show. I was able to get the results to show as well when I did the search. Below are some ads for two different rings at a couple of Kohl’s locations in Buffalo. If you click on either one of the ads, the user will be taken to the local inventory ad landing page, which is hosted by Google.
Just to show you the difference between the test, the following image shows what the results look like on Google when I did search for “engagement rings Maine.” The results were completely different.
When Google introduced these promoted places ads last spring, they noted that local searches are growing 50 percent faster than overall mobile searches. Because of this, the company wanted to ramp up their efforts to monetize all these local mobile searches in the past year.