Google to generate ad sales using Maps app

In a bid to boost revenues from its mobile services, web giant Google has introduced targeted ads into its Maps app for Android and iOS devices.

The move could put a dent in mobile operators’ plans to create new revenue streams using location based services.

With the revamped Google Maps, relevant ads from sponsors appear at the top or bottom of the Google Maps screen after a user performs a search. The ads include a title, ad text, and a link to get directions to an outlet. Users can tap or swipe upward to see more information.

“When users click on an ad to get location details, they’ll see additional information such as the business’s address, phone number, photos, reviews and more. From here, there are a number of paid and free click actions they can take,” Google Maps’ product manager Salahuddin Choudhary wrote in a blog post.

“Paid clicks include the initial ‘get location details’ click, get directions, click-to-call and clicks on the ad headline. AdWords will only charge for up to two paid clicks per ad impression. Reporting for these paid clicks can be found by segmenting reports in your account by ‘click type.”

He added that free actions include saving business information for later, sharing a business with a friend, or starting navigation.

Location based advertising has proven a challenge for some players, particularly in the US.  AOL recently canned its Patch local news service, which CEO Tim Armstrong had said was part of the firm’s long-term strategy for growing the business through local advertising sales.  The venture failed to generate a profit for AOL, which has now closed over 300 of its local sites as part of a restructuring effort.



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