Third Party Ads in Knowledge Bar
For venues such as bars, restaurants and tourist attractions, as well as for retailers with local outlets, the Google knowledge panel has become a key part of the online search experience. The panel typically includes images of the location, as well as user reviews, maps, addresses and opening hours.
Knowledge Bar Ads Now Testing Ads in Local Queries
Whilst Google AdWords has run ads for nationally available items within the bar for some time, It would appear that Google is experimenting with monetizing this space by encouraging local advertising in the knowledge panel. The ads have previously only appeared for nationally available products such as movies and cars.
In the latest development, the search engine technology site, moz.com has recently reported that the panel has been seen to feature local business advertising in some areas of the USA. This marks a shift in the nature of advertising that has been seen and suggests that Google may be looking to open up new markets amongst smaller retailers and local leisure facilities.
Groupon Ads and Other Third Party Ads Lead Way
The ads that have been seen appear to be related to third-party ads promoting Groupon discounts at certain venues around the Pacific Northwest state of Washington. A Google spokesperson commented that “We’re currently experimenting with new ways to surface helpful and relevant local information to users on Google Maps and Search. Maintaining a good experience for our users is our top priority and based on feedback, we’ll determine whether to roll these changes out permanently and broadly.”
The ads are not yet available outside of a beta in some areas of the USA, however, it is not surprising that Google is looking to grow their ad base on mobile by pairing the ad with the local knowledge bar. Overall, it is now believed that over a third of Google searches are local and that local searches are growing 50 percent faster than mobile search overall.
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