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Rick Hogan

The Benefits of Google Local Search Ads


What Is a Google Local Search Ad?

Local search ads display when users make general or proximity-based searches for businesses or services on either Google Search or Google Maps. This ad type appears at the top of the Google Maps results, above the top three Google My Business (GMB) listings displayed.

Google local search ad

Local search results on Google Maps, which are driven by Google My Business listings, are influenced by many factors, but chiefly among them is proximity (how close or near the user is to the business). Google seeks to provide searchers with useful, relevant results, so local searches (such as searching for a service on Google maps or typing “bakeries near me”) automatically deliver proximity-based results.

Many local businesses who are seeking to find new leads and expand their customer base are helped and hampered by such a system. Note that businesses need a Google My Business listing to appear on Google Maps search results. On the plus side, people who are physically near their business can search and find them with relative ease, but those who are further away in the same city may not be delivered those same results. Even if for example, your service area includes all of Northern Virginia, a local result for your business will only appear for those closer to your physical location.

Enter the Google local search ad, a viable option to get your Google Maps result seen by users who would otherwise not see the listing due primarily to the proximity of the searcher to your business. This type of ad enables businesses to set up location extensions, effectively choosing the locations where the ads may appear geographically. The local search ad appears on both desktop and mobile results and links directly to a pop-up of the business’s GMB listing and its location on Google Maps. This prime ad slot appears at the top of the “three-pack” of Google My Business listing results from Google Maps, thus earning this ad type the nickname “local pack ad”.

How Can Local Search Ads Benefit Your Business?

1. Gain an Edge over Competition for Local Industry Keywords

Across a variety of industries, as many as 35% of competitive local keywords that generate local pack results also feature local search ads, according to Moz. Expanding the range of your geographic results through local search ads will undoubtedly increase the number of searchers who view your listing. More importantly, remember that this ad placement is above the fold on the first page of results. For competitive local keyword results, would you rather Google deliver your ad or a competitor’s?

2. Attract More Customers

Google estimates an individual searcher’s location based on your device location, location history, previous activity and the IP address of your internet connection. Since Google estimates the user’s location based on those factors, individuals may receive local results based on their common home or work location history if they’re not at a fixed location or are on the move. To reach more prospects, businesses can use local search ads with multiple location extensions that cover a wider geographic range than typical local Google Map results.

3. Maximize Ad Impressions and Clicks

Unlike paid ads, which direct users to a landing page or webpage, local search ads result in clicks to the business GMB listing. However, for the same price as paid ads, local search ads tap into a user intent that will likely increase your ad click-through-rate (CTR). According to HubSpot, almost half of Google searches are for localized results, with as many as 88% of mobile local searches resulting in a call or visit to the business. Maximize the potential to attract new customers with local search ads that deliver your local GMB listing to a wider region of users more likely to take action.

In short, local search ads can help your business compete better at the local level and gain an edge over your competition of other local or national brands. Whether you’re seeking to develop or diversify your paid ad strategy, you need to consult with a local digital marketing partner you can trust. Bleevit Interactive has the Google Ads certifications and local search advertising expertise needed to assist your business in maximizing your return on advertising spend (ROAS) – contact us today to get started.


  Rick Hogan, CEO & Co-Founder – Bleevit Interactive  Rick possesses over 20 years of digital marketing experience and started Bleevit Interactive with the primary mission of helping local businesses succeed online. When he is not working he can often be found hiking Great Falls, Virginia with his Labradoodle Lily, or sailing the Chesapeake Bay. If you have any comments or suggestions on how we can improve this post or otherwise want to give us a shout, send an email to hello@bleevit.com.

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