Google now shows competing ads on local business profiles

Google has gradually increased the monetization of local search. He introduced local search ads in early 2017, which put ads in local packs, and began posting them in the Knowledge Panels rough two years ago . Now, the company is starting to show competing ads in local business profiles.

Location "Local Campaign". Part of Local Campaigns Advertisements are designed to encourage visitors to visit shops and convenience stores. These fully automated units run on Google properties, including search sites, Maps, GDN, and YouTube.

Ben Fisher noticed for the first time this evolution last week. Here is his smartphone screengrab:

The list of the trade is that of a dealer Dodge-Chrysler-Jeep in California. The announcement is for Valley Hi Toyota, located about an hour from the Chrysler dealership by car.

I could not recreate this example or find another comparable by myself.

I can not pay to withdraw the ad . Discussions on the block of ads on Twitter designate this panel as the local knowledge board, but it is technically the profile of the local business. It is also speculated that Google is preparing to ask business owners to withdraw the ad. However, I confirmed to Google that companies would not be asked to pay or have the ad removed.

In April, Google sent a survey to business owners, which some agencies also received, asking for potential future capabilities and capabilities for GMB. It was a test and most of these things will probably not happen. However, one of the proposed elements was "get contacts with competitor profiles".

The ad block above is not the proposed feature but is in keeping with its spirit. Much of the reaction of the local SEO and the conversation that follows Fisher's original tweet is critical to the move.

The people I've talked to in the local SEO community generally believe that Google should not run ads. for direct competitors on company profiles. In addition, some argue that this can also confuse consumers looking for specific businesses.

Why we should care It is felt that the GMB profile is "owned" by the company. However, it is not correct; it's owned by Google, just like Facebook owns and controls local Facebook pages. Businesses should stay sober. However, Google must also pay attention to the overly aggressive monetization of the local population. Some SEOs say that it is such an example.

It is probably best that companies do not pay to remove these ads, as this would be perceived as a form of "extortion", which Yelp is accused of – they are advertisers. Do not have any competitor ads on their profiles.

About the Author

Greg Sterling is a collaborative editor at Search Engine Land. He writes about the links between digital commerce and offline commerce. Previously, he held senior positions at LSA, The Kelsey Group and TechTV. Follow him on Twitter or find him on LinkedIn .

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