Google has revamped its format for AdWords that display within Maps for Mobile, in an effort to make them work more efficiently for smartphone users and advertisers.
As a part of the new format, which will be made available to newer versions of Android phones today, calls to action like “get directions” and “click to call” are more prominent and clickable in more places.
Additionally, a new “hyperlocal marker” shows the user how far the advertiser’s business location is from where they are.
Interestingly, clicking on the ad now takes the user to a framed version of the advertiser’s web site, meaning they can easily get back to the maps app. But it also means they’re sent to the advertiser’s site with fewer clicks than before.
When I spoke earlier this week with Jonathan Alferness, a product manager in the AdWords Mobile Ads group, he said his goal was to make mobile ads “two click experiences,” to ”get it to that level of simplicity and level of ease.” This change appears to be moving in that direction.
In tests, the company says the redesigned formats increased click-through rates by 100%.
Google has recently been in an all-out war with Apple over mobile mapping applications. After years of Google domination of mapping, Apple is in the process of rolling out its own mapping software for iOS, the 6.0 version of which is expected in the fall.