Roy’s Restaurants Sees Massive ROI From Local-Mobile Search Campaign

Google has released a provocative case study with Roy’s Restaurants, a high-end national restaurant chain with 31 locations around the country. The company reported a massive 800 percent ROI by using Google’s location extensions and Click to Call ads in mobile.

It must be said that part of the reason for the huge ROI is the general absence of competition for mobile ads right now on Google. But it’s also a reflection of the better performance of mobile advertising and the propensity of mobile users to take action — in this case call local restaurants for reservations.

Prior to the involved campaign Roy’s had been running market-specific geotargeted campaigns, which the company had extended into mobile. Those campaigns sent online and mobile searchers to the national Roy’s site, where they could consult a store locator and obtain local numbers accordingly. Roy’s new agency G&M Plumbing developed a new campaign around Click to Call ads using location extensions.

The new strategy featured a mobile-only national ad that matched local numbers and restaurant locations dynamically based on the location of mobile search users. Thus the nearest Roy’s location to the mobile user would appear, together with the local number.

That resulted in 40 percent more calls and more in-store visits. I spoke to G&M Plumbing, which said the mobile calls were effect new reservations and not cannibalizing calls generated from online. That would be interesting to drill into a bit further; however Roy’s doesn’t have clear insight into all the behavior of consumers interacting with its website because they don’t do call tracking online.

Regardless Roy’s results were impressive. I asked the agency what was the big takeaway. They said it was to get involved in new opportunities like mobile early to take advantage of  cost savings and potential ROI gains accordingly.

Mobile search advertising right now is like general paid-search in its early days. Those early advertisers saw great returns without intense competition. Mobile will not represent such an opportunity for long.

The use of location extensions and call extensions also illustrates what will be a very common methodology for national advertisers trying to reach mobile users in local markets going forward: national ad campaigns with dynamically inserted local elements.

Campaign results like this illustrate and make the case that search advertisers still sitting on the mobile sidelines shouldn’t be for very much longer.

Related Topics: Channel: SEM | Google: AdWords | Google: Maps & Local | Google: Mobile

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About The Author: is a Contributing Editor at Search Engine Land. He writes a personal blog Screenwerk, about SoLoMo issues and connecting the dots between online and offline. He also posts at Internet2Go, which is focused on the mobile Internet. Follow him @gsterling.

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