As a brick and mortar shop the landscape of digital advertising can feel vast and overwhelming. From the outside looking in, it can feel like the big players have the industry on lockdown. But this is a myth that keeps many small and medium businesses from achieving their full potential.
As the world of e-commerce continues to boom it’s vital that physical retail businesses understand the opportunity available to them right now. Google advertising is a great asset to brick and mortar stores looking to drive traffic and the advantages of the platform aren’t exclusive to big name brands. All it takes is understanding how to maximize that advantage and connect your online presence to physical one.
Today’s post seeks to cover how and why physical retailers need to begin exploring the possibilities that Google paid ads present.
I’ve gone over this before and for good reason. Google has a unique focus on providing relevant quality experiences to all its users. It’s this philosophy that the algorithm is built around that actually evens the playing field for smaller and medium sized businesses. On Google’s platform, brand recognition doesn’t instantly equate to quality or results. They care about catering each experience to the unique user. So how does that give a brick and mortar store an advantage?
Location is a heavily weighed variable in Google’s relevancy factor. Giving users the nearest and most local options is a priority for Google’s algorithm. This gives physical retailers an advantage over online only shops and even big name stores who’s locations may be too spread out to target a user’s central location. Local equals convenient to Google, and if you can play to this aspect of the ranking system then your ads have a much higher chance of appearing above less localized competitors.
So how can you make the most of this opportunity? Consider putting “Local” in your search ads. Add to your list of target keywords. Include your city or location name to better resonate with a user’s search query. Consider building entire responsive search ads with copy specifically speaking to your location. If done properly, your quality rankings should rise and you’ll find it easier to win more bidding wars.
So how else can you maximize the relevance of localized google advertising? Let’s cover some more options below.
Google Ads has many tools enabled to help local businesses stand out. One of the strongest tools available being local campaigns. You can find this option in the New campaigns window, where you can select Local store visits and promotions.
This type of campaign is a conversion driven campaign with a focus on increased in-store activity. These ads allow for the usual combination of copy–headlines, descriptions, CTA–and an image for additional branding. With an established business profile you can set up details like your store’s location, hours and even contact number.
The goal of these campaigns is to specifically drive activity to your physical location. This can be as simple as increasing calls to your location or spreading the word about new in-store discounts. Ads like this can appear on any of the Google platform networks such as Google Maps, YouTube, Google Search, Google Display, and even Gmail.
This is a great opportunity to present local shoppers with info on your business and even create brand awareness. Try to utilize the image feature to give viewers something recognizable about your store. Provide info like hours and store address, consider special prices or promotions you may want to advertise as well.
Extensions allow you to provide additional details on your business without taking real estate out of your search ads. Extensions appear dynamically, only when they rank high enough at the top of the search results. They appear below the copy of your standard text ad and allow up to 4 extensions per ad.
While it’s not guaranteed that your extensions will appear, it’s still a lost opportunity if you neglect to include them. The most vital extension options would be store address and phone number. These features are similar to the location campaigns features but have less conversion tracking tied to them. Either way, it’s still beneficial to include this info on your standard search ad groups.
With your phone number attached you can enable click to call features on your ad that can allow nearby users to instantly call your location as soon as they see your ad. You can also set up a geofence to target users near your location and include your address in the extension for them to easily navigate over. On the flipside, you can set a geofence around your competitor’s location and use an extension to display your better hours or offerings.
The biggest advantage about Google Ads to physical retailers is that it doesn’t require too much overhead to get your campaigns off the ground. Majority of the options we discussed today don’t even require an ounce of design work. While big brand name stores can invest deeper in bidding and quantity, they can’t do anything to compete with the relevance of local businesses. This evens out the playing field immensely–if you use the right strategy.
My team is equipped with keyword strategists and copy wizards who know how to maximize the advantage of Google paid ads for your business.. We’ve enabled teams of all sizes to continue to increase physical traffic all through digital ad campaigns. If you want to meet to learn about our strategies or discuss a personalized partnership with my team then we’re available to meet. It’s up to you, simply click here and book some time so we can evaluate the best path forward for you.