There are indications the Google GPS service, Google Maps, will be moving toward monetization.
How Might Google Monetize Google Maps?
Google plans to invest in their maps service. The brand predicts that highlighting sponsored locations and adding more data about businesses in Google Maps will encourage consumers to use the service more.
Google Maps should then have the ability to introduce ads in four areas: basic direction searches, searches for things nearby, personalized recommendations and local business searches, according to AdAge.
The Director of Product Management for Maps at Google, Rajas Moonka, said, “We want to be able to highlight things that are around you and surface them nearby to you in a way that’s not disrupting your experience. We’ve been pretty careful about not being very aggressive about how we present those to users because we don’t want users to feel like we’re overloading the experience.”
Why Might Google Be Monetizing Google Maps?
The Google Maps service has more than 1 billion users who rely on its directions. This audience could offer an expansive reach for potential advertisers.
And while Google’s search engine is wildly successful, Amazon is fast approaching as a serious rival for product searches. Google Maps “feels like new territory primed for Google’s ad systems to start pumping dollars from what is a giant, untapped data well,” as described by AdAge.
Google’s Business Chief, Philipp Schindler, commented on the possibility of monetizing Google Maps, calling it an “interesting playground.”
What Does Google Maps Monetization Mean For Marketers?
Advertising on Google Maps should give marketers the potential to better target nearby audiences, including people actively seeking immediate, nearby solutions.
From Google to Apple to (Google-owned) Waze, competition for map users and advertisers has become fierce. Even apps with primary objectives outside of navigation (like Uber) have entered the mapping world, looking to keep consumers within their walled domains.