As you can see in this image from my phone, Google is finally selling its most valuable search engine results page (SERP) real estate - the top of the Local Maps area.
What's The Big Deal?
Businesses have long agonized over the presence of their competitors in the top 3 and their own inability to break through and join them. In some industries in which I have extensive experience, these map listings were frequently clogged with "virtual locations" that really seemed unfair, but also unbeatable.
These ads have been seen for some time on the full local map page if the user clicked the More Places link, but few of us actually do so.
Now, these listing are up for bid on the first page, where it really counts! WOW!
What Makes This Space So Valuable?
Consumers have a preference for these apparently more trustworty local results as well as a need for the type of information displayed there, like a phone number to call for a quote,
This little box is the better mousetrap that really put the phone book out of business.
Call to Action
Get your ads displayed there ASAP and get to know the costs and results. But as always, be sure to limit your exposure to the proper search intent keywords.