Google (NSDQ: GOOG) is unveiling a new mobile advertising format today that attempts to offer even more locally relevant information to consumers. The so-called “hyperlocal” ads provide the mileage between you and the advertiser directly in the sponsored link, so you know exactly how far away you are from a restaurant, a rental car agency or a gas station.
To show users how far away they are, a blue distance marker (which looks a bit like a bloated explanation point) is located on the left-hand side of the sponsored link on the search results page. The actual distance is noted right under the marker. In July, Google released an expandable ad format that revealed a map noting the advertisers’ location, so this is taking it a step further.
Advertisers will automatically participate in the program if they have enabled location extensions and opted into showing them on iPhones, Android OS phones or other mobile devices with full internet browsers (The feature is not available in applications). Advertisers are only charged when users click to visit the website or on the phone number shown in the ad. In a blog post, Google details how Enterprise Rent-A-Car is using the feature. For example, if your car breaks down, you can find a nearby rental car agency. Users will only receive the ads if they