Facebook just recently added a new map feature to its location-based awareness ads so that brands will see a higher number of people visiting their locations. The social media website also has the ability to tell each company how many people visited their locations based on the ad. While most ads on the site in the past had included some sort of link to offer the store location, in many cases the landing pages at the end of the links were designed for desktops so that mobile customers were not able to use them effectively. Since the ads normally run on mobile phones, Facebook decided to include maps that are a part of the ad format so that there will be no issues with users being able to view the location of the brand.
What makes the built-in maps even more useful is the fact that they are not Facebook’s own map product used to plot a location as part of the website’s mobile app. Instead of creating their own map product, the in-ad maps use the mapping tools that are built into people’s phones such as Google Maps or Apple Maps as part of their GPS system. When a mobile user views the ad on their mobile phone they will be able to click on the map built into the ad and immediately get directions to the store as well as view its hours and retrieve its phone number. This new feature in Facebook ads is a part of a bigger goal of helping brands push people into visiting physical locations and tracing their digital ads to determine the results. Google has been pushing this same goal by showing mobile ads that highly businesses near a person’s location as well as putting ads in Google Map’s search results. Facebook and Google are both part of a race to use location tools to increase customer visits to stores based on viewing digital ads.
Facebook will be able to estimate how many people visit brands by taking advantage of users that share their location and even tracking when people appear near a business location. The website will also poll people to determine whether they in fact visited these locations. Advertisers that use these new ads with map tools will be able to see how they affect their foot traffic and as well as the age and gender of visiting customers. They will also be able to see how these stats have changed over the past few days, week or month. This new feature of Facebook ads could be a useful way for companies to get involved in location advertising so that they are able to bring more people into their physical locations.