Home > Google Maps, Local Advertising, Local Search, Online Marketing > Local Listing Ads End. Analysis for San Diego Categories

Local Listing Ads End. Analysis for San Diego Categories

If you have not heard, Google has ended the Local Listing Ad (LLA) Test that was running in San Diego and San Francisco.  Mike Blumenthal posted this announcement yesterday  and I noticed it that same day when I was trying to start a new ad for a client.  I was working on some analysis behind the offering this week so I wanted to share some basic analysis comparing PPC Adwords to LLA costs.

I referred to the recent WebVisible release to determine the categories who are spending the most in local online advertising.  Greg Sterling posted a great overview of this report last week. It seems that most of the advertisers in higher volume categories have learned a wide array of keywords that are profitable for their business, so it is unlikely they would ditch all these keywords for 1 Local Listing Ad.  However, they may quit buying their category keywords (San Diego Attorney), which is likely the highest volume and most profitable for Google.   I took this list and compared the LLA Rate with the PPC rate and then calculated the ratio for each category.  The average cost seems to be comparable for all the categories that were made available ($75 for high volume to $73 for lower volume), but since the PPC is much higher for the heavier advertisers due to the higher level of competition, the ratio is actually much lower for the more competitive categories.  I find this very strange since you would have expected it to be set up the other way around.  The goal of the LLA advertising is to get less those SMBs and/or categories that do not participate in Adwords today.   From this data, I’ve had trouble figuring out how Google has determined the rate for the LLA for a specific category.  Any ideas?

There are some real outliers like Movie Theatres and Night Clubs which typically don’t do much advertising at all so it’s strange that the price for the LLA was so high for this trial.  Perhaps that is why they ended up making these ads free during the trial??  Was anyone ever billed for these ads?

  1. December 4, 2009 at 10:06 pm

    Nice post, it is very informative! The only way i can see Google determining the price for the ad could be population in relation to establishments? Greater population and fewer establishments = higher price? This would fit in to their LLA placement/dilution model.


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