Natural Search Blog


Google Maps could be chocked full-O-ads

I was glancing at Google Maps of Tokyo when I noticed just how many ads they have running in them! I can see icons for all sorts of chain restaurants for instance, including: McDonald’s, Baskin-Robbins, 7-Eleven, Royal Host, Mini Stop, Taco John’s, Denny’s, KFC, ampm, etc.

Ads in Google Maps, Tokyo
(click to enlarge)

Now, we’ve already seen ads in Google Maps here in America, but in a much more limited deployment:

Google Maps Ads in the US
(click to enlarge)

The Tokyo map ads are not clickable like the ads in the states.

What’s really different with the Tokyo map is the density of ads within the maps is much greater, and there seems to be much more variety of companies advertising. I can only see this as the likely future for Google Maps here in the US, too — more ads, from more companies.

UPDATE 3/18/2010: Mike Blumenthal reports on how icon ads have been added to Google Maps in Australia.

2 comments for Google Maps could be chocked full-O-ads »

  1. MyAvatars 0.2

    This is very interesting to see the difference between those two. We have just started working with the interactive google maps for some of our clients & it is going to be very interesting where this is at in even 6 months. Thanx for sharing!

    Comment by Janna Berg | Prime — 6/20/2007 @ 1:39 pm


  2. MyAvatars 0.2

    They’re not really ads, more like points of interest as with GPS devices. Competing map services (like Mapion) have similar features. It’s mainly for wayfinding (eg: “look for the building next to a particular business”), since address numbering is somewhat non-standard in Japan.

    Other sites are leveraging the data in other ways, particularly in real-estate (apartment hunting based on proximity to convenience stores, etc).

    Comment by fh — 7/8/2008 @ 9:38 am


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