Stock photo of a couple using a Waze gps app in their vehicle.

Waze, a GPS navigation software developed by Google, has officially launched it’s local ads system for small businesses. Waze local ads will offer three different advertising units; promoted search, zero-speed takeover and branded pin. According to Waze, setting up an advertising account for a business takes fewer than five minutes to complete.

Zero-speed takeover advertisements will show your brand’s advertisement when vehicles stop in traffic. The branded pin will show your business logo on maps while users are driving. When the logo is clicked, it will provide additional information about a business. The promoted search option will operate similar to Google Adwords and Yelp ads and will show advertisement when specific searches are made. Brands will be charged based on a cost per impression (CPM) advertising model.

During Waze’s test period with local ads, they found that among their 1400 trial advertisers, businesses received an average of 20% more navigation to their business than prior. There are three advertising tiers depending on a brand’s business model. Brands with fewer than 10 locations will fit into the “starter” tier. Brands with more than 10 locations will be placed into the “Plus” tier while brands with more than 50 locations will be placed into the “enterprise” tier. With the starter package, business can pay $2 or more per day for advertising space. The plus package comes with live support and requires a $100 spend per day. There are no long-term contacts with Waze local ads and Waze will be happy to provide your brand with a demonstration to see how your ads will appear on their system. Larger corporations like Dunkin' Donuts have had the privilege of being able to exclusively advertise with Waze these last few years.

Waze will report the following key performance indicators to business owners (KPI’s) including clicks, navigations, impressions, info button clicks and call and URL information. Businesses that fit into the plus and enterprise categories will be supplied with even more in-depth data. Performance reports will be reported to business owners in real time.

According to Waze, they currently average more than 100 million monthly users that spend an average of 11 hours per month using their app. Those numbers compare well with Instagram and exceed the monthly usage of SnapChat. Waze believes that storefronts like restaurants, coffee shops, movie theaters, hotels and gas stations will get the most out of Waze local ads. Google acquired Waze for nearly $1B in 2013 but has not tied Waze to any other Google products just yet. Google Maps currently averages more than 1 billion users per month.

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