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Mobile Auto Dealership Listing Ads from Google

Research has shown that the two most popular activities done by car shoppers on a mobile device are calling a dealership and locating a dealership. To help dealerships get this information to customers, Google has launched a new Dealership Listing Ad (DLA) format to allow mobile device users to easily complete these actions.

The new visual format puts the most commonly searched for items in a clear and easy to use layout, with touch-optimized links and buttons. The mobile-focused ad format includes a link to the dealer, location details, directions button and a click-to-call button.

Searches from mobile devices now account for more than 50 percent of auto queries, as smartphone popularity continues to grow and on-the-go customers need accurate results quickly. By simply clicking a button in the ad, smartphone users are sent to the appropriate location, such as their navigation app, call dialog or the dealership’s mobile site.

Based on experiments run in late 2014, Google saw twice the click through rate and user engagement versus the current mobile ad format for auto dealers.

What triggers a DLA?

Initially, DLAs will only be for mobile searches done in the U.S. for v1 keywords determined by Google. These are explicit car dealership seeking queries, such as “Toyota” dealer, “Toyota” “New York” or “Toyota” “sf”. Google expects to expand search queries and use more structured data for improved and expanded results as performance of these ads are proven even further.

How to participate in DLAs

There are three steps that must be completed in order to participate in DLAs.

  1. Create a Merchant Center Account (link here)
  2. Link your Merchant Center Account to your AdWords MCC or AdWords ID
  3. Complete a form to be whitelisted (link here)

Once your account is whitelisted, Google will send instructions on how to build the feed for your auto dealership into merchant center. Google also provides instructions on how to link your AdWords ID and Merchant Center ID, which can be done in the Settings > AdWords section of Merchant Center.