Google Maps Will Now Show Branded Location Pins When Getting Directions
Google Maps' much-awaited AR-based navigation may not be available to everyone just yet, but finding your way around unfamiliar territory is now slightly easier. Google introduced the concept of branded location pins back in 2016, which allowed businesses to stand out by displaying its logo in the map view. They don't usually appear when you're zoomed out and only show up when you're viewing a location at street level. Apart from helping people locate businesses better, they also help in navigation. It is far easier to look for a name-brand store and follow directions from there rather than looking at your map constantly. The image below should give you a good idea about what they'll look like:
Additionally, businesses will be allowed to offer coupons and other product inventory information on their Google Maps place cards along with other details like store hours and reviews. Until now, such content would disappear when the Google Maps navigation interface was used to input a destination, select a mode of travel, and browse routes.
They will now remain and users can even add them as another destination to their route. When you tap on the branded location, there will be a prominent “Add stop” button just underneath the text and image ad encouraging you to “Visit Today.” Just for this holiday season, stores can also create a curated visual catalog of available products, an example of which you can see below.
Lastly, businesses can also create a separate list for items available for immediate pickup and items that are not available on location. These changes are rather surprising, considering that Google was vehemently against placing ads inside the Maps app not too long ago. I guess exceptions can always be made at this time of the year when people will be out shopping in droves. There are also some business-specific offerings, that you can read more about in their official blog post.