Waze is a popular navigation app that offers advertising opportunities for local businesses. Is it right for you?
Digital maps and GPS are now modern essentials. They show routes in real-time, allowing us to see – and attempt to avoid – current traffic.
Google dominates this space. They own both Google Maps and Waze.
Waze has some features Maps doesn’t. The first is that it’s open-source. Users contribute data on routes, so you get suggestions based routes people actually drive. There is more information on things like avoiding road-construction or consistently congested areas.
Second, if Maps and Waze were both streets, Waze would be the one with billboards. Waze advertising tools reach drivers not only when they search for a type of business, but when they’re in proximity to it.
How Do I Advertise On Waze?
The Waze advertising platform is pretty straightforward. You input your business info and it creates a branded pin that appears on the map when people are near your business.
You can also advertise for searches, similar to how it works on Google Ads.
There is also the takeover pin, which is a larger ad that displays when the driver is at a stop near your location.
Here’s the quick breakdown from Waze:
Should My Business Advertise on Waze?
Based on our experience at Marketing 360®, most local businesses with walk-in traffic should be on Waze, if for no other reason than it’s inexpensive.
Recent changes mean that they charge based on cost per impression (meaning you pay a small amount if a users views your pin), but for a minimal budget your business can get exposure here.
However, there are several other factors to consider.
First, consider how valuable it is for you to get drivers using a navigation app to stop and come into your business. For example, this is high-value traffic for restaurants and retail stores. The more likely it is someone driving by will spontaneously come in and become a customer, the more valuable Waze is for you. If you’re this type of business, use all the features including the takeover ad.
Second, keep in mind that the Waze user-base is made up of people who’s primary goal is avoiding traffic and finding fast commuter routes. Because of this there are far more Waze users in large urban areas and big cities.
According to data from Drivemode:
- Drivers in Los Angeles used Waze 82% more than the larger California population.
- Drivers in Atlanta used Waze 50% more than Georgia drivers overall.
- Boston drivers used Waze 46% more than Massachusetts drivers.
- New York City drivers used Waze 43% more than New York State drivers.
- Chicago drivers used Waze 42% more than Illinois drivers overall.
If your business is in a small town rural area, you’re less likely to get value out of this platform.
Still, Waze is quick to set up and the tracking data isn’t complicated. Give it try to see if this modern take on the billboard works for your business.