Google has long touted the growth of queries with local intent, such as those that include the words “near me” or a location name, such as a city. Over the past couple of years, the search giant has set about to monetize this ever-growing segment of queries. Whether directly on its own domain, such as with Local Inventory Ads, or in its popular navigational app, Google Maps, new local formats are beginning to deliver meaningful shares of both brand and non-brand traffic. It’s likely to have an even more dramatic impact this holiday season, as 2016 data showed strong growth of Local Inventory Ads and Google Maps ads leading up to Christmas Day. Local Inventory Ads (LIAs) are a variation of Google Product Listing Ads that include local information about available products at certain retail locations. Retailers have increasingly adopted this format over the past couple of years, as Google has grown the prevalence of these ads for any queries that display local intent. Looking at the share of all Google Shopping traffic attributed to LIAs for those brick-and-mortar advertisers deploying the local format, it’s clear that local ad traffic picks up significantly in the days immediately leading up to Christmas. This could be for a few different reasons: Searchers are more likely to use queries that display local intent as Christmas Day approaches, when they turn their gift searches to products they can pick up locally, rather than risk a late delivery or the extra cost of expedited shipping….