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Geotargeting Website Content? Here’s What You Need to Know

As an eCommerce business, you may have asked yourself if you should be geotargeting website content. It’s certainly a fair question, and the answer could be yes or no depending on what type of eCommerce business you are, what you sell, and who your customers are. 

With that in mind, let’s explore everything you need to know about geotargeting to get to the bottom of that important question. 

How does Geotargeting work? 

Geotargeting is the ability to customize your eCommerce store depending on the geographical location of your shoppers. A geotargeted website uses geo-location data to show a different view for unique customers. 

Best of all, the location can be incredibly specific, such as a town or city, or broader, such as a country. This helps you create a customized experience that suits your exact business model. You can check out geotargeting right now by pulling up your browser on your smartphone. Search your favorite food. Will you get restaurants within a few mile radius of your location or restaurants located halfway around the world? That’s geotargeting. 

So, your webmaster can add geotargeting to your eCommerce store and you can then set the locations you want to target. Boom: That’s how geotargeting works. 

Geotargeting is the ability to customize your eCommerce store depending on the geographical location of your shoppers.

What Are the Benefits of Geotargeting? 

There are many benefits to geotargeting, especially in the eCommerce world.  

Benefit No. 1: Custom Experiences 

First and foremost is the ability to customize your shopper experience depending on geographical location. This is huge. If you sell tires, you want visitors who live in Maine to see winter tires in mid-January while visitors from Southern California see all-season tires. Same if you sell winter clothes, backyard grills, or any other seasonal product. Customize your webstore based on climate, interests, or culture, especially if selling internationally.  

Benefit No. 2: Unique Promotions 

Geotargeting also gives you the opportunity to provide unique promotions to certain shoppers. For example, you may have brick-and-mortar stores in addition to your webstore. You want to offer reduced shipping costs if customers opt for Buy Online, Pick Up In-Store instead of home delivery. However, you only want to show that deal to people who live with 10 miles of one of your physical locations. You can do that via geotargeting. 

Benefit No. 3: Compliance and Legality 

Another perk of geotargeting is the ability to customize your website depending on the location’s regulations and laws. This is more beneficial for eCommerce stores that sell across multiple countries, especially countries with strict or specific laws governing the sale of certain goods. Geotargeting allows you to display legal notices to website visitors only if that notice applies to them. It lets you remove certain products, landing pages, or language depending on the requirements of the country. Geotargeting can be an excellent way to increase your reach across borders without running afoul of any cultures, customs, or laws. 

Benefit No. 4: Increased Conversions 

This benefit encompasses all the previous benefits, but it’s important to mention on its own: Geotargeting can increase website conversions. This tactic is one more tool in your toolbelt to optimize your webstore and provide each customer with an experience that is suited to their specific needs. That can take many forms, including languages, products, promotions, currencies, marketing, and advertising. A shopper who gets a custom experience is more likely to buy.  

Person using map and laptop on wooden surface.

What Are the Downsides to Geotargeting? 

On the flip side are the negatives to geotargeting. Thankfully, there aren’t as many negatives as there are positives (and those four benefits above are just a few on a long list).  

The main reason why you’d not geotarget your eCommerce site is that you simply don’t need to. Your business could be local or your product universal. It’ll be obvious if there’s not really a need to have geotargeted web content ready to go.  

Another downside is the time investment behind geotargeting. This is a small downside, especially if you have a dedicated webmaster ready to implement the changes. However, it is worth mentioning that geotargeting requires minor changes to your website, such as in the form of an added plug-in, in order to work. It also requires your team meeting to discuss geotargeting rules that you want, and then testing to see which changes produce the most ROI. That time is probably worth it, but that’s up to you to decide. 

You’ll need to know exactly what shoppers want—plus what and how they’re buying—to geotarget effectively.

Where to Begin with Geotargeting 

Are you on board with geotargeting? If so, here’s how you can get started. 

As mentioned above, discuss with your webmaster the best way to set your site up for geotargeting. Options include: 

  • Plug-ins 
  • IP redirects 
  • Subdomains 
  • Custom code 
  • And more! 

Once you have that down, research many of the ways in which you can geotarget your website. Consider your product or products, who your customers are, where they are located, and more. Check your website analytics to see more on your audience and their browsing preferences. This can help you customize content once you reach that stage. 

This early research is critically important, because it allows you to build a connection to your visitors through customized content. You’ll need to know exactly what they want—plus what and how they’re buying—to geotarget effectively. Are shoppers in this state more likely to buy Product A? Are they abandoning their carts? These types of answers are the best way to begin your geotargeting efforts. 

Now Start Geotargeting Website Content! 

To recap, geotargeting is a great way to create optimized website visitor experiences based on their location, with the ability to increase conversions and drive sales to specific products or promos. It has many benefits to only a few cons, and eCommerce businesses that have a need for location-specific content may greatly benefit from geotargeting. 

Is geotargeting the right call for you? Wiser is here to help if you have any retail data needs in your quest for a successful business. Drop us a line—we’d love to chat!  

Matt Ellsworth

Matt is the Content Marketing Manager at Wiser, the leading provider of actionable data for better decisions. He holds a BA from Salem State University.

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