Home Digital Marketing What is Geotargeting with Google Ads and Should You Be Doing It?

What is Geotargeting with Google Ads and Should You Be Doing It?

by Ansley Merrill

Geotargeting with Google Ads is all about delivering the right message, in the right location, at the right time. Without delivering on all of these factors at once, your business ad and search strategy could fall apart over time. In this article we will discuss what geotargeting means, it’s benefits and challenges, and some of the best ways for your business to utilize geotargeting. Let’s get started!

Table of Contents

What Does Geotargeting Mean?

Geotargeting is a paid advertising strategy that targets local communities and delivers different advertisements based on geographic locations. Also known as radius targeting, it is often used more in local paid advertising.

Choosing to geotarget with paid ads means you’re focusing on a more detailed way of reaching people based on their specific area and behaviors on their devices. For example, you could run an ad for a clothing store to target consumers who are in close proximity to the establishment. Advertisers can then choose what type of messaging and content they want to appear in their ads in certain areas. In this example, let’s say they run an ad for consumers to come and visit the clothing store. Individuals who enter that proximity will receive those ads if they are on their device in that certain location. 

Overall, geotargeting helps advertisers create more relevant and targeted ads for their customers. In this way, it can prove to be useful in advertising strategies to help further increase engagement and traffic.

What are the Benefits and Challenges of Geotargeted Advertising?

Benefits of Geotargeted Advertising

1. Increase Your Local Presence

Geotargeting helps get your business ranking high within the local areas you’re targeting. Especially for smaller businesses prospecting in local areas. When you’re ranking higher with advertisements in local areas, the more local customers notice you and find ways to interact with your business. Improving relationships with customers helps build trust with customers for them to keep coming back. 

Because geotargeting has factors with customer behavior, this can help your business recognize your customer’s needs. Taking customer’s needs into account will help improve a stronger engagement within local PPC campaigns. Also implementing local PPC strategies with a local SEO campaign can help further create double the positive impact for any business large or small. Increasing your local presence through geotargeting helps reach larger and more targeted customers in your local area.

2. Helpful in Competitive Areas

Especially in areas and industries that are more competitive, utilizing geotargeted advertising can be a benefit for your business. There may be times where you want to test certain campaigns in certain areas without your competitors knowing. In these cases, you can do so by hiding an IP address along with utilizing geotargeting. This helps your business test certain areas around you without removing parts of your search strategy. By excluding the IP address, your business prevents competitors from seeing your ads. When you’re working in a competitive area or industry, geotargeting helps keep your strategies safe without removing a market from it. 

3. Best for Local Strategy

In certain industries, it’s better to be local and relevant. These types of businesses can be restaurants, nail salons or spas, boutiques, pet stores, or smaller businesses with fewer locations. Being a smaller local business can be more beneficial from localized advertising such as geotargeting. It’s one of the best ways for brick and mortar stores to bring traffic and revenue to customers around them or who come near them. Not to say big businesses can’t benefit from geotargeting as well. However, it comes more naturally and easily to smaller local businesses. 

Challenges of Geotargeted Advertising

1. Be Patient with Results

With any PPC campaign, there is always a certain risk you take with using it. Running different tests over time can become expensive and costly while it might not always bring the traffic or changes in behavior your business desires. That’s why it’s important to have the right content at the right time for the right audience. Otherwise your content and voice can come off to the wrong audience and not make any sense or relate to their needs. Geotargeting can sometimes be a gamble, but it must be a risk your business is willing to be patient with and take. 

2. Trouble Reaching the Right Audience

Due to the shift from the Covid-19 pandemic, many aspects and processes in personal and work life have changed from what used to be considered normal. With this in mind, reaching the right audience at the right time has become more of a challenge in PPC campaigns. While there are still ways to go about targeting your audience, it might be more of a challenge for your small business now then in the past. With geotargeting being specific on having the right content at the right time with the right audience, it’s important to double check your information before starting a campaign. If not, your business could lose revenue instead of gaining it. 

6 Best Practices for How to Use Geotargeting

In order for geotargeting to be successful, it is all about having the right content, in the right area, at the right time. There are different ways in which your business can go about utilizing geotargeting and here are a few ways to help you get started:

1. Target the Location(s) Your Business Serves

When it comes to geotargeting, the best thing to focus on is targeting the locations your business serves. The best way to ensure you’re not wasting your business’ time, money, or resources is to focus on where you are located. If your restaurant has one location in Atlanta, set your search campaign to only appear to searchers in the Atlanta area. If you’re an ecommerce website that serves the southeast, don’t have your ads appear outside of Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Alabama, Florida, Tennessee, etc. When you don’t eliminate areas that shouldn’t be targeted, it wastes your money spent on customers who aren’t able to convert. 

2. Exclude the Locations That Your Business Does Not Serve 

In opposition to targeting the area in which your business resides, it’s important to take note of the areas your business does not reside in. There may be areas your business isn’t aware of that have the same name as the city or area in which your business is located. Without making a note of excluding that area, your business could be targeting an area it’s not able to serve. For example, your business might be able to deliver to U.S. states excluding U.S. territories. With this important factor in mind, it’s important to exclude U.S. territories such as Puerto Rico from your search campaigns. It’s important for your business to exclude the areas or locations that your business isn’t able to service. This helps prevent wasting money and effort in areas that are not beneficial to you. 

3. Optimize Your Ads to Reduce Wasted Ad Spend & Irrelevant Leads

Optimizing your ads helps save your business wasted ad append and helps get rid of irrelevant leads. When you’ve learned to optimize your ads, your audience will be more likely to convert. Without putting in the effort to optimize your ads, your ads can lose their value and not convert customers into visiting your business. For example, for someone looking for a dentist in Washington D.C. it’s not going to convert for a dentist in Washington state. Be sure to take the time to exclude the areas that might be of similar significance or have a similar name to help further optimize your ads. An optimized paid search campaign decreases wasted ad spend and helps increase ROI, too.

4. Consider Incorporating Location and Call Extensions

One of the best ways for your business to take advantage of customers around you is through location and call extensions. Location and call extensions present an opportunity for local prospects to contact and reach your business if needed. When location extensions are added within your ads, people will view your address in targeted areas. When call extensions are added within your ads, people will view your phone number in specific locations. Giving customers direct access to the information helps potential customers reach your business directly in the moment or in the future.

5. Avoid Competing Against Your Locations

When geotargeting your ads, be sure to specify in Google Ads that your business ads only want to appear in your searcher’s location. Rather than to searchers who let Google search their location. The best thing to do in these instances where several locations are closer together is to separate by product or service. Segmenting by products and services over the location helps when all of your locations are bidding over the same keywords. It will keep the price per clicks lower, increase returns on investment, and improve performance over time. If this isn’t the best option for your business, consider A/B testing to test on certain keywords and locations while being careful not to overlap targeted areas. 

6. Look at Google Trend and Keyword Data for Expansion Opportunities

Utilizing tools such as Google Tools can be one way in seeing which areas and regions offer your business the most potential for conversions. Along with Google Tools, keyword data can be beneficial to your business. Look at areas and topics that are worthwhile for your ads strategy to target through geotargeting. With each ad, your business should take these factors into account and consideration:

  • Visual aspects
  • Language
  • Culture
  • Offers and Deals
  • Currency

All of these factors should be considered when choosing which content goes with each targeted area. Failure to incorporate the right factors into the right ads, can make the ads not as successful in the wrong areas. Be mindful of these factors and what areas you decide to target in. 

Local SEO with Geotargeted Advertising

For your business it’s always important to consider how you’re going to use geotargeting to your advantage. PPC and SEO are clearly different. However, the two can work together to make a big, positive impact on a business’s growth and lead generation. PPC is a faster means but SEO is more sustainable for long-term growth.

Local PPC and local SEO can make a business more relevant locally, expand its reach, gain exposure, and capture the local market more effectively. It’s up to your business and what goals you would like to achieve. If you’re looking for assistance with SEO, Manta is here to help! Learn more today about our small business SEO company services.

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