Geo Targeting for Advertising & Content
There are many ways to target your ideal audience, including with the use of demographics. However, one often-overlooked piece of data is geographic location. If you fail to consider this information when coming up with a marketing strategy, you can miss out on crucial opportunities.
The simple fact is that the more you know about your audience, the better you can target them. This can increase the chance for conversions, and bring in more traffic to your website and social media platforms. Plus, the key information you’ll need isn’t hard to find.
In this post, we’ll introduce ‘geo targeting’ and explain how it can be used for advertising and content delivery. We’ll then show you how to set up geo targeting on Google and Facebook, and introduce some WordPress plugins that can help. Let’s get started!
What Is Geo Targeting?
Geo targeting, also known as local targeting, is a marketing practice that delivers advertisements to consumers based on their individual geographic locations. This marketing can take place on search engines, social media platforms, and websites.
For example, let’s say you run a business based in downtown Los Angeles. You may prefer to deliver advertisements only to consumers located in the city and surrounding areas, as opposed to nationally or internationally.
Beyond advertising, geo targeting can also be used to improve your content delivery systems, and provide a more authentic User Experience (UX). Let’s talk more about how that works.
How to Use Geo Targeting for Advertising
Geo targeting has many benefits. For instance, it can increase your business’ Return On Investment (ROI), by serving content to searchers based on their physical locations. This is great news for businesses of all size, as it can cut down on unnecessary spending and improve the way the money you do spend is being used.
How to Set Up Geo Targeting for Google Ads
There are many platforms where you can use geo targeting, but one of the best places to start is with Google Ads. To do that, you’ll first need to set up a free Google AdWords account.
Once that’s done, you can create your first campaign. From the Google Ads dashboard, click on Campaigns. Once you’re redirected to the next page, select New Campaign:
Choose your goal (such as sales or website traffic) and campaign type (such as display or search). Then, hit Continue at the bottom of the page.
Next, you’ll be instructed to name your campaign (it’s best to make that name as descriptive as possible), and to choose your campaign Networks. Once that’s all set up, it’s time to configure the location settings:
The main options are very general, but you can add your own specific locations to target or exclude, including countries, cities, regions, and postal codes. Clicking on Location options will also give you more control over your geo targeting:
Here, you can decide how your campaigns will target the specific locations you’ve chosen. For example, you can only target people who are physically in that region, or target both them and people searching for businesses in your areas of interest.
You can also determine how your campaign should handle excluded locations. This can be just as important, especially when you’re trying to reach a very specific audience.
Once all of those selections are made, as well as any other settings here you’d like to configure, you can save the campaign and begin to implement it immediately!
How to Set Up Geo Targeting for Facebook Ads
Similar to Google Ads, Facebook Ads enables you to set up your geo targeting at the campaign creation stage.
To get started, you’ll want to click on the drop-down arrow in the top-right corner of the Facebook newsfeed, and select Create Ads. You’ll then be brought to the Ads Manager, which is where you can create and edit campaigns.
The first thing to do here is select your campaign’s goals, then hit Continue. To set up geo targeting, scroll down to Audience on the next page:
This is where you’ll select the locations you’d like to include and exclude. You can add countries, cities, counties, and zip codes from across the globe.
In fact, there are even more options here than on Google Ads. For example, you can target your audience based on what they’re doing in your chosen locations:
This gives you greater control over your business’ geo targeting.
Geo Targeting Website Content
It’s important to ensure that your advertisements on search engines and social media are set up for proper geo targeting. However, you may find that this is not enough to produce the results you’re looking for. To boost your chances of attracting the right audience, another way to use geo targeting is via your website’s content.
Optimizing your website content for specific locations enables visitors to access content that’s more relevant to their wants and needs. This include blog posts and website pages, but also region-specific discount codes and seasonal offers.
Does Geo Targeting Website Content Impact SEO?
Another way that geo targeting can benefit your site is by positively impacting its Search Engine Optimization (SEO). In other words, it can improve where your website shows up Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).
SERPs rank web pages according to many factors, one of which is keyword optimization. It can be difficult for newer websites to rank highly on SERPs, because the keywords they use may already have lots of competition.
The answer to this is to use location-specific keywords, to improve your rankings and increase your reach. For example, the keyword “teeth whitening” has 108 million results on Google:
On the other hand, a location-specific keyword such as “teeth whitening London” has significantly less results, at 13.5 million:
In the majority of cases, adding a location to your target keywords can improve your rankings on SERPs, and more efficiently target your audience.
Other ways to use geo targeting to impact SEO include creating location-specific landing pages, and optimizing your website for Google Local Search.
The Best WordPress Plugins for Geo Targeting Website Content
Finally, plugins can make geo targeting your site’s content a lot easier. Fortunately, there are plenty of options to choose from. Let’s take a look at just a few that you can use on your WordPress website.
GeoTargeting Lite is one of the original geo targeting WordPress plugins. It enables you to create dynamic content, and then display that content to users based on their country.
This plugin can be useful for eCommerce websites and local business sites, both of which may create products or content for specific areas. You can even deliver exclusive location-based offers to your readers.
Geotargeting Pro is the premium offshoot of GeoTargeting Lite. With a wider array of features, this plugin enables you to target your content, hide specific eCommerce products from selected regions, and more. Plus, it lets you target states and cities, not just countries.
Unlike the other plugins on our list, IP Geo Block works by excluding IP addresses originating in certain locations from accessing your website. This is a great way to protect your website from scammers and hacking attempts. Plus, it lets you display eCommerce products and content only to those who would benefit from them.
Using Geo Targeting to Improve the Digital Experience
Geo targeting is one way to improve the digital experience for your users, as it enables you to tailor the content they’ll see. Fortunately, WP Engine makes this task easy with the GeoTargeting add-on.
To learn more about WP Engine and what we can offer you, check out our plans as well!