Ideas & Innovation

Location Based Targeting: How to Boost Physical Foot Traffic to Your Store

Location Based Targeting: How to Boost Physical Foot Traffic to Your Store
Jan. 29,

Location targeting is a successful strategy for connecting the right customer with the right content within a specific location – which is essential for any business who wants to be more intentional about marketing directly to its own local target audience.

Pretty much every local business, agency, or company out there is looking for effective ways to target more potential customers and improve customer experience, all while operating within set advertising budget constraints.

In this modern economic climate, online shopping continues to grow in popularity by the day, thanks to the saturation of smartphones, tablets, and laptops, along with the amount of time the average consumer spends on these digital devices. It has become increasingly challenging for local brick-and-mortar stores and small businesses to stay competitive in terms of driving more physical foot traffic to their establishments, along with being able to acquire new customers.

But with a powerful tool like Google Ads, you can not only sustain your current level of business but also continue to grow by optimizing Location Targeting strategies.

Google Ads includes numerous features to help put your company in front of your desired audience and potential clients on the devices they use, at the times they use them, in a manner that’s very geographically specific to your location.

Simply put, Location Targeting is a feature which can help stores, retail shops, outlets, restaurants, and small businesses to increase their customer base.

Let’s dig deeper into the world of Geographical Targeting (Location Targeting), and help uncover how you can become an expert in implementing this robust feature.

What is (Location Targeting)?


Location Targeting or Proximity Targeting in Google Ads is a focused targeting option which allows the advertiser to present personalized ads to potential clients, based on their current location.

Why Should I Be Taking Advantage?

Let’s see what Google has to say about their own Local Searches, in order to better understand the potential of Location Targeting and Local Pay-Per-Click (PPC) ads.

75% of people who find local, helpful information in search results are much more likely to visit the physical stores that appear in their search results. (https://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/articles/how-digital-connects-shoppers-to-local-stores.html)

Almost three-quarters of people who search on their smartphone for a local solution nearby will visit a related business within a day of their search, and 28% of those searches result in a purchase.

Google has seen explosive growth in searches like “near me,” “open,” “now,” and “near me” – which helps to reflect the shifting desires of customers in finding more immediate results and solutions.

Online platforms and devices like mobile phones and tablets have provided the ability to look for a solution as fast as possible, thus increasing the amount of local searches. Being present in front of a prospective customer with the right message at the right time can serve to help grow your business exponentially!

How to Utilize Geotargeting in Your Campaigns

Google Ads provides three different options in Standard Location Targeting, which are explained below.

Location Targeting Options

  • Presence or interest: People who are either presently in, regularly in, or have shown interest in your targeted locations (recommended). This includes people who are searching on any of Google’s platforms or related partner sites.
  • Presence: People who are presently in, or regularly in your targeted locations. This includes people who reside in your location, or who frequently visit your targeted geographical area.
  • Search interest: People searching for your targeted locations. This approach is best for tourism, real estate, the rental industry, etc., as they seek to target the people who are showing interest in their targeted area. These folks could be looking to visit, relocate, or are planning a vacation in your area. With the geographical targeting exclusion option, you can target the prospective clients you’re looking for, and also exclude any locations you specifically don’t want to target.

Location Exclusion Options

  • Presence: People presently located within your excluded locations (recommended). The point of this to be able to exclude people from your targeting, based upon their respective locations.
  • Presence or interest: People who are presently in, regularly in, or who have shown interest in your excluded locations. Here you can exclude not only the physically-present people, but also those who regularly visit, or are simply showing interest in that particular area. With advanced location targeting options, you can target or exclude certain countries, states, provinces, cities, places, even university communities. This feature offers you a more granular approach towards selecting your target areas. You can also opt to select an area within a specifically-define radius for targeting your customers. You can pinpoint a specific location (such as your store or business location), and then set a certain radius around your site to include for potential customer targeting.

Smart Tips: You should leverage the Location Ad extension and Affiliation Location extension. These can direct users straight to a Google Map which displays your store or business location. It’s also wise to create a Google My Business profile for your business in order to establish a stronger local online presence.

How does it work?

Geotargeting is based on various signals, including users’ settings, devices, and behavior on Google’s platforms. But there are also other identifiers that come into play, like GPS/Wi-Fi data, as well as content which is specific to your intended location.

For example, let’s say you have a coffee shop in New York City, and you’d like for any local customer searching for “coffee near me” or “coffee shop near me” to see your ads presented to them personally. Without Location Targeting in place, your ads could be seen by somebody in Wyoming who has no plans to ever set foot in your neighborhood. But if you really just want to show your ads to a potential customer within a certain perimeter, then implementing Location Targeting in your Google Ads is the way to go. Your ad can be utilized to provide detailed information about your location, your hours of operation, and any special products or deals you’re offering right now. In other words, this gives you the ability to connect with your potential local shopper in an effective manner, right at the opportune moment to best capture them.

Benefits of Geotargeting

Granular Control Over Your Marketing Budget – With Location Targeting, you’re only serving your ads to those customers who are actually in your specified area, city, or location. This helps to reduce unnecessary clicks, which also ultimately helps to save you on your advertising costs.

  • Improve Customer Satisfaction: Providing personalized, fast solutions serve to boost client engagement, also resulting in a better overall customer experience with you.

Improve Customer Satisfaction

  • Edge Over Competitors: Location targeting helps your ads to display over those of other competitors’ business offers, products, promotions, and ads. Your ability to better connect with potential customers with your target radius gives you a decided advantage.

Edge Over Competitors

  • Improved Local Business Relevancy: Location Targeting can help you become an established authority within the domain of your neighborhood. This helps to make your business more locally relevant and puts you in a better position to promote your business on special occasions, as well as through special, localized marketing events.

Local Business Relevancy

  • Offering and Testing New Products & Services: By already having a reliable, trustworthy customer base in place, you can also leverage testing your new products, services, and offers with your existing base to better gauge their response. This can also help you to capture additional markets by implementing your most successful local strategies in other desired locations.

Testing New Products

Let’s Get Started!

In conclusion, it’s time to start leveraging the hidden power of Geographic Targeting ASAP! You can provide your users with the services they’re looking for, and you can also become a bona fide local brand authority!

We hope that you’ll find these tips and strategies to be helpful. But now that you’ve read this far, you may have some other follow-up questions that have come to mind. Ready to start really growing your business? Need some help with your digital marketing strategy, tools, and practice? Cibirix is here to help! We provide data-driven, successful, real-world marketing & web development solutions for businesses & companies in every sector. So, what are you waiting for? Let’s get started on GROWING your business today!

About Author


Amrita Khandelwal

SEO Analyst

Amrita is one of the professional SEO analyst for the Cibirix marketing team. She applies her in-depth knowledge and experience to help boost website rankings for both our B2B and B2C business clients, ultimately producing more traffic for their sites. She is intentional about creating an individualized link-building strategy that’s not just creative, but ethical as well – she’s always careful not to violate any of Google’s SEO policies. Amrita believes in building links which will elevate our clients’ respective brands both effectively and sustainably. During her spare time between SEO projects, Amrita loves to read books and follow blogs related to nutrition and yoga.

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