Geographic Targeting 101 in Digital media

What is Geo targeting for ads

Geo targeting is a feature that allows digital media advertisers to specify a location, or a set of locations, as the only area(s) in which they want their ads to show. This is an essential strategy for businesses that depend on foot traffic or home deliveries, such as restaurants, brick-and-mortar stores, and ecommerce sites.


How do you know you need geo targeting for your ads

These are a few of the scenarios in which you should advertise locally:

  1. You sell via local retailers or have a brick and mortar store

If you sell products in your own local storefront, it’s a no-brainer to run location targeting campaigns. (use location extensions and targeting tweaks)

But even if you sell in third-party retail stores like Tesco and Sainsbury’s, you can run impressive campaigns to drive sales on your products. (use affiliate location ad extensions to drive traffic to locations where your product is sold)

  1. Your product or service can capitalize on geo hotspots

Location targeting isn’t just for those who sell products in a storefront or through a retailer. Maybe you sell tech gear for business workers or briefcases and clothing for CEOs. Target big metropolitan areas with fortune 500 companies. Areas like London, New York or Seattle.


Top platform features to use when trying to target a local audience

  1. Radius targeting

Radius targeting (also known as proximity targeting or „Target a radius”) allows you to choose to show your ads to customers within a certain distance from your business, rather than choosing individual cities, regions, or countries. If you want to get acquainted with geo targeting, check Googles page on this matter.


Selecting a radius

When you target a radius, it’s worth keeping in mind that selecting a small radius could mean that your ads might only show intermittently or not at all. That’s because small targets might not meet our quantitative targeting criteria. Try to approximate population in the areas selected and remember to check “target size” when building an adgroup (you’ll see it in the right hand column).

  1. From the page menu on the left, click Locations.
  2. Click the name of the campaign you wish to edit.
  3. Click the blue pencil icon, then select Radius.
  4. In the search box, enter the address of the location you’d like to use for the center of the radius. Enter the radius that you’d like to target and select a unit of measurement from the drop-down menu.
  5. Check the map to make sure you’re targeting the correct area. When you’re ready, click Save to add the radius target.
  6. Click Save.


  1. Postal code targeting


Consider using more precise targeting if your business doesn’t serve all regions or cities, or you’d like to focus your advertising efforts on certain areas within a country. Depending on the country, you can target regions, cities, or postal codes.

If the post code you’re trying to target begins with zero, make sure that your spreadsheet formatting doesn’t remove the zero as the first digit.


  1. Google My Business page


GMB is a free tool that lets you manage how your business appears on Google Search and Maps. That includes adding your business name, location, and hours; monitoring and replying to customer reviews; adding photos; learning where and how people are searching for you, and more. Find more about what it takes to be present on Google my Business in this article about tracking store traffic that we posted previously on Point Primus blog.


  1. Targeting people interested in a specific location


This option lets you show your ads to anyone who searches on Google for your targeted location. If a person doesn’t specify a location in their search, then the system uses their physical location for targeting. Google offers accurate information about this targeting type in the following article:


Geographic targeting stunts

  1. Targeting events (using Facebook and Google’s radius targeting)


Geographic specific events, such as a conferences or traditional local holiday celebrations, can be used to target consumers.


  1. Targeting venues


Stadiums, airports, universities, and malls are examples of specific venues that can be targeted in order to reach specific interest groups. Make sure to read SearchEngineLand’s article and find out more tips for when targeting really really specific.



There you have it, now try to customize your ads better with location targeting and always think about who your’re targeting and what’s their daily activities. Where do they work? Where do they like to have their lunch? Where do they relax?

For more information try looking up on Search Engine Land, Wordstream, Search Engine Journal and Google itself. They also share a lot of accurate information.