IP Addresses and GEO Targetting – International Search Summit

The second session saw Kristjan Mar Hauksson from Nordic eMarketing present on IP addressing and GEOIP targeting.

Studies have shown 15% – 35% of people chose to search by targeted country (pages from). It is essential to make sure your regional based site appears in these results.

Geotargetting however is not 100% accurate, so always question the data. The inclusion factor is loosely based on a Concept of region. This is determined in various ways from CCTLD, IP of hosting, and inbound links. Other signals such as currency symbols are becoming more valuable and relevant. They also affect conversion rate in terms of usability.

Business listings like Google Places are becoming more and more relevant location based pointers. Google wikimaps will be interesting to monitor.

There is still confusion between brand and geographic location, for example “Iceland” in the UK is more brand search than country information search. Within the Spanish results the brand is still there but lower. Click through rate is a factor in determining this.

How exact can we be?

USA is very exact as it gives out IP addresses based on ZIP codes. The rest of the world is not as exact. Yahoo analytics also has better geo reviewing functionality than Google Analytics however it drops a lot outside the US. IPv6 will allow personal IP addresses but the current penetration rates are around 2%.

Take aways:
1. Use a proxy in the Germany if you want Geran results.
2. Use ratio of incoming links on a geographic basis.
3. If you have a generic TLD ensure that your geotargeting is set up. .TV is actually the Isalnd of Tuvalu.
4. Google webmaster tools is very slow to react on geographic settings.
5. Google ignores Geo meta tags.

See other related posts on the conversion conference:

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About Louis Venter

Louis Venter is the founding director and CEO of MediaVision, a Search Engine Marketing (SEM) company specialising in all areas of search. His particular interests are organic search marketing, paid search marketing, conversion strategy and online PR.