The online stores are already an established norm for anyone interested in selling products, merchandise, clothes or anything, anywhere in the world. The abundance of platforms and tools that are specifically created to ease the process of creating an online store from scratch only tells us how much the demand in them has skyrocketed. Any hobby or side hustle can be turned into a profitable business and setting it up on the internet without the physical baggage of an actual physical space is certainly much more attractive to many of us.
These days, even the smallest of shops has the potential and tools to stand out, finding the right approach towards their customer. Having at their disposal strategies based on statistics and analysis that is already available, it is all just the matter of choosing the right type of insight on which to focus.
The geographical location, however irrelevant it might seem to be at first glance for a shop that is activating online, is actually something worth considering in terms of marketing research and analysis. Knowing where your customer is in the world, as well as on the internet, is a way of improving your service, understanding better how you can attract the right type of customer and keeping them interested is after all, what every store owner wants.
It is a strategic power load, which when used in the right way can be a very strong advantage for your business and store. This article will look into only a few of many ways that the geographical information can come to our aid, connecting you to the many customers that have the potential to become your loyal clients and friends for a very long time.
What is Geomarketing?
When we talk about anything that includes the word “Geo” in it, it clearly refers to a geographical attribute. Making the assumption that it refers to the location of the customer, we would be quite right, however, it is not limited to it. Knowing where a person is, or where they shop, gives a much bigger insight than merely their physical location, and it can help a shop as well as a web shop owner in many ways.
The term Geomarketing could be found roaming the realms of the internet for some time now, and the principle seems fairly simple to grasp. It refers to the gathering and analysis of geographical information. It is not a set of rules, but rather guide points from which decisions can be made, and strategies developed. In more simple words, it is a way of detecting firstly where your customers are, that is the main thing, but also where they are not, what are the customs of the region, the language they speak, and lastly, their habits, which is definitely a very important part of the equation.
Generally, knowing these things are quite basic and essential for a brand to know, as it has short, as well as long term rewards. It is one of the ways that create a connection between the business and the clients, which is more impactful in the long-term, but also has instant benefits for sure.
The best part though, is that Geomarketing can be used by all types of shops and companies, no matter the size, it is just as useful for a large brand as well as for a one-person organization that is just starting out. There are new things that can be learned and discovered at any point in the development of a company, and the same data can be interpreted in many different ways.
Geographical information that can be gathered online, is a good starting point for creating a long-term strategy which would serve you well for quite some time. And with the grand number of visitors, and potential visitors, it is much easier to detect the patterns of behavior that leads them to one website or another. The triggers that lead them to a finalized purchase, or on the other side, what makes them exit without a second thought.
By creating a more personalized experience for someone accessing the store for the first time, creates a greater chance of them coming back. If they see something on the website that is relevant and specific to them, they will instantly have the feeling that your website can be trusted to do most of the work, and that they are much more likely to find what they need much faster. And the use of geographical information is one of the most useful, and information-packed data that you can use to your advantage.
There are so many ways that this kind of information can be used, as it is quite personal to each and every type of business or store. Depending on what they do, where they are and most definitely where they want to get, each and every business should think on how to strategically use it to deliver the best service, in the best way for them and their customers. Below are just a couple of things that the geographical information can help you with, but as always, the sky’s the limit.
– It’s all about the season
While it does depend on what exactly the shop is selling, most things are subject to seasonal change in one way or the other. Whether it is the holiday season in one part of the world, or if it is snowing most of the year in another, understanding where it would be more relevant to promote some type of products or others, you can turn it into a great advantage.
Keeping up with these changes will increase the trust in your store, in a way that will assure your visitors that they can count on you as a source of most relevant content.
It can also give you a chance for longer term planning, a way to implement season related promotions and campaigns, but only in those areas where they would be most relevant.
– Different languages
It really is a great number of customers that websites created singularly in English might miss. Besides the people that do not happen to speak it at all, imagine how much better the first impression would be, if during the first visit, they would see their native language on the screen. Or vice-versa, if you have the website in your local language, and you hope to start moving towards a more international audience, it is more efficient to show the people accessing it from the US the English version, instead of letting them stumble around while trying to find how to switch the language, and oh the horror, not being able to find it all.
– Shipping experiences
The location is also a very important part to take care of while thinking of shipping. It is quite straightforward but assuring your visitors that they are shipping to your exact location is sometimes not visible or accessible. And there is nothing more frustrating than getting to the checkout page only to discover that the shipping is going to cost extra, that it is going to take longer than you expected, or that it is not available at all. Getting all that information to the customer from the very beginning can be a great advantage to you, as well as to them, again, letting them know that they are receiving the highest order degree of customer care.
– Connection to physical stores
Bigger brands that are linking their physical locations to their online audience, have a very regular practice of targeting online shoppers that are situated close to their stores, and have interests that are similar to what they promote as part of their ecosystem.
In-store pickup is a great feature for many customers that are keen on both virtual and physical store experience, and it is a great way to let them know that they have the option of getting both.
It is also a great way of letting know the people that are traveling around and only in the area for a short while, ergo unable to wait for the delivery except maybe for the next day, that they have the option of getting what they want anyway, just a short walk away.
The online and offline world is in a state of constant change and development, we all know that. As sellers and buyers, it is always a good idea to understand these changes the best we can and decide which would benefit us the most. Having at our disposal so many tools is definitely encouraging, but it can also be a bit overwhelming. The goal is to increase trust, make the right connection to the people that would appreciate our store because they understand the value it presents.
It is great to try out different strategies, but the most important part is understanding what really works for you and your store. It is all about the context in which you operate, and the way it fits within the universe in which you are activating. Geography can be of great help, but there is no universal answer, the real question is how it can help your store specifically, and that’s what makes it all so exciting.
Polina Slepac is a writer and illustrator, working as a Digital Marketer at Personizely ( https://www.personizely.net/product/website-widgets ), a SaaS platform that offers marketing tools for website widgets and personalization. She writes articles on various themes, from web marketing, to art and philosophy. You can find her on LinkedIn ( https://www.linkedin.com/in/polinaslepac/ ).