When it comes to getting success from your PPC and Google Ads campaign, you are probably only too aware that there are many, many factors that you need to get right to bring in those sales and enquiries, but when we focus on location as one of these factors, this element is key to making your campaign fly and be a success.
AdWords and Pay Per Click relies on your initial set up to be as close to perfect as you can make it to get results, and then of course the optimisation and work that often needs to be done to keep on top of the incoming data and to make changes based upon it. Very few campaigns will just work from the start, but if you get good foundations and your underlying settings are spot on, then the rest should follow over time with some work and effort.
Getting the location(s) of your campaign spot on is important, as if you get this wrong then your campaign is likely to fail and in a very financially draining way. Knowing where your customers are located is important, and then making sure your campaign is hitting these people is also very important, which is why just leaving your location set to UK is the worst thing you can do if you are only looking for locally based customers. For example, a fruit and veg shop based in Bristol does not want someone searching up in Nottingham for fruit and veg shops, as they are a local company wanting local footfall, but a national online retailer of shoes is unlikely to just want Cheltenham based traffic if they sell nationwide.
And therefore, the location setting within your Google Ads campaign is something you simply must focus on. If you leave it too open, you will spend your money and get few results, whereas if you aim it too tight and narrow, then you may well find that the traffic is just not there and you do not get the level of customers you were wanting. But, it is better to start close to home and then slowly open up the coverage, rather than bring it back in, as by then, the money will spent and you will have lost your love for PPC.
So, let’s look at the location controls you have open to you.
By Post Code
Post codes, if done correctly, can be a strong way of hitting the markets you want to tap into. For obvious reasons, if you are a local business wanting people in your area, then using post codes can work well, but if you are a local business that knows a few post codes are maybe more suited (finically for example), then you can target these and remove any areas that might not potentially fall into your requirements. This is not being snobby or elitist, but in some cases, targeting areas that are known to be “wealthy” post codes does make sense for the high end and luxury markets.
By Town, City Or County
A Google Ads campaign allows you to target by town, city or county, which means you can draw up a list of towns, cities and counties and then specifically target them. Most local businesses are often not county wide, so they would normally target a city or a town or two, or maybe a bit of both as we come to later, but being able to simply hit the areas you want to is so important, and you can do it quite easily via place names. One thing to mention is that not all areas have enough search volume to make it work, so if you find the figures or population is quite low, this is when you might need to expand your locational targeting to get the most from the platform.
Radius targeting works on an area plus X miles of this place, so for example, you could target Bristol and then 25 miles as a radius around it, but this as the crow flies rather than considering other distance aspects. Radius targeting can work well, but you need to think about how this works for your business as in some circumstances, it can target the wrong areas. For example, if you had your location as Chepstow and a 20 mile radius, whilst this would take into account the Forest of Dean, Monmouth and key areas, it would also hit Bristol as well, and when you take into account how long it actually does take to get to Bristol from there, plus the bridge fee, it might be where the radius option starts to fall a bit short for you. So, although it can work for many, just make sure you consider how it works out the distances before you opt for it and make sure it’s right for your campaign.
By A Bit Of A Mixture
The nice thing about location targeting is that you can use a bit of a mixture, so maybe a few post codes and a radius, or maybe the main city and the surrounding post codes. Google Ads and indeed most paid advertising models can take time to get right in terms of hitting the right people, so never be afraid to try more than one aspect until you find the right one, or a balance of a few, as some times trial and error is necessary to get your campaign performing just right.