What is geolocation and why is it important to e-commerce activity? Most people would be familiar with the term e-commerce. It means an online store where you can buy stuff and it gets delivered to you. Based on the statistics from statista.com, it shows e-commerce sales in the United Kingdom (UK) from 2014 to 2019. In 2019, website sales amounted to approximately 356.4 billion British pounds. The statistics show that e-commerce is popular and growing year by year. So, do you know what is geolocation and how it relate to e-commerce?
Whenever you are surfing the Internet, your electronic device is assigned a unique id called an IP address. Every machine connected to the Internet has an IP address. This IP address is read by websites whenever you visit them.
IP geolocation is the technology that translates that IP address to geographical location. This is usually done by querying a geolocation database or API to get that IP’s geographical data.
By knowing your location, e-commerce websites can customize the user experience to make your shopping that much better. In the process, they get to maximize their revenue when customers enjoy their browsing and purchasing experience more.
Understand what motivates or interests your customers
Using geolocation data in e-commerce is pretty straight forward. With geolocation data, businesses are able to “see” where their clients are located, know which country, region or city their customers coming from based on their IP addresses. Combining location data with the customers’ browsing and purchasing histories, trends can be discerned.
Marketing department can easily see which products sell best in which region. Therefore, it is possible to target ads to online visitors to entice them with items which people in their region usually buy.
For instance, if you live in a region with heavy snowfall, you can bet that heavy-duty winter gear such as parkas will be hot selling items. On the other hand, customers from hotter climates would prefer lighter clothing.
Knowing regional preferences helps the online merchants to offer relevant promotions to boost their sales numbers. Customers definitely prefer to shop wherever they can find promotions for stuff that they like.
Customize the e-commerce website to be more accessible and convenient
Make your website visitors comfortable and they’ll be more likely to make a purchase on your online store. Merchants can utilize geolocation data to provide a localized experience for customers from various regions. Let’s take a look at some of the common ways that merchants help customers to feel at home while shopping on their web stores.
One useful thing is to have a multi-lingual website to cater for a global market. Spanish-speaking regions will appreciate a website that uses Spanish as the primary content language. The description of the product on sale in Spanish can help buyers to understand what it does. No need for Google Translate here.
Displaying the item prices in the local currency gives buyers an easy way to manage their budget for their purchases. It reduces the headache that customers experience whenever shopping on a foreign e-commerce store. No need to calculate foreign exchange rates before making purchases.
In addition, merchants can redirect customers to the local support staff for faster response to queries and assistance. Often, such support staff are able to speak the local language and better understand the customers’ needs.
During regional holidays, merchants can have localized promotion to capitalize on the surge in gift buying. It helps the marketing and sales team to focus all of their efforts on users from a particular region. As a result, the company will experience a higher ROI for their efforts.
Integrating both the online and physical stores
An online store can use geolocation to drive foot traffic to a physical store. It is common for online stores to display promotions for a nearby physical store. Thank you, geolocation data!!
Merchants know the location of the online visitors hence it’s possible to give them incentives to visit an actual store. In-store promos are a great way to encourage customers to visit a store.
Showing nearby customers such ads will definitely interests the customers to drop by. Customers are more likely to buy more things when browsing at a physical store especially if the merchant throws in free shipping.
So you may ask, what kind of geolocation can your IP address reveal?
While an IP address won’t be able to tell you exactly where you live, in some cases, it will give you its approximate geographic location information like country, region, city, coordinates of city – lat/long, ISP name, local time, domain, net speed, IDD & area code, ZIP code, weather station, mobile carrier, mobile country code – MCC, mobile network code – MNC, elevation, usage type, address type, category, proxy information, for example, proxy type, proxy ASN, threat, last seen, provider and much more. It’s a good idea to understand what an IP address reveals and you can see what your IP address geolocation looks like through an IP2Location IP Address lookup demo if you want to.
Merchants should utilize the power of geolocation data to provide a convenient and seamless shopping experience to their online shoppers. Relevant promotions increase sales conversion rates while a more localized experience improves visitor engagements. Shoppers can easily buy whatever they want and merchants get to reap the profits. Win-win situation for both parties.