When you create a new text and image campaign in Yandex.Direct, advanced geotargeting is usually enabled by default in the advanced settings section. But do all advertisers need this setting? Are there any cases where advanced geotargeting should be turned off? Let’s figure it out together with paid traffic specialists.
How advanced geotargeting works
Advanced geotargeting allows you to show ads when searching for queries with the name of the display region, even if the user is in a different region. For each request, the system automatically determines the region of interest to the user and takes into account similar and informal names, for example, St. Petersburg, St. Petersburg and others.
This allows you not to lose contact with the user who temporarily left the target region, as well as interact with those who are interested in goods or services in another region, even if they do not live in it. Often, when planning a trip, users search in advance for goods or services in the region where they are going, or, while away, they are interested in products in their home region. Advanced geotargeting allows you to expand your reach to such users.
Advanced geotargeting works for both search advertising and campaigns in the Yandex Advertising Network.
When extended geotargeting is enabled, ads are shown to a user from a non-target region if the search query contains an indication of the target region. For example, a person, being in Kazan, may be interested in the delivery of sweet gifts in Saratov in order to surprise a friend by entering queries such as “delivery of sweets in Saratov” into the search box. Also, a user who is going to St. Petersburg will probably search in advance for information about shops, cafes, restaurants and entertainment in the city by entering requests marked “St. Petersburg”, “St. Petersburg”, “Peter”, etc.
Here the principle of operation is somewhat different. The system uses Crypto to analyze where the user is most often to determine his home region. If the user spends most of his time in St. Petersburg, most likely he lives in this city. When the advanced geotargeting option is enabled, the user will see an advertisement if his regular coordinates match the target region. Thus, a St. Petersburg resident interested in buying a home will see advertisements for the sale of real estate in St. Petersburg, even if he is temporarily in Moscow.
Advanced network targeting is especially useful for goods and services with deferred demand that the user does not purchase immediately. Even if a person temporarily leaves the home region, these goods and services, most likely, will not cease to be relevant to him. Advertising with extended geotargeting in networks works for long-term interests and gradually leads the user through the funnel.
Experiences and recommendations of specialists
Advanced geotargeting is a useful setting, but not always and not everyone should use it. We asked specialists from i-Media and Artics Internet Solutions agencies when it is advisable to use advanced geotargeting, and when to disable it.
The enabled “Advanced geographic targeting” option allows you to show an advertising message not only to those users who are physically located in the selected region, but also to those who live in another and are interested in goods or services in the region specified by the geo targeting settings. The option can also be used to communicate with a user who is interested in the offer, but is temporarily absent (for example, went on vacation). The system will find it at a different point and show the relevant message.
In addition, when working with low-frequency queries, the tool can help you remove the “Low impressions” status from ad groups and avoid disruptions.
This option is not suitable for all topics. For example, advanced geotargeting ignores the travel segment by default.
Also, the option is not available in topics that require documents and licenses to be promoted (for example, insurance, finance, or medical goods and services).
For all other projects, there are no formal restrictions, but it is important to look at the goals of campaigns and the structure of the advertising office.
When working with e-commerce projects, we optimize advertising campaigns by ROI, and extended geographic targeting does not allow making adjustments upward or downward for regions that bring profit or loss, since the end result of an advertising campaign is also influenced by users living in other regions.
When drawing up the structure of the advertising account, we came to the conclusion that it is more efficient for us to separate campaigns by different locations (districts, cities of federal significance, millionaires, regional centers – depending on the product and the volume of requests for it), since the seasonality of demand differs between different regions and income from the order of each product.
If your goal is to meet fixed economic indicators (ROI, ROAS, or DRR), then enabling advanced geotargeting can lead to an increase in the cost of the targeted action, as well as the inability to improve campaign performance by disabling expensive segments. Non-targeted impressions to users from other regions will lower the CTR of your ads and lead to higher cost per click.
We find advanced geotargeting to be a useful setting, but with a few caveats. By default, we turn off this feature in advertising campaigns and only use it in special cases when it is appropriate and useful in a specific project. For example, we have a positive experience of using this option in the real estate industry: in this case, the user’s actual location does not contradict his willingness to make a conversion.
When deciding whether to enable advanced geotargeting or not, first of all, you need to understand the specifics of the user behavior that will be selected for displaying ads using this function. This should be a person looking for a product or service in a location different from where he is. Let’s assume what the reasons for his requests might be, and select examples of suitable advertising topics.
The user plans to move for permanent residence to the target location:
The user plans to travel to the target location to rest:
cultural events (theaters, museums, festivals, etc.);
beauty industry services;
rental of specialized equipment (for example, sports equipment).
The user goes on a business trip to the target location:
rental of specialized equipment (for example, professional equipment for photography or video filming);
services of private companies and specialists required in business topics (for example, translation services for negotiations).
User – organizer of outdoor events:
rental of premises;
services of private companies and specialists participating in events (floristry, decoration, catering, etc.);
rental of specialized equipment.
The user remotely organizes the gift in the target region:
Let’s move on to topics for which we do not recommend using advanced geotargeting:
Topics prohibited by Yandex – tourism and recreation, as well as topics for which advertising is required certain documents, for example, medicines, medical products and services, finance, insurance, etc.
E-commerce. As a rule, goods from online stores are needed in the place of presence, the decision to purchase them is quick. In this case, it is optimal to show ads to the user from the target region.
Urgent services, for example, equipment repair, calling a specialist.
We recommend that you carefully work out the semantic core and exclude ambiguous and informative keys from campaigns with advanced geotargeting (for example, “price of an apartment in the center of Moscow” for advertising a residential complex in Moscow). Such requests are likely to be inappropriate.
Conclusion: When deciding to enable extended geotargeting, we advise you to first of all understand the specifics of the product or service being promoted. If you are not sure about the decision, we recommend that you run the test and make a decision based on its results. The report wizard in the Yandex.Direct interface offers a convenient report with the targeting region and the region of location. If using an option is appropriate but not necessary, it is important to evaluate the budget for the campaign and prioritize it correctly.
Here are the main conclusions that we made based on the opinion of experts:
This option allows you not only to find users in other regions who are interested in your product, but also to remove the “Low impressions” status from ad groups.
Advanced geotargeting is not available for all topics. It cannot be included for advertising in the field of tourism, as well as if the promotion in the topic requires the provision of documents and licenses.
Advanced geotargeting works well for real estate, relocation, rental, gift delivery.
It is better not to use this option for e-commerce, as well as for goods and services that are required here and now.
Advanced geographic targeting should not be included if your goal is to meet fixed economic metrics (ROI, ROAS, or DRR).
If you’re not sure if you need advanced geotargeting, do a test.