IP geolocation sounds like complicated internet jargon when, in reality, it refers to one of the most essential services for businesses and law enforcement agencies.
Let’sbreak this down a little further: IP refers to IP address, which is the unique serial number assigned to any device connected to a computer network that uses the Internet Protocol for communication. Geolocation is, in this context, the specific geographical location (as specific as street address or zip code) of a given IP address.
A service used more often by businesses who operate in multiple regions, IP geolocations allows companies to establish a presence in different parts of the country/world, create tailored content for users who live in specific areas, and so much more.
Are you curious about how this data is gathered and what you can do with it? Continue reading our post to find out.
How is IP geolocation extracted?
One of the first questions many well-meaning businesses have asked us is how IP geolocation is obtained in the first place.
To anyone with qualms about extracting confidential data about a user, rest easy. While this information isn’t publicly available, there are geolocation databases that provide this information to IP geolocation providers. In the US, this includes the Regional Internet Registries and other large organizations that manage and distribute IP addresses in certain parts of the world.
Apart from this, IP geolocation services also mine the data users provide about themselves to zero in on a specific location. If you’ve entered your location or zip code to access certain types of information online, like the weather, your data gets linked to your IP address. This is then accessible by geolocation services.
In addition to these, certain Internet Service Providers may even submit location data to databases that are used by geolocation service providers.
What can I do with geolocation data?
The potential here is staggering. With geolocation data, your business can reach out to audiences across expansive geographical distances and establish a local presence with just a few lines of code.
What does this look like in practice?
Content and website optimization
Imagine you’re running an e-commerce website from the US but wish to establish an international presence.
With geolocation services, like site redirection or the display of dynamic content, you can tailor everything from website content to URLs to the country each visitor is in. For example, the prices of your products can be converted to Indian Rupees if a visitor from India accesses your site.
Location data also helps you put your advertising budget to better use by tailoring your promotions to specific geographical audiences. Given the drive towards personalization around the world, users want to see content that’s relevant to them.
With geo advertising, your advertisements are likely to increase conversion and boost ROI significantly.
Digital rights management
Another application of geolocation data is digital rights management. If your website provides access to movies, music, or other media that’s protected by certain licensing agreements, you can block users from restricted countries from viewing your content.
Law enforcement and data security
IP geolocation is also far more useful than standard business applications. As mentioned above, law enforcement agencies use this data to track credit card fraud, money laundering, and other illegal financial practices and scams.
This data also helps organizations combat spammers and hackers by locating the source of any hacking. It enables operators to block visitors from certain countries, both from visiting their site and attacking their servers.
Is IP geolocation for my business?
If you’ve noticed visitors dropping from your site, poor levels of content engagement, and inadequate levels of conversion, IP geolocation could be the answer to many of these issues, especially if your operations are scattered across several regions.
In this process, choose a service provider that’s reputable (with no skeletons in their closet), experienced, and can provide a range of services that are as convenient as they come.
By leveraging these features on your site, provide users with a customized experience they can’t forget.