A Comprehensive Guide to Geofencing

Whether your Toledo business is a small, family-run company with a single location or a large corporation with storefronts across the country, you know the importance of reaching customers near your business’s location. While the old, tried-and-true methods of using print media, billboards, radio commercials, and online ads can certainly help you reach local customers, the concept of geofencing could mean reaching nearly every person with a smartphone that travels near your business.

What is geofencing?

How could it help you?

Consider the information within this guide to determine if geofencing is a concept you could use to drive local business.

What Is Geofencing?

Geo-fencing is a concept that is designed to begin an action or set of actions when a user with a smart device enters a particular geographical location or engages in a certain behavior. In order to trigger the action – the appearance of a notification on the user’s device – businesses utilizing geofencing set up a virtual “fence”. When users cross the fence and enter into the controlled area, location is determined by the device’s Wi-Fi location, GPS or RFID. Location within the area reported by the device triggers the action.

Alternatively, some behavior set up by the user could trigger the action. Behaviors such as passing by the user’s place of business or opening the user’s banking app could trigger actions such as “send a reminder to make a deposit.” Businesses set up actions associated with their own app or a partner app to promote engagement.

Combining location-based in-app mobile with other digital tools allows brands to extend reach to new consumers, while targeting crossover consumers with complementary messaging.

For example, a big box store could prompt its app to send sale notifications whenever a user passes within a certain distance of the store. Or, an auto parts store could instruct its app to remind users of the ideal oil change schedule after a certain amount of time passes between visits to a local store. Geo-fencing is meant to prompt users performing some action or within some geographical location to pay attention to the business promoting targeted notifications.

How Could Geofencing Help Your Business?

Ideally, geofence notifications and offers prompt potential customers near your business to take action and visit in order to take advantage of the offers. You can notify existing or potential customers of offers, sales, and unique events without ever having to find them locally. Even if your customers don’t follow through and visit initially, you’ll have more in-depth knowledge about the location of the user and which outreach efforts trend as the most successful.

Geo-fencing has found its home both inside and outside of business applications, including special event engagement through Snapchat and other social media platforms, home security notifications, and even human resources. The technology has the potential to help many businesses reach the users in the best position to convert to customers – those right down the road.

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