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Geo Targeted Domain Names

January 19th, 2009

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Within any given city or state jurisdiction, there is a community of local businesses from different biz categories. Popular examples include real estate, legal services, financial services, hotel & travel, restaurants, and retail stores. These various businesses serve residents and companies within the surrounding area … as well as those who live and work outside the immediate community.

Geo targeting pertains to narrowing one’s focus to a specific geographical region. This is not a new concept, but is a highly effective method (utilized by marketers and advertisers) for achieving maximum impact from advertising dollars. Geo targeting allows companies to address the needs of their local, and most relevant, audience of buyers. Traditionally, people and businesses advertised in their city’s newspaper as that used to offer the best opportunity for reaching the most relevant audience.

Fast forward to the internet age and we see that geo targeting is still highly effective, but being adapted in a new way. Newspapers are on the skids after having enjoyed many decades of a local monopoly. Today, ever increasing numbers of people are relying exclusively on the internet for business search, news, information, entertainment, education. While the mechanism has shifted from newspaper to internet, the basic need of the customer is exactly the same: to locate what they need quickly and easily.

 

urlbar1Locating a service within a geographical area is achieved through two means: direct navigation, or a search engine (Google, Yahoo, MSN).

Both methods have their unique advantages. Direct navigation means typing what you are looking for directly into the address bar (as shown above). Appropriate domain extensions might be .com, .info, .biz, or .us. This is one form of geo targeting and is built on the logical City + Business concept. Such web addresses are commonly referred to as “geo targeted domain names”. The domain itself contains all of the necessary information that the online consumer is searching for.

Geo targeted domain names are high quality internet properties, and are often purchased by professionals who work and live in a particular city or state. These professionals realize that owning the geo targeted domain for their profession gives them a marketing advantage over their competitors. In short, the professional captures all of the direct navigation traffic while their competitor must promote their business with a lower quality domain name which must be supplemented by additional search engine advertising.

geodomainerThe other advantage of the geo targeted domain name is its superior clarity and descriptiveness. Geo targeted domains are easy to remember and to convey to customers … both in writing and in verbal communication.

If you are a business owner (or domain name investor), a geo targeted domain name may represent a logical acquisition for your company. A good tip for discovering the benefit of a particular domain is to enter the keyword combination (ex. Los Angeles Attorneys, or Miami Real Estate) into Google, and perform a search. Pay attention to the advertiser search results at the top of the results page and along the right side margin.

At the bottom of the right margin, is there a blue link that says “More Sponsored Links”? If so, then you know this is a highly relevant phrase, with multiple advertisers, and might be a fitting geo targeted domain acquisition for your business. For example, try typing in Los Angeles Attorneys into the Google search field and hit enter. You will find many pages of law firms and attorneys advertising under this phrase. This is because advertisers want to reach customers specifically in search of Los Angeles Attorneys.

Geo targeted domain names are frequently included in high profile auctions and listed on domain name sales sites. Sometimes, a geo targeted web address is used to display a list of local advertisers in the desired profession. At other times, the geo targeted domain will resolve to a fully functional website such as MiamiRealEstate.com, a nice example of geo targeting within the real estate industry.

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