How To Make Geofencing Work For Your Small Business

How To Make Geofencing Work For Your Small Business

4-11-2016 12-13-01 PM

Most have heard of and possibly used geofencing but there are still questions on how it works and the big question: How can it work for my business?

It’s best to start with the basics. You can have an app built for your business relatively easily and then push it out to existing customers, fans, friends etc and get them to download it. Geofencing is a top available function that you can include in your app.

So, what is Geofencing? Simply put it is the establishing of a virtual fence around a predefined geographic area. What you can do is set up a push notification that any of your app users will receive when they enter or exit the area you set up. What this does is allow you to send location-specific messages to your customers/fans when they are in the area.

I get that you say but how is geofencing used?

For the most part businesses will use geofencing so they can send special offers to their customers when they are close to the store’s location whether they are driving or walking by. But there still is variety of ways it can be used. A couple of examples: real estate agencies are able to send push notifications to potential buyers as they approach the area of an open house, and bands can send messages to fans that walk by the venue of a concert they are going to be performing.

However, businesses aren’t just limited to just their own locations.

For example, a law firm can, if they choose, have the ability to send a notification to a user when they walk into a bail bonds office. A coffee shop could have a notification go off when a fan walks into another coffee shop. Even a wedding planner can have notifications go off when their fans travel into various wedding-related venues and offer helpful tips.

There are numerous possibilities, and most businesses are still exploring them. If you allow yourself to be creative and think outside the box, geofencing can open up many new and interesting possibilities for your business.

Smaller is better when you are setting up the radius of your main geofence

While businesses can set the radius of their main location’s geofence to any size they want, but the question becomes what is the right size? Going citywide isn’t going to help much-it won’t have the convenient link coverage between the message and the proximity to the sender. What works better is if your business has a lot of competition, then your own backyard is a better place to focus on. However, on the flip side if you are the only game in town, then using a bigger radius is fine.

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Other key considerations

Using geofencing doesn’t mean to bombard users with messages everytime they go places. Doing that will cause them to opt out of messages or worse deleting your app. Always put the customer first. Put yourself in the customer’s shoes and ask yourself if you would want to receive these messages if you were the user and about the value your program provides.

A good way to accomplish this is to not thing of geofencing as just another way to sell to your audience. A better way is to use it as an organic way to connect and add value. Would you want your favorite companies exploiting all channels just to boost sales? However if they pop up now and then with something timely, relevant, and useful, it can become a treat.

So your goal should really be to use your geofence messages so your customers’ have an improved experience with benefits. Being able to do this while at the same time driving traffic to your location and getting more activity on your promotions, all the better. In the end always put your customer first then you will get more success out of using geofencing.

If you can accomplish this, the rest will fall into place naturally.