IP Geolocalization

Looking to route our customers to the correct site US/CAN. Currently we notify customers through messaging after items have been entered to their cart when they indicate their shipping address. However we would like to route based on IP up front.

I’m curious if anyone uses this type of treatment and IP Gelocation. If so, how does your site function? Looking for examples of Sites that will treat me differently based on where I’m ordering from. Might need some Non-US Sites.

What server side language? If it’s PHP there are a number of options available.

Let me Google that for you…

I’m looking for more of “the what” as opposed to “the how.” Looking to see what other sites do from a User case standpoint. Strictly from a frontend UI standpoint.

Ah. I gotcha ya. If I come by any examples I’ll be sure to post them. In the mean ttime here are tactics I have done or seen in regards to geo-targeting:

  1. More personal headlines and text calling out environments and/or locations local to the user. Here are basic examples:
    [LIST]
  2. For California: “Whether you are at the beach or on your way for a family day at Disneyland you need…”
  3. For Colorado: “Biking? Hiking? Rock climbing? Make sure to get…”
    [/LIST]
  4. Pre-populating location based forms such as dealer locations.
    [LIST]
  5. I wouldn’t recommend pre-populating any personal information even if you do know their city, state, or zip code as this makes some users feel their privacy is being violated.
    [/LIST]
  6. Offering product promotions targeted to those locations.

It’s all about how you can make the experience more personal and relate-able to the user but at the same time making so they don’t feel their privacy has been violated.

All of this sounds great. One of the dynamics is we have multiple Country sites. One for US, one for Mex, one for Canada. We’re looking at using an IP Geolocator to make sure that our Canadian customers who come to our US site are rerouted, if they’re shipping to Canada. However some will ship to the US and therefore we need to makes sure that they continue to have the ability to order off of our US site. We’ll be prompting the user at some point during the shopping process and asking them to distinguish which county they will be shipping to.

My thought is that our use of the IP Geolocator may be specific to our model, but thought I’d throw it out on this forum to find out.

You can always have an inline pop up when you see someone on the US site that is in Canada. They can then agree to do to the other site or not and you would just store their choice so they aren’t bothered again.

Unless you offer different products for each country I would recommend designating the country during one of the checkout steps. If your products are the same there is no reason to inconvenience the customer on something like fulfillment location that can be completed behind the scenes.

Agreed, Unfortunately some of the products are different, so I think the plan will be to prompt them upon initial entry to our site. We also need to factor in multiple entry points based on Search Engine results which may lead to a Category page or a Product Detail Page.

I don’t know your site framework style but hopefully you can just add a global filter that is run on each page load.

IP Geo-location is a blast, I use it in Software Droid to allow users to change product prices depending on a visitor’s country:
http://www.softwaredroid.com/features.html#multi_currency

If you’re ever looking for a good solution, check these guys out:
http://ipinfodb.com/ - Free IP look ups, and they have a beautiful API.

I use MaxMind GeoLite Country: http://www.maxmind.com/app/geoip_country

It takes some effort to import due to its size, but I like the accuracy so far. We don’t use it for anything critical on our site or I would opt for the paid version. Currently we just use it for displaying the proper shipping quotes based on the visitors country.

What about a customer who is traveling overseas (or in Canada) and actually lives in the US?

This has always been my problem with auto geolocation type sites.

For instance.

I’m a US citizen, live in the US, but am traveling in Europe. When I visit your geolocalized site you automatically assume that I’m from Europe, when in actuality I need to be seeing the US site.

For recreational sites this may be fine, but for business sites it could cause quite an issue. Maybe you only want to show prices to one country and not to another. If I’m traveling in that country I may see prices that I shouldn’t be seeing…

In the past I’ve always had users choose their location, then store it as a cookie on their browser. Therefore if they ever visit again from that computer I automatically know where they’ve accessed from before and send them to that place. This is not without it’s drawbacks but it’s ok for me for now. Although I’m always open to other solutions.