IP addresses are just as important in the world wide web as physical address in the real world. IP addresses reveal a lot of details about a web visitor. Most of the websites use IP address to geolocate their visitors and readers.
Geolocation has gained a lot of importance recently since most of the advertising campaigns are based on geolocation. This feature is highly useful for tracking conversions and improving customer services. It is a very powerful marketing tool.
IP geolocation is the process of mapping the IP address of a user to his/her geographical location. Through Geolocation, a web owner can determine the Country, City, Zip code, time zone, connection speed, language, mobile carrier, longitude & latitude, etc.
Advantages of IP Geolocation
There are numerous applications of the IP geolocation technology. The businesses can provide customized and better services based on the user’s whereabouts.
The local pizza delivery service or cab services like Uber can offer localized services based on the customer’s location. You just open their website or app, they will automatically track your location and display the expected delivery time or the waiting time. Based on the locations, some GPS apps can show the nearby restaurants, ATMs, bank, bus stops, gas stations, etc.
Businesses can send relevant localized offers to the subscribers. A retail store may send offers to the customers based in that area. I keep getting notifications from the local cab services regarding their lowered prices and cash back on outstation rides.
Multi-lingual Web Interface
For global businesses like Amazon or Facebook, geolocation can help them maintain multi-lingual websites. They can automatically set the language of the website based on the user’s Zip code or country or they can also redirect the customer to the localized sub-domains of their services. Providing services in local languages improves user experience and conversions.
Safe and Secure Cyber Services
Geolocation also helps in maintaining safe and fraud-free services. At the time of check out, the website can cross check the customer’s IP geolocation against the credit card billing address. If there is a mismatch, the business can send the order for a manual review. This not only prevents potential cyber crimes but also saves the overhead on the business’s part like when the customer files a complaint or costly credit card chargebacks.
Many online applications like Facebook and Gmail also keep checking the geolocation of their users. Now, if the user’s account credentials have been hacked and the hacker tries to login into that users account from a different location then the service will know and send a notification to the user’s phone, recovery email or prompt the hacker to give more information about the account like “answer the security question”, etc.
Enforcing territory and distribution rights
Many times the publishing rights and marketing policies force the services to operate under some certain markets. For example, Spotify is only available in some selected countries. Some online retailers can ship their products only inside the boundaries of the United States, etc. There are many cross-border shipping restrictions that the services have to oblige.
How to Geolocate Visitors with IP2Location
Indeed, there are countless advantages of geolocation. But, how do we obtain the location details from an IP address? Is there any service for mapping the IP address to location? Fortunately, there is such an IP Geolocation service. It not only provides the basic location data like country, city or zip code but also provides intricate data like ISP, domain name, weather station code, and name, mobile carrier, elevation and usage type information using their proprietary IP address lookup database and technology.
I entered my IP address to test their services and I was surprised to see how much data can be revealed only using a simple IP address. The data was not only highly accurate but was very detailed too.
So, how can the website owners geolocate visitors using IP2Location? It takes only three simple steps.
Step 1: Retrieve the IP address from server-side variable of the web server or the networking protocols. Web owners can easily obtain the list of IP addresses of their visitors.
Step 2: Translate the IP address to an IP number in decimal format. This will speed up the database query process.
Step 3: Now, reverse lookup the IP number from the IP2Location™ database to get geolocation about that IP address.
There are many comprehensive subscription plans available as per your requirements. You can take a demo of their services for free. IPv4 and IPv6 are both supported. To take a demo, first visit IP2Location demo page. You will see a form to enter the IP address as shown below:
Enter the IP address and hit the “Search” button. Within a second you will get details about that IP address.
The demo service is completely free. A lot of people use it to check details of various IP addresses.
They also have Android and iOS apps to let people retrieve current IP address and information about other IPv4 addresses.