Manage ads

Geographic targeting

Set Geographic targeting in the Geography section of your ad properties or targeting template. This enables you to serve your ads only to users in specific locations that you choose.

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Areas you can target

Countries

Choose countries from the Countries menu. If you select countries to target, only users in these countries will be served your ads.

To set countries that you ad can't serve to, click the Exclude countries checkbox and then select your countries. Your ad will not serve to the countries you select, but it will serve to any other country. This can be helpful if you want your ad to serve anywhere except a few countries.

Regions

Choose regions from the Regions menu. Remember that you can't target regions if they lie within a country you've targeted under Countries.

Cities
  1. Click the Cities menu.

  2. Choose the country where your cities are. Note that you can't target cities if they lie within a country you've targeted under Countries.

  3. You may need to choose additional regions, such as U.S. states, from the Select a region menu that appears.

  4. Check off all the cities from your region or country that you wish to select.

  5. To select cities from another region, choose a different country or region from the country and region menus. Every time you choose a new country or region, the city menu populates with cities from that area.

DMA® Regions

Designated Market Areas (DMA® Regions) were created by Nielsen Media Research, DMA® Regions identify geographic areas consisting of groups of counties that share the same home market television stations. Nielsen has identified 210 DMA® Regions. Choose them from the DMA® Regions menu.

Note that you can't target DMA® Regions if they lie within a country, city, or region you've already targeted.

Postal codes

Enter ZIP or Canadian codes in the ZIP/postal codes field.

  • Separate each entry with a space or comma. Only use spaces to separate different entries.
  • For Canadian postal codes, enter only the first three characters, without spaces.

You can't target postal codes if they lie within an area you've already targeted. For example, if you target the United States, you can't target postal codes within the U.S. But you can target postal codes outside the U.S., such as in Canada.

You cannot target a ZIP code if it's assigned only to post office boxes. You should instead target the ZIP code that's assigned to the larger area that contains the post office box.

Postal codes and mobile: Currently, you cannot target mobile carriers and postal codes at the same time.

FAQ

What kinds of areas can I target?
  • Countries

  • Regions (U.S. states, military "states," and Canadian provinces and territories).

  • DMA® Regions (Nielsen™ Designated Market Areas), which divide the U.S. into 210 major television viewing areas.

  • ZIP/postal codes for the U.S. or Canada. 

Why are some areas unavailable for targeting?

Consistent with U.S. law, Google doesn't allow advertisers to target ads to Burma (Myanmar), Crimea, Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria. Crimea is a recent addition (as of 2015).

We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you and appreciate your understanding. Learn more about sanctioned areas

What if a user doesn't meet my geographic targeting criteria?

If a user does not meet your ad targeting criteria, the ad will not serve. This includes geo targeting criteria.

The alternative ad Campaign Manager chooses may be a default ad or another ad with different targeting criteria that the user does meet. When you use targeting, it's a good idea to include a standard ad with little or no targeting criteria. This way, if a user doesn't meet your targeting criteria, Campaign manager can send a standard ad with more complex creatives, rather than a default ad with an image asset.

How geographic targeting works

Campaign Manager uses IP addresses to determine each user's geographic location. A user must match the geographic criteria that have been specified in order to be served a geographically targeted ad. If for any reason Campaign Manager cannot determine a user's geographic location, the user is not served a geographically targeted ad.

Keep in mind that a user only needs to match one targeted location. Also, you cannot target both a region and a smaller region with it. For example, if you target the U.S., you can't also target Alaska. However, you can target both Alaska and China because Alaska is not a sub-region of China.

Why does my report show "N/A" values?

"N/A" means Campaign Manager could not determine a particular geographic dimension based on the user's IP address.

This is only a possibility for geographic dimensions that you do not target. You will never see "N/A" for geographic dimensions in your targeting criteria. Here's why:

  • Campaign Manager only serves your ad if it can tell that the user meets your targeting criteria, including geographic dimensions. Since this information is required to serve the ad, it will be available for every impression.

  • If you do not target a geographic dimension, Campaign Manager will serve your ad even when it can't determine that aspect of the user's location. The information is not required for the ad to serve. This is why you might see an impression in your reports that shows "N/A" for one or more geographic dimensions. Keep in mind that this will only happen if there is a problem capturing the information. Campaign Manager tries to capture geographic dimensions regardless of whether you target them.
Why can't I add some postal codes to my targeting?

A ZIP code or postal code prefix may not be targetable because it's either invalid or can't be targeted due to privacy or accuracy concerns. For example, some ZIP codes are assigned only to post office boxes.

If a code isn't added to your targeting criteria, make sure it's valid. If it turns out the code is valid but targets a post office box, you should instead target the zip code that's assigned to the larger area that contains the post office box.

When targeting to the U.S., you can't target to a ZIP code if you've excluded the region, state, or metro area in which the ZIP code is located. When targeting to Canada, you can't target to a postal code prefix if you've excluded Canada.

Why aren't my geo-targeted ads showing to users?

All geographical targeting data is based on the registration information from the user's ISP (Internet Service Provider). If an ISP has not registered its zip or area code, state, or country, then a geo-targeted ad will not appear for a user viewing a website from the targeted location. There are also issues when the ISP of a user does not match the user's physical location. For instance, a user may live in one area code (the one you want to target) but the user's ISP is registered in another area code, which means you can only target that user with the ISP's zip or area code.

Another reason that a geo-targeted ad may not appear to a user in the targeted area is that the IP address for the user is not traceable.

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