At the end of last month, search engine marketing professionals noted a subtle change to Google Ads’ location targeting options. Rather than being able to serve ads to “people in your targeted locations,” marketers can now serve ads to “people in or regularly in your targeted locations.”

With the old setting, Google Ads would not display to people “who searched for your target locations but whose physical location was outside the target location at the time of searching,” according to Google’s Help page on the subject. Now, search engine marketing agencies will be able to target people who are regularly in target locations, such as commuters.

“Although my default reaction to these sorts of changes is to be skeptical, I do think in this case it will result in incremental high quality traffic coming in for advertisers,” SEMPilot CEO Ted Ives told Search Engine Land. “We live in a mobile world … that means people move around a lot; people we target during the day don’t disappear at night, they go home. Why not get your message in from of them there? So, I think this is a helpful change in the paradigm; probably even an overdue one.”

While questions about the new setting remain – who does Google consider a “regular” visitor to a target location, for example – the change may help advertisers reach high-value consumers at high-value moments.

As a Google Premier Partner digital marketing agency with access to valuable insights on Google’s preferred practices, GrowthEngine Media is always prepared to integrate new features and options into your search engine marketing campaigns. Like most of Google’s updates, the new location targeting feature will not singlehandedly propel your business to success. But an experienced digital marketing team can help make the most out of this and other changes to ensure that your business is found by the customers that matter most.