IP tracking: Pros and cons for businesses

Abi Abrahams, Tuesday 16 October 2018
8 min read time


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IP addresses are a fundamental part of our digital world. Without them, no device could access the internet or connect with other networks. IP addresses are short strings of numbers and symbols, unique to each connecting device. Many tools offer businesses the ability to track these individual identifiers, using them to gain pockets of data - but why should we do it? What are the advantages of IP tracking for B2B organizations? And what are the reasons we should be cautious? 


Pros of IP address tracking


This process is a popular part of many B2B marketing mixes, as it offers businesses some huge advantages, helping generate revenue and promote business growth. Here are some of the best reasons your businesses should use IP address tracking: 


Exciting data


80% of B2B marketers are driven by data, and it’s no wonder when it makes businesses six time more likely to profit year on year. The more data we can gather to boost analysis and increase performance - the better! IP address trackers offer businesses some very exciting data. The most basic trackers can use IP addresses to decipher the location of the connected device, helping businesses understand their online audiences and brand reach. More advanced trackers include further website metrics surrounding traffic numbers and popular pages. Google Analytics for example uses IP address tracking in combination with its JavaScript code to produce insightful website metrics, including overall traffic, most visiting location and referrals. 


Improved campaigns


This exciting data gives B2B marketers a very important advantage - the ability to better design and execute campaigns. The insight gained from IP address tracking means business can better understand their audience; what they want, where they come from and what makes them convert. This is invaluable knowledge awarding marketers the chance to make data driven changes for serious campaign impact. Success may be very close, just a small edit to copy, a better optimized passage or a new call-to-action; the data you gain from tracking website visitors and their IP addresses will help you discover what elements you can change to achieve the ultimate results


Increased lead generation


IP address tracking can undoubtedly boost business lead generation in several ways. The improved marketing campaigns stemming from IP address insights boost campaign conversion producing more leads, and these insights allow your team to make website improvements for increased success. Some IP address tracking tools offer an even more advanced lead generation solution. Lead Forensics for example can identify the businesses visiting your website, running detected IP addresses through our extensive, privately-owned database to provide the user with a bounty of fresh leads. With contact details and a full visit analysis provided, your team can conduct impactful, effective follow-up communications. Find out more - book your free demo today! 


Higher lead quality 


IP address tracking, especially when included as part of a wider website analytics tool can seriously benefit your lead quality. The better quality your leads, the more likely your team are to close a sale. Advanced IP address tracking tools provide marketing teams with all the information they need to set up an intricate and effective lead scoring model. Knowing when visitors return to your website and what pages they engage with alongside the qualifying information these tools can gather, means your team can easily assign various lead scores. This better confirms when leads are sales-ready, so you can be sure to only pass the best leads onto your sales team, increasing their chance of closing sales and growing your client base. 


Improves pipeline


All these benefits feed into a very important element of business - your sales pipeline. Improved lead generation and higher lead quality promoted by your IP address tracking solution, lead to a healthy sales pipeline, consistently moving and delivering a result. This in turn drives revenue and provides users with that all-important return on their IP address tracking investment. Gaining ROI is a vital part of marketing consideration and success - many are hesitant to invest in new marketing technologies, unsure about their possible return. The effect an insightful IP address tracking tool can have on your overall sales success is vast, an exciting opportunity not to be missed. If you’re hesitant about trying an IP tracking tool, why not start a free Lead Forensics trial? It’s a great way to discover how IP tracking can revolutionize your own business results with no risk. Book your trial today! 



Cons of IP address tracking


Whilst we’re all for IP address tracking and the incredible opportunities it can offer B2B organizations, we need to always take a measured approach and factor in any reason we should be cautious about IP address trackers:


Data discrepancies  


Whilst there is a huge amount of valuable data to be gained from IP address tracking, there can sometime be problems with this data’s accuracy and collection. Some IP address trackers that provide users with IP location can draw the data from public databases held by the ISP (internet service provider) who originally assigned the IP address. This means the data is often out of date, and less exact; it’s safest to assume the location provided is approximate. This can still be useful for many marketers, especially when discovering geographical markets, you were unaware you’d penetrated. Though for the marketers keen to be precise in their IP tracking (for locally driven campaigns), this discrepancy can be a problem. Many more advanced tools however use different databases to source more accurate, useable data. Lead Forensics for example put all data though three rounds of verification and an annual cleanse, to ensure the IP address tracking results provided are precise and exact. 


Static vs Dynamic IP addresses


Another issue IP address tracking poses lies in the way IP addresses work; all IP addresses will fit into one of two categories - static or dynamic. Static IP addresses remain constant, the device in question always using them to access the online world, whereas dynamic IP addresses continually change whenever an outside network is engaged. This carries different benefits for those using the IP addresses, but for those tracking them, a difficulty arises. Dynamic IP addresses (commonly used by mobile devices like phones and laptops) often cause IP tracking tools to misread data. Due to their ever-changing nature, their record doesn’t offer businesses information of use, and can disfigure the data marketers rely on to make informed decisions. This isn’t the case for every tool but is definitely an element to consider. 


Shared IP addresses


Another difficulty caused by IP address technology comes from shared IP addresses. Some businesses and home networks have a shared IP that many different devices access - like a company phone with one dial in number, but several individual extensions. These shared IP addresses, like dynamic ones, can throw IP tracking tools off and cause them to provide incorrect data. This problem arose when the original set of IP addresses created ran out, due to our ever-growing reliance on electronic devices; but new advancements have created such a huge number of IP addresses, there’s no telling how long this will remain an issue.  For B2B marketers however, this doesn’t cause too much hindrance, as they look to target a whole business anyways. The number of people sharing an IP address within it doesn’t affect their ability to successfully convert that business. 


Actioning data 


Whilst it’s all very well having an IP address tracking tool gathering data you need, many businesses struggle to find ways of actioning this data. The vanity metric mind-set sinks in, and businesses just want to know their visitor’s locations for the sake of knowing. This means the data is not used to effectively design campaigns or benefit outreach, driving little sales success, and therefore reducing possible ROI.  If you’re planning to use an IP address tracker, ensure you have an appropriate plan in place for gathering data your business genuinely needs, and actioning it appropriately. Whether you use the data to drive future campaigns or directly gain new leads, ensure it gets used to maximum effect so your business can gain the necessary results.  


Finding the right tool 


Another problem many marketers face when embarking on their IP address tracking journey is finding the best tool for the job. There are many to choose from, all offering varying levels of data and insight. Take time to understand what your team need from an IP address tracker, so you can ensure you find a tool befitting your business needs. 


If you’re keen to boost business lead generation and revolutionize your sales pipeline - you need Lead Forensics. An advanced tool using a combination of IP address tracking and the largest business database in the world to identify the businesses visiting your website and provide additional contact details. With a full visit breakdown on hand, your team will gain a bounty of high-quality business leads, ready for impactful, tailored follow-up. Find out more - book your free demo today!


Free guide - Discover the power of IP address tracking and what it means for your business with our extensive, free guide. Download "The beginners guide to IP tracking software" for free now! 


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Topics: Lead Forensics, Lead generation, B2B marketing, IP tracking

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