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About Locations and Geofences

Geofences are only available in select Braze packages. For access please create a support ticket or speak with your Braze Customer Success Manager.

The ubiquity and flexibility of mobile technology allows marketers, product managers and growth teams to reach their users everywhere, blurring the lines between digital and real-world experiences. Using the Braze platform, you can create and enhance relationships with your users based upon their location in the real world, unlocking a powerful set of deeply connected interactions:

  • Upload the locations of all of your brands’ brick and mortar stores, and send push notifications to loyal users notifying them of in-store promotions if they pass nearby.
  • Upload the location of an upcoming concert, and message users letting them know where to register when they reach the venue. Then, follow up with a thank you message an hour after they depart.

At the core of Braze’s real-time location offering is the concept of a “geofence.” A geofence is a virtual geographic area, represented as latitude/longitude pairs combined with a radius, forming a circle in a specific position on the globe. Geofences can vary in size from the size of a building to the size of an entire city.

You can define geofences on the Braze Dashboard and trigger campaigns in real-time as users enter and exit them across the globe. Geofences are deeply integrated into Braze’s segmentation and messaging capabilities. Campaigns can be delivered in real-time to users as they exit or enter geofences, or sent as followups hours or days later. As users enter or exit your geofences, Braze’s location analytics also add a new layer of user data that can be used for segmentation and re-targeting. Geofence-specific analytics also generate insight on the activity of particular locations of interest.

Geofences Overview

Geofences are managed in the Locations page in the Engagement section. Geofences are organized into geofence sets - a group of geofences that can be used to segment or engage users throughout the platform. Example geofence sets include All Northeast Regional Stores or September Events. A given geofence set may only contain up to 10,000 geofences.

Creating Geofence Sets Manually

locations_main_screen

Once you have created a geofence set, you can manually add geofences by drawing them on the map. We recommend creating geofences with a radius of at least 100 meters for optimal functionality.

Creating Geofence Sets via Bulk Upload

Geofences may be uploaded in bulk as a GeoJSON object of type FeatureCollection. Each individual geofence is a Point geometry type in the feature collection. The properties for each feature require a "radius" key, and an optional "name" key for each geofence.

The sample below represents the correct GeoJSON for specifying two geofences: one for Braze’s headquarters in NYC, and one for the Statue of Liberty south of Manhattan. We recommend uploading geofences with a radius of at least 200 meters for optimal functionality.

{
  "type": "FeatureCollection",
  "features": [
    {
      "type": "Feature",
      "properties": {
        "radius": 200,
        "name": "Braze HQ"
      },
      "geometry": {
        "type": "Point",
        "coordinates": [-73.992473, 40.755669]
      }
    },
    {
      "type": "Feature",
      "properties": {
        "radius": 200,
        "name": "Statue of Liberty"
      },
      "geometry": {
        "type": "Point",
        "coordinates": [-74.044468, 40.689225]
      }
    }, ...
  ]
}

The maximum geofence radius that may be uploaded is 100000 meters (100km/62mi).

Using Geofence Events

Once geofences have been configured, you can use them to enhance and enrich how you communicate with your users.

To use a geofence, create a Campaign or Canvas and choose “Action-based Delivery” for its delivery method. Next, add a trigger action of Trigger a Geofence. Finally, choose the geofence set and geofence transition event types for your message. You can also advance users through a Canvas using geofence events.

action_based_geofence_trigger

Mobile Integrations

Cross-Platform Requirements

Geofence-triggered campaigns are available on iOS and Android. To support geofences:

  1. Your integration must support background push notifications.

  2. Braze location collection must not be disabled.

Braze location collection is enabled by default. To verify your location collection status on Android, ensure that com_appboy_disable_location_collection is not set to true in your appboy.xml.

On iOS, we are not strictly enforcing the Braze request processing policy for geofences. When geofences are enabled, the requests will automatically be sent up even if the processing policy is manual processing.

Geofence Configuration

Latitude/Longitude

The geographic center of the geofence.

Radius

The radius of the geofence in meters, measured from the geographic center. We recommend setting a minimum radius of 100 meters for all geofences.

Cooldown

Users receive geofence triggered notifications after performing enter or exit transitions on individual geofences. After a transition occurs, there is a pre-defined period of time during which that user may not perform the same transition on that individual geofence again. This period of time is called the “cooldown” and is pre-defined by Braze. Its main purpose is to prevent unnecessary network requests.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do geofences affect battery life?

Our geofencing solution uses the native geofence system service on iOS and Android and is tuned to intelligently trade off accuracy and power, ensuring best in class battery life and improvements in performance as the underlying service improves.

How many geofences can I upload to Braze?

You may create or upload an unlimited amount of geofences on the Dashboard, allowing your marketing team to setup geofence sets and campaigns without needing to calculate numbers of geofences. However, each geofence set can hold a maximum of 10,000 geofences. Braze dynamically re-synchronizes the geofences that it tracks for each individual user, ensuring that the most relevant geofences to them are always available.

Can I store more than X geofences?

Per Android’s documentation, Android apps may only store up to 100 geofences locally at a time. Braze is configured to store only up to 20 geofences locally per app. For geofences to work correctly, you should ensure that your App is not using all available geofence spots.

iOS devices may monitor up to 20 geofences at a time per app. Braze will monitor up to 20 locations if space is available. For geofences to work correctly, you should ensure that your App is not using all available geofence spots.

When are geofences active?

Braze geofences work even when your app is closed, at all hours of the day.

How accurate are Braze geofences?

Braze geofences use a combination of all location providers available to a device to triangulate the user’s location. These include Wifi, GPS, and cellular towers.

Typical accuracy is in 20-50m range and best-case accuracy will be in the 5-10m range. In rural areas, accuracy may degrade significantly, potentially going up to several kilometers. Braze recommends creating geofences with larger radii in rural locations.