In just over 30 years, our world has become connected in ways that we never thought imaginable. We connect with others via our mobile phones, via emails or on social media with people all over the world (and in our own neighborhood) in seconds. Mobile phones have become prevalent in our society and are turning into a great advertising source for business! According to a report by comScore, Nielsen and Stat Counter , smartphones currently have a U.S. market penetration of 72% and that is expected to grow to 90% by 2016! As consumers search patterns change from using the desktop to using tablets and mobile phones, so must the marketing industry.
Mobile advertising products are continuously changing to meet the demand of the users. Marketers who started off years ago with mobile SMS text messages and banner ads have now developed into highly targeted local mobile marketing programs. The importance of mobile marketing, mobile search and local mobile search is getting stronger every day. Google just announced that they will be making a change in their search algorithm in April to rank mobile search result. Websites that are deemed “mobile friendly” by Google will rank better in mobile search. Mobile friendly would include responsive websites as well as mobile websites.
Mobile apps that are indexed by Google will also begin to rank better in mobile search. Mobile apps such as Pinterest, Yelp and Twitter actually get more usage via mobile apps than via desktop. Facebook is the most popular app with Google Search and YouTube rounding out the top three.
A recent study by MOZ found that people in the U.S. perform over 6.2 billion local searches every month. Customers are searching for local information- in fact, of the 95% of smartphone users searching for local information, 61% of users call a business after looking up information on their phones, and 59% of those who searched actually visit a location. It was found that 90% of people act on their mobile searches within 24 hours. According to the Local Search Association, consumers who search for local products and services using mobile phones and tablets are more likely to follow through with a purchase than those using pcs and/or laptops.
There are many ways to make sure that a business is found when consumers are making the searches, from having the correct local business information on Google and in other online data aggregators such as Axciom and Infogroup, to placing paid mobile advertising.
Mobile usage drives significant local search traffic so businesses need to pay attention to their mobile sites and new mobile technologies, such as mobile payment and integration across devices. Many companies are developing mobile advertising programs for businesses and brands to reach consumers where they are spending the most time or researching the most.
YP and DexMedia have developed various mobile marketing programs that specifically target consumers via mobile targeted banners that will appear on your favorite app, or even by specifically targeting a consumer when they are ready to buy! These ads then take a consumer to a mobile landing page where they can directly call the store, restaurant or business or they can click through to the business’s website. YP has even developed cross device advertising which goes from yp.com desktop searches to sending ads to the customer’s mobile device by using proprietary 1st party search data. This mobile marketing program uses real time targeting to extend, engage and connect with consumers, targeting the user and not just the demographic.
Right now, the sky is the limit for mobile marketing. It’s a new frontier and if you want your business to be where your customers are searching, then you need to be there!