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What You Should Know About The Growing Trend in Mobile Computing And What It Means For Your Web Marketing Strategy

More people now own mobile devices than desktop PCs. Nearly 70 percent of all adults in the United States have a smartphone, and Americans spend about 35 hours a month browsing on their phones. According to Google, more than 60 percent of all searches performed in 2016 were from mobile devices. And Google has already shifted its focus because of this trend, as evidenced by their recent roll out of a “mobile first” strategy. Such statistics emphasize the importance and potential of marketing to a mobile audience.

What Is Mobile Marketing?

Basically, mobile marketing refers to any type of digital marketing that’s targeted at consumers who are on a smartphone, tablet, or other Internet-connected device that can be used remotely from any location. It’s a multi-channel, digital strategy aimed at connecting with consumers through any content that can be accessed online on websites and with emails, texts, social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, and mobile apps. The way you promote your content across all these channels is what mobile marketing is all about.

Why Mobile Marketing Matters

Mobile marketing matters because it’s how most consumers stay connected today. It’s also how many of those same consumers prefer to engage with their preferred brands, get information on businesses in their neighborhoods and communities, and either initiate or complete a purchase. There are also plenty of compelling statistics that provide an added incentive to consider a mobile marketing strategy. Even if you don’t do a significant amount of business online, you’ll still benefit from mobile-friendly marketing. Nearly 80 percent of local searches made from a mobile device lead to offline purchases. Also, consider the following mobile facts:More than half of all smartphone users discover new products and businesses while browsing

• Nearly half of all consumers start their search for product/service info with a mobile search

• Half of all business-to-business purchasers do their research with a mobile device

• A quarter of all consumers use branded apps to do their research when making a purchase

Mobile-Friendly Marketing

With more than 90 percent of all adults mainly using their smartphone to get information, making content as mobile-friendly as possible is essential. The first step in achieving this goal is to make your website’s design appealing to mobile searchers. It’s a process that involves:

• Minimizing page load times as much as possible by removing unnecessary features like excessive images or videos on a single page

• Leaving space around clickable buttons to make room for fingers tapping on smaller screens

• Using phrases like “click to call” to encourage mobile conversions

• Redesigning your website so it’s multipurpose (designed for both desktop and mobile viewers) or ‘responsive’ (which knows what type of device it is delivered on).

• Making your images re-sizable for different devices

Your Mobile Marketing Strategy

Web marketing for a mobile audience requires a carefully planned strategy that usually starts with developing a mobile buyer persona. This is a fictionalized version of who you believe your typical mobile consumer is and what they prefer to find when looking for what you have to offer. It’s easier to produce content when you know who it is that’s likely to be reading it. You can confirm if you’re on the right track with techniques such as A/B testing (launching two different versions of the same content or campaign).

Mobile Marketing and Email

More than 60 percent of emails are opened on a mobile device first. Nearly 95 percent of companies that use some form of marketing automation do it with emails. Incorporating email into a mobile marketing strategy has been shown to produce an ROI (return on investment) as high as 40 to 1 in some industries. Email is also ideal for mobile lead generation and conversion because it can be highly personalized with content specific to each recipient. Mobile-friendly emails should include:

• Larger buttons near the top to encourage click-throughs

• Clear calls-to-action

• Relevant information condensed to easy-to-digest formats

Mobile Marketing with Texts

Short messaging service (SMS), commonly referred to as text messaging, can be extremely effective on mobile devices. More than half of all consumers who receive a branded text make a purchase. However, be aware that reaching out via text message means taking someone’s personal time. Avoid being intrusive, which can be damaging to your brand, by:

• Keeping texts short (under 160 characters)

• Avoiding “text speak”

• Clearly identifying your business in the message to make to avoid being shut down before anything is read

• Offering something relevant or of value (e.g., coupon codes, exclusive invitations or deals)

Mobile Marketing with Apps

Mobile apps are perfect for delivering messages or alerts specific to the recipient. Referred to as “push notifications,” this form of delivery is highly visible since the message is displayed even if a mobile app message isn’t opened. Roughly 70 percent of mobile users allow such notifications anyway, so it can be good for brand visibility. Mobile app engagement can be in the form of:

• Quick reminders of things like specials that are only good for a limited time

• New in-app features

• CTAs for events related to your brand

Your Mobile Marketing Goals

Consider what you’re already doing with mobile now and what you could be doing. Go back to your consumer persona to think about what would be the most effective way to reach out to your audience. Would they likely respond better to mobile-friendly website content or social media engagement? Maybe emails and social apps would work better for you. Does text messaging make more sense for your audience? After all, it has an open rate of 98 percent compared to email’s 22 percent open rate.

Your decision for using specific engagement techniques should be based on what’s resonating with your intended audience. For instance, you may notice you get twice as many responses back with email campaigns than text messaging efforts – so it would make more sense for you to use emails to stay connected with your mobile users. Although most online marketing tends to be more effective if you engage in cross-channel promotions, spreading your message across multiple platforms. After you’ve determined your priorities and goals, get everyone on your team on the same page to ensure consistency with your brand’s messaging.

Engaging Local Consumers

Most mobile searches (about 40 percent) are done with local intent. Developing local marketing strategies be an effective way to reach these consumers, especially if you’re a small business owner with a customer base limited to specific geographic areas. Make it easy for local searchers to find you online with consistent business name, address, and phone number (NAP) data wherever it appears online, particularly in directory listings. Providing clear directions to your business can be done by adding maps to your NAP information. Also take advantage of the GPS capabilities of mobile devices when fine-tuning your local marketing strategies by:

• Sending out coupon codes to local consumers

• Offering special deals when previous customers are physically close to your store or business (via emails or social media posts)

• Targeting consumers who are physically in your business via their mobile devices with in-store offers they can take advantage of at the register

Your Mobile Metrics

Your mobile online marketing efforts will be greatly improved if you’re consistently aware of what’s going on, what’s working, and where there’s room for improvement. This also allows you to eventually target visitors based on various points in the buying cycle. For instance, you may discover more of your visitors come to your social pages to gather information about your products or services before going to your website to complete a conversion. Millennials, in particular, tend to carry brand engagement across channels. The best place to start tracking your mobile metrics to understand such patterns is with your Google Analytics. Pay particular attention to:

• Your mobile conversion rates

• Which mobile devices are generating the most engagement

• What content is attracting the most attention from mobile users
Adjusting website pages and other online content for on-the-go audiences and interpreting your stats can cut into the time you need to actually run your business. It can also be difficult to launch, track, or sustain a campaign across multiple online channels, which is becoming increasingly necessary given the way many people prefer to use their mobile devices to connect with their preferred brands. Partnering with a web marketing company you trust can be a cost-effective and time-saving investment if you’re looking to make mobile engagement work for your business.

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