Preparing For Mobile Web Search
The mobile Web is currently a “Wild West,” with plenty of undiscovered territory, and a different set of user behaviors to be decoded. For advertisers and publishers, the question of traffic retention requires a different answer for the smaller screen. In preparing to position themselves properly, marketers looking to leverage mobile need to understand that the search of the future, both in engines and ads, needs to be more anticipatory, better integrated, and deliver compelling, useful results to drive the user to click over to your page or download your app.
With the switch to mobile, user patterns are about to undergo a massive change. At the moment 50% of Americans own at least one mobile device that can access the Web. Over the next decade, 4 to 6 billion people will use a tablet, smartphone, or other mobile device as their primary access point to the Internet.
Aside from the long-term explosion of number of devices owned, search volume will be rapidly migrating to mobile over the next five years. It’s estimated that 30% of all searches could include a location-based comment, according to a recent BIA/Kelsey report, thus making the GPS-enabled smartphone the clear “weapon of choice” for most users moving forward.
The first phase of the online advertising world was viewed though the lens of the desktop. Access to the Web is constantly evolving, as new devices emerge and change the way we access and interact with the Web. In the very near future smart phones will have 3 to 4 times the number of desktop users worldwide and the number of users who access the Web will multiply by the same fold.
The following five rules will help companies navigate the new landscape of the mobile Web, to best position themselves to attract consumers that have vastly different expectations than desktop users and traditional search applications:
Location matters – use it & infuse it. Make sure you indicate your location on your website and your entire digital outreach program. Be sure to include both local and regional information to maximize your appeal.
Create messages that respond to who, what, when, where. Clear and concise messaging makes the information you present to your consumer “foolproof” by keeping it simple and to the point.
Be descriptive and engaging. Don’t just tell consumers what your product is. Make sure you tell them what your product can do for them, and outline the benefits.
Showcase recommendations & customer reviews. Showcasing consumer feedback on your site is a great way not only to build up your SEO profile, but also to gain trust from consumers who are considering purchasing your product. If you have a feedback tool already enabled, don’t be afraid to showcase it. If not, it’s time to start exploring a mechanism that you can include on your site.
Develop linked user paths through descriptions. Developing a better internal linking strategy does double duty: It keeps users on your site longer and it also can help boost your SEO rankings, thus making you more visible over time.
As Web users migrate from blue Links to a more active, location-based search, advertisers and publishers will need to adapt and react accordingly. By making moves to attract users who want a natural language search, or close to it, Web advertisers will be ahead of the curve. as more and more of the Web goes to mobile.