Tablets And Mobile Take Search Spotlight


Ad impressions from mobile and tablet devices reached 12.1% of total paid search impressions in June among Performics' clients, according to James Beveridge, the company's senior analyst. Tablets account for 1.7% of all paid-search impressions -- and about 14% of all mobile impressions -- but continue to grow at a steady pace.  

Tablets should grow 157% in 2011, with more than 26.5 million units being shipped to dealers that will result in $14 billion in shipment revenue, according to the Consumer Electronics Association.

Google recently added tablet targeting in AdWords under the checkbox "Tablets with full browsers" to accommodate the estimated 165 million that Google expects manufacturers will ship during the next two years. There's also a section for "Advanced mobile and tablet options" to specify operating systems such as Android, iOS or webOS on specific carriers.



Google also continues to keep an eye on mobile handsets. On Tuesday, Google announced it had added mobile ad trafficking, inventory management, forecasting, reporting and ad serving directly into the DoubleClick for Publishers (DFP) platform. Later this year, it will integrate video capabilities into DFP Small Business, enabling marketers and advertisers to manage and sell video ad inventory all from one platform.

Demographics for tablet devices skew slightly different than smartphones. Sixty-one percent of tablet users are younger, more affluent males who show an interest in shopping through the devices, Beveridge said, adding that "they see it as a portal to navigate the purchase path."

Mobile click share contributed 11.9% of all paid-search clicks for mobile and desktop in June, of which tablets contributed 13.3%.

The time-of-day use patterns seem to follow mobile, but Performics identifies the heaviest use during the evening hours. About 81% of tablet owners use their device at home between 5 p.m. and 10 p.m. when marketers expect most people are watching television. Early tablet impressions are heavily weighted toward display, with virtually no impressions coming from Google search partners. Tablet clicks -- PCs and mobile -- largely come through Google search, not display or syndicated search partners, according to Performics metrics.

Beveridge suggests that marketers gearing up to launch tablet campaigns might want to:

1) Plan specific campaigns for tablets. There's no excuse now that Google has segmented tablet from mobile handset targeting options in AdWords. It helps to distinguish where purchases and clicks originate.

2) Adjust bid strategies that are specific to tablets. Once campaigns are set, go back frequently to analyze performance. Similar to a computer screen, tablet users are more likely to scroll around the page, compared to mobile device users, who prefer to click on one of the first few listings.

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