Search Marketers Get Used To A Multichannel, Multi-Device World

Watching-Tablet-TV-A2In a world where consumers jump from one screen to another, search marketers will need to learn how to optimize and support campaigns that consumers view on multiple devices. Some 63% of consumers used more than one digital device to shop for gifts during the past holiday season, and 67% of consumers believe having access to multiple devices makes it easier, according to Google.

Consumers using one device to research and shop made online and offline purchases across an average of six product categories, while those who used two devices purchased across eight categories, and people who used all three devices shopped across an average of nine categories. If I’m going to use multiple devices to shop online, especially on a smartphone, the retailer better make it easy for me to click and buy in as few steps as possible. I keep going back to the unfortunate incident on the Nordstrom Web site last year where the online system would not process the transaction from my iPhone. The mobile app that is now available works much better.

The search research from Google also identified an interesting trend. On Jan. 1, people searched for gym memberships and diets on smartphones, and then the following day, searches for those same words spiked on tablets and desktops. Maybe they started researching the topic while away from home, and on their return delved deeper into their options. It appears to be a symptom of the got-to-have-the-information-now mentality born from an always-connected world.

Devices supporting an always-connected world continue to grow. As of mid-2012, there were 1 billion smartphones in the market, according to reports, taking 16 years since the launch of the Nokia Communicator, a device viewed as being the first.

The IHS iSuppli Mobile Handset Displays market tracker report estimates phablets, a combination of tablet and phone with a large display size 5 inches or bigger, will reach 60.4 million units in 2013 -- up 136% from 25.6 million last year.

So what category do phablets fit in when it comes to Google’s AdWords platform? Although not all markers see the benefits of combining tablet with laptop campaign bidding, earlier this month Google changed its AdWords advertising platform with the intension of making it easier for businesses to target ads across multiple screens. A report from Google published in mid-2012 suggests that 90% of people move through multiple screens to accomplish a task.

By the way, I’m still plugging away on my Microsoft Surface Pro, waiting for the return of my laptop. I’m becoming accustomed to Windows 8, and wondering if I’ll have a problem slipping back into the prior Windows version without access to a touch screen. I love, love, love the ability to touch the screen and make things move. Marketers should love it too, when considering it tightens the contact with the content on the screen makes the connection between the brand and consumer.

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