Posted on Jan. 18, 2012 by Alica Danesh - Social Media Analyst
How many times a day do you use your cell phone? For those that are always on the go, their cell phone is their oxygen--they simply can't function without it. The obsession with and strong ties to mobile devices have created a buzz in the marketing industry. According to CTIA, the International Association for the Wireless Telecommunications Industry, 91% of the U.S. population are mobile subscribers. As smartphone usage is on the rise, mobile marketing is also projected to have a huge increase in 2012. Companies are tailoring marketing campaigns to target consumers via their phones.
Mobile marketing has the potential to be particularly beneficial to small companies looking to market their brands with maximum impact at a minimum cost. For example, text message marketing provides the opportunity for ensured, instantaneous delivery, unlike traditional snail mail which can take days, or even e-mail which has the potential of being filtered into a junk mail or spam folder. That factor of immediacy is one of the main factors attracting businesses to mobile marketing.
Most mobile users keep their cell phones nearby in their pockets or purses, thus allowing direct, easy access to search engines such as Google and Bing. Google searches on mobile devices allow users to quickly gain access to local businesses while on the go. For example, plugging in the word "florist" brings up local listings, access to a map, directions, as well as a "call" button allowing for an instant connection to the business.
It is important to note that Google searches on mobile platforms differ from Google searches on desktop. According to searchengineland.com's Bryson Meunier, local results are more prevalent on mobile Google as opposed to the desktop-bound version, meaning that Google Places listings may appear to rank higher on mobile device searches. With this in mind, Search Engine Optimization is key to ensuring that your business ranks on the top of these mobile Google Places searches. People on the go are not likely to have either the time or the patience to browse past the first page of search results, making low page rankings even more damaging to a Search Engine Optimization campaign. A study by Performics found that 84 percent of smartphone owners use mobile searches to find local retailer information, including phone number, address, and hours of their desired stores/businesses. Additionally, 75 percent of people reported that mobile search makes their lives easier.
With the current trend of consumer satisfaction with searches via mobile devices, small- and medium-sized businesses would do well to adjust to this growing phenomenon and make an effort to be on the top of the results of Google Places to target the on-the-go consumer.
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