For years, I would go to conferences and presenters would swear it was the year of mobile marketing. In 2012 I didn’t hear a single person say it. It seems that when the truth hits it’s not actually news. It’s obvious.
If you are entering 2013 and you aren’t seriously discussing your mobile strategy you are alienating a major percentage of your audience.
I’m also finding that more people are using their phone than are using a tablet. That means your mobile strategy has to be even more sophisticated. It’s hard to get a full Web site to render on a tiny screen.
This blog post is dedicated to the 5 things you need to be thinking about for your imminent mobile strategy. Everyone needs a mobile strategy.
1. Think Responsive Not Separate.
Most sites should focus on making their entire site mobile friendly. Only sites that have distinctly different traffic patterns for their mobile traffic should consider implementing a separate site for their mobile traffic.
Google recommends webmasters follow the industry best practice of using responsive web design, namely serving the same HTML for all devices and using only CSS media queries to decide the rendering on each device.
If responsive design is not the best option to serve your users, Google supports having your content being served using different HTML. The different HTML can be on the same URL or on different URLs, and Googlebot can handle both setups appropriately if you follow our recommendations.
Determining if you should build a responsive design or a separate site is easy. Use Google Analytics Advanced Segments to look at the top landing pages for different kinds of technologies.
If your mobile traffic is doing wildly different things then you probably should consider giving them a dedicated site.
But in my experience, most sites are seeing very similar trends in traffic patterns.
2. Being Good is More Important Than Being Pretty
You have to believe me that people are not impressed with your music that automatically plays, your model that walks out onto the screen and starts talking to you and fancy moving objects in the center of the screen.
They want an experience that works and gives them what they need.
I’m not saying things have to be ugly. But what I am saying is that the form is the function. Think Bauhaus.
Bauhaus builds objects based on functionalism and simplicity. The functionality makes it beautiful.
In this era of cross browser, cross platform compatibility this functionalism and simplicity has never been more important.
4. Native App or Mobile Web site? Usually Mobile Web site.
If you are debating whether you should invest in an app for one of the markets like Android, iPhone, Windows phone… well, this sentence alone should discourage you.
The app marketplace is becoming more and more fragmented. On top of that it’s hard to get people to update your app any time you have something new you want to give them.
The benefits of building a mobile, responsive Web site continually grow.
They upgrade instantly with no action on the viewer’s part.
They are compatible on any and all mobile devices.
They can easily be found in traditional search results.
People don’t delete mobile Web sites.
They are cheaper and easier to make.
Now, a native app definitely has value.
If your concept requires these things then you should definitely consider an app. But it almost always should be second to making your Web site responsive first.
5. Make Your Mobile Local Strategy
If you cater to a local audience then you have to be thinking mobile local.
The two places to start, if you haven’t are Google Local and Yelp. Yelp is particularly important because Bing uses these listings for its local listings.
You definitely need to claim your listings within these networks. Then you need to build them out.
Listings with photos and videos perform better than listings without these resources.
The next step is to see if people are checking into your business on Facebook and Foursquare. If so, you’ll want to claim and build out these next. Foursquare is important because of its connection with Instagram.
Then other places you are going to want to go, depending on your business are:
Just follow back where a particular listing comes from and go claim your listing there.
Local is mobile.
A solid local strategy is going to help your mobile strategy significantly.
I’m seeing, on average, a 200% increase in mobile traffic year over year on every site I look at.
If you think people aren’t looking at your site on a mobile device, I’m sorry to say this but, you are wrong.
Get mobile on your shortlist of must do’s sooner rather than later.
And for what it’s worth, SageRock is dedicated to mobile marketing. We aren’t seeing great mobile strategies coming out of many development houses right now. With our dedication to conversion-focused design and your mobile audience, we can help you create a modern Web site that converts and looks great for all your visitors.
You can call me, Sage, at: 330-379-9000 ex 5010 to talk more about our services in this area.
It’s not that I love all your negative ads and misleading “facts.”
It’s just becoming pathetic at this point in the game that you aren’t figuring out how to reach me (a 40 year old who votes in every election).
Here’s a news flash:
I laugh at the guy at the mall who is trying to sell me a newspaper subscription. Newspapers are bad for the environment and are literally yesterday’s news.
I have no antenna on my tv. Nor do I subscribe to cable or satellite. All my tv comes to me via the Internet (Netflix and Youtube).
I hate terrestrial radio (other than WZIP FM 88.1 the University of Akron station). Your morning zoos are not freakin’ funny! And your commercial breaks are too long. I listen to the radio on Pandora and Spotify.
I also don’t have a phone that you know about. I never pick up a number that I’m not familiar with.
So you might see here that I’ve pretty much shut down every channel of marketing you use.
And if you say that I’m the only one like this, I’ll have to reach directly through this screen and shake your naive little shoulders. The Internet is better media and more and more people are figuring that out.
Google has stressed the need for politicians to pay attention to the web and mobile devices, lest their message is lost given the increasing number of people who pay little attention to television in favor of personal computers and mobile devices.
That’s me and my tech savvy brethren, politicians.
Google put together a sweet infographic
Four Screens To Victory
You can click the image to see the full version over at Mashable.
But some of the stats here are really important to understand:
1. More than 80% of eligible voters are online.
2. Similarly, 83% of mobile phone owners are registered voters.
3. One out of every 3 likely voters in November say that they didn’t watch television in the past week.
4. Voters are spending more media time on their mobile devices than with newspapers & magazines combined.
This isn’t a fad, folks. This isn’t some sort of rogue, fringe group of freaks in the corner that you can ignore.
83% of mobile phone owners are registered voters.
You don’t buy an iPhone, spend $100/month for service and then go watch TV, read a newspaper or listen to FM radio. You use your iPhone!
I know this is hurting your brain. Anything new always does. But politics is life or death war. There is one winner and a bunch of losers. You don’t want to be in the “bunch of losers” pile.
So force yourself to get your ass online and start spamming me with your incessant messages. (And no. Email doesn’t count. I don’t read those any more.)
Chase and LivingSocial want to help small businesses by awarding grants of $250,000 to 12 small businesses. SageRock wants to be one of these!
You can help us and other local small businesses grow by voting for us!
Here at SageRock we are dedicated to growing not only our business but other local businesses. It’s very rare that we would ask for your help, so please take the time to help us and those around us grow to our full potential!
Here’s How in 3 Easy Steps (less than 30 seconds!!):
3) Vote for SageRock!!!We realize that we are asking a lot from you.
We want to only grow and provide our level of service to an even greater number of local businesses and help them grow as well. We are under a time crunch to reach 250 votes by Friday afternoon and we thank you in advance.
There is an Easter egg hidden in Google AdWords. Tucked away in your campaigns is a tool that will make you rethink mobile search and its implications for your business. Yes my friends, there is a Google Mobile Keyword Tool.
To access this tool, you must have an AdWords account with some odd specs set up.
The easiest way to get there is to open up AdWords Editor and create a new paused campaign with a paused ad group. In that new ad group toss in a random keyword and create a single mobile ad. Click-to-call or one with a link, it doesn’t matter the kind of ad you create. Now upload that sucker and head over to Google AdWords.
Log into Google AdWords and drill down until you are in your new ad group with one little mobile ad. Click on the Keywords tab. Next to “+ Add keywords:” there is a link to the Keyword tool. Click it.
This should look pretty familiar to you. We’re now at the Google Keyword Tool! I know what you’re thinking. “Joe, you made me do all of that when I could have just Googled “Google Keyword Tool” and been done with this? I hate you and your entire family.” Look up in the upper right corner. You’ll notice that your mobile ad is there. That’s a little different, now isn’t it? And if you read the text before the tool input, it says that the results are geared towards mobile searches.
Go ahead and use the keyword tool as you normally would, but check it out: the search volumes and cost per click data are associated with mobile and not with standard search.
When you clicked on that link back to the Keyword Tool back at the ad group level, something magical happened. Google looked at the oldest ad in you ad group, saw that it was a mobile ad, and is now giving you data that is all about mobile. If you accessed the tool any other way, you would get the standard search data.
I know it’s a lot of work to reach, but the Google Mobile Keyword Tool is a great gadget to help you determine if mobile search should be the next step in your marketing plan.
Thanks for the image goes to salomonrbc via Flickr.