Search Marketing on Mobile Devices

3/16/2011 12:08:00 PM

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You might be surprised to learn that within five years more users will connect to the Internet through their mobile device than through their desktop PC’s. Not only are customers using their mobile devices to access the web, but they are also making purchases online. It is estimated that by 2015, 8% of all e-commerce purchases will be made via mobile phones - that’s $119B in sales.*
With such tremendous growth in the mobile space, it is a great time to optimize your search campaigns to include mobile targeted campaigns. The following are some tips for developing strong mobile search campaigns:

  • Break out mobile campaigns: Create unique mobile search campaigns. This will allow you to bid differently by device and customize your text ads. To take that strategy one step further, you can break out your campaigns by desktop, mobile phones and tablets.
  • Bid: Start with aggressive maximum bids (1x to 2x Search bids) to build strong history and win the limited auction spots available. You will be competing to have your ad serve on one of five ad spots versus ten for desktop. Then, manage bids to meet the target CPA.
  • Keywords: Look at analytics to see which keywords are receiving strong mobile traffic (in paid or natural results) and leverage those. Consider how user intent may be different for users of mobile devices and tailor the keywords accordingly. Use general keywords to increase impression volume.
  • Creative: Test mobile specific calls to action such as “Shop today from your phone” or “Call for a free quote”. Also use location and phone extensions to attract attention to your ads and make them more relevant to users.
  • Landing pages: Be sure to check functionality and usability on various devices. (Note that flash-heavy sites often don’t work well on mobile phones)
  • Expand misspellings: Include more misspellings than are included in your desktop campaign, since they are more common on a mobile device.
  • It’s local: 1 in 3 mobile search queries have local intent - optimize your campaigns accordingly.
  • Click-to-Call: Add a number to your text ad, so you can drive customers to your call center.
  • Sitelinks: Minimize clicks on mobile devices and take users directly to the point of sale. If you’re a big-box retailer and sell a myriad of products, it is advantageous to have links directly in the ad unit to ‘computer accessories,’ ‘printers,’ ‘office supplies,’ and the like.
 *Source: Mary Meeker’s “State of the Internet”, Morgan Stanley, 2010; ABI Research, Feb. 2010; Forrester; Kelsey Group

Posted by Anuj Kucheria & Courtney MacConne, The Google Retail Team