Mobile is the new black.
From responsive website design to mobile-optimized landing pages to mobile specific content development, including mobile in your marketing strategy was never more critical to success than it is today. And with good reason, too.
Just over half (50.3%) of all traffic to e-commerce sites comes from mobile devices. Yet, conversion rates are among the lowest for mobile users.
A big reason for this is that we take nearly two decades worth of digital marketing insights in a desktop environment and paste them on to mobile platforms. When the results are not as expected, we cry foul and bemoan the ineffectiveness of mobile marketing.
How about going the right way around for a change? Here are five simple and scalable tips to inject new life into your mobile marketing.
Step Up to Cross-Device Targeting
Facebook made 69% of its revenue last year off mobile advertising, beating desktop ads for the second year straight. Not only is desktop advertising dying, mobile advertising is becoming so yesterday. We keep hearing about the innovations in mobile advertising that are the flavor of the season, from video ads to native ads, to in-app advertising. Mobile advertising already accounts for $68.7 billion worldwide, more than three times the figure just two years ago. However, we still hear reports about how mobile conversions are dropping.
What we don’t realize is that today’s consumer is a multi-device, multi-platform consumer. Tracking the response to advertising on one platform (say, mobile) while ignoring consumer action on another platform (like, pointing at the signboard outside your shop) that resulted from the original ad exposure does injustice to your advertising efforts.
Cross-device and cross-platform shopping is the new normal. A Mobile Audience Insights report [PDF] from Ninth Decimal shows that 54% of users shopped on a mobile device before making a purchase. Of this 54% of shoppers, 45% completed the purchase in-store.
By moving up your strategy to cross-device targeting, you can attribute each conversion to the right medium. Not just final attribution, cross-device targeting also helps you create a unified view of the consumer across all their devices, thus minimizing any unnecessary overlap in advertising.
Push Out More – Erm – Push Notifications
A study by Localytics shows that 52% of users enable push messaging on their devices. Like every other form of customer communication these days, push notifications can be personalized down to a segment or even user level. Localytics’ data shows that 54% of all users who open a segmented notification convert.
For example, Uber uses geo-targeted messages to alert users when prices have dropped in their area. This feature entices riders to book a ride and avoid higher prices.
Don’t have a mobile app? Do the next best thing, in that case. Invest in SMS or text messaging updates to your user base. According to data from Loudhouse and SAP [PDF] 64% of users would like to receive more text messages from businesses they patronize. The exact same percentage of users have made purchases based on highly personalized text messages.
- Enable push notifications on your mobile app for key announcements, sales, coupons, events, and more. If you don’t have a mobile app, go for text messaging instead.
- Offer unique, personalized content in your push notifications/text messages. That’s the secret sauce to amazing mobile conversions.
Use More Video Content
If there is one clear star in the content marketing galaxy right now, it’s got to be video. Nearly 8 out of 10 American internet users aged 18 to 29 download or stream videos on a regular basis, according to Pew data; the focus on video content is only getting stronger.
Marketing Experiments reports about a diet and fitness company that wanted to grow conversions for their membership landing pages on mobile devices. By experimenting with different variations of using videos on their landing pages, the company boosted their mobile conversion rates by over 50%.
Video marketing does not have to be the domain of big brands alone. Small businesses can succeed equally well – especially in content marketing, as my colleague Pratik Dholakiya explains – with videos featuring actionable how-to advice, DIY tips, product demo videos, or even home-made videos that go wildly viral.
For example, chances are you probably saw this video of 20 strangers kissing each other for the first time doing the rounds of social media last year.
But did you know that this hyper popular video that’s garnered over 100 million views till date, was created by fashion brand Wren Studios for just $1300? Small price, big punch.
Go Local to Go Mobile
Over half of all searches on mobile devices have local intent. This means users turn to their mobile phones to get the address of that restaurant they plan to go for dinner tonight. Or they’d like to know the closest Macy’s outlet to their location. Or, maybe they are looking for garage sales in their area while driving around.
It gets better. 61% of those searches result in a purchase. In other words, it’s not idle curiosity that drives mobile searches – it’s immediate intent to buy. The final purchase could be online or offline. The important thing is that your mobile content – both paid ads and organic content – should be adequately geared towards local searches to drive conversion numbers.
Embrace Mobile Payments
Last, but definitely not the least, invest in mobile payment options. Awareness of this niche, yet rapidly growing, payment platform stood at a huge 80% as of last year. While the Google Wallet was already operating in this space for a while, it is the entry of Apple Pay in late 2014 that changed the entire mobile payments landscape.
According to a consumer survey carried out by the U.S. Federal Reserve, 22% of all mobile users had made at least one mobile payment in the last year. This figure is more than double the number in 2011. The most common use (68%) of mobile payments was towards payments of bills via mobile apps. Nearly 40% of users had also made a point of sale payments using their mobile devices.
I could go on, but the long and short of it is that mobile payment mechanisms are the credit cards of the future. The sooner you adopt them – in the form of in-app payments, POS payments, P2P mobile funds transfers, QR code payments and more – the quicker your business will be on the road to higher conversions.
Over to You
So, that’s my take on improving mobile conversions for now. How about you? What mobile marketing strategies have shown real results for your business? Has investing in responsive design or a mobile site bumped up your conversions or sales? Share your mobile successes, I would love to hear from you!