September 10, 2013

Marketing Research Chart: Mobile search marketing tactics

SUMMARY: Search engine marketing was hard enough when marketers were just trying to optimize their content to grab a top search results page ranking and outbid their competition for important paid search keywords.

Then, an entirely new variable was thrown into the mix: mobile computing. To help you manage this new variable, we'll take a closer look at mobile search tactics in this MarketingSherpa Chart of the Week.
by Daniel Burstein, Director of Editorial Content

"It is our entire business. Our greatest success is in providing customers a new way to browse their environment."

Some marketers are deeply engaged in mobile search, but we discovered they are in the minority when we fielded the 2013 MarketingSherpa SEO Marketing Benchmark Survey …

Q: Which of the following mobile search tactics has your organization employed in the past year?

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Click here to see a printable version of this chart

Mobile-optimized websites

When we asked marketers about their greatest success with mobile search, one marketer replied, "redesigning mobile site and creating content and campaigns specifically geared to mobile."

While only 15% of marketers are creating separate paid search mobile campaigns and ad groups, the tactic marketers are most frequently engaged in — with 34% taking part — is creating a mobile version of the organization's website. Somewhat fewer — 21% of organizations — are creating landing pages for mobile users.

As we discussed in last week’s chart about mobile email users, if you get the click whether from email or search only to send prospects to a webpage not conducive to a mobile device, you may only have achieved a bounce.

For that reason, if your organization is not among the 34% of marketers with a mobile-optimized site, it may make sense to explore that possibility, as the following benchmark survey respondent did, "Because we're within the financial industry, we don't use much PPC for compliance reasons; we rely on content creation with articles and news. We're in the works to have our mobile site launched next week so visitors on mobile devices have quicker load times and easier navigation, while also being able to read content."

Most marketers not engaged in mobile search-specific tactics

"Haven't done much at all with mobile search." "We are a small firm so it is limited." "I don't believe we have targeted search specifically for mobile."

While I said at the opening of this article the tactic marketers are most frequently engaged in is creating a mobile website, that's not entirely accurate. The most used tactic is really no tactic at all.

As you can see in the chart above, 41% of marketers aren't engaged in any of the surveyed tactics. That number is even more pronounced when we break out the data for B2B and/or B2G marketers. A majority of this group — 52% — answered "none of the above."

While mobile search is certainly a hot topic among marketers, marketing departments simply can't chase every shiny object. After taking a closer look, you may find that diverting resources from other marketing tactics to mobile search may not be the most efficient way to reach your goals, as this marketer replied …

"Due to the complexity and highly specific nature of our product line, we have not used mobile search."

Related Resources

Mobile Search [Infographic]: 72% of smartphone users look for information on the go

Optimize your Site for Mobile Search: 5 Strategies

Mobile Marketing: 27% of marketers don't know their customers’ mobile adoption rate

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