As technology advances, mobile phones are taking on a greater role in consumers’ lives. With smartphones now telling users where they are and what businesses are nearby, opportunities for small-business owners to take advantage of mobile marketing are growing tremendously. In a recent survey by JiWire, more than half of mobile users want to receive location-specific advertising, and nearly 40-percent want location-based coupons. This trend is creating a stir with many small business owners, who wonder how they can tap into this new opportunity. However, just as many lack the time, budget, or tech savvy to develop and implement a mobile market strategy. Fortunately, there are a number of mobile marketing tools available that can help you attract customers on the go. Foursquare, Facebook Places and Yelp are three of the most popular, particularly for brick-and-mortar businesses that cater to local customers. These sites encourage users to “check in” with details being published on the business’s Facebook page, and offer a variety of promotional tools and features that leverage word-of-mouth marketing. Beyond using social media sites that are geared to mobile users, developing a mobile-enabled website is a must for any business, both those with storefronts and those without. When you consider that there are now more mobile devices (smartphones, iPads and tablets) than PCs being sold, the need for your site to be optimized for these devices is no longer just helpful—it’s essential.
What are the components of a website optimized for mobile devices?
- Faster page-load times
- Simplified navigation
- Improved readability
- Click-to-call button
- Map and directions
In most cases, mobile users don’t want to peruse an entire website on their phone. Rather, they want basic information, directions to your location, and the ability to call with questions. Thus, a landing page with this information is typically all that’s required to launch a successful mobile marketing presence. For a small investment in a mobile-enabled landing page, small business owners can achieve a significant return on investment from mobile users who convert into paying customers.
Source: The Costco Connection – December 2011 / Image credit: Steven Lait