I have been hearing this for last 4~6 year-
“Next year is of Mobiles!”
Analysts, gurus, and pundits point to massive device adoption overseas. Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft continue to invest heavily in mobile technology, including ad serving, testing different monetization schemes and ad formats. But mobile needs to become material and more of consumer behavior influencer for more people before marketers claim successes.I’m still concerned about the mobile browser’s applicability as an ad platform for a large portion of search marketers. Lets discuss why I think mobile search still faces some serious hurdles for many advertisers.
Where Mobile Search Advertising Works
Clearly, people use mobile search when they need information on the go. If it’s a commerce-related search, there’s an opportunity to simultaneously meet the searcher’s needs and the marketer’s objectives. Local businesses, particularly restaurants, bars, movie theaters, and retailers, can present their location or business information to consumers when they’re actively searching and proximal to their location. However, not all searches with regional or geographic intent are suitable for mobile ad platforms.
As retail Web sites’ interfaces and content become more mobile-friendly, including product-availability searches at specific store locations, mobile use may increase. Still, significant issues remain that the mobile ad industry must solve, including:
Ad-format challenges. What’s the right ad format for mobile devices? Banners don’t render the same across all devices. This is partially due to different screen aspect ratios, as well as browser compatibility challenges that make Firefox/IE incompatibilities seem quaint.
Ad-payment/monetization issues. User behavior on mobile devices is different. Often users want to engage in a call, so PPC (define) doesn’t make sense as an ad vehicle. Pay per call has much of the trackability PPC does, a feature that will appeal to many marketers as well as consumers.
Click to call, a close cousin to the pay-per-call platform, requires users to enter their number to have the switch initiate the call. This presents a poor user experience in the current mobile environment. SMS-based calls to action have some significant opportunities, particularly when combined with offer codes and coupons.
Clearly, we’ve reached critical mass among early mobile search adopters. If the price for larger-screen phones falls within consumers’ reach in their next phone-upgrade cycle, we may see a dramatic uptick in mobile search. But before pursuing mobile search advertising for your business, think about its value to you and mobile consumers. Are they worth more or less than stationary consumers? Atleast not yet .