- "DG approached us, understanding our needs. We have found them attentive and patient with the ever changing scope of the job." ...
Kieran Doyle, Ecoklens
- "When you deal with the DG Group, Expect professionalism, efficiency and excellent communication. They are a great group of people"
Ruth Little, Samhain Consulting
- Always positive and full of ideas for how to deliver a project efficiently and cost-effectively, the team are a pleasure to work with....
- "I updated my website with the DG Group, they set it up exactly the way I wanted...An excellent service!"
Eleanor Swan, Eleanor Swan Artist
- "From the first meeting it was clear that they understood how to resolve our [issues] and explained what was needed"
Ivan Craige, HLS, Ashbourne, Co. Meath
- "I engaged The DG Group to provide a new website and also to revamp by brand identity...the results are excellent."
Ken Taylor, KT Communications, Monaghan
Mobile Search – Time To Pay Attention
Fig.2 - Mobile Searches Will Overtake Desktop Searches By 2015
Fig. 3 - Search Traffic By Day Of Week (Desktop vs. Mobile)
Fig. 4 - Search Traffic By Time Of Day (Desktop vs. Mobile)
As a marketer that has worked with many small and medium sized businesses, I tend to focus more on the ROI of an activity rather than how cool or innovative it is. It’s for this reason that I would typically turn off the “Mobile Network” option in Google Adwords when creating accounts for clients. It was my view that mobile searches were small in number and unlikely to deliver good ROI and so it was better to focus the budget on desktop ads.
However, I recently received an email from a Google representative in the Adwords team. He said he had reviewed the campaigns we ran for clients and had some interesting data to share with me and asked if I had some time to discuss this over the phone. “Well of course” was my response, after all it’s not every day you get an email like this from Google!
We had the call a couple of days later and it was a real eye-opener. He shared with me the fact that he only contacted us because we were delivering mobile websites for clients and had Adwords campaigns for many of them, but we were not using the mobile network to deliver their ads into mobile searches. I explained my reservations about the mobile network and he said that many people he had spoken to had the same concerns. He then shared with me some interesting data as follows:
- Mobile Searches as a % of all searches = 15%
- Mobile Searches YoY growth = +340%
- Clicks on mobile ads YoY growth = +482%
- Ad Click-Through rates on Mobile vs. Desktop searches = 4.82% vs. 3.45%
- Average Cost-Per-Click on Mobile vs. Desktop searches = $0.41 vs. $0.70
Basically what all this means is that although still small when compared to desktop searches, we are all starting to do more searching on mobile devices, but more importantly we are starting to click on the ads. In fact mobile ads receive 1.4% more clicks than desktop ads, yet they cost almost half the amount. (More detailed tables are shown in Figure 1 to the right).
This made me realise that the mobile ad network provides a huge opportunity for those who have invested in a mobile website and my thanks goes to Ian (I didn’t get his surname) in the Google Adwords team for patiently answering all my awkward questions while converting me from a doubting Thomas to a true believer.
With this initial data in hand I started to do a little more research and found some even more startling data:
The first was some data by BIA/Kelsey in the US (April, 2012) where they forecast that mobile searches will surpass desktop searches in 2015 – only 3 years away! This certainly correlates well with other data by Morgan Stanley that highlighted how general mobile browsing would eclipse desktop browsing by 2014. (A graph of this data is shown in Figure 2 to the right).
The second was some data released by Google in June 2011 that compared mobile search volumes vs. desktop search volumes by day of the week. This showed that searches on desktop stayed pretty flat on Mondays through to Thursdays then dropped significantly on Fridays, dropped even further on Saturdays and then went up a little on Sundays.
By comparison mobile search volumes stayed pretty flat on Mondays to Fridays then rose sharply on Saturdays and dipped slightly on Sundays.
This shouldn’t have surprised me because it’s obvious, but it did. People don’t work at the weekends and the average person will use a PC/Laptop a lot less at the weekends than they would during the week. However, Smartphones and Ipads can go with you anywhere and because they are “instant on” they allow you to easily do searches that you wouldn’t bother with if you had to wait a few minutes while your laptop starts up. (A graph of this data is shown in Figure 3 to the right, however please note that the scales of the two lines are different and so volumes of searches are not proportional in this graph. They are simply aligned in order to highlight the differing trends between them. We are not saying that the absolute volume of mobile traffic is equal to or larger than desktop traffic - yet).
Finally, the same Google report showed a startling difference between search patterns on mobile vs. desktop by time of day. On the desktop, searches start to rise around 6am and continue to increase to a high around 3pm. Then searches start to decline steadily until 11pm where they then drop severely.
Mobile searches, on the other hand, start to increase around the same time, but continues to increase throughout the day (save for a small dip between 1pm and 4pm) up to 11pm where they also fall.
So again this data shows that mobile searches actually increase when people are away from work unlike desktop searches which decrease as early as 1pm. (A graph of this data is shown in Figure 4 to the right. Again, volumes of searches are not proportional in this graph).
So what does all this mean if you run a business? Well, it means that you should implement a mobile website and then initiate advertising on Google’s mobile network. This is especially true if you run a business that wants to attract evening or nightime trade, i.e. restaurants and bars.
Take this to heart and you could gain significantly more traffic to your website and if you advertise on Adwords you could enjoy higher click-through rates at lowers costs.
Don’t have a mobile website? Check out our mobile web design services and then give us a call and we’ll deliver a completely integrated desktop and mobile experience for you and your customers.
Franco De Bonis is a marketing professional with a unique view on the world of marketing and co-owner of The DG Group. Franco has worked in the field of sales and marketing promotion for over 20 years and was most recently the global marketing manager for Creative Labs before setting up The DG Group in January 2007.