The competition between the various search engines will grow more intense, as mobile search continues to grow at a rapid pace, which is why it is making it increasingly important for mobile marketers to think more broadly.
Many experts believe that Microsoft’s Bing and Yahoo will increase their mobile search market share. And, as mobile search grows exponentially, marketers will need to rethink their search engine marketing (SEM) strategy and consider a different approach to mobile search.
“The growth in online search was initially gated by both PC access and Internet access penetration,” said Jonathan Tom, group manager of global trade marketing, mobile, local and commerce at Microsoft Advertising, Redmond, WA.
“Adoption of mobile devices is happening faster than that of the PC, and the device is already an always-on device,” he said. “We think mobile will grow at an accelerated pace relative to the growth trajectory of online search.”
Mobile search provides a great opportunity for marketers. Many should take advantage of smartphone capabilities such as GPS and voice and image-recognition technology and incorporate those into their multichannel marketing efforts.
“It’s really exciting to see how quickly mobile search is growing, overall,” said Michael Slinger, director of mobile ads at Google, Mountain View, CA. “Worldwide, mobile search experienced a 2.3 times growth between the fourth quarter in 2009 and fourth quarter in 2010 and over the past two years, we’ve grown five times.
“Searches on smartphones and tablets have increased by four times in the last year alone,” he said. “Marketers need to recognize that mobile is unique and optimize their campaigns accordingly.
“We’ve found that when advertisers run a mobile-specific campaign, they experience, on average, an 11.5 percent increase in mobile click through rates compared to their mobile click through rates on a hybrid campaign that runs both on desktop and mobile.
According to Mr. Slinger, another important tactic is to ensure that marketers have a mobile-optimized landing page.
“We’ve found that 79 percent of Google’s large advertisers don’t have mobile-optimized landing pages, so there’s plenty of room for improvement there,” Mr. Slinger said.