If you’re trying to reach retail customers, mobile marketing had better be part of your strategy. That’s according to a new study by Hitwise, an eCommerce and consumer analytics company.
The study (PDF) found that 56 percent of visitors to the Hitwise Retail 500, a collection of the top 500 retail websites now come from smartphones or tablets.
Here are some other highlights of the company’s “Mobile Search: Topics and Themes” Report:
Mobile Retail Search Trends
72 Percent of Visits to Food and Beverage Sites Come From Mobile
According to the study, a whopping 72 percent of online searches that result in a visit to a food and beverage site come from mobile devices. The health industry comes a close second, with 68 percent of searches being generated on mobile devices.
Surprisingly, entertainment (42 percent) and banking (39 percent) were among industries that found desktop searches beating mobile searches.
Kitchen Tips and Food Safety Draw Large Percentages of Mobile Search
According to the study, a large number of consumers are using their smartphones to make important food decisions.
So whether it’s quick kitchen tips (82 percent) or answers to food safety concerns (80 percent), consumers are relying heavily on their mobile devices.
Retail: Location-Based Searches High on Mobile
It’s worth noting that location-based retail searches are quite prominent on mobile devices. It’s probably not difficult to understand why. Busy consumers make impulsive shopping decisions and they are often looking for solutions that are well within their reach.
Moreover, the study reflects mobile consumers want to know who is open for business and when. For example, 82 percent of the searches for the term “24 hour ” originate on mobile devices.
Not Going Mobile is Not an Option for Businesses
Regardless of the industry they belong to, businesses can no longer afford to ignore mobile. Arguments in favor of mobile-first marketing strategies continue to increase, and with good reason.
Last year, mobile searches surpassed desktop searches on Google for the first time. Seizing the growth opportunity, Google introduced the first of what’s expected to be many mobile adaptations of eCommerce tools.
The search engine giant has also revamped AdWords to address the mobile-first trends and capture the interest of an increasing number of consumers who prefer using their phones to seek information.
For small businesses, this is the right time to develop a mobile strategy. To begin with, businesses should make their websites more mobile-friendly. It’s also important to ensure the load speed of the mobile page is fast enough to retain the interest of busy users.
A well-defined mobile strategy can provide long-term benefits for the small businesses using it correctly.