Insight from Google research into the consumer path to purchase highlights the profound impact smartphones have had on the customer journey. The stages we’re accustomed to (awareness, consideration, purchase, etc.) are still relevant, but the smartphone has served to break these stages down into a series of what Google calls “micro-moments,” or moments that shape consumer decisions and preferences. And with instant access to information at our fingertips, these moments are critical for brands to deliver immediacy and relevance for consumers.
Smartphones = Knowledge + Calls
First we need to take a step back and think about the word “smartphone.” The first half emphasizes how our devices have in fact made us more knowledgeable – we have instant access to any piece of information we desire. But think about the second half – a smartphone is still a phone, and people still want to talk. In fact, mobile advertising will drive 93 billion calls to U.S. businesses in 2015.
So let’s break down four key micro-moments Google highlights, and how the “phone” in smartphone is still relevant for each.
Google shares here that 66% of smartphone users turn to their phones to look up something they saw in a TV commercial. That’s not particularly surprising considering 91% of U.S. adults have their smartphone by their side 24/7 (Nielsen). But it is telling.
Why calls? Maybe these people aren’t ready to convert, but they do want more information and placing a call from a smartphone is the most natural way to get answers. Not to mention fast. A call provides an immediate answer to the searcher’s inquiry.
Google has seen “near me” searches double over the past year, with 80% of those searches occurring on a smartphone. People are ready to take action, and whether they’re looking for business hours, a store location, or a phone number, one thing remains the same: they are looking for context. They want the location nearest them. Not the one in the city over, but the one most relevant to them.
Why calls? Google call extensions drive millions of calls every month. According to Google, 70% of mobile searchers have used click to call to connect with a business directly from the search engine results page. If a “near me” searcher clicks-to-call from the SERP, routing them to the correct location right away will help drive relevance and immediacy.
Video plays a crucial role in moments where consumers want to feel empowered to complete tasks or projects themselves. In fact, over 100 million hours of “how-to” videos have already been watched in 2015. By seeking out these types of videos people desire immediate instruction and empowerment, but also demonstrate a need for help from brands and experts.
Why calls? While people may not call directly within an “I-want-to-do” moment, once they’ve exhausted the usefulness of “how-to” videos, the natural next step for a more complex DIY task is to place a call. 62% of smartphone users are more likely to take action right away toward solving an unexpected problem or new task because they have a smartphone. You can get immediate answers by calling an expert for advice or a home improvement store for more information about certain products.
Google reports a 29% increase in mobile conversion rates year-over-year. Despite its growth, mobile web conversions are still low, but that makes sense. Depending on the type of purchase, a conversion may occur online on a smartphone (e.g. pay for a taxi via an app) or research may begin on a mobile device with the conversion occurring on a desktop (e.g. purchase apparel on a website). And what about conversions for more complex, considered purchases like insurance, senior care, or a car? This leads us to…
Why calls? Marketers who only track mobile web conversions during “I-want-to-buy” moments are missing a valuable lead source: phone calls. There is significant investment being made in mobile advertising (it will make up 72% of digital budgets by 2019) and it’s generating more calls to U.S. businesses than ever before. Marketers will only have closed-loop attribution when they begin tracking both web leads and phone leads.
Learn tactics for driving more calls and revenue from popular mobile channels in the on-demand webinar, “Call Analytics for Mobile Marketing: Real Strategies, Real Stories.” Or check out DialogTech for Mobile Marketing to learn about how end-to-end call analytics and automation are empowering marketers in our mobile-first world.