Mobile Search: 4 Ways it is Different
by Jason Wells, Search Engine Journal
September 21, 2012

1). Mobile searchers are ready to buy
There is both anecdotal and quantitative evidence supporting this claim. First, Google says that 90% of mobile searches result in action in one day. Another statistics—in one of the most oft quoted in the mobile marketing world—says that 70% of mobile searches result in action within one hour. Even if those statistics are slightly exaggerated (which we have no reason to believe they are), they are still stunning. Mobile searchers enter the funnel ready to buy. They have done research by the time they conduct a mobile search. They are ready to buy immediately.

2). Mobile searches produce a disproportionate number of phone calls
xAd and Google have been reporting for at least a year that mobile searches produce phone calls over 50% of the time. That’s stunning. But then a report from Nielsen dropped a bomb on the entire mobile marketing world when they said this: 73% of mobile users say they regularly look up and call business phone numbers. Mobile searches produce phone calls at a staggering rate. This has broad implications about the tactics mobile marketers use and the metrics they use. It also means that Google is going to make a boatload of cash from their already burgeoning pay-per-call (click-to-call) market.

3). M
obile SEO is harder
Google said in November of 2011 that CTR falls off almost 90% from position 1 to position 4 in the mobile space. That is much higher than ‘standard’ SEO. The reason mobile SEO is more difficult is not hard to figure out. The screen is smaller and there is less room for results.

4). Mobile search will continue to grow
As smartphone penetration crests 55% later this year, mobile search is only going to increase. When, precisely, it passes desktop search is not known. But it will be soon—likely in 2013 or 2014. And eventually—whether it is in 2015, 2016 or beyond—mobile search will own 70% to 80% of the search market.
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