The world has officially gone mobile. According to the United Nations’ telecommunications agency, there are 6.8 billion cellphone subscriptions and roughly 7 billion people in the world. What’s more, this mobile madness only took 20 years to fully take over. Looking at these numbers, it’s no surprise that mobile searches surpassed desktop in early 2014. Mobile, however, doesn’t just refer to mobile phones. Combined with tablets, our society can search, socialize, and shop on the go. This means that businesses with an online presence are hard-pressed to keep up with the mobile evolution.

Rank In Mobile Searches

Google is keen to the mobile takeover. With recent algorithm updates, unresponsive or non-mobile-friendly sites stand to lose ground in rankings if they don’t quickly adapt. In short, if your site isn’t mobile friendly according to Google’s tool, you’ll be penalized in organic search results. If your site isn’t responsive yet, you aren’t alone: even though the majority of searches are now conducted on mobile devices, only 56% of all small business sites are actually responsive. The other 44% are difficult to navigate on mobile devices and won’t show up in mobile search results. Talk about missed opportunities!

But it’s not just about search results, is it? Mobile offers additional benefits as well.

Connect With An Actionable Audience

Previously, with a limited window for desktop usage, the point of connection between advertiser and consumer was often limited as well. Now, with mobile searches, advertisers can connect with consumers anytime, anywhere. This allows advertisers to connect with consumers at a point of action.

To explain this further, if someone is searching for restaurants on their phone, it’s usually at a time when they are looking to make reservations, order food, or sit down for a meal. So, this presents an opportunity for restaurants to advertise to this consumer when they are looking to make some sort of conversion. Mobile ads have to be adapted (both visually and in content) to take advantage of small phone screens. A well-crafted mobile marketing campaign should provide click-to-call actions and take advantage of the wide variety of mobile-friendly functionalities. For example, ads can lead customers to add events directly to their personal calendars, share content via various social media or messenger applications, and make a purchase on the spot.

Create Actionable Ads

It’s not just about timing; it’s about creating quality content that caters to mobile users. Adding the constraints of a smaller screen, advertisers are further challenged to develop engaging, informational content. Advertisers need to rethink marketing and on-site copy strategies, presenting the information mobile searchers most want to see. The simple fact is that people searching on mobile devices aren’t necessarily looking for the same information as desktop searchers.

Leverage Local

Mobile content—both in advertisements and on a business’ website—should be direct, to the point, and altogether shorter than what is presented to desktop searchers. It should also be hyper-local. Building off the actionable nature and location services for mobile searches, it’s important to tell users that you are located near them. So, back to the restaurant example, not only are you the best search result for seafood, but also you’re actually located in the user’s neighborhood. Someone searching for seafood while in Mid City probably isn’t interested in seeing results for seafood restaurants in Slidell or Baton Rouge.

Local listings are also a crucial aspect of leveraging local in mobile. Businesses need to be sure that all their local profiles—across Yelp!, Google+, Foursquare, Bing, etc.—are optimized for local. Be sure to implement mobile strategies across the full spectrum of mobile-accessible platforms.

Use Social To Your Full Advantage

Mobile is especially important in social media plans as well. 26% of app usage is spent on social media applications such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Further, two-thirds of Facebook users access the service via mobile at least some of the time, and more than one in six people exclusively use mobile phones to access Facebook. Even more impressive, 85% of Twitter usage comes from mobile users.

In other words, the social realm presents big opportunities for advertisers looking to connect with mobile users.

Craft A Multifaceted Strategy

Creating a mobile marketing strategy can be complex, but when executed well, it can connect a business with the vast majority of users. It’s crucial that advertisers leverage (and balance) a multi-faceted mobile strategy to connect with these customers at various states of mobile activity to lead to conversions.

Don’t get lost in the mobile madness. Your Audience Experts at NOLA Media Group can give you a mobile makeover and connect you with these on-the-go consumers.