For small business owners, if your website is not mobile-friendly, you're like Justin Bieber or Chris Brown trying to be seen as sympathetic: yes, you are dead in the water. Recent studies show more rely on their smart phones for not only researching products and services, but buying. According to Telmetrics, 46% of consumers use their devices as their sole research tool.
Imagine if you own a water heater company. Your customer's got her diamond bedazzled smart phone in her hand, but how is she going to find a number to call? According to Google and Ipsos, 70% of mobile searchers call a business directly from their search results.
Here are five ways that small businesses can dominate the mobile marketplace:
1. You go "loc." With the growing mobile advertising platforms, it's vital for small businesses to have exposure on as many free local directories as possible. Not only do these provide valuable contact information and links to your website to get new customers, but they serve as forums where customers can leave positive feedback. From a mobile point-of-view, near every major local directory has developed an easy platform for interacting with businesses listed in its directory. Show clients you are relevant and get the free exposure.
2. You "figured out" how the mobile users operate. Providing local ads with a click-to-call feature is an important way small businesses interact with their customer base to cause more clicks and faster closings.
3. You follow dominance. If all projections hold true, mobile search will overtake search on desktops well before years' end for small businesses. It is imperative that small businesses adapt their online marketing and website materials to be optimized for mobile viewing, and to have the maximum exposure in mobile search.
4. Show you are hip. Responsive design -- the ability for your site to adapt to the smart phone and tablet -- is a must. Small businesses must have their online marketing efforts designed to capitalize on mobile trends and outreach on mobile platforms.