Almost everybody owns a smartphone these days. In fact statistics have revealed that there are more people around the world who own a mobile than own a toothbrush.
Bringing it closer to home, a large proportion of your potential client base are likely to use their smartphone to make online searches and use to social media sites.
What makes this fact even more exciting is when somebody makes a search on their mobile they are often looking for local businesses to visit or local services to use in the immediate future. It emphasizes how important it is for your business to be found online.
However, most small businesses are not making proper use of the huge opportunities provided by mobile marketing. Recent reports show that only a small percentage of small businesses are using mobile solutions to help market their products or services.
It is a wasted opportunity and doesn?t make sense in comparison to how to their customers are embracing mobile technology and it has become part of their daily lives.
The future is very bright for businesses that are embracing the mobile revolution. What about you? Do you own a small business? Are you ready?
If your site is ready for mobile visitors then you are going to benefit in a big way. If you are not set up for shoppers accessing your site by mobile phone then be prepared to be left behind while you watch your competitors attract every potential customer searching for products and services that you provide.
Mobile marketing is a potential goldmine for small businesses like yours. We will show you how your business can leverage smart mobile phone marketing strategies in order to attract a flood of new and repeat business from a loyal army of smartphone users.
Here are some steps that your business can take to make sure that you are not missing out on any business:
Make sure your website is mobile friendly
A large percentage of total web traffic is now generated from mobile phones and tablets. People rarely surf the Internet while stuck at their desktop PC?s any more. They have their mobiles and tablets with them everywhere and search on the move.
However, almost 50% of small businesses do not have a mobile friendly website (if they even have a website at all).
Having a mobile friendly website is good business sense as it makes it very easy for your customers to find you on their mobile devices and you will be one step ahead of your competition.
Optimising your website for mobile visitors doesn?t need to be an expensive or time consuming project if you are just setting up an online presence.
But even if you have had your site for some time there are ways round making your site mobile friendly without having to start again.
The most important factors to consider for your mobile site are:
1. Make sure that it is easy for your customers to find the information that they are looking for on a small mobile screen size.
2. The site loads quickly on the slower mobile connections or when they don?t have Wi-Fi connection.
The information that you want your customers to be able to find very quickly are:
* Your location details
* Your phone number ? make sure it is prominently displayed with the ability for your customers to be able click on the number to call you.
* Your opening hours and when they can contact you.
* Your ?About Us? page
* Anything that your customer might be expecting to be able to do, depending on your niche. E.g. download menus and prices if you own a restaurant or the facility to be able to book an appointment if you are a dentist etc.
Be Found on Google Places
Google Places is very important for your business. It allows you as a business owner to list your premises along with key information. The listing then appears on Google Maps and in Google Page results.
Listing on Google Places is free and is an excellent way to increasing the visibility of your business, particularly those potential clients who are using mobile and tablet devices.
You might not be familiar with QR codes but there is no doubt you will have seen them on websites, printed magazine and product packaging. A QR code is usually a small square box with a pixilated barcode. When a person swipes their smartphone over the code using a special app, the code will take them directly to a specific web page or coupon page.
Although they have not taken off in the way that many people predicted they are still an incredible way of getting customers to visit your website or exclusive offers page. It?s a good idea to embed QR codes in all of your printed material in order to encourage traffic to your website or to provide mobile users with exclusive promotions.
QR codes can be very useful marketing tools and are the perfect way to integrate mobiles with offline marketing such as brochures and newspaper ads. Simply ask the mobile user to scan the code using their mobile device to get a ?surprise? or a ?goodie? that they would not be able to get anywhere else.
Most mobiles users would be intrigued and keen to see what they would receive. QR codes significantly increase engagement and draw new prospects into your mobile marketing world.
The key to their success is to have a clear call to action. If you include a QR Code in your printed ad don?t just have it sitting floating round on the page. Tell the reader to scan it. Tell them why you want them to scan it and offer a juicy bait to encourage them to scan it.
To get the most from QR codes you need to make it worth the reader?s time and effort to scan it. In most cases they won?t bother if you just place the code in the ad with no text describing it and telling them why they should scan it.
Text message marketing
Many companies use text message marketing because it is highly efficient and is an easy way to connect with current and potential clients.
Why is it so effective? Because no other marketing tool has an open rate like text messages. According to most polls, an impressive 98% of text messages are opened and read. For further proof, how many text messages do you have on your phone that have not been read?
A 98% open success rate is going to have a huge impact on your business if you wisely use text message marketing and have a good campaign in place.
However it is not just text messages that mobile users pay attention to. Mobile users are far more inclined to open social media and email messages and respond to them immediately when they are on their mobile and tablet devices compared to desktop and laptop computers.
So how does this work in practice?
Let?s say you own a hair salon and it is Tuesday afternoon, very quiet and you don?t have many bookings.
Now imagine that you had built up a list of over 500 mobile numbers from customers who had used your services before. That afternoon you could send out a text message to all of these clients that offered a discount off a haircut or treatment if they came in that afternoon.
Even if you got 2 or 3 bookings the text message will have more than paid for itself.
There are many ways to do this and we will be able to advise you on the best method for your company.
What to remember about Mobile Marketing
A lot of businesses that try to use mobile marketing methods forget one very important point: when people are using their mobile devices for shopping and buying purposes they are often ?on the go?. In most cases they won?t be sitting at a desk without any distractions. They will be out with friends, sitting in a busy coffee shop while on a shopping trip or they may be searching Google while trying to find a local business or restaurant.
In all of these cases they want an immediate answer to their question. They want to be able to quickly find what they are looking for and they want it now.
You have a choice. Will you make it easy for them to find your business or service online or will you ignore mobile marketing and force the shoppers to go to somewhere else (Your competitors).
If your website is not mobile friendly and your site is cluttered, busy and doesn?t load right in their mobile device they will quickly abandon your site and go looking somewhere else. So it is a vital part of your mobile marketing success that you keep your messages brief and to the point and make sure that your website is optimized to be seen clearly on their mobiles.
The mobile user experience is critical. You need to make it simple for your visitors. If they visit your site and find their experience of shopping or buying from you is difficult or hard work then they will click off your site in an instant. They will not persevere and battle their way through a clumsy site.
A good way of discovering what kind of buying experience customers have when they visit your site is to view your site yourself on your own mobile.
Try to look at it from your customer?s point of view and put yourself in their shoes.
What does your website look like? Is it easy or hard to find information on your site? Does it display well or does it look out of sync and with large clumsy slow loading graphics?
You want it to be easy?.very easy!
As mentioned earlier, most of your mobile customers will be looking for what they want while they are out shopping and on the go, not while they are sitting at home on their PC?s. There will be lots of distractions and they will be busy so you don?t want to make visiting your website hard work. If buying from you is hard work they simply won?t do it and will go somewhere else.
How Your Business Can Join the Mobile Revolution
As you can see, there are so many advantages to mobile marketing for every small business and you should be taking advantage of it.
It creates a level playing field for businesses of all sizes. You will get business, lots of extra business, if you make it easy for customers to find and access your site by mobile.
Mobile marketing can be a dream come true for almost every small business and the potential of how it can build your brand and attract thousands of extra customers is enormous.
We help small, local businesses just like yours and offer tailor made services that will help grow your company profits.
We offer a wide range of mobile marketing solutions and services that will put you way ahead of your competitors. These services will provide your users with an outstanding buying experience that will make them come back and buy from you again as well as want to tell their friends and family about it on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter.
If you want to add your company to our growing list of success stories then please contact us and we will be delighted to help you set up a profitable and successful mobile marketing strategy that will be just right for your business.