In the past, hyperlocal search referred to getting local information on demand from your PC. You searched from your desk or laptop and local results for news and deals came up.
These days hyperlocal search has gone one-step further. You can get that information from anywhere with your mobile phone. And this way of getting information and shopping is hotter than ever.
Here are some stats to prove that:
- Sixty percent of customers review a product on a mobile before buying.
- 51% of smart phone users buy when there is a mobile site, but less than five percent of brands actually have one
- Seventy-seven percent of smart phone users visit social sites and search engines.
- More than 90% of mobile searches end in an action like purchasing or visiting a business.
- Twenty-five percent of searches in the world are mobile.
There’s no denying it…getting your website mobile-ready and geared to deliver local results is as important as ever.
Of course, this means you will have to do things like build a mobile site, optimize it for mobile search, create a mobile-only AdWords campaign, engage the click-to-call function and create a mobile-specific keyword list.
That might sound like a tall order, but this guide will show you step-by-step what you need to do…and you’ll see it’s not really that hard.
So, let’s get stared:
Build the mobile site
Here’s another stat for you from a Compuware study: More than 50% of mobile customers will not recommend a brand if their mobile site is bad. Furthermore, in spite of brand loyalty, more than 40% would actual go to a competitor who has a better mobile site.
That’s huge. Â
So, your first step is to get your site mobile ready. To get started, let’s check out what your website looks like on a mobile device at Google’s initiative GoMo:
Answer 6 questions and then you’ll get a report on your site’s mobile friendliness:
Click on read full report and you can get a Google Doc of a detailed report for your site:
Naturally, you’ll want to develop sites that can be used across devices. Keep in mind that search engines rank a page based on some common criteria—screen rendering, site performance, usability and page download speed.
Here is a site that Jakob Neilson uses as an example that gets all of these criteria right:
Creating a mobile site sounds like a lot of work, though, right? Would you believe me if I told you it’s really not?
In fact, you can create a mobile site with this free tool:
Or if you use WordPress, you can use the WP-Touch plugin. Of course if you have more robust needs, you’ll need to hire a developer.
Use traditional SEO practices
Once you’ve created your mobile-friendly site, your next step is to optimize that site. You can use conventional best practices, focusing on these strategies:
- Keywords in headlines and copy – Like their PC counterparts, mobile search engines use keywords to deliver relevant search queries. But unlike the PC users, mobile users use shorter keywords. Typing on a mobile phone is just too hard. Below I’ll discuss how to create a keyword campaign focused on mobile users.
- Page titles – Try to match search queries to titles since this is one of the main factors that users use to evaluate whether they will click through. The closer you can match the higher in position you will be…and the more likely you’ll get the click.
- Page descriptions – You’ve got to nail your meta descriptions to compel a mobile user to click through. Make sure they are short, keyword rich, and enticing.
- Links – Mobile users don’t mind clicking…it’s just that your links need to be clickable. Mobile users like the experience of finding and exploring, so provide value whether you are linking in your site or out of your site.
Like I said, these are pretty standard, and if you create a mobile site using the WP plugin, for example, you won’t do a optimization for the PC and then the mobile site—it will all start from the PC side. So keep mobile users in mind when you create content. Check out these 9 content strategies to help you.
Create separate mobile AdWords campaigns
Google’s research shows that advertisers who use mobile-specific campaigns get an 11.5% increase in mobile CTR, with a 29% rise in the number of mobile clicks.
With a mobile-specific campaign you can:
- Optimize campaign for mobile specific keywords – You can damage your PC campaign if you try to add mobile-specific keywords. A separate campaign will allow you to choose words that work best on a mobile device.
- Customize ad text to mobile-specific CTAs – By creating text in your ad that appeals to mobile users you’ll increase conversion. The essence behind this idea is to make requesting by phone front and center.
- Adjust bids – A mobile-only campaign allows you to set your bids and budget to help you achieve the top spot.
It’s pretty easy to set up a mobile-specific AdWords campaign. You can use either AdWords Editor Tool or do it from your AdWords account. Let’s look at the AdWords Editor Tool first.
Log into Editor Tool, and then click “New campaign”:
Then choose a mobile device:
Next, choose the campaign you want to copy and then add to the new campaign. After that you can adjust your ad bids and budget.
Tip: Since fewer ads are shown on mobile, you can be more aggressive with your bids.
You can also create a mobile-specific campaign in your Google AdWords account if you are not using the AdWords Editor Tool.
Login and click on the “New Campaign” in your account and choose which device you want to create a campaign for (mobile or tablet):
Now you are ready to copy over your existing campaign into your new mobile-specific campaign. Your next step is to create a mobile-friendly keyword list.
Create a mobile-friendly keyword list
Another significant difference with mobile users is how they use keywords. Their behavior is different than PC users. For example:
- Use short keywords – Typing on a mobile device is hard, so users take shortcuts. One-word search queries are the most used: “coffee,” “boots” or “movies.” They are hoping the local tools of search kick-in at this point to deliver the most relevant listings for these queries.
- Obsessed with top 3 positions - According to Google’s book, users care more about those spots since the real estate on a mobile device is limited. How important are those positions? Just a drop from top to second position can lead to a 90% plunge.
- Hate scrolling – Mobile users want to see everything within their window. So it’s best that your keywords are matched to their requests so you can land in the top spots.
To get started, you can use the Google Keyword Tool, but you’ll have to search with the “Advanced Options and Filters” in order to get mobile-specific suggestions.
Significant keyword volume is critical to a successful mobile campaign. Ignore keywords without a high volume.
Add phone numbers to your mobile campaigns
Customers who are on a mobile device are primed to call your business. Make it easy for them to do by adding your phone number to your AdWords campaigns.
Advertisers who use this feature experience a 6-8% rise in CTR, and doesn’t cost any different than if you got a click to your website.
So how do you set this up? Follow these steps:
- Log into AdWords.
- Choose the right campaign…inside AdWords, select the campaign you’d like to add a phone number to. Note, if you want ads shown on high-end mobile phones, click “Mobile devices with full Internet browsers.” You can find this under “Devices” in the campaign’s “Setting” tab.
- Click the Ad extensions tab…to get the right view, click “Call Extensions.” You’ll have to enable this tab if you can’t see it.
- Choose “New Extension.”
- Add your phone number and country.
- Hit “Save and continue.”
And to enhance performance, you can also see the number of calls received per campaign, ad group or keyword.
Tip: You can make your phone number and not your headline clickable when it shows up on a mobile device. Just select “Allow only click-to-calls.”
Basically in few steps you can have a highly-optimized mobile site that delivers relevant search listings in your local market and actually converts. This is a superb strategy for anyone who is in a business with a local customer base.
That means coffee shops, record stores, car dealers, florists. And you don’t necessarily need a brick-and-mortar location. You could be a real estate agent or plumber who works from home. Just make sure you define your market/region/city precisely so the right people call you.
Have you had any success with a mobile-specific campaign in your local market?