Recently I had a conversation with a local small business owner who suggested social media marketing was on the decline. “People are burned out and tired of it,” he said. “I’m not sure it’s worth the effort.” This is not an unfamiliar refrain; I‘ve heard it many times, usually from a solopreneurs or start-ups and small businesses who are bootstrapping their early months or years.
Today’s email delivered a timely report from Google—one I wish I’d had on hand as a response for the aforementioned business owner. According to Google’s data, consumers using their smartphones to research and purchase goods and service is up 120% from last year.
Last year I was informing clients that over 60% of consumers were researching, planning and making purchases via their phones. The update from Google was not exactly surprising, but it is compelling.
According to Google, over eighty-two percent of consumers report consulting their phones for purchases they’re about to make—either on way to the store or when they’re already in the store.
The article over at Think With Google also refers to a Mastercard report which reports customers who shop both online and off with a specific retailer buy 250% more, on average. One major retailer claims its omnichannel shoppers are 8 times more valuable than those who shop in a single channel.
These numbers indicate a greater need than ever before for strategic, integrated, mobile-friendly marketing and merchandising. The big players have teams of strategists advising them to stay ahead of the consumer trends, but in many ways, the local mom-and-pop shops have a harder time of it.
If 8 out of 10 shoppers are influenced by mobile marketing, it’s critical to provide a rich, rewarding user experience at every step along the way. That includes lively, inspired digital media across every appropriate channel.
Staying on top of marketing trends and proven best-practice methods is often beyond the reach of the small business owner who's been relying on the DIY approach to marketing. Even the smallest not-for-profit usually has some call-to-action to spotlight.
If you haven’t upgraded your old desktop-browser designed website to a mobile-forward, optimized, social media integrated website you may as well just be listed in the phone book. And let’s face it…When’s the last time you even saw one of those?
Omnichannel marketing is here to stay and small businesses who want to remain relevant in their markets will take it to heart.