How The Majority of Us Search Online And Why It Matters To Your Business

According to Smart Insights, most of the time spent on mobile devices, 90% to be precise, is spent using an app (think Facebook, etc.), which is based on recent Google research. Even though the total number of digital hours people spend on mobile is higher than desktops, this is mainly because people use their apps for everything under the sun. But when it comes to actually “surfing the web,” people are only spending about 10% of their digital hours looking for answers on a handheld device. That’s not very impressive.

So, why is Google so bullish on mobile devices?

Here’s how their abundant enthusiasm is reckoned: For typical website inquiries in 2017, web searches most often begin on a mobile device of some kind. This often satisfies those looking for a quick answer. However, some web searchers needing deeper answers to more complex questions about products, issues, or problems either start or continue their research on a desktop platform.

This is a vital piece of information if you are trying to create a website strategy that meets the needs of today’s online clientele regardless of the type of business you operate.

Marketing folks like to call this behavior the customer journey. It is a significant subset of a popular practice that progressive companies embrace known as omnichannel marketing.

We won’t concern ourselves with omnichannel for now, however; let’s consider why your customers’ online behavior should influence your web design, strategy, and approach. Hopefully, a bit of background information will help you think about how your particular customers behave online, making this research more relevant to your business’ online marketing needs.

What are your web customers doing with online search?

The real story is not that people are using mobile devices for searches. We get that. What we may not be getting with the same sense of urgency is how the practice of using multiple devices are the biggest part of the customer journey. This is called multi-platform search, and it is the most common method by far for those that are likely to engage with your online presence.

So, where are all of the headlines talking about Multi-Platform Search? Sorry folks, it’s not very sexy to talk about mixing what some people like to think of as an old device (e.g. laptop) with the latest, hottest, biggest, flattest (add more adjectives here) smartphone the world has ever seen.

I recently logged on to the website of one of my B2B clients who has a national focus and viewed their analytics. Very telling. In the last three years, the number of mobile devices people used to find them went from less than 3% to about 15% today. Now contrast this with the national average of visits via mobile in the retail sector, which is upwards of 75%. You can see where the trend is heading, just like Google’s research suggests.

OK, I’m going to suggest you do something, that is, if you would like to work on and improve your customer journey to purchase. Login to your website’s analytics and get the total ratio of mobile vs. desktop visits for the last three years.

Once you have your ratio of mobile vs. desktop visitors to your website, we must ask: Does the proportion of people finding you online agree with how your site design, functions, and user experience play out? If you cannot honestly answer yes, you are in danger of becoming irrelevant on the web, regardless of how much money you spend on SEO and advertising. Customer convenience leads to satisfaction and is part of the outcome of a great user experience, and it may just be your best competitive advantage.

Please report these numbers to your head of marketing before you risk losing more of your relevance on the web. Then engage a competent web design and marketing company to help you interpret, create, and implement a plan of action if you don’t have these skills in-house.

Today, there are many strategies and tactics to yield results from the Internet. And your website may be only a part of a multi-platform approach that actually puts your presence in the format that people need. Not everyone has the same preferences, and casting everyone in the same mold is a grave mistake.

Regardless of what you find when your review your website’s browser statistics, the correct answer for your company is going to be decidedly your own. That’s because most industries have customers with diverse needs, values, habits, and experiences.

Better marketing uses the best science but still relates to people by being an art. Finding the right balance is critical to success and is often out of kilter today because digital marketers overuse disruption techniques that violate important marketing principles, such as, don’t annoy people!

A solid marketing plan positions your business both offline and online to

  • communicate your unique selling point
  • deliver awesome goods or services that reflect your value proposition
  • focus on the customer
  • do or create something good that people believe in

If you are in the majority of companies who need a website to reach your client, then today’s research says it should at least be mobile friendly. This is just the starting point to begin thinking about your customer journey. The more you know about your customers’ journey, the better you will understand what kind of marketing strategy will best serve your company’s goals in the years ahead.

6 Different Models Of Internet Marketing

In my last three articles, I talked about my ups and downs in affiliate marketing, the two sides of that business model and why giving value to people is more important than anything else – including self-belief in your business success. Here, I am going to explain the 6 different models of internet marketing which is quite general by its definition.

1. Affiliate Marketing

The first model is by far the most basic and yet essential for all newbies to get started. That is by promoting other people’s products and services – be it digital or physical – and get paid in return. There are many ways you can go about doing so but that is another topic I will cover for the day.

2. E-Commerce

The second model is e-commerce.

While it may seem similar to promoting physical products as affiliate at first glance, it is not.

What this essentially means is that instead of having a physical store which can cost you tens of thousands in rent, staff and inventory costs, you can have a virtual one in the form of an e-commerce website instead.

In contrary to the traditional model, you do not need to have huge inventory at home.

You just need to have good connections of reliable suppliers who are willing to deliver the products for you to your customers while making sure they are in great condition and exactly what your customers required upon placing orders.

The only con is that building an e-commerce store is very challenging. Especially for a beginner who does not know anything about web design.

Even if you hired a freelancer, you may have to pay hundreds and even thousands of dollars because of the perceived value as in your store can earn you much more than what you invest initially in the long run though you do not get to make that money immediately.

3. Local Business Consulting

If you are already proficient in building websites and getting them ranked on top of Google, you can be a local business consultant to offline business owners whether they are running companies, cafes or shops.

If you are able to get customers throughout other online strategies as well, that will be even better.

However, I do not recommend this to newbies as most business owners are very selective in who to hire the same way as who they should employ in job interviews.

4. Freelancing

You can also do freelance work for internet marketers if you are good in building websites, writing content like articles, blog posts, e-books and short reports, designing banners, e-covers and graphics.

But do not expect to get high pay unless you are an experience programmer and software developer.

You may head down to sites like Elance, Fiverr and Guru to offer your services.

5. Mobile Apps

This is another profession you may consider if you like to learn and earn from designing mobile apps for people.

Given the fact that iPhones are very popular these days and people tend to surf web through those to laptops and desktops, this is another model you should consider.

6. Creating And Selling Your Own Information Products

I did cover this topic briefly in my article on the Two Sides Of Affiliate Marketing Coin.

What this means is you write your e-books and design your own video tutorials teaching people on how to do certain things based on your expertise and experience.

It does not have to be just internet marketing.

It can be other things like smart business investing, wise financial management, personal development and health-related topics.

Or even hobbies based on your personal passion as well as that of others.

How To Use Technology To Expand Your Small Business

Did you ever try to think how technology brings a change in our economy? Have you ever tried to notice and realized the existence of your business without the technology? You would have simplified a lot of things which were full of complexities with the help of technology. When you start thinking about the technology, you would realize that it enabled a small business to reach the top despite the tough competition.

You would have managed all tasks by assigning it manually without the internet, emails, mobile marketing, telecommunication channels and a lot more. Now, you can’t deny the importance of technology as businesses have experienced a huge growth in the last decade.

Time tracking software, employee scheduling system, time clocks, task management tools, CRM and a lot more options are there for managing all the tasks. It maintains the communication level within the teams and customers across the globe. It also assists in marketing a business and its products so that you can experience a success in a short span of time.

Let’s find out how to use technology to expand your small business:

Communication: Communication is very important when you have a product and providing a service because communication allows you to inform and encourage your prospective customers to avail your service and products. It is also important to respond to customer’s query without any delay. Emails, texts and social networking can keep small businesses connected to the customer base to improve the business solution.

Marketing: Technology has broadened the scope of advertisement so you can reach to new and existing customers through internet marketing. You can use search engines to the e-commerce websites, social networking sites to the email marketing for your brand promotion. When seeking a trusted platform to expedite the marketing process, it recommends choosing the right to the maximum accessibility.

Productivity: Many businesses have started working on a common software and files that can be accessed by the allocated teams & its members, clients and that can be extended to the head of the department. When you start working on a project, it will be beneficial for you to assign tasks on this software so that all the team members can work and allow the client to track the progress in real-time.

Also, Time Tracking Software allows having an idea about the work schedules, deadlines and total manpower required to finish a certain task. It will also be helpful to track the total time spent on a task and create the employee’s payroll.