You are already in the moment
Life in the digital age – where the majority of us have a smartphone and a constant connection to the web – is all about moments: We want to know what’s happening, we want to go somewhere, we want to do something, and we want to purchase something. These are called micro-moments, and for brands today, these are prime real estate for brands looking to connect with customers.
Mobile has enabled us to get the answer to every question answered in a matter of seconds. Want to find that film you watched but can’t remember the name? Google the actor or the premise of the film. Want to find a store that sells those shoes you want? No problem. Our smartphones have destroyed any need to be patient and wait for the opportunity. We want the answer now, and we can get it.
Micro-moments open a doorway for consumers with quick thoughts and even quicker search instincts and brands have to be ready to take advantage of this. It’s a consumers quick search and swipe on a mobile that follows a spur of the moment action which means the old journey taken by consumers is disrupted with new user intent driven micro-moments. Google found that consumers can even be more loyal to their instant needs in a micro-moment than their loyalty to existing trusted brands.
The Importance of Websites being optimised for Mobile
Brands and creatives should already be well aware of this behavioural trend, and they are optimising themselves to make the most of these micro-moments by ensuring that all of their online presence – their websites, online stores and social networks – are primed for mobile users. They achieve this by ensuring that the following boxes are ticked:
- The pages on their website are fully responsive – meaning that it adapts to the device that it is being viewed on, whether that’s an iPad, iPhone, Samsung Galaxy or any other form of smartphone, tablet or desktop computer.
- Clear calls to action on their website that are actionable via mobile devices, e.g. voucher codes, email sign-ups, store checkouts and payment options, etc.
- No slowdown or increased loading times – people want to navigate your site with ease and get to where they need to be within seconds. Miss that window and you’re doomed to fail.
Mobile conversions are up 29% in the last year, and they are only likely to increase, this is without taking into account that 82% of smartphone users consult their phone before making a purchase in a store. This is because of the mentality of smartphone users, and the importance of their mobile devices in their daily lives. According to an August 2015 Google Consumer Survey, 68% (two-thirds) of smartphone users say that they check their phones within the first 15 minutes of waking up in the morning, and 30% of these users will openly admit to having no-phone anxiety (nomophobia) when they don’t have their mobile device to hand.
It would be more staggering to hear if it wasn’t so blindingly obvious, and all the more reason for brands to ensure that their websites are being optimised for mobile users, who are likely to grab their mobiles up to 150 times a day when they need to check something. Have you ever been in the middle of a task and then thought of something that you need. What was the first thing you did? Grab your phone. Of course, it was right there, and it contained the answer to that niggle in your head. Not only this, but users also spend 177 minutes on their phone every day!
Be There – Be Useful – Be Quick
In order for your brand to provide the answer and reap the benefits of consumer behavioural trends, you need to be three things, according to Google’s guide to succeeding in a micro-moment world:
- Be there – Anticipate the micro-moments and be there when your consumers start asking the questions. Remember, 90% of smartphone users aren’t brand-committed.
- Be useful – When the questions are asked and they find your brand, you answer those questions creatively and decisively. No need to search anywhere else. You’ve got it covered.
- Be quick – The mobile experience needs to be fast, because they’re not called micro-moments because they last for a lifetime. They are fleeting and you need to understand that in order to capitalise on them and deliver.
The Battleground for Micro-Moments
The best way to ensure that you’ll be there and be useful is to have a website that delivers the goods – including a fully responsive theme, calls to action and solid navigation – and has the content to provide a useful answer to the questions that your consumers will be asking online. Users expect more these days so UX reviews are essential, when was the last time you acted as a customer and took a walk through your website or tracked user journeys, internal clicks, drop off pages or conversion paths?
If consumers are searching for something and you have the answer, it should be right there in front of them. 1 in 3 smartphone users has purchased from a company or brand other than the one they intended to because of information provided in the moment they needed it, so ensuring that you have what the customer needs is the majority of the battle.
Location-based searches have increased significantly due to mobile users being able to pinpoint their exact location when looking for answers. This means that local brands who are delivering the goods can maximise their sales potential in the micro-moments where consumers are adding terms like “near me” to their searches.
Try this on for size: Search for your most common topics in your industry and see how often you are featured in the results. If you’re not turning up as often as you like, it is time to rectify this. Consider putting more emphasis on your mobile ad campaigns, and give the content on your web pages another read-through. Do they get your message across in a way that is useful and quick? Are you solving queries and problems with your content? Does it have clear calls to action and create demand for making a purchase?
If the answer is no, then it is time to go back to the drawing board. This is how your brand will make a success out of consumer micro-moments.