(written by AutoRevo CEO Chad Polk)
If you haven’t yet heard of the 3-screen lifestyle, you’ll soon become very aware of it. It’s the ever-growing lifestyle of consumers with a TV, Computer, and now s Smartphone. Modern marketers are finding creative ways to reach these consumers who are riding the growing wave of always on instant availability. Recent research finds that U.S. mobile Internet users are engaging in shopping-related activities at a rate that exceeds desktop usage.
Any way you look at mobile, it is transforming the way your customers shop and interact with your dealership. Dealerships that are not investing in mobile shopping technology are at risk of getting left behind. The good news for mobile initiative dealers is that mobile-optimized websites can raise engagement as much as 85%.
This isn’t meant to scare anyone. Mobile websites are just another marketing channel to reach prospective customers. What better gift could a customer give you than to have your dealership available in their pocket 24/7? You’re probably a smartphone user, right? At any given time, how far away is your phone? Personally, I know the farthest my phone ever gets from me is my nightstand.
In a recent study done by Adobe, I found some statistics that will get your attention:
Auto dealers have gone through the TV phase, are living in the computer phase, and have now been given a new frontier for marketing: the smartphone era. For dealers, mobile can be a highly influential marketing channel. For automotive retailers, it provides the unprecedented immediacy of shopping your store when the need strikes the consumer. Think of mobile not strictly as a purchase channel, but more as a marketing channel to drive consumers to an action (lead conversion) and to serve them information whenever they’re ready to buy.
Mobile shopping is still in its early days, but auto dealers absolutely need a mobile presence to begin testing and measuring what works for their store, clients, and region. Mobile will continue to evolve as user experiences catch up to the fast pace of smartphone technology.
So, you ask, “What should I consider when setting up my mobile website?” Here’s a list of 5 areas to consider when you’re getting started with mobile (or to evaluate your current mobile site).
Google recently stated that mobile searches have increased by 500% from 2008 to 2010, and according to recent projections published by Nielson Co., 1 in 2 Americans will own a smartphone by the end of 2011. It’s time to take notice that the “must have a website” era in our industry has now become the “must have a mobile website” era!
(source: Adobe Scene7 Mobile Commerce Survey: Mobile Shopper Insights for 2011)