The news is just getting better for mobile marketers and retailers, especially early-adopters of the mobile bandwagon-. A new IBM study confirms my earlier hypothesis on why you need to have a mobile marketing resolution for 2012 in your business planning.
Fact: The IBM study proves that potential customers use their smartphone devices to shop.
As of December 25, 2011, there’s been an almost 173% increase of sales made via a mobile device over 2010 (5.3%). Couple this with steadily increasing traffic to mobile sites year-to-year (almost 118% on December 25, 2011) and we have a pretty clear picture of the meteoric rise of mobile.
The lesson for dealers is clear: if you don't have a mobile website, do not participate in mobile group shopping site or have no clue what "geo-location" means, you need to get a handle on this right now. We are already into 2012 for 11 days – do you and your dealerships “think mobile” yet?
With this dramatic increase of mobile traffic, it’s a natural assumption that time on mobile site will also increase, as well as sales. Indeed, we are seeing customers opening their wallets as a result of mobile search, especially the day after Christmas. Consider the following stats: Numbers here are showing the pattern pretty drastically evolving:
27.8% online sales increase for December 26th (YTD)
109% increase of mobile traffic compared to 2010 (16.4% for 201111.3% of all web-based sales after Christmas were generated through a mobile website (in 2010 the figures were 4.3%)
2012 will be the year of Mobile
When we believe the mobile marketing experts (and in this case we really should), in 2012 we will see even more mobile shopping apps popping up. More check-ins, more digital coupons, more mobile pay and check-out applications, more mobile devices, more deals and especially more mobile e-commerce. eMarketer’s Prediction is that mobile commerce will reach $11.6 billion for the "Mobile Year 2012" - just slightly up from the approximately 2011 numbers of $6.7 billion (wink, wink)
Time to act now
Although the big crystal ball did fall on New York's Times Square, you have still time to get in on the 2012 mobile trend time left.
Here are my suggestions for what you should do right now.
You CAN’T AFFORD ANYLONGER to have not a mobile website. Not only is the mobile adaption rate of consumers going through the roof, but facts are also showing higher conversion rates for mobile sites than static websites. Keep in mind, you are actually getting the low-funnel consumer engaging with you on your mobile site – short before he will turn into a buying customer.
Make sure that your mobile site will have the capability to assist the consumer right then when they are ready to take a plan into action. Internal research here at ADP | Cobalt showed that these consumer in particular skewing towards “setting service appointments” – so your mobile site should have the connectivity to your DMS, allowing the customer to pick the time, the day, service menu and even which Service Adviser should help her further in real-time. One of the prime examples in the dealer world is i.e. Diver Chevrolet in Wilmington, DE. A seamless integration with all digital components and DMS resulted in tremendous success, especially in appointment set / show ratio.
Get familiar with the current Groupon and/or Living Social (more cities will be added in the future) or any other group buying websites in your area.
Find out if any of your car dealership competitors are running specials on accessories, driver gear, or the fixed ops stuff like brake services or oil changes.
The same counts for offers from your local Pep Boys or Autozone stores, who may currently have tire sales and battery specials running.
Target not just the city where your dealership or store is located, but also the surrounding suburbs and towns. People will indeed drive a few miles even to save just a couple of bucks (Just ask Jessica, our digital ad specialist http://www.drivingsales.com/videos/friday-happy-hourbig-city-ads ).
Get acclimated with the Foursquare app. It will combine the need for people to get "vocal" aboutwhere they are right now and to check if the place they want to be a Mayor of in the future runs anything on specials.
Get going and start your marketing today!