3 Mobile Marketing News Stories Small Businesses Need to Read … and Other Hot Topics

man with smartphone

With 2013 right around the corner, it’s time to start thinking about resolutions—not only for yourself, but also for your business.

Where do you want your business to be a year from now? How will things look in December 2013?

Mobile is one topic that no business owner should leave off the list.

Three news stories this week gave some valuable insight into the future of mobile marketing and how adopting a more mobile strategy now can help you grow your business.

Plus, small businesses throughout the U.S. have plenty to celebrate this holiday season—especially those who participated in Small Business Saturday.

Read about these top stories and more in this week’s marketing news roundup!

1. Half of all mobile users access email on their mobile device

New survey data from the Pew Internet & American Life Project provides some revealing details into how American’s are using their mobile devices. According to the survey, 56% of all mobile users are now using their devices to access the internet, up from 25% in 2010.

The survey also found that 50% of all mobile users are now using their devices to send or receive emails, up from just 19% just two years ago.

Bottom Line: Your customers are on-the-go: accessing emails at home, at work, and even right in your place-of-business. Your email content should fit the demands of an increasingly mobile consumer.

As a small business, you won’t need a complex mobile marketing strategy to cash in on the power of mobile, but you do need to make sure both your emails and website are mobile-friendly. Make that a top priority for 2013!

2. Mobile traffic to retail websites up 67% on Black Friday 2012

According to a report from IBM, mobile had a record-setting influence during this year’s Black Friday event. According to the report, mobile traffic to retail websites grew by 67%—almost one quarter of all consumers used a mobile device to visit a retailer’s site.

Overall, Black Friday online sales grew by 20.7% from last year. Mobile sales exceeded 16%, up from 9.8% in 2011.

Bottom Line: The role of mobile on Black Friday is a perfect example of why mobile marketing is such a powerful tool for retailers—small and large. On a day where competition is at its highest amongst retail businesses, consumers turned to their mobile devices to get the answers they were looking for.

Whether trying to find products or to seek out holiday sales, consumers were searching for more information than ever before and the businesses offering the best mobile experiences were given an immediate advantage. And, with 40% of all mobile searches being done with local intent, there’s no reason why small retailers can’t take advantage of the power of mobile.

Here are 8 things small businesses must know about the future of mobile marketing.

3. 56% of smartphones users access their mobile device in-store

According to a new study from the IAB Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence, more than half of smartphone users are now accessing their device in-store to aid in their shopping experience.

The study, which looked at the influence on mobile on consumer shopping habits, broke down all the ways in which these consumers are using their smartphones to aid in shopping:

  • 37% contacted a friend or relative about a product purchase
  • 35% used the internet to check prices/availability
  • 31% found the product info while in-store
  • 30% accessed social media

Bottom Line: For years, businesses have thought of online marketing as a way of engaging and connecting with customers when they aren’t at their place of business. Now, thanks to mobile, that has changed and for many consumers those online interactions continue even after they walk through your door.

Pay attention to how customers are using their mobile devices. In addition to connecting with friends and family, they are seeking out information on your website, on social media, and in their inbox. Make sure the information they find in all those places is accurate and up-to-date.

(TIP: QR codes are a great wait to direct customers to information online. 47% of U.S. smartphone owners say they have a QR code reader app on their device. Here are 11 reasons you should be using QR codes at your place of business.)

4. Consumers spend $5.5 billion on Small Business Saturday

In what has been a memorable start to the holiday shopping season, consumers reportedly spent a total of $5.5 billion during last week’s Small Business Saturday event. According to a report from the National Federation of Independent Business and American Express, consumer spending outperformed the expected $5.3 billion providing signs that the shopping holiday continues to gain traction with consumers.

The report also found that consumer awareness of Small Business Saturday jumped 67% during the two weeks leading up to the holiday shopping weekend. This is the first year that consumer spending was tracked by the NFIB.

Bottom Line: For all the small businesses that participated in Small Business Saturday, congratulations! Small businesses are finally getting their piece of the holiday shopping pie and these numbers prove it.

But Small Business Saturday is just the start of the holiday shopping season. Take advantage of the momentum of the big day and continue to take advantage of the growing interest in shopping small for the holidays.

We have put together a list of marketing resources to help make the most of the holiday season.

5. 100 fascinating social media statistics and figures from 2012

It should come as a no surprise to any small business owner that 2012 has been a busy year for social media marketing. With new networks like Pinterest and Instagram coming onto the scene and old favorites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn undergoing changes of their own—businesses have had a lot to keep up with. Plus, with new research being done all the time, keeping up with the latest facts and figures is nearly an impossible task.

A recent post on the Huffington Post blog provided a helpful breakdown of all of the hottest social media statistics of 2012. From Facebook to Instagram to Google+, the list highlights 100 of the most newsworthy figures of the year.

See the entire list here and make sure to share your reaction to the most compelling stats in the comments below.

Bottom Line: Each week, we provide our take on the hottest marketing news stories we feel small businesses need to be aware of. Check out all of this year’s top stories and check back every Friday for more!

Does your business plan on stepping up its mobile strategy in 2013? Let us know in the comments!

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