Hi, I’m Adam Figueira, Product Marketing Manager at Monetate. And I’m joined by Bruce Ernst, Vice President of Product Management. Bruce, today’s topic is mobile search optimization. And I understand that you have a few questions for me, actually.
Absolutely. And it starts with, can you tell me a little bit about what exactly is mobile search optimization?
Well, I think mobile search optimization means different things to different people. The most common definition is any visit, to your site of course, that comes from a search that takes place on a smartphone. So it’s really device and query. But mobile search optimization is about much more than just that.
I’m very fond of using car analogies to explain things. So you’d never want to make a car faster without giving it bigger brakes to stop at the same time. And along those same lines, we can’t simply talk about mobile search optimization in terms of the device, the query, the search result, without also asking ourselves how we can make the on-site experience better for these visitors and really as best as possible based on everything that we know about them.
OK, so I understand that whole part about getting to the top of the list things. But what is it that I can do on my mobile site to actually continue that experience down the line?
I think there’s two considerations that you need to have. The first is what are the cues or signals that you need to listen for? And second, what do you do with those?
So first, in terms of cues, we’ve talked so far about the device, the query, the search results, but there’s other things that you can look at as well. So things like where the visitor is located, their actual geography. But then there’s also proximity to other things, such as a brick and mortar store, a distribution center, things like that.
Whether you’re new verses returning, because those types of visitors are going to engage your site in entirely different ways. Also, to go back to the query actually, taking it down a level, is it branded or non-branded? So what really mobile search optimization is all about is getting out of the search result, getting off of just the landing page, and looking at all these different cues or signals that can help you determine what the best experience is possible.
Great. So now I’ve got all of these cues and all of these signals. Tell me a little bit about what I can do specifically to act on them to optimize the experience.
I think I can use another car analogy to explain that and it really deals with prioritization. If you’re driving down the road and you’re looking at your dashboard, let’s just say that a couple lights come on. The first one might be low tire pressure. Now, you’re definitely going to want to get that addressed, but you can probably finish doing what it is that you need to do. You can look at that later, it’s not the most important thing.
But if your check engine light comes on, or the transmission, low oil pressure– these are much more important. So the first task in looking at all these cues is understanding what’s most important. What really defines what this visitor is interested in?
So for example, if the visitor searches the term “discount pants,” what’s more important, that query or the fact that the query took place on a smartphone? Well, I would argue that “discount pants” is the best indicator of what that visitor’s looking for. Whether it’s a smartphone or a desktop, or an iPhone versus an Android is really immaterial.
So I need to know the difference between the cue and the circumstance. And the circumstance maybe doesn’t matter as much as the cue.
Exactly. And ultimately, everything is contextual. So if I search “deep dish pizza in Chicago,” the fact that I’m in San Francisco Airport doesn’t matter. So again, there’s a context to everything. But what’s really important is to understand what all the cues are, which ones are more important than others, and to act accordingly.
Great, Adam, that’s really helpful.
No problem, Bruce. For more on this topic you can check out our accompanying blog post located at monetate.com/blog.