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15pc of Black Friday searches will be done on mobile: Google

September 6, 2011

Google predicts that 15 percent of Black Friday Web searches will come in via mobile

With holiday shopping just around the corner, new findings from Google’s AdMob predict that 15 percent of Black Friday Web searches will be done on mobile devices.

Additionally, the Google insight found that consumers are using their mobile devices to drive in-store traffic. Sixty-five percent of users polled in the study said they used their mobile device to find a business to make an in-store purchase.

“Our goal was to help advertisers understand the mobile search opportunity during the holidays,” said Michael Slinger, director of mobile ads at Google, Mountain View, CA.

“We wanted to provide some specific mobile search insights to help advertisers best plan their holiday media campaigns,” he said.

Shop on mobile
In addition to Black Friday mobile results, Google projects a large volume of mobile search results to generate from last-minute shopping.

The findings predict that 44 percent of total searches for last-minute gifts and store locators will be from mobile devices.

“Last-minute mobile searching – and shopping – is a significant consumer trend that’s unique to the mobile platform,” Mr. Slinger said.

“It makes a lot of sense – everyone’s been in the situation where they have gifts to buy with hours to spare before they need to present them,” he said. “With the proliferation of mobile devices, last-minute shopping becomes much easier.”

Additionally, from Black Friday and the week before Christmas, mobile search results for retail brands will double, per the findings.

“It’s clear that mobile devices and smartphones in particular are playing a hugely important role with consumers as they make their shopping decisions,” Mr. Slinger said.

“What remains surprising to me is how far ahead consumers are from most businesses,” he said. “The survey speaks to how much people are using, and will continue to use, their mobile devices when they shop.”

“Many businesses still haven’t developed a strategic mobile business approach.”

Even though many consumers use their mobile devices to shop last-minute, the findings also indicate substantial mobile use for consumers beginning their holiday shopping at Thanksgiving.

More than 33 percent of consumers of both smartphone users and tablet users plan to start their shopping before Thanksgiving.

Mobile moves
According to Mr. Slinger, the increase in mobile usage is only expected to skyrocket in the coming years.

“It’s hard to believe, but we’re still in the first chapters of the mobile revolution,” Mr. Slinger said.

“Devices – smartphones, tablets and more – will continue to proliferate and consumers will increasingly understand the mobile platform and expect businesses to engage them there,” he said.

In other season-inspired shopping news, Wetseal recently targeted back-to-school shoppers with free Android devices who tried on jeans (see story).

Additionally, now is the time for retailers to get on board with mobile.

“For businesses, my advice would be: it’s still not too late to be early on mobile,” Mr. Slinger said.

“Now is a great time to look closely at your mobile business strategy and determine what’s working, and what isn’t,” he said.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is editorial assistant on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York

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