Helping retailers win with mobile

People today are constantly connected. They’re finding directions to stores, shopping, and even comparing prices instantly from their smartphones. In fact, 8 out of 10 smartphone shoppers use their devices to help make shopping decisions while inside physical retail stores. As a result, retailers now must account for new and complex paths to purchase.

While constant connectivity poses a new challenge in marketing, it also presents great opportunities. For instance, shoppers who use mobile spend 25% more in-store on average. Beyond mobile-assisted store visits, consumers are also increasingly comfortable with m-commerce, whether they’re purchasing directly from their smartphone or starting on a phone and later completing the online purchase on a PC.

Not surprisingly, at our recent Think Shopper summits over the past month, many retailers asked how they could win with mobile. Retail continues to be a major focus for Google, and we’ve invested in solutions to create great shopping experiences for consumers across all screens and improve ROI for retailers. We’re excited about our efforts and wanted to share some of the things we’re working on.

Insights to better understand constantly-connected consumers

Tools to create better mobile experiences
  • Creating a multi-screen website: To help retailers create great shopping experiences across devices, we published best practices on making your site work across multiple devices, especially on smartphones.
  • Search as you type: Retailers can integrate search as you type directly into their sites, tapping into the power of Google instant search results and making it easier for shoppers to find what they’re looking for from their smartphones.
  • Google Wallet Instant Buy: Retailers can improve their m-commerce experience by implementing Instant Buy into their sites, allowing mobile shoppers to check out in as few as two clicks.
  • Google+ Sign-In: Retailers that implement Google+ Sign-In enable their site visitors to easily sign in once with their Google account and switch seamlessly between PC and mobile without having to sign in again. This increases online conversions by removing friction from cross-device logins. Retailers can even present a ‘buy now’ button to consumers within G+ posts.

Media solutions that drive shopping conversions
  • Retail-focused ad formats: Retailers can promote their product inventory with shopping ad formats like product listing ads.
  • Remarketing: Retailers can also use remarketing to re-engage consumers who have previously expressed interest in a category or brand.
  • Enhanced campaigns: With enhanced campaigns, retailers can effectively engage today’s constantly connected consumers. Location extensions make it easier for mobile searchers to find a retailer’s store, and proximity-based bidding allows retailers to bid strategically for higher-value searches happening closer to their stores.

Mobile attribution models to better measure ROI and inform investment
  • Full Value of Mobile: Nearly 3 of 10 mobile searches directly result in a conversion, but they can often be hard to track. Retailers need to create new mobile-specific attribution models to more accurately track how mobile is driving customers to physical and digital stores, so they can invest appropriately. The Full Value of Mobile site and calculator helps estimate the value mobile brings through a retailer’s mobile site and apps, cross-device usage, calls and in-store visits.

We’re constantly adapting to changes in technology and consumer behavior, and are always looking for the best ways to help retailers connect with customers. Stay tuned for additional developments on this and other ways we’re helping the retail industry win with today’s multi-screen consumers.

Posted by: John McAteer, VP, US Sales

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