Amber Tiffany of Kenshoo partner, Invoca, joins us today for a guest post. Amber brings experience in B2C and B2B digital marketing and passion for content to her role as Content Marketing Manager at Invoca, a leading inbound call marketing solution that empowers advertisers, agencies and performance networks to track, measure and optimize inbound calls. Invoca recently released a new eBook, Paid Search for the Mobile Era: Guide to More Calls, Conversions and Customers, which features insights from Kenshoo on connecting inbound calls with paid search strategies.

It’s here. This is the year that mobile search will overtake desktop search. But according to eMarketer, 2015 won’t see mobile search ROI surpass or even catch up to desktop ROI. We know how to get in front of our mobile audience, but when it comes to converting them, we’re not quite there.

It’s Time To Focus On the Phone

The monumental shift to mobile has meant we’ve had to adjust the way we work. After being hit over the head with the necessity of responsive design, we’ve updated our landing pages. We’ve even changed our keyword bidding and targeting strategy to align campaigns with the unique needs of a mobile audience. But have we really focused on the new mobile conversion funnel? Are we truly catering to a mobile audience? If you haven’t upped your call conversion game, the answer is no.

It’s here. This is the year that mobile search will overtake desktop search.

Marketers must wrap their heads and strategies around the fact that paid search drives call conversions. One hundred percent of mobile users make phone calls, to friends and family –  and yeah, even businesses. Here are three reasons why the new mobile customer loves the call conversion.

1. People on Smartphones Are Action-Oriented

From my own experience and talking with the PPC experts, people on their mobile phone tend to be either at the top of the funnel (e.g. they’re just browsing products while waiting in line at the bank), or they are ready to take action (e.g. they’re looking for a plumber and want to make an appointment). For these bottom-of-the-funnel prospects, we need to offer ways for them to take action and get their question answered or problem solved – immediately.

People on their phone are especially action-driven when they make local searches. A study from comScore, Neustar and 15miles found that 38% of people who conduct a mobile, local search report being in the middle or at the end of the funnel, versus only 14% of desktop users. This is why nearly 80% of local, mobile searches result in a purchase.

When someone does a smartphone search and wants to take action, making a phone call is often the path of least resistance. When you want an insurance quote or are looking to make an appointment would you rather fill out a form only to be forced to wait for a call back, or would you rather hit a click-to-call button?

2. People Want Personal Assistance

In an age dominated by mass media and automated responses, it’s easy for customers to feel far removed from brands. But when we give people the chance to connect one-on-one, voice to-voice, we create a sense of trust and personalization.

Being available by phone is especially important when selling things like cable, financial services, insurance – anything where people will eventually need to talk through their specific situation with a sales rep. In fact, 45% of customers say that a phone call is the quickest way to get a problem resolved according to NewVoiceMedia. These kinds of companies should be offering mobile search prospects the option to click-to-call in ads and on landing pages.

Personal assistance is also critical when businesses require personal or sensitive information. More and more people are skeptical about submitting personal information in a lead form for fear of it being sold, misused, or even stolen. Consumers tend to feel more comfortable sharing information with a live person.

3. People Want Convenience

One of the most obvious reasons call conversions have become so prevalent in mobile search is because it’s easy. In a recent study, comScore found that people search on their phone for two main reasons:

  • They need information on the go
  • It’s easy to do

Think about filling out a five-step form on a small touchscreen versus hitting a click-to-call button. Today’s consumers want speed and convenience, which is why 70% of mobile searchers have used the click-to-call button directly from search results. We’ve got to stop forcing customers down online-only conversion paths simply because it’s easier for us to manage and track. There is an abundance of data generated from calls that can be captured and applied back to your paid search campaigns.

Paid search is no longer just a digital game. The people have spoken, and they want to call. Don’t be the marketer who stands in their way.

If you want to learn more about getting more call conversions from search, download Invoca’s newest eBook, Paid Search for the Mobile Era: Guide to More Calls, Conversions and Customers.