It's only September, but we're nonetheless proud to annoy you with our first Christmas-related story. Still, if you work with any clients who sell things that might be bought during the holiday season, you should pay attention. According to Google, "44 per cent of total searches for last minute gifts and store locator terms will be from mobile devices this holiday season based on historical growth rates". The blog post, written by Johanna Werther, senior product marketing Manager, Mobile Ads, notes that such shoppers may have missed the deadline for online shipping and are therefore motivated to "locate and shop at brick and mortar locations"; in other words, these searches drive in-store purchases. Backing up this claim is another figure from AdMob that states "65 per cent of high end device users report that they have used their device to find a business, and then made a purchase at that business in person".
The report is based on data from the USA, and so the figures are perhaps a little higher than they would be elsewhere, such as in Europe, but the news should nonetheless come as a wake-up call to any businesses not yet fully supporting mobile, even in the most basic sense. If your websites aren't usable on a mobile device, you might get search hits, but you won't get anything further, including sales; it's also important to be mindful of system limitations, such as iOS not being able to access Flash content.
Further stats worth bearing in mind from the report include planning for tablet audiences when it comes to driving on-device conversions: the report reckons tablet users tend to spend 50 per cent more than PC users; it also adds that smartphone users tend to start shopping earlier than average, thereby not providing you with a great deal of time to get sites ready for the holidays.