Online Shopping Evolution – Are You Missing the Boat?

Online shopping behavior is changing. Online shoppers are looking at more than just online PPC ads these days.  Social media outlets are becoming second to search engines. Shoppers are looking to social media for advice from friends, brand credibility, and reviews. Some studies indicate that shoppers are using up to 25 sources before making a purchase. In one study, 40% of online shoppers said social media helped them gather information of a product and 16% said social media outlets helped them decide what to buy. But the changes don’t stop here. Online shoppers are also using mobile devices to gather information at any time and from just about anywhere. 40% of local business searches are completed from mobile devices. If you’re not taking advantage of social and mobile advertising, you are certainly missing the boat!

Here are some quick tips to start your social media and mobile advertising campaigns:

It’s important to note that with Facebook you can advertise your website (through standard Facebook ads) or create a network around your Facebook page (through ads that encourage users to “Like” your page). Either way, Facebook allows for extensive targeting including geography, age, sex, relationship status, interests, and education as well as estimated reach based on the targeting you choose.

The key to building a network on Twitter is to gain followers and to follow the right people. One easy way to gain followers is through Twitter’s Promoted Accounts. With Promoted Accounts, you show up in the Who to Follow widget on the right side of the Twitter panel when there is a relevant recommendation. Recommendations are based on interests you target in the Promoted Accounts settings. You can also target locations worldwide or by country. With Twitter you can also use Promoted Tweets where you can more widely promote your regular Tweets. The same targeting options are available as in Promoted Accounts but with Promoted Tweets, users searching within Twitter will be served a relevant Promoted Tweet in the first position that will stand out with a yellow Promoted By: (your company) box.

Because LinkedIn is a business networking site, it may not benefit all companies. LinkedIn advertising allows you to target groups much like you would with Facebook, but you can go even more granular and target specific job titles such as “Director Of ___” or “Vice President of ___”.

Starting a mobile PPC campaign can be very easy. If you’re running successful desktop targeted campaigns, simply duplicate those campaigns and target mobile devices and tablets instead of desktop and laptop computers. Add additional shorter keywords to the mix because this is often what people search with on mobile devices. While some standard landing pages show up alright on mobile devices, having a mobile landing page is a relatively quick and simple way to ensure you’re giving your customers a good user experience. It’s also important to note that ads should be kept short and sweet to stand out on the mobile screen.

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