American Marketer


Going mobile: Tips to turn an ad into a sale

February 14, 2012


By Andrea Bridges-Smith

You have built an eye-catching mobile ad, and your target user has clicked on it. Everything is going according to plan. But what happens next?

If the process quickly devolves into something unusable, the customer will move on.

It is no secret that there is an exponential growth in mobile shopping. Nearly 73 million mobile users ages 14 and up will browse or research products and services on their phones in 2012, according to a study by eMarketer.

Businesses would be wise to consider the entire end-to-end experience from clicking on an ad to completing a sale.

If you are looking to convert mobile ad spending to money in the bank, you should consider the following:

1. Get a mobile site. Seems pretty obvious, right? Mobify, Wirenode or Onbile can take your existing Web site and convert it for mobile or help you build a new one quickly.

Make sure the mobile site is easy to use. Think about how mobile customers will be using your site on the go and keep the most pertinent information easily accessible.

2. Expect comparison shopping. It is easier than ever to quickly check information from multiple businesses, so what sets you apart from everyone else? Do you have a special offer, better selection, free shipping or great customer service?

Make sure your mobile site addresses – in its limited screen real estate – why the search should stop with you.

3. If you want mobile ads to drive mobile purchasing, “secure” is your keyword. The idea of sending your credit card out into the ether from your phone is still a little weird, but people are getting more used to it.

To make your potential customers feel extra-safe, tell them how your mobile site has been “secured” payment-wise.

4. Offer discounts through mobile. If your user wants to see your product in person at your store before buying, a mobile coupon or discount card could help her seal the deal once she has visited.

Try integrating with mobile coupon applications or leveraging QR codes. Skip the little plastic discount cards and find a 21st century way to do the same thing.

5. Check your reviews. Before buying, there is an excellent chance that your buyers are going to check out the reviews on your products and business first.

If there are negative reviews out there for either, see what you can do to address them, and make sure your score is 4-5 stars.

NEXT TIME you see an ad, try clicking on it and see where it goes. What is the experience like? Is everything easy to use? Do you give up and look somewhere else?

Take note of the entire end-to-end experience and make sure your solution is thorough enough to back up what your mobile ads are trying to sell.

Andrea Bridges-Smith is technical sales engineer at the MediaMind Global Publisher Unit, Austin, TX. Reach her at