Living in the moment
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Living in the moment

Google’s Micro-Moments concept explains our behaviour in a mobile world.

It seems we all live in the momentafter all. Google’s recent study with Ipsos, Consumers in the Micro-Moment, reported that 60% of online consumers use mobile search to make purchasing decisions faster. In these Micro-Moments, people want to discover, locate, do and buy in an instant.

For marketers, the concept of the Micro-Moment is a powerful tool in todays always-on world. When consumers won’t wait for a slow-loading mobile site or clunky app when they demand ever-faster answers to their queries marketers must anticipate their needs and eliminate any obstacles that might stand in the way of their search.

The data backs up the importance of Googles insights: since 2014, mobiles share of web sessions (in the US) has increased 20%, while the duration of sessions has fallen by 18%. Its estimated that mobile sessions average only one minute and 10 seconds long, but they happen dozens of times per day. People are using the mobile web more often, but in shorter bursts; they need information quickly, at all times. The linear journey through the marketing funnel is being well and truly atomised.

The four Micro-Moments

Google outlined four types of Micro-Moments in which consumers engage with brands via their smartphones:

  1. I-Want-to-Know Momentswhere consumers seek snackable, helpful content, but not sales messages.
  2. I-Want-to-Go Momentswhere they are looking for a local business or product.
  3. I-Want-to-Do Momentswhere people need practical how-toinformation, including video, while attempting a task.
  4. I-Want-to-Buy Momentswhere they want to make a purchase, whether they are at home, in transit, in store or out-and-about.

These are the moments when consumers make decisions, and when marketers have the opportunity to engage with them and inform their choices. They’re moments, quite simply, not to be missed because they’re the stepping-stones towards a site or store visit. So how do you optimise your mobile strategy to leverage your brand in these split-second opportunities?

The first thing is to ‘be there’– instantly discoverable whenever someone taps or swipes a screen. Second is to ‘be useful’ – don’t just arrive with the hard sell. Instead, offer solutions, give advice, be helpful. Third is to ‘be quick’– according to Google, nearly a third of smartphone users will immediately switch to another site if yours is slow to load and two-thirds will move on if there are too many steps to get what they need.

Its often said that people dont go online anymore, they live online. And, as with anything else in life, people dont like to be left waiting or stuck in a queue. If your brand cant meet peoples needs in the micro-moment, youre missing out.

Martin Bewick is editor of Catalyst.

Martin Bewick Content Lead CPL
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