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Google: More Searches on Mobile than on Desktop

Malcom Chakery
Google: More Searches on Mobile than on Desktop

Google's latest changes to its AdWords system offers users information on items they are considering rather than links. The new ads are meant for people who are looking for cars and auto dealerships as well as for hotels, flights and even for mortgages.

The latest ads are meant to work with the touches and swipes used on smartphones instead of the mouse clicks used on desktops and laptops. Google has also tweaked its search algorithm, which means that it now prioritizes sites that have been optimized for mobile search. Sites that are not optimized for mobile viewing will be buried in the search results while those that have been optimized will show up closer to the top of the results pages.

The Rise of Mobile Search

According to Google executive Jerry Dischler, searches via mobile devices now outnumber those on desktops and laptops in 10 countries. Those 10 countries include the US and Japan, though Dischler declined to name the other eight. There is nothing surprising about this as the demise of desktop search has been predicted for years.

Google’s Response to the Rise of Mobile Search

Mobile devices have smaller screens, which provide advertisers with less room for keyword-based ads. People who are searching on mobile devices are also usually on the go, which means that they often do not have a lot of time to spend searching for the things that they need. The result is that many of Google's latest innovations have to do with speeding up the search experience. In addition to this, users are spending more time in apps than they are in search engines; this is another reason why Google wants to provide them with faster answers to their mobile searches. According to Google's Blog, consumers have higher expectations than ever and they want everything right and "right away." The result is that marketers have to answer their needs immediately no matter where they are.

Dischler stated that usage patterns are also changing as people move between devices. People are browsing on phones, and then browsing on their desktops while they are at work, then their tablets when they get back home. They may then purchase the items on a store visit or via a phone call.

In order to tackle this situation, Google's new mobile friendly ads depend on data like images along with product details and prices from advertisers rather than on keywords. When someone searches for something, Google will show a panel or a carousel at the top of the results. This panel or carousel will have listings from advertisers and the searcher can swipe across them to see more listings. When searchers tap or swipe on the listings, the advertisers will get traffic for which they will pay Google.

Google's Auto Ads

According to Google, car buyers spend up to 15 hours researching their purchases. Furthermore, people want to see images when they are researching cars. With their new auto ads, people who are looking for information on a particular car are presented with multiple images on the vehicle's interior and exterior. Tapping on an image provides information about the car such as its horsepower and its fuel efficiency. When people click on these listings and go to the car company's website, the car company pays Google. Dischler mentioned Chrysler as being among the automobile manufacturers who have been testing these ads.

Similar ads are being launched for dealership searches so that Google gets paid when customers click through to a dealership site.

Google's Mortgage Ads

Whether searchers are first-time homebuyers or they are seeking to refinance, they will be able to search for the best rates from a variety of providers. They will be shown a worksheet that allows them to set criteria such as loan-term, fees and interest rates. Google will provide them with results and they can click on listings to be able to apply with an approved lender or they can choose to get more information by speaking with an adviser. The mortgage providers will pay Google for the referrals.

Google's New Hotel Ads

According to Google, when people are searching for hotels they want information like availability, user reviews and editorial descriptions. They also want Google Street View and high resolution images. Hotel ads will show current prices and the traveler can simply select "Book" to make a reservation on the advertiser's site.

It is important to note that Google groups tablets with desktops and laptops. In other words, the new data on “mobile devices” is for smartphones alone.

What are your thoughts? Feel free to leave a comment!

Image credit: Canva & Big Stock Photo

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Malcom Chakery helps businesses improve website design, linkbuilding and SEO strategy, content marketing and user experience. Learn more at Get in touch with him on Twitter @chakery , LinkedIn or Google+ for more articles like this! Malcom’s last article for SEMrush was “Google: More Searches on Mobile than on Desktop."
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