Consumers are researching brands, products and services across multiple devices. In response, search marketers are setting aside keywords in favor of secondary signals and personalized content.
- Mobile Growth Fueling Cross-Device Search
- The Challenge of Multidevice Searching
- Cross-Device Optimization in Practice
- Impressive Content for Impressive Results
Mobile Growth Fueling Cross-Device Search
Search prominence is becoming more complex and valuable all the time, as evidenced by the introduction of Facebook Search FYI on October 22nd.
One critical behavioral development is that US web users are increasingly looking something up on one device and then switching to another one to complete their search. That’s because mobile search is becoming much more common, as indicated by 2014 statistics and 2019 projections from eMarketer on the American market:
- 2014 – 214 million search / 134 million mobile search
- 2019 – 236 million search / 216 million mobile search.
The Challenge of Multidevice Searching
Jumping from one IP address to another makes it much more complex to target search and gauge performance effectively. However, the reward is great for marketers who can figure out how to bridge the gap between devices effectively, so SEO best practices are quickly developing.
One of the most fundamental methods to address multidevice users is to focus on secondary search signals such as time of day and location. In other words, keywords are now considered insufficient.
In a way, thinking only in terms of keywords is similar to quoting out of context, explains marketing executive Jeremy Hull. On the other hand, “[l]ooking at [additional] information that the user passes when they search [is] … equivalent of being able to have a face-to-face conversation with someone where you can read their body language,” he says, stressing the importance of choosing the right company.
Cross-Device Optimization in Practice
How do you put these secondary signals to work? Marin Software market analyst Brian Lee gives the example of a clothing e-tailer placing higher value on users in certain ZIP codes. If you look at the amount of rain in certain areas, you can better establish context, he says. “While they might not be looking at rain products at that moment, it’s related to their location … more than it’s related to their current search topic.”
Impressive Content for Impressive Results
Multidevice SEO is a growing challenge, with one study forecasting that the average user will have 4.3 devices by 2020. In the arena of cross-device search, marketers will need to target audiences rather than just keywords.
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