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If you picture prospective customers clicking on your search advertisement on their computers, your odds of being correct are roughly 50%. According to Mobile Watch.com, one in two of every paid search advertising clicks originates from mobile devices. Last year Google took note of this and, in a one size fits all move, ditched right-side paid advertisements on their search engine results pages (SERP), making desktops SERPS looking just like mobile ones. In limiting pay-per-click (PPC) advertisements to the top of the page, the search engine giant is grooming users for the future when even more searches will be done on the go.

The numbers are even more telling when it comes to close-to-home searches. According to a 2014 Google-sponsored research undertaking, Understanding Consumers Local Search Behavior:

  • 50% of consumers who conducted a local search on their smartphones visited a store within a day.
  • 18% of local smartphone searches led to a purchase, the same or next day.
  • 72% of consumers who search on a smartphone visit a store within 5 miles of their location.
  • 51% of mobile searchers are on the go, i.e. in a bus, train, or car
  • 4 out of 5 searchers want ads to be customized to their town, zip code, or immediate neighborhood.

Time to Enhance Your Campaign

So what are small business owners like you to take away from this? Well, for one, you should revisit your advertising campaigns, and if you have not already, create ads suited to smartphones. (Make sure you give a street location, local landmark, and perhaps a link to a local map.)

Then, enhance your ad campaign to target users by location and mobile device.  Next, use radius targeting and adjust your bid prices using these criteria.

 What is Radius Targeting?

Radius Targeting is a way to assign value to clicks based on geography. For example, if you own a gourmet grocery store, you know that most shoppers come from within your immediate area, but it is not out of the question for some to come from the neighboring town. By taking advantage of radius bidding, you can set up two separate targets, paying a one price-per-click rate for those originating within  a 15 mile circle. And since it is more of a hit or miss proposition, you’ll pay a lesser rate for those searching from 16 to 30 miles out.


Ready or not—We are living in a mobile world. Consumers are searching for local information everywhere, on every device, right up to the moment they make the decision to buy. Mobile Marketing Watch found that not only did mobile marketers spend $18.52 billion on search advertisements that targeted mobile devices, their expenditure will increase to $22.18 billion in 2017, and $28.25 billion by 2019. If you don’t want to be left behind, make sure all your PPC advertisements are formatted for mobile platforms. Include your location and directions, and make sure the ads are targeted to reach prospects in your locale.