In a mobile-first world where consumers are rarely seen without their smartphone in hand, the consumer journey has become much more complex. As a result of this fragmented environment, Google has created the concept of micro-moments as apart of its ‘Think with Google” program. This blog looks into what micro-moments are and how they will impact marketing in the future.
What is a micro-moment?
A micro-moment is the many different moments that make up a consumer’s day where a user searches for something that is top of mind. One example of a micro-moment is when you use your phone to research the calories in your bagel while standing in a line at your coffee shop. Another example could be scanning the news on Twitter while you wait in the dentist’s waiting room. These small moments are building up a fragmented user journey for consumers’ interacting with brands and offer huge opportunities for marketers.
“Billions of times per day, consumers turn to Google for I-want-to-know, I-want-to-go, I-want-to-do, and I-want-to-buy moments. And at these times, consumers are increasingly picking up their smartphones for answers,” says Jerry Dischler, vice-president of product management, Google Adwords.
Why are micro-moments different?
Micro-moments aren’t the same as regular desktop searches: they are typically shorter because users are searching on their phones; they are intent-driven and happen in the midst of busy schedules. Micro-moments are hard to track and difficult to associate with an actual conversion because they can act as a simple touchpoint along a disjointed user journey.
According to Think with Google, 82 percent of smartphone users turn to their phones while in a store deciding which product to buy.
How can marketers use micro-moments to their advantage?
The secret to using micro-moments effectively is by unravelling the intent behind each moment. What are consumers looking for in these moments? What triggers the moment? Is it caused by a previous advertisement or are micro-moments searches just the top of the funnel. Once you understand how micro-moments play into your consumer’s journey you can begin to manipulate those moments.
“Near me” keywords
One trend that is coming to light through the concept of micro-moments is ‘near me’ keywords. When someone is searching for a product or service near them, this is a popular keyword to use. For example, if you are looking for a cinema near you, you might search for “cinema near me” or “movies near me”. This type of keyword has grown in use drastically over the last year and will only continue to do so as micro-moments become more and more popular.
What changes can marketers make now?
Unsurprisingly, Google Adwords is making moves to help marketers take advantage of these micro-moments. Google has introduced mobile-centric ad formats and more advanced measurement products to help companies understand the impact of their ads. Measuring the impact helps marketers understand the attribution of each ad and how it plays a role in a conversion. Is it first click, last click or linear? Google now tracks in-store visits, and can associate an ad to an in-store conversion. The attribution modelling is only going to get more and more advanced and it will be exciting to see how this plays alongside micro-moments.