A couple of years ago, if we couldn’t remember an actor in a movie or the name of a song, we’d wait until we got home to look it up on our ridiculously large computers. Now the speed at which you can refresh your memory is as fast as you can type on your smartphone. Information, literally, at our fingertips.
Once thought of as sluggish and not worth the effort, browsing the web on our trusty cellphone has become second nature. Eighty eight per cent of adults in the U.S. own a cellphone and 55% of those access the internet with it, according to Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project (2012). With smartphones dominating the new phone purchases, these impressive stats are bound to go up even more.
This may be mostly down to convenience, but more and more users are also relying on just one device, and how often are you without your mobile versus your laptop? While desktops still rack up the most minutes in web-surfing, the mobiles’ share is rising fast. Those minutes browsing on their mobiles are also more frequently spent when salons and other small businesses have the greatest opportunity to engage with them – when those users are close by (both in proximity and emotionally).
Another study, this time by Nielsen Research, showed the most popular activity for mobile users on the web was email (38.5%) followed by social networking (10.7%). And let’s not forget the popularity of location-based searches and services like Yelp! and Foursquare.
Moral of this story? Pay attention to how you and your website look on a mobile phone and make sure your information is readily available to all mobile addicts. Your mobile site should have as little text as possible and big buttons that can be clicked with normal-sized fingers.
Also make sure you are sending emails that are easy to interact with on a mobile phone. Studies show that emails received after 7pm and at weekends are most likely to be read on a mobile phone. So be conscious that if you try to reach your clients with confirmations or email blasts during these times you are most likely to be opened on a mobile. That’s not necessarily a bad thing if you want them to ‘call now’ or ‘text this number’ as it’s actually much easier.
You can also take advantage of this trend towards mobile browsing by actively encouraging your clients to engage with your salon online during their appointment. Set up a special offer or run a competition for any user who checks in while at the salon and then ‘shares’ the offer on her own social profiles so her friends can partake, too. -Valorie Reavis
Valorie Reavis is part of Linkup Marketing, an online and social media marketing specialist focusing on search engine marketing, salon email marketing programs and social media marketing for salons and spas. If you have any queries for the Linkup team email firstname.lastname@example.org, find them on facebook.com/linkupmarketing or follow them on Twitter @linkupmarketing .