Understanding micro-moments for online small business success

mobile marketing micro-moments

Remember how you used to spend hours casually surfing the Internet? Those long, online sessions have been replaced by thousands of “micro-moments” on our mobile devices – mostly on our smartphones.

Understanding this changed behavior is critical to your small business online marketing and advertising success.

Google is probably the single biggest driving force behind describing micro-moments and that’s not surprising since its search engine and ad-revenue models depend entirely on understanding how we consume digital content. And let me follow that up with a big “truth” that you should internalize:

Anything that’s important to Google can be decisive to small business marketers.

We have seen small businesses wake up one morning and have almost all of their website traffic disappear because overnight Google tweaked its search algorithm. As Google grasps the import of micro-moments, I don’t believe we’ll see earth-shaking changes like that, but we will see a continuing evolution – and the small businesses that understand the direction of this evolution will ultimately become the industry or at least the local leaders.

What are micro-moments?

We are all familiar with these micro-moments. Many of them occur when we get the sudden urge to see what our Facebook friends are doing, or check on tomorrow’s weather, or see what text message just popped onto our screen and caused our phone to vibrate. However, as Google says, there are other, more commercially important, micro-moments, such as:

  • I want-to-know moments,
  • I want-to-go moments,
  • I want-to-do moments, and
  • I want-to-buy moments.

I suggest that you start with these four micro-moments as you plan your small business online marketing strategy. All of these may not apply to every small business, but many will. Turn these moments around into these questions:

  • When prospects have an “I want-to-know moment,” have I created content to answer their questions? Is that content search engine optimized?
  • When prospects have an “I want-to-go moment,” do I make it easy for them to get to me? Does my website have a functional map and easily understandable directions?
  • When prospects have an “I want-to-do moment,” have I communicated everything that they can do through my small business?
  • When prospects have an “I want-to-buy moment,” does my mobile online presence make it easy for them to buy from me? Does information about my products rank highly in search results?

Micro-moments impact purchases

I can’t stress too strongly how important these micro-moment concepts are. Let me relate some statistics that Google pulled together:

  • 69 percent of all leisure travelers search for travel ideas when they have a few spare moments,
  • 91 percent of all smartphone users look up information while they’re in the middle of doing something, and
  • 82 percent of all smartphone users search for information while they’re in a store still deciding which product to purchase, and some 10 percent change their minds and buy something different than they had originally planned on buying.

We have been pleading the case for mobile marketing for quite some time and offering tips to get your virtual presence in shape. I think that once you understand micro-moments and how they overlap the objectives of your small business plan, you’ll be able to make even smarter decisions about your content marketing, mobile website design, geo-fencing strategy and ad buys.