We have been discussing mobile marketing extensively in class. Certainly the rise of mobile is on every marketer’s mind as well as in their marketing plans. But in managing a few Analytics accounts for several clients I started to see a pattern emerging. In the discovery phase of the marketing funnel (awareness, interest, consideration) most of the traffic was coming from mobile but in the conversion phase (intent, evaluation, purchase) the traffic shifted to desktop.
Some of the accounts my agency manages skew to an older demographic. At first we thought it was maybe older generations found it easier to see and complete a purchase on a desktop. But then we also saw the same pattern occurring with younger audiences as well on things that were considered purchases or required a lot of steps in completing the transaction.
Could it be that the marketing funnel aligns with different devices in terms of using the right tool to complete the job? I know from personal experience if it is a complicated or expensive purchase or requires me booking something I always revert to a desktop. Somehow completing a purchase on a desktop seems like a more secure and detailed process. Data gathered in 2015 survey seemed to support this theory.1
But 2015 was a long time ago in the world of mobile so in looking further I also found on Forbes.com an article that urged hotels to shift more marketing dollars to desktop marketing over mobile. A single sentence stood out for me:
“Because when it comes to mobile advertising, not all industries are created equal.”1
The article went on to detail that even though mobile usage numbers are growing year over year that when making larger purchases online like booking a hotel room the “dreaming phase” is perfectly suited for mobile—which is higher up in the marketing funnel. But when the research is done and you want to book the hotel—desktop still reigns supreme.
Intrigued, I looked further and found a second article2 which shows that while mobile traffic beats desktop traffic,
when it comes to the purchase cycle desktop jumps ahead of mobile and is integral in completing the conversion:
I think as marketers we need to pay attention to how the industry we are marketing converts and which device is being used for that conversion. I believe mobile is excellent for enabling discovery, but desktop is still the king of conversion for larger, considered purchases. Based on the numbers I have found this theory holds true. But marketing is ever-evolving and what is true today may change tomorrow—especially in the world of mobile marketing.
- Selders, Sam. “Desktop vs. Mobile: Which Converts Better? [Infographic].” WebFX Blog, WebFX, 7 May 2019, https://www.webfx.com/blog/general/desktop-vs-mobile-converts-better-infographic/.
- Deflorian, Adam. “Why Hotels Should Invest Their Advertising Dollars Into Desktop, Not Mobile.” Forbes, Forbes Magazine, 30 Sept. 2019, https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesagencycouncil/2019/09/30/why-hotels-should-invest-their-advertising-dollars-into-desktop-not-mobile/#62fcfa27f50c.
- Charlton, Graham. “Why Are Mobile Conversion Rates Lower Than Desktop?” SaleCycle Blog, 4 July 2019, https://blog.salecycle.com/featured/mobile-conversion-rates-lower-desktop/.