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Mobile Mondays: Setting goals for mobile monetization

This is the first post in our ‘Mobile Mondays’ series. Throughout the next couple of months we’ll highlight best practices to help you get the most from your mobile content. From time to time, we’ll also share stories directly from publishers who have recently gone mobile.

We recently announced our 11 billionth app download from Android Play. Given the consumer movement towards the small screen, it’s important to consider how much of this consumed media was created specifically for mobile. Once you’ve successfully taken your business mobile, you can capitalize on this with some key optimization steps. Below, we’ll outline ways you can get the most out of your mobile content. Before any optimization can take place, you’ll need a clear view of your business goals on mobile.

The importance of goals
There are no rules around mobile strategies, but mobile businesses need clearly defined goals  in order to be successful. If you’re an online-only publisher, your goals might revolve around engagement and visits. If you have location-specific content, you may want to incorporate local elements into your mobile offering. Your business goals should align with the needs of your users.

Prioritization is a key element in goal-setting. You might think that all publishers have acquisition goals around new users prioritized most highly — after all, who wouldn’t want to reach new audiences? Consider a mobile forum and message board website. They’ll want new users discovering and using their online discussion site, but this should occur organically if their existing user base creates discussions with sufficient breadth and depth. In this instance, it could be beneficial for the forum owners to focus on website optimization (driving engagement), rather than new user acquisition.

With these possible goals in mind, here are some tips to help you optimize your content for a mobile audience:

Goal #1
: Drive traffic and new customer acquisition

  • Cross-promotion: This is an easy and cost-effective way to leverage your existing user base to drive users to your mobile site.
  • Advertising: Mobile website optimization now factors into mobile search ads quality. To find out more about advertising on mobile devices, visit our Mobile Ads site.
  • Localize: China, Korea, Japan, and the U.S. represent some of the biggest markets for mobile media consumption. Track your usage in regions and consider building out a localized app for regions where it’s most popular. 
  • Create new, unique mobile content for new mobile audiences. Men’s Health understood that their target audience used smartphones in the gym to listen to music. As a result, they created a mobile app with workout exercises — handy for when their users have the phone with them in the gym.

Goal #2: Drive engagement

  • Website optimization: If one of your goals is to retain users who want access to content on-the-go, use Google Analytics to help you choose the most effective content for your site. A recent survey (Omniture, 2010) found that Mobile- friendly web experiences have produced an average 75% higher rate of engagement (revenue, page views, etc.) per visit for mobile users, than desktop websites viewed through a mobile device.
  • Brand engagement: Make use of the extended functionality of a mobile device (GPS, Camera, SMS).

Goal #3: Maximize revenue

  • When designing a mobile-optimized site, it’s key to focus on the overall user experience and what you want to achieve as a publisher. This is especially true if your core business model is built around advertising revenue or if it’s a strong contributor of profit. Consider the type of ad units and formats that you plan to incorporate, which will help you make the most of monetization opportunities without compromising content. To find out more, download our publisher guide or our Android app to explore the range of our mobile ad formats.

We’ve placed “publisher goals” into three categories using broad brush strokes above. In reality, it’s unlikely your ambitions will be as narrow in scope. We hope you’ll be able to pick an optimization step (or a combination of steps) tailored to your particular site.

Posted by Robbie Wetherell, Mobile Publisher Advocate

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