Mobile Marketing in the Performance Channel – By Kevin Edwards

by Colleen on August 20, 2012

In April 2012, online traffic through mobile and handheld devices hit double digits for the first time on the Affiliate Window network in the UK. In November 2010, barely 1% of the network’s traffic was attributed to handsets and tablets. Fast forward two years and it’s anticipated that one in six clicks will be mobile tracked by the end of 2012.

Factoring in natural growth, this represents a 20-fold increase in traffic, an anticipated 50m clicks, with sales in excess of $180m; nearly a digital revolution.

As a result, you would think advertisers would be eager to exploit this new frontier, but there exists an enormous knowledge gap within the mobile performance sphere with many advertisers missing out on significant revenue streams.

Looking at which sectors over index on mobile, it’s apparent the types of advertisers that should be taking mobile particularly seriously. Low value, generic products that aren’t dependent on ‘customer experience’, e.g. CDs, DVDS,
SIM cards and low consideration goods bought via mobile handsets are all performing well.

Typically these are products that consumers feel comfortable purchasing without needing to see, goods that transcend the emotive decisions around product selection.

Group buying too is succeeding with consumers driven to transact by the time sensitivity of the offers. This sector encapsulates some of the elements of mobile that are important to grasp: the emergence of the online savvy shopper and mobile’s geo-location functionality.

There is an emerging group of publishers who are using in-store check-ins, redemptions, bar code scanners, as well as online to offline deals. They are publishers who have spent years building loyal desktop subscribers in their millions: a latent army of consumers who are evolving into mobile shoppers. It’s no surprise that at present as many as 80% of Affiliate Window’s mobile clicks originate from ‘incentivized’ publishers.

Let’s also consider that mobile represents a powerful and trackable medium that enables retailers to incorporate multi-channel campaigns alongside their existing online marketing activity: something that is difficult to measure.

Clearly secure foundations need to be firmly in place in order to ensure this is possible. One of the biggest stumbling blocks encountered is the simple issue of affiliate tracking.

Advertisers with considered mobile plans can expect to see a higher percentage of sales through mobile devices. It’s impossible to generalize by sector but typically 50% more sales are generated through mobile when an advertiser has launched an m-commerce site with affiliate tracking in place.

Conversion rates also improve. One noticeable trend has been the disparity between mobile traffic and mobile sales. This gap will increase as more consumers turn to mobiles to access the Internet and advertisers fail to see the affiliate opportunity by not tracking sales.

There is no doubt that mobile opportunities are enormous and will change how we transact forever. The performance channel has the ideas and willingness to be at the forefront of this revolution: it’s up to the networks, agencies and OPM’s to ensure that advertisers are fully paid-up members of the cause.

Kevin Edwards is the Strategy Director at Affiliate Window.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

TextMessage August 21, 2012 at 1:00 pm

Mobile marketing is an crucial component of any successful company plan, and understanding the diverse techniques is crucial.

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