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Study: Consumers finding local businesses by accident?
Turns out consumers performing local search queries aren't necessarily looking for a specific local business. Instead, the 2010 15miles Fourth Annual comScore Local Search Usage Study, consumers have an idea of the products they want and are using generic terms to find local businesses carrying the items.
On the bright side? If those consumers are using a mobile phone to perform a business query they may know who those local businesses are.
Where are consumers looking first for local business information? No surprises here. Most (70%) turn to search engines, online Yellow Pages or social networks to find these businesses.
According to researchers mobile and social consumers are more likely to have a local business in mind when they search for products in a specific city or region. Why the difference? Likely because traditional searchers are looking for something while at work or at home using a PC; mobile and social consumers may already be on the go, perhaps on a shopping Saturday, and out of the house when they perform a search using a mobile device.
In fact, comScore reports that smartphone users in particular are using mobile browsers or apps. comScore reports that 60% of smartphone consumers are using apps and 55% are using their mobile browser (August 2010) compared to 39% and 44% of non-smartphone subscribers. For the month of August nearly 81 million mobile subscribers used their mobile browser.
"Although smartphones still make up less than a quarter of the US mobile market, they are generating the lion's share of mobile content consumption," said Mark Donovan, Senior Vice President of Mobile, comScore. "With Smartphones' share of the pie destined to get greater over time, marketers and content providers should begin to shift their focus towards developing with primarily these devices in mind."
What is the male/female split? 56% of men are using apps or mobile browsers compared to 44% of women, however the female demographic showed a 5.5% increase (Year over Year) for usage while the male demographic declined 5.5%. The comScore report feeds directly into the 15miles report, which indicates that mobile and social consumers are using search differently than PC consumers.
Mobile consumers are looking for weather information as well as maps from mobiles, but they are also checking in on social networks (30%) and using mobile search (18.7%) through apps. More than half (54%) of mobile consumers are using search from the browser.
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