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Micro-Moments: The Impact of Loading Time on Paid Search Ads

If you work in digital marketing, you’ll be familiar with Google’s Micro-moments and have seen the video (if not bought the T-Shirt). The ‘I want to know/go/buy/do’ moments – filled with intent, context, and immediacy.

It’s these all too brief occasions when your customers or prospects are suddenly very open to the influence of your products or brands, because they’re actually looking for some help and assistance in finding stuff out or buying something. This is the moment when your pitch is not seen as that annoying interruption. They actively need your help and want to engage with you.

And with the rise of mobile, being there in that instant is more important than ever. 87% of people have their smartphone by their side, day and night so that’s almost certainly where they’re going to look first.

Google found that 82% of smartphone users say they consult their phones on purchases they’re about to make in a store, and 91% turn to their phone for ideas in the middle of a task. That’s a lot of opportunity wrapped up into a small (micro) moment.

To succeed in these moments, fairly obviously you have to be there and be useful too. That means connecting people to what they’re looking for in real-time and providing relevant information, right at the point they need it.

But crucially, and especially when it comes to mobile, you absolutely have to be quick and good. Because even if your PPC means that you’re right there in their SERPs, the result of the link experience will be crucial. People will be turning to their smartphone in a hurry – and if they have to wait or can’t navigate the page easily then they’ll simply move on to someone else.

In fact up to 79% of customers who are dissatisfied with a website’s performance say they’re less likely to buy from the same site again. That means that if the User Experience (UX) is poor then they’re out of there.

So your landing page must provide the best possible UX in terms of customer journey and experience. But a key part of UX is page load speed.

If it takes too long to load, the impact can be really negative. In fact, studies suggest that 40% of visitors will wait no more than three seconds before abandoning a site and that if a website loads just one second faster, the conversion rate will increase by up to 27%.

And ultimately all of this will have a really big impact on your paid search. Because, when customers are actively busy searching in these micro-moments., all that PPC spend could be completely worthless when the related landing page experience is poor and loading time is too slow.

So test out your page load speeds. You can use free tools like Google’s PageSpeed Insights. And use your Analytics Data, user research and heatmap tools to assess the user experience on your landing pages to make sure you’re not making it harder for your customers to get your answers to their micro-moment needs.

Then, if you want some help improving performance in any of these areas – get in touch.

How can we help?

We can implement the right technology and analytics for your business, set up tracking tags across all online activity and create a content strategy for all customer touchpoints that drive the prospects towards the final conversion.

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