In one of my previous posts, I briefly touched on the concept of advertising specifically to mobile users. Given the current and expanding market penetration for smartphones, I’d like to go into a little more detail on how that works.

Reaching this audience could be crucial to succeeding with your online ad campaigns, especially if you offer a product or service that is often sought via mobile device. The form factor of a phone reduces the number of ad positions, but also increases the visibility of your ad, which gives mobile ads a potential advantage over desktop or tablet-based ads.

Google’s AdWords system currently has one of the most robust sets of mobile advertising tools available. This functionality is visible the moment you start creating a new campaign, under the section labeled “Desktops & laptops, mobile devices and tablets”. To limit the ad to only run on mobile devices, you can just click “Let me choose…” and uncheck the boxes for desktop computers and tablets.

Select only mobile devices

Google defines a “full browser” as one that “can show standard HTML web pages and can support a user making a purchase from start to finish”, which includes Safari (iPhone), Android, and Palm webOS. If you’d like to drill down and only target a certain type of user, Google allows you to do so in the Advanced options section. You can drill down to the OS (e.g. iOS or Android) level, which includes the ability to exclude older versions. You can also drill down all the way to an individual device if you’d like.

Mobile ads for these types of phones are created in the same way as regular text ads, but can be enhanced with Call Extensions.

Call Extension options

If your primary goal is to generate calls for your business, you should consider only showing your phone number in your ads. When a user clicks on the ad, they will be sent to the dialer app on their phone, after which they can immediately call your business. This allows you to shortcut the process of a user potentially getting turned away by a landing page.

We’ve seen immediate success with running mobile campaigns alongside their desktop counterparts, and your business could see the same by expanding into this ever-expanding market.