Tablets on track for higher conversion, click-through rates than PCs: Report

Tablets on track for higher conversion, click-through rates than PCs: Report

Summary: The post-PC debate moves to the marketing world as a new study highlights the boosts for search advertising and e-commerce thanks to tablets.


Here's more fodder for the post-PC era proponents, this time with a marketing and advertising twist.

It's well-known already that tablets (and mobile devices overall) have enabled an incredible shift in the way consumers research and shop for products online.

After a few years in the marketplace, it is now becoming much more evident (and verifiable) as to just how much of an impact that tablets are making -- for both consumers and the companies targeting them.

A new report from Marin Software, an online advertising management platform provider, focuses on how much tablets are eclipsing the desktop when it comes to search advertising. Here are some of the highlights from the study:

  • Conversion rates on search clicks on tablets increased increased by 31 percent over the course of 2012.
  • By the end of 2013, researchers project the conversion rate for searches originating from tablets will eclipse that of desktop searches.
  • Adversiser spend share on paid search ads on tablets increased from 4.8 percent to 10 percent in 2012.
  • Click-through rates for search ads on tablets were 37 percent higher than ads placed on desktop searches.
  • The average cost-per click (CPC) for paid-search ads on tablets was 17 percent lower than desktops.
  • CPC prices for tablet search ads increased 25 percent in 2012.
  • Researchers are projecting that tablet CPC prices will equal desktop CPCs by end of 2013.

Emphasizing that advertisers need to adapt their online marketing strategies to align with these trends, Marin Software also offered a few tips for smarter mobile campaigns -- much of which focuses on taking advantage of the device itself.

That includes optimizing the user experience for mobile browsers (a particular hindrance cited on smartphones) and targeting users with device-specific copy.

For reference, Marin researchers focused on brands and advertisers that manage more than $4 billion in annualized paid-search spend in more than a dozen countries.

Screenshot via Marin Software

Topics: E-Commerce, Apps, CXO, Mobility, Tablets

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  • Touch mistakes

    This is problem due to accidental touches on touch screens. Happens to me frequently. But, heck, a click is a click.
    • Same here

      On a smartphone or tablet, it's easy for the finger to slip and it an ad instead of the original target on the screen.

      I almost never clicked on an ad on a PC using a mouse, but it happens at least once a week on a smartphone or tablet. In the same way we do a lot of typos when typing on the onscreen keyboards, we hit the wrong things while touching an app or webpage.
  • Tablet hype

    "Here's more fodder for the post-PC era proponents"

    No.But if this theory is true, I would not be surprised. Tablets are for mugs. A netbook or uktrabook does the same thing and very much more besides and they're cheaper. Mugs are more susceptible to advertising and more likely to click an eye-catching ad like a baby reaching for a rattle.

    "A fool and his money..."
    Tim Acheson
  • Question on the terminology here

    Just want to make sure I'm understanding them right:
    -- "Click-through rates on search ads" is talking about someone performing a search (Googling, Yahooing, Binging, whatever), but instead of clicking on one of the actual search results that comes up (i.e. someone that was looking for info on this weeks' Westminster Dog Show chooses to click on the link for the homepage of the show), they click on one of the ads instead (i.e. they clicked on the ad for a brand of dog food that's sponsoring the dog show), right?
    -- "Conversion rates on search clicks" I'm not sure about. Are they still talking about how many people clicked on the search ads instead of one of the actual search results? Or are they talking about people that, after clicking on a search ad, went on to make a purchase (or, perhaps, downloaded an app -- for those times where they may have downloaded an app for free instead of paying for something)?
  • A simpler explanation

    Tablet browsers don't have ad-blockers.