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When you wake up, what’s one of the first things you do?

If you’re like most people, you pick your phone and check the weather, your emails or how many likes you got on that totally Instagram worthy post you made last night (this is a safe place; we can share here).

These days, the human race is reliant on their connected smart devices—8 billion of them, to be exact—and that number is growing every day. We could pepper you with endless stats about smartphone usage, but none of it would surprise you.

What you really need to know is that more than ever, consumers are instinctively turning to their smart devices when they have a strong intent to do something, discover something, watch something, or buy something.

This my friend, is called a the micro-moment. The sacred space in time where decisions are made and preferences are shaped.

In this article, we’ll help you identify a micro-moment and learn how to set your business up for success with the insights we’ve gained as a certified Google Partner.

Example of a Micro-Moment

Say you and a friend have plans to meet for lunch. You search for a new lunch spot online and make a reservation. That’s a micro-moment. You had a strong intent to find something and then take an action.

Or, let’s say you’re attempting to make a barbeque chicken pizza at home. After searching for recipes and realizing it’s just a bit harder than you thought, you switch your attention to the handful of pizza shops in town that sell barbeque chicken pizza. One of them is even running a sale! That’s a micro-moment.

The Task for Businesses

To “win” these moments and a potential sale, businesses have to meet consumers’ needs by understanding their intent and context. Connecting with customers online is dependent upon providing helpful information for potential customers during these moments of need.

Getting Attention Online Boils Down to Three Key Principles

  • Be there for customers throughout the purchase journey: As a business and a brand, you must appeal to consumers and catch their eye. They’ve got to notice you before they take an action.
  • Be valuable by offering useful info and meaningful experiences to customers: To be meaningful means being relevant, and being relevant means understanding your customer. What do they need and how do they think, feel and react in your product category?
  • Be quick: You need to deliver fast and frictionless experiences in real-time. Every second matters, because that’s how quickly a consumer can make a decision to bounce from your site to a competitor’s site.

Let’s take a deeper dive into each of these key principles and cover tactics you can employ to get on the winning side of micro-moments!

Say You’ll Be There

With 87% of consumers turning to Google search with their needs, it’s simple: when you snooze, you lose on the search engine battleground.

Optimize Your Google My Business Page

Google My Business (GMB) provides key information about local businesses on Google Search and Maps. (You know the section with the photos and reviews at the top of your mobile search?) It helps create connections using Google Search and Maps to provide information like reviews, store hours, and directions.

When a consumer searches your business and sees the “Claim this Listing” message on your GMB listing, it’s a clear signal that you’re asleep at the wheel. Don’t be this business!

GMB provides features that allow businesses to engage with their consumers like messaging and posts. These posts can be used to publish business announcements, new product arrivals, or provide offers and coupons—and it’s free to use!

Use Local Search Ads

Local ads on Google highlight your locations and encourage potential customers to call or visit. Google Ads allow your product to appear in the right place at the right time. In fact, according to Google, Search is used more often than any other source before an in-store purchase is made.

Potential customers can see local ads across:

  • Google Search
  • Shopping, using local inventory ads
  • Display
  • Google Maps
  • YouTube, which recently launched the first-ever ad extension for video ads with location extensions

A Closer Look at YouTube

YouTube is the perfect way to be present during moments of intent and discovery. It’s the number one video site for influencing purchase decisions and has more than 1.8 billion monthly logged-in users and every day, people watch more than a billion hours of video content according to Google. Wowie!

So how do you translate these billions of actively engaged users into growth for your business?

Use video ad formats for every attention span. YouTube offers six-second pre-roll ad formats for shorter attention spans or longer ad formats to reach consumers interested in educating themselves on your products and services.

If you’re asking yourself if you can deliver anything persuasive in that six seconds, you can!

  • What’s ONE key differentiator for your product?
  • Is there something about it that’s unusual or piques people’s interest?
  • Is there any entertaining way you can get your message across?

Rest assured that 9 in 10 viewers can actually recall an ad after watching a 6-second pre-roll ad. So find a way to be memorable!

You’re Like Really, Really Valuable

Okay, time to talk about being valuable.

When your business’s message isn’t an interruption but a service, you’re there to help people find what they’re looking for.

How do you know if you’re valuable? Guess what, you as the business owner should not be answering that question based on how you feel. And no, offering a useful product doesn’t automatically make you valuable.

The most earnest way to determine your value online is to look at the data—because data don’t lie.

Google Analytics

Google Analytics is a free tool and one of the most popular website analytics tools available. It offers digital tools to analyze data from touchpoints to better understand the customer experience. Knowing more about your customer helps you get better results.

Google Analytics:

  • Helps you understand what data tells you about your site and what actionable steps you can take.
  • Identifies how customers find your site to drive organic traffic.
  • Allows you to track and record goal completions.

Say you’ve added a new interactive tool on your website, are consumers seamlessly making it through all the steps, are any bouncing at a certain point, and how many are taking actions as a result of it? Ultimately, you’re assessing the value of your web tool and how can you make it more valuable to your customers.

Google Analytics also helps you understand your customers’ demographics. Their age, gender, and interests are critical pieces of information that can help you market to them.

Google Trends

To help you understand your consumers, Google provides quick, useful insights on what people are searching for through Google Trends.

Google Trends, offers insights into search patterns, such as seasonality, to help you understand what your consumers are seeking so you can provide a better shopping experience and inspire purchases.

Business be Nimble, Businesses be Quick

This is the lowest hanging fruit for businesses, but it’s important nonetheless.

A recent study by Google shows that on average, it takes 15.3 seconds to fully load a mobile page.

That’s just too long for today’s information-hungry consumers. And that’s why Google takes mobile experiences so seriously. Slow site speed doesn’t just hurt your user experience, it can push you down in Google Search results. Page speed is actually a ranking factor for organic mobile searches on Google now.

Think about it, if Google sends you to a page that takes forever to load, that affects their brand, which is their product. So Google has a keen interest in sending their consumers to pages that are going to match their user’s expectation—which is speed. Test your site speed with Google here and see how it stacks up.

Tips to improve your site speed:

  • First, you want to give your customers a good first impression. Do this by ensuring that the content above the fold loads in under 3 seconds. This means that anything a visitor can see in their initial screen view.
  • Second, you want to reduce the number of page requests as much as possible. This means the number of resources the browser needs to request from the server. As a general rule of thumb, Google suggests having a goal of less than 80. The fewer requests, the faster the load time.
  • Finally, bump down your page weight to less than one megabyte. Think about your images, videos and fonts on the page.

Go Forth!

Don’t let all this information overwhelm you, instead, pick one area to focus on at a time and start chipping away at it! Remember, you know your customers best, which is the greatest tool you can have. Google offers tools to make your job, which is doing business, easier. Use this information to do that.

If you have more questions, our team is here and ready to help. Are you interested in having an AdWords specialist get you on the winning side of micro-moments? Contact 360ideas today!