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All Marketing is Mobile Marketing: Cindy Krum

Mobile phone illustration

In 2010, just three years after the launch of the iPhone, Cindy Krum published one of the top-rated books on mobile marketing, and she has been working on the subject ever since. She has focused her entire career on mobile SEO, a side of search marketing that’s bigger than it might seem from the size of the screens where it takes place.

According to Pew Research, 81% of Americans today own smartphones, up from just 35% in 2011. For 46% of Americans who own a smartphone, it is the preferred way to access the Internet instead of a desktop or laptop computer, up from 34% in 2013, and an additional 23% of smartphone owners now use their phones and computers equally to go online.

One of the things all these users do with their smartphones is search the Internet. Google has a 96% share of mobile searches worldwide, followed by Baidu with a bit more than 1%. We know the mobile market is important for Google because the search engine pays Apple billions of dollars every year to be the default search option in iOS. Of course, Google also owns the Android operating system, makes Android phones, and runs the Google Play app store.

The evidence about the importance of a strong mobile experience for users is clear, yet for many publishers their mobile websites are often an afterthought. That’s where Cindy Krum comes in. Her company MobileMoxie offers a series of mobile SEO tools to help companies perform better on mobile searches. One of the tools allows customers to see how a search engine result page (SERP) would look on mobile depending on where the search is run, another helps evaluate how a landing page will look on different phones, and a third one provides insights to help improve app rankings in Google Play and the iOS App Store.

MobileMoxie offers a free 7-day trial of the three tools. The first tool, to analyze SERPs based on location, is called SERPerator and lets SEOs check how search terms perform in any location in the world by entering country, city, zip code, and type of device. The company calls it a “mobile SERP emulator,” showing live Google mobile search results just as they would look by running the same searches on the same location at the same time. This is a handy tool to evaluate mobile search rankings including feature snippets, knowledge graph, and other Google inserts, anywhere in the world, with clickable results, the ability to track changes over time, and adjust several settings like language and handset.   

Cindy Krum’s team also provides consulting services for customers such as eBay, Target, TripAdvisor, and many other large companies. In a presentation this year, she explained that it can take a large company with a complex website up to a year and a half to go live with her team’s recommendations, so it’s very important for them to look beyond the latest algorithm update to tell what’s a short-term fluctuation that will sort out on its own, and what’s a longer-term trend.

The key long-term trend that she has picked up on consistently over the last 20 years is how mobile users were changing the entire Internet, and she has often been right in both the big picture and the details. Recently she has been talking about how video search results are starting to take more space on Google mobile SERPs. If she’s right again, we will soon need to familiarize ourselves with video fraggles, and other advanced SEO techniques that take advantage of video search results. Her research shows that Google is increasingly looking into all the video we post online to find segments that offer good answers to our queries.

Verb can help you ride this trend by creating stories people will care about.