Smartphone usage is booming, and we’ve all seen the stats! According to Google, mobile search will surpass the desktop search by the end of 2013, with over 150 million smart phones sold worldwide in the second quarter of 2012.

Yet, many brands and agencies have still been pretty cautious to utilize the mobile channels in their marketing efforts. Lack of understanding of mobile consumer behavior as well as the difficulty in tracking the right metrics have been cited as the biggest reasons why some marketing professionals have been taking the “wait and see” approach.

Many of today’s marketers grew up in the online desktop world. When it comes to stats and measurements, we think in terms of unique visitors, “thank you” page hits, time spent on the website, online purchases, and other traditional desktop metrics.

While some of these metrics can still apply in the mobile world, they are clearly not enough to properly measure the outcomes of mobile campaigns or offer insight into consumer mobile behavior. Here is a list of highly relevant metrics that are typically missing from mobile website stats or mobile web campaign reports:

  • Phone calls
    According to Google, over 60% of mobile searches end in a phone call. Calls generated from the mobile website seem to be a much more frequent action than filling out a form or making a purchase. And yet, many mobile marketing web campaigns do not measure phone calls data.While tracking the actual calls made can be complicated, keeping track of clicks on the “call” button or link is something that can be implemented fairly easily. Certain cloud-based solutions, such as piJnz mobile website builder and SignalMind campaign manager include stats on phone calls generated from the mobile site.
  • Accurate location of the visitor
    Mobile engagement is about location and proximity. According to Google, over 70% of mobile searches are local, and according to TMC/comScore, 61% of local searches result in purchases, mostly offline.Considering the importance of the local factor in mobile marketing as well as smartphones’ GPS detection capabilities that can provide the marketer with an accurate location of the visitor, mobile stats should be including much more granular visitor location details, down to the street or community level, offering marketer the valuable insight on where their best customer is coming from.
  • In-store visits, purchases and coupon redemptions. Many on-the-go consumers turn to their smart phones to look up local businesses, or when making a decision to visit a local restaurant or a store. Over half of us used our smart phones while inside a store to look up customer reviews and competitor prices. Since most of the resulting actions with these types of searches happen offline, they can be difficult to track, yet they should not be ignored.
    Mobile coupons have been growing in popularity, and coupon redemption is a valuable metrics in measuring customer engagement. When including mobile coupons into your marketing strategy, make sure you get the metrics that include detailed redemption data.

While gaining insight into some mobile metrics (e.g. tracking offline actions such as in-store visits and purchases) can be quite challenging, others can be effectively tracked with solutions available today. As the quote states: “You can’t manage what you can’t measure.” Measuring relevant data is critical in improving ROI, understanding your consumer behavior and your best customer.