Optimost releases mobile tracking and targeting tool

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Optimost, a Web site optimization company, has released a new feature that provides for automatic tracking and targeting by browser, operating system and various types of devices - including mobile phones, such as the new Apple iPhone, and gaming consoles like the Nintendo Wii.

" The share of online time experienced via mobile devices is continuing to grow," said Mark Wachen, CEO of Optimost . "As such, it is important for every company to figure out how best to optimize the experience for people viewing a Web site from a mobile device, which is a very different experience than viewing a Web page on a 17-inch monitor. The look-and-feel needs to be different and the messaging often needs to be different as well."

Optimost's search engine targeting and segmentation capabilities include all information about a site's paid and organic search engine traffic, including search engine, keyword and advertising copy. In addition, Optimost provides native support for many other forms of audience segmentation, such as date and time, internal and affiliated domain referral, demographics and visitor behavioral characteristics.

Clients have the capability to execute precisely targeted campaigns using any combination of characteristics about their audience, and then optimize their site for those specific personas. For example, a Canadian electronics store with a special weekend promotion could use Optimost to target messages specifically to people who typed in "Sony" on google.ca and clicked on an organic link on Friday afternoons.

" Optimost helps companies improve their conversion rates at every stage of customer interaction online, whether that be landing pages, shopping carts, AJAX applications, e-mails or even mobile devices," Wachen said. "Optimost does this through a process called multivariable optimization."

Optimost's technology lets users create and test limitless permutations of copy, layouts and offers. The technology creates the different versions, runs them to live traffic and then optimizes based on actual performance.

This allows companies to evaluate thousands or millions of versions of their Web page with the same amount of effort it would take to create and test one or two versions.

As for the specific technology, Optimost gives a customer JavaScript to insert into the page being optimized. Whether a company is testing one variable or ten variables, one target group or ten target groups, it is still just one JavaScript callout that is required.

"Once the code is on the page, the customer can run multivariable optimization experiments to their audience without any further IT involvement. With the new targeting functionality, customers can instantly target for specific devices, keyword groups and more, without any further technical integration," Wachen told DM News.

According to Gartner, the Smartphone market will continue to expand, reaching just over one million units in 2007, with handheld shipments growing 34 percent in 2007. This makes mobile content delivery a primary focus for marketers today.

"The fact that someone is visiting your site from a mobile device can tell you a lot about their behavior, and what type of messaging is likely to resonate best," Wachem said. "For starters, you certainly know that they are looking at a much smaller screen, so keeping it simple and uncluttered is paramount."

Someone viewing on a mobile device is looking for an immediate answer to a problem, rather than just surfing, he said. For example, for a travel company, if someone is viewing a Web site from a mobile device it probably means they are trying to solve some immediate need, like change a flight or check flight status. It is probably less likely that they are planning or researching a winter vacation. As a result, a travel company may want to change the emphasis of different features of the Web site based on the device of the visitor.

" Mobile marketing is very much in its infancy. In five years, most companies will offer very different experiences for mobile visitors versus desktop visitors. They will recognize that mobile Internet is to desktop Internet as newspaper ads are to billboards," Wachem said adding, "In the same way that you wouldn't display your print ad prepared for The New York Times on a billboard in Times Square, companies will better understand that mobile is a completely different medium that requires a completely different design and messaging."

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