We all need somebody to lean on, and when it came to search, consumers heavily relied on their mobile devices in 2012.
According to the YP Local Insights Digital Report, based on 2.2 billion searches via the YP Local Ad Network, 30% of the ad network’s searches last year were mobile-based. iPad searches jumped 233% from 2011 and Android searches grew 205% across YP apps—one of the ad network’s chief mobile features. Additionally, according to figures from the YP Local Mobile Display Network, consumers who are one to two miles away from a business are 1.48 times more likely to click on that business’s mobile ad banner.
Consumers started to warm up to their mobile sidekicks last year and began searching for less time- or location-sensitive categories. For instance, the industrial manufacturing category shot up 105% in mobile search and party planning jumped 94%. However, local searches still rule. Pharmacies also experienced a 144% increase in overall search inquiries, and grocery stores increased 102%.
Restaurants comprised 17% of mobile searches and comprised the most popular search category overall, raking in 10% of all search inquiries. Although it was the second most popular search term, financial services trailed behind and made up only 4% of overall searches.
Like the color of the leaves, it seems that consumers’ inquiries also change with the seasons. Due to factors such as weather, holidays, and news events, 39% of the 4,600 ad network’s categories encountered some seasonal change—experiencing two to three times their typical traffic during the categories’ top business weeks, according to the study. For example, concert bureaus, camping equipment, and fireworks all reached their top search traffic during the summer months from June to August. Yet it looks like states with a warmer climate did most of the searching last year, as California, Florida, and Texas accumulated more than 400 million local searches in total.