Brands' investments in content-driven strategies for mobile devices are paying off as email conversion rates increase and provide more bottom-line value.

Mobile is becoming a make-or-break factor for your content marketing, whether you’re using search, social or email to reach your audience. A recent YesMail study found emails opened on mobile devices, like smartphones and tablets, are providing dramatically better ROI than they have in the past. Between 2014 and 2015, mobile email conversions increased 70 percent, while the conversion rate for desktops dropped 4 percent.

It’s not just that conversion rates are on the rise – the value per email is also up. YesMail found mobile messages tend to generate twice as much revenue per click than messages opened on desktops.

Mobile email conversions increased 70 percent, while the conversion rate for desktops dropped 4 percent YoY

The dramatic conversion uptick doesn’t necessarily signal the death of desktop-focused strategies. There’s a time and a place for every device, and your audience’s preferences should be the anchor of your campaigns. Rather, this could be the byproduct of a broader trend toward mobile propensity, in which:

  • More people are opening emails on smartphones – and the sheer volume increase is driving up conversions.

  • Marketers are optimizing emails for smartphones – so recipients can open them on mobile, click links and convert.

  • Companies are investing in marketing automation technology – so they can track whether messages are opened on mobile or desktop.

Mobile-optimized marketing messages are becoming the industry standard. The majority of consumers now carry smartphones and brands have the opportunity – sometimes, even the obligation – to deliver web content on the devices their recipients prefer.

Send email messages to mobile devices

According to Experian’s Email Benchmark report, users opened 53 percent of all email on mobile phones or tablets during Q3 of 2014, a 5 percent increase from the quarter before.

Whether mobile results have improved because marketers are creating content that looks good on devices, or that users are more receptive to brand messages on smartphones, it’s good news. Companies need to take mobile optimization seriously if they’re going to thrive on the ‘net going forward.

Here’s a video covering 4 tips to optimize your content for mobile viewers as you build campaigns for smartphone and tablet users.  

Back in 2013, Google’s Software Engineer Matt Cutts suggested it wouldn’t be long before mobile traffic will surpass desktop traffic to the search engine. Now, Google is launching a new algorithm targeting mobile-friendliness. Sites that aren’t optimized for smartphones and tablets will see mobile search rankings and traffic deteriorate. The search engine has already added some ‘filters’ to help users differentiate between sites that will provide good experiences on a device and those that prove difficult to navigate.

Check out this Q&A with Google on mobile SEO from this year’s SMX West conference for more details about the coming algorithm updates.

Lauren Kaye is a Marketing Editor at Brafton Inc. She studied creative and technical writing at Virginia Tech before pursuing the digital frontier and finding content marketing was the best place to put her passions to work. Lauren also writes creative short fiction, hikes in New England and appreciates a good book recommendation.