A report from the Local Corporation and the e-tailing group found that tablets and smartphones are becoming increasingly important for purchase research.

A report from the Local Corporation and the e-tailing group suggests that tablets and smartphones are becoming as important to the buying process as any other internet-connected device. While most consumers still prefer to make purchases in stores, they are increasingly turning to the web whenever they can to research products and services they hope to buy.

According to the study, 23 percent of consumers said they use their tablets in conjunction with their desktop or laptop computers to research potential purchases. In general, this figure represents an increase in shoppers’ use of the web to ensure they are highly informed about options before spending their money. Content marketing campaigns optimized for the mobile web and the desktop web that focus on highlighting a brand’s value to the user can help businesses reach these consumers.

Marketers planning to publish and share content should also be conscious of when their audiences are most active online; 20 percent of respondents said they use their tablet at certain times of day to browse product listing or make purchases. Nineteen percent said they rely on both their tablet and smartphone to research items they’re interested in buying.

With both the tablet and smartphone markets growing rapidly, companies must alter their web marketing campaigns to ensure mobile users have complete access to their website content. Brafton recently highlighted a report from AT&T Interactive that found that just 10 percent of mobile searches result in website visits, with most making use of click-to-call features or address information.

To ensure that consumers can find location or contact information from a mobile SERP, businesses must provide that information in readily accessible pages on their websites and actively maintain their Google Places listing.

Joe Meloni is Brafton's former Executive News and Content Writer. He studied journalism at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and has written for a number of print and web-based publications.