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Mobile Content Marketing Strategy For Local Businesses

More than 80% of mobile device users look up restaurants on their smartphones and tablets. In our previous post on local content marketing, we briefly touched on some statistics for mobile. With the increased importance of mobile content for small, local businesses, we thought the topic deserved a post of its own.

Why should you start thinking about content marketing for mobile devices?

  • Cater to current clients and searchers, even if they are a small segment of your total visitors
  • Gain a competitive advantage over other local players
  • Differentiate yourself from national and larger chains

Users searching for and interacting with a local business have different needs and expectations than those looking for national brands or researching non-commercial information. We also see a difference between smartphone and tablet user behavior.

In general, smartphone users want information that leads to an in-person, physical transaction. They want menus to decide on which restaurant to go to and maps to get there. They want a hyperlinked telephone number to call a doctor or dentist to either make an appointment or adjust their appointment time.

Tablet owners use their device more like a PC. Instead of using the device while on the go, tablet users look for more involved content, whether that’s video, ebooks, or news. In search, tablet users convert to online sales instead of in-person visits.

We’ve developed a “threaded” strategy for planning whether different devices get different content, and what content each device receives. This structure helps businesses put content on one or more of these threads, allowing the business to keep its message consistent throughout the thread.

Based on your actual user statistics, you can tailor separate, unique content for smartphones, tablets, or both. Not all local businesses will need separate content threads for each type of device, and different industries may get more return on content for different devices. With that in mind, let’s look at some mobile content marketing in action.

Mobile Content For Restaurants

Viva Las Arepas, a Las Vegas Venezuelan eatery, is an interesting example. Their mobile-optimized site is visually impressive but lacking in content. It does not have the address, phone number or hours listed on the homepage, forcing an extra click to get the most important information for users. A menu option for directions is helpful but incorrect – it leads to a map of the former location, which is now a taco stand, effectively driving customers to a competitor.

On the other hand, Giuseppe’s, an Italian restaurant, includes their address and phone number in plain text on their mobile site, along with a short description of the atmosphere. The most important information is front and center, easy to read and accurate. Menus are quickly available as well.

Both of these restaurants have a dual-thread strategy with content written specifically for mobile devices. One danger of a multi-thread strategy is that information changes need to be made in all threads, increasing the workload.

Mobile Content For Beauty Salons is an example of what can happen when neither your design nor your content are ready for mobile. The site is organized on a desktop, but it becomes a scroll of large pictures on a smartphone, with the address and booking options at the end of the scroll. The phone number is not visible on the mobile site, making booking and confirming an arduous task. has a specific mobile site with a clear call to action. While the graphics and layout may not be perfect, the mobile site provides the content that a smartphone user is looking for – address and phone number.

Great Clips has taken a different tack, with a short blurb encouraging smartphone users to “just walk in.” This promotional content does not appear on their desktop homepage.

Other local businesses can focus their page design and content to cater to which device people are using. Mobile searches for locksmiths may be locked out of their home, whereas a desktop searcher is not. Mobile content should convince the visitor that the locksmith will be out quickly and that the visitor is safe. Lawyers may have similar situations, especially if they specialize in accident representation.

Local businesses can differentiate themselves from the competition and better cater to their clients’ needs simply by adding appropriate content to their mobile sites. When optimizing content for mobile, ensure that the information is correct and regularly updated, easily readable and appropriate to the visitor’s situation. Your business can only benefit.

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