Google, Target data shows mobile search ads drive in-store sales

Google wants to show advertisers that there is real value in mobile advertising. To help them do that, the search giant and its client Target shared with The Wall Street Journal data that reveals mobile search advertising influences in-store sales.

"We know from Google's store-measurement data that our mobile-search ads greatly influence in-store sales," Kristi Argyilan, a Target senior VP, told WSJ.

Moreover, Argyilan said that during the 2014 holiday season one-third of the customers visited a store after clicking on a mobile search ad.

These findings echo Deloitte research that estimated 28 percent of the $970 billion in in-store sales were influenced by mobile devices last year, up from 5 percent in 2012. By contrast, total online sales in 2014 were about $300 billion.

So far though, consumer mobile device use has far outpaced the adoption of mobile search advertising. For example, while Google announced recently that, for the first time, mobile has surpassed desktop in search in the United States, marketers still aren't convinced customers actually make purchases on their smartphones. However, if the company manages to provide better attribution for offline sales, advertisers may be influenced to invest more in mobile search advertising.

Read the rest of this article in FierceMobileRetail's sister publication, FierceMobileMarketer.