Local Businesses: How You Can Put Mobile Payments, Commerce to Work

June 14, 2018         By: Steven Anderson

It’s easy for the small business to think that the mobile trends that are striking, from mobile payments to mobile commerce and beyond, aren’t really applicable to their current setting. The local gift shop that may not have an online presence at all, the small restaurant that caters to the after-work crowd at a nearby factory…businesses like these may not even be considering mobile. With mobile commerce on the rise, and shoppers increasingly turning to smartphones for product research, ignoring mobile could mean ignoring a potential new market.

There are some comparatively simple things that businesses can do, and businesses of any size at that. For instance, businesses who have a website would do well to see it optimized for mobile. With 88 percent of shoppers in one survey reporting a negative experience with a mobile shopping site, and 30 percent of them planning to never return, there’s every reason to optimize for mobile.

Google also plays several roles in direct promotion for mobile users, especially local businesses. It’s recommended that those who haven’t already claimed a listing on Google My Business should do so, and run Google AdWords campaigns that are just “call-only”. This allows better results for small businesses with a more local focus. Local search ads are also encouraged, as are ads that focus on texting.

Perhaps the biggest recommendation that could be made is the use of mobile payments. Thanks to a growing range of options, it’s now not only possible to bring such tools in, but also comparatively simple. Whether it’s one of the Pays—Google Pay, Apple Pay, or Samsung Pay, among others—or something from an established brand like Mastercard, there is no shortage of options available.

It’s easy to say “my store’s too small” or “I don’t sell outside of this town” when it comes to pursuing mobile innovations. But these innovations come to small towns, too, and whether it’s looking for a particular item from a local bookstore or a menu for a local restaurant, mobile can deliver the kinds of outcomes that businesses want to see.

In the end, it’s all about putting the technology that’s right for each business to work. Mobile is one of these, even if it’s not immediately clear just how.