Mercedes-Benz Revs Up Mobile

Adweek notes: Revamped mobile site soars in 2012; mobile ad spend coming in 2013

Marketers these days like to talk about how mobile is in a similar place to where the Web was a decade ago. Well,Mercedes-Benz has just wrapped up a complete overhaul of its mobile website—and just like an e-commerce firm in 2002 probably felt after retooling its online product pages—it’s pretty stoked about how much better the performance is before vs. after.

In fact, Mercedes’ mobile traffic is up 85 percent year-to-datedue to a months-long, incremental makeover that was completedyesterday, according to Derek Johnson, digital platform supervisor,digital marketing and CRM at Mercedes-Benz USA. He added that nearly half of the visitors arereading/utilizing product pages about specific cars, representing astark increase compared to the former mobile site version.

The best tweak made? Per Johnson, it was taking the detailed customization features from online and making them more lightweight and interactive in the mobile sense.

“People are there to look at vehicles,” the digital exec told Adweek. “We did not go the route of adding really heavy ‘build’ experiences because we think they can be really cumbersome [via mobile].”

The automotive brand worked with mobile vendor Usablenet to enhance Mercedes’ mobile site. “In this demographic,” Johnson said, “everywhere you look there are smartphone usage numbers going up.”

Mercedes echoes another currently popular marketing sentiment: this is just the tip of the iceberg for mobile in terms of spend. In the coming months, it plans to launch mobile surveys to perhaps further optimize the mobile site and looks to buy mobile advertising for the first time in 2013.

“The thing about mobile is that it is constantly evolving,” Johnson said. “People are not necessarily thinking about deep branding experiences on mobile. What they are looking for is getting information at their fingertips.”