Micro-moments occur when people reflexively turn to a device—increasingly a smartphone—to act on a need to learn something, do something, discover something, watch something, or buy something. They are intent-rich moments when decisions are made and preferences shaped.

To understand how Micro-moments started we need to understand the context in which they work. Have you ever counted how many times you look at your phone during the day ? Most likely the answer is NO Nevertheless, Google started paying attention to this analytics, measuring and analyzing the average times a person looks at their cell phone per day. Google realized that millennials depend on their smart phones, as a matter of fact they have their phone next to them 87% of the time. The average person checks their cell phone between 150-200 times per day.

Google realized that every time you check your phone there is an interaction. This interaction generates an emotional reaction from the user. For example Steve was walking by a cafeteria, he heard a song that he liked, immediately Steve uses Shazam on his phone to find out the song’s name and artist. When Steve is on his way to work he is listening to songs from this artist and he starts searching for more information about the artist in Google. A couple of days later Steve receives an advertisement about the artist that he had searched. The ad catches his attention; he goes to the link however he doesn’t purchase anything. The ad continues now announcing an upcoming event from this artist. Steve finds out that his friends are attending this event, now he searches the event’s location date and time. He coordinates with his friends via WhatsApp to attend the event. Finally, Steve purchases his ticket to attend this event.

This example helps us illustrate the key micro-moments in their journey.

These are the 4 game changing moments that really matter:

I want to know moments: When someone is exploring or researching but is not necessarily in purchase mode

I want to go moments: When someone is looking for a local business or is considering buying a product at a nearby store

I want to do moments: When someone wants help completing a task or trying something new

I want to buy moments: When someone is ready to make a purchase and may need help deciding what to buy or how to buy it.

Micro-moments have become a challenge for the marketing industry. They are here to stay and they are game changers.

As a brand, you can therefore turn to micro-moments to elevate your search marketing performance. By being there and being useful exactly when it’s needed, you can use micro-moments as a vehicle to increase engagement and ROI.