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The Only Thing More Fun Than Tax Prep Is Mobile Tax Prep

I know—we aren’t even through the holidays and I am bringing up the dreaded tax season.  But it is right around the corner, so tax preparation and related businesses need to be ready.

At the end of the 2014 tax season, Google published research regarding the search behavior of taxpayers. The report, 2014 Tax Season Trends: The Returns Are In, and the data gives valuable insight into what we can expect for the 2015 tax season.

In 2014, mobile use among taxpayers continue to grow significantly, with the mobile share of tax-related searches up 80 percent since 2012. Google noted that because of this growth “it’s incredibly important for brands to ensure their sites are mobile optimized.” In fact, Google found that people are five times more likely to abandon a task if the site is not optimized for mobile.

Generally, I am not a gambler. But I would bet my tax refund that in 2015 we will see even greater mobile usage when it comes to tax-related searches. Unfortunately, our data shows that the industry is not well-prepared. For example, we found that one-third of tax preparation brands do not have a mobile-optimized locator. Such companies risk frustrating consumers and losing them to brands that are more digitally savvy.

The good news is that there is time to correct such issues before consumers transition their searches from holiday gifts to tax preparation topics.

Here are a few things that tax businesses can do to better meet the needs of mobile consumers:

1)   Develop properly optimized mobile locators and landing pages for each of your locations.

2)   Consolidate sites on a single URL and avoid using mobile redirects.

3)   Use dynamic responsive design to optimize the user experience based on device type.

4)   Properly format and compress images.

5)   Incorporate mobile functionality such as click-to-call, geolocation, and GPS features.

If you work for a tax-related brand, now is the time to improve your mobile presence so that consumers can find you and interact with you this coming tax season. But you don’t have to do this alone. Our mobile and SEO experts can help; contact us for a complimentary mobile assessment.

And if you are thinking “my company isn’t in the tax industry so how does this apply to me?”: Well, across all industries our findings are even worse, with 36 percent of companies not having a properly implemented mobile locator.  So all brands can benefit from assessing their online properties and following the mobile tips above.

Now go and enjoy the final holiday weeks before the onslaught of tax returns and paperwork is upon us!

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