The App-le of Your Eye :
Smart phones are everywhere. It’s possible that you know of a half-dozen people who own and use smart phones – perhaps many more than that. And there seems to be an app for everything these days – an app to listen to radio stations, an app to count calories, an app to search daily deals. But should you think about having an app created for your business?
In a recent report on Technorati, an estimated 91 million users will access the internet through a mobile device at least monthly by the end of 2011, which indicates that mobile search will have an increased reach. And with that, more people will be using their mobile phones to access the internet more frequently. When compared to 2010, 20% more people use their phone “almost-daily” to perform mobile searches, and more than half of all mobile users search the internet on their devices “weekly.”
But as we know, you can use the internet two ways on your phone – through a mobile browser or through an app. Most people still search through the browser on their phone, but that number is dropping. Compared to last year (January 2010 and January 2011), the number of app-based searches for local content has increased from 42% to 56%.
This data shows an obvious trend that browser searching on mobile devices is cumbersome and more users are preferring apps for searching content, so businesses and brands should consider having their own app. But more importantly, businesses need to make sure they are being represented in the mobile space. This means your SEO firm should have your site optimized for mobile browsing and you should have your business showing up in local app-based search results – especially in general search apps like Yellowbook and Google Places. As research from eMarketer shows, 87% of people who search with their mobile devices are on GPS-enabled devices and it will be vital that your business can capture traffic from those who are right outside your front door (literally) and looking for a place to shop.
It always comes back to the same thing in business – location, location, location.
How Mobile Search is Growing :
Yes, many people have a smart phone, and it’s clear that these devices do much more than give one the ability to text or talk. And even though the number of apps available for these devices is astounding (350k+ for the iPhone, 200k+ on the Android Market), people are using their phones to find websites and perform searches.
In fact, former Google CEO, Eric Schmidt, stated recently that there are more web searches performed on smart phones than desktops in emerging counties like Indonesia and South Africa.
As far as sales are concerned, smart phone sales are projected to beat global PC sales within three years, and the growth of smart phone sales continues to increase by 30% each year.
The rate at which mobile web adoption is growing is eight times faster than the equivalent point 10 years ago for desktops. Technology is changing quicker than ever, and people are doing their best to keep up.
Currently, half of all new internet connections are from mobile devices instead of PCs, laptops or notebooks.
The question this begs, then, is whether or not your website and your marketing campaign will be able to attract mobile search traffic, and if you don’t position yourself ahead of the curve your website could get left behind.