Go Mobile or Go Home
Here are some recent stats on mobile usage to mull over while you’re assessing your mobile marketing strategy: As of late last year, there are over 3.5 billion unique mobile Internet users with mobile devices driving 80% of Internet usage. Users spend on average 69% of their media time on smartphones, and 50% on mobile apps. The total number of mobile app downloads in 2017 was 197 billion.
What’s more, mobile is the main platform used for searches, with 69% of consumers worldwide between the ages of 18 and 39 using mobile devices to research products before they buy. The category with the highest percentage of mobile search volume is “Food & Beverage” at 72%, according to Google, followed by health, sports, news, lifestyle and retail. Seventy-eight percent of mobile searches for local business information result in a purchase – that’s higher than from any other kind of device. Ninety percent of smartphone owners use their phones while making purchasing decisions in a brick and mortar store.
Where are we are heading in the mobile landscape?
Progressive Web Apps
Progressive Web Apps (PWAs), according to experts, are set to rein. PWAs are mobile apps delivered through the web with technology that delivers an app-like experience on your browser. It feels like a native app due to the use of an app-shell that provides app-style navigations and gestures. Since progressive apps are built on the web, they are not tied to specific devices. A PWA displays seamlessly and identically on all devices, including desktop, mobile, tablet, or whatever will come next.
A PWA loads instantly, regardless of network quality, and is designed to work offline and in areas of low connectivity. PWAs also eliminate the middleman – the apps store – which means that developers are no longer bogged down by iOS and Android’s rules and guidelines. They also don’t have to go through an approval process. There is no need to manually update the app, as the revised app version will instantly and automatically be available to everyone. The end user accesses the PWA by clicking on a link, which means anyone can launch the app straight from a URL. You can share it on social media, email, text message, online ad, or link it to a QR code, and the user will instantly be immersed within an app.
Google announced in 2016 that websites would be indexed based on a brand’s mobile site, not its desktop sites, which is crucial for search ranking. That means pages need to load quickly and use responsive design, buttons need to work with touch screens, no zooming or side scrolling for mobile usability, and photos and text need to appear properly. If your site isn’t responsive already, get on it as you’re losing ground in the search competition.
Micro-moments are intent-rich moments when decisions are made and preferences shaped. They are defined as moments when individuals turn to their device to act on a need to learn something, do something, watch something or buy something. Research shows that 96% of users now turn to their smart phones for these micro-moments. These devices have trained us to expect brands to immediately deliver exactly what we are looking for, when we are looking for it. We want things right, and we want things right away.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) gives brands the power to help personalize a customer’s experience at every level. It’s estimated that a virtual assistant will be on 3.3 mobile devices by 2020.
Livestreaming as part of a wider campaign is gaining greater traction. By 2019, video will account for about 78% of the world’s mobile traffic. The message is loud and clear: mobile has taken over.
Sources: BiznessApps, Entrepreneur Magazine, Google