Why all brand owners, and not just Facebook, should be concerned about growing access of internet by mobile.


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As we see in the news, the Facebook IPO has had a rocky ride. The price fell significantly in the 2 weeks after listing. Some investors are threatening to sue as they were not told, unlike major investors they claim, about a downgraded view on Facebook revenue potential.

The “Facebook” concern: Growth of Mobile access
The concern is that more and more people are accessing Facebook by mobile. The challenge for Facebook is how to generate the same level of revenues they can via traditional PC based access. Facebook has not found a way to run and generate the sort of revenues from ads on mobile platform efficiently. Advertising revenue is key to Facebook business model.

The importance of mobile access of the internet not only to Facebook but to every brand owner was hit home again to me today while attending an Adobe Systems Webinar called “Mobile Matters: Optimising Search for Mobile”.

Mobile access of brand sites is growing dramatically
The Webinar pointed out that not only are Smart Phones changing how people access the internet, but that Tablets (like the iPad) are accelerating and driving this even more. And are introducing a different dynamic.

By 2014 One in Five visits to a brand site will be on mobile device (smart phone or tablet)! This excludes traffic to mobile apps.
As a result, 1 in 5 search dollars will be spent on mobile search within a year. It is expected to be at least 16% by year end. Already it is 11% in the UK and 8% in the USA.

When thinking mobile, think about the Tablet and not just the Phone.
Tablet access of brand sites will be greater than that by smart phones by 2013!
Tablet users are also more engaged when using sites than on a Smart Phone, but still less than PC. As a user of all 3, the Tablet does give a better experience as also is more likely to be used when you have more time, while you tend to use a Smart Phone to answer something specific and time sensitive.
Tablet users are using them to shop online, and spend more than those on Smart Phones. 50% more! Interestingly they spend 20% more than visiting sites on a PC. This is likely because they are, by definition as tablet users which are quite costly, more affluent and have more discretionary dollars available to spend. They also use it more in evening and weekends than PC users, and so have more time to explore and spend.

Implications for brand owners:
Deliver right site on all platforms.
Brand owners need to ensure that their site is optimised and works for the needs and how people access them on PCs, Smart Phones and Tablets. This may not mean just being compatible but relevant and works for how they access and use. They may need, and expect, different things and level of information and capabilities.

Not just a site that works on different platforms
Many brands focus on making sure their site works on the different platform, but it is not just about making sites work. But making sure they are meet the different expectations.

What do you think? Please leave a comment on the blog, and if the post got you thinking please share using the sharing buttons.

Further reading: Watch Adobe Mobile Matters webinar or download a PDF of the charts

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Gary Bembridge
30 years of marketing experience managing and building brands globally for companies like Unilever and Johnson & Johnson, as a Global Vice President Global Marketing. Now a freelance marketing consultant, blogger and podcaster. The podcast has won awards in the European Podcast Awards (Business) the last 2 years.


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