At the end of 2010, something happened which no one could have predicted. Shipments of Smartphones and tablet PCs outstripped shipments of PCs. The way people are using the Internet is changing, and it has become far more portable in recent years. There’s no question that the growth of social networking has contributed to the way computers are used, and the mobile internet has shown itself to be particularly well-suited to applications like Facebook and Twitter. The implications for advertisers and online merchants are staggering.
More and more applications are built to complement mobile use of the Internet. Facebook’s location functionality and four square’s integration with Twitter are tailor-made for users who are taking their Internet with them. In a market like Japan, mobile users account for 85% of page views of a popular social networking site, in contrast to just 14% 4 years ago.
Another interesting development is that 60% of the time now spent on Smartphones is on activities other than traditional phone activities like phone calls or texting. Smartphone users overwhelmingly use them for Web apps, games, directions, social networking and all kinds of other utilities.
It’s estimated that global mobile traffic will grow 26 times over the next five years, with a large percentage of this growth being in video. Across all of the major social networking and media sites like Facebook and Pandora, mobile users are leading the growth with substantial numbers. It can probably be expected that many quickly growing sites will tailor their growth to those mobile users.
Of course, with that kind of growth, advertising can’t be too far behind. It appears that advertising to mobile users is very effective, compared to regular internet users or television viewers. It has yet to be fully developed however, so there is currently a lot of unutilized potential. There is still a fairly large disconnect between the amount of time spent by consumers online, and the amount of advertising dollars spent there. With Pay-Per-Click advertising still leading online advertising, it seems that there is a great deal of potential in mobile search to make even greater use of this type of advertising.
There is also a great deal of potential for interactive television advertising. Using a Smartphone, a viewer can get coupons, get more product information, and share it with friends. Advertisers are only beginning to make use of all of the possibilities.
While e-commerce still dominates, the greater flexibility of mobile customers means that they are a large and underutilized target market. In 2011, eBay alone expects to double its mobile customer sales to $4 Billion.
As you can see, the mobile internet is still in its early days. As prices for Smartphones and tablet PCs continue to fall, more and more customers will be getting on board. This presents a unique opportunity for many online providers, especially in social networking. In addition, advertising to mobile internet users is still far from its potential. The greater interactivity possibilities of the mobile internet mean that users can use advertising and e-commerce in new and innovative ways. The possibilities seem endless for those who are able and willing to get into the game now.
The post has been shared by Calvin Scott. Calvin is a hands on tech expert. He is fascinated with the pace with which technology is advancing and loves to review latest gadgets in spare time. Visit his site for interactieve televisie and tv en internet.