"Mobile to overtake fixed Internet access by 2014" was the huge headline summarising the bold prediction from 2008 by Mary Meeker, an analyst at Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers who reviews technology trends annually in May. Today, we're long past this tipping point, but we're still seeing rapid uptake of smartphones which we show in this article by answering 7 questions about consumer smartphone adoption and usage.
The mobile statistics that the team at Smart Insights curate in the regular updates to this article are grouped under these headings for key questions marketers need to answer about mobile to help them compete:
Q1. Time spent using mobile media
Q2. Percentage of consumers using mobile devices
Q3. How many website visits are on mobile vs desktop devices?
Q4. Mobile conversion rates vs desktop and visit share for Ecommerce sites?
Q5. Mobile app vs mobile site usage?
Q6. How important are mobile ads
Q7. What percentage of Google Searches are on mobile?
Countries covered in this compilation?
The United States and United Kingdom are the main countries covered for which there are many reports. In the Ofcom international benchmark we also cover the main European markets, i.e. France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Sweden. Australia and Japan are also covered.
We start with one of the most useful recent reports from comScore: Mobile's Hierarchy of Needs covering 9 global markets (USA, Canada, UK, Spain, Italy, Brazil, Mexico, China and Indonesia). It clearly shows the growth in share of mobile minutes
So that's the intro showing the importance of mobile, let's dig into the details to prove it.
Q1. How much time do consumers spend using mobile media?
Mobile media use varies through the day. This is important to understand for dayparting, i.e. buying AdWords and display media. This daypart media use from comScore Global Digital Future in Focus shows how desktop is still important for daytime at work audiences, but Tablet and smartphone dominate in the evening.
The latest figures, also from comScore Mobile Metrix presented in the OfCom Communications Market report show the total browse time per month is much higher on smartphones - these figures compare to 34 hours and 29 hours for the United States and United Kingdom on desktop.
Mary Meeker's annual spring updates on mobile are a must-read if you follow consumer adoption of technology platforms, so we have used some of the key findings from the latest KPCB mobile technology trends by Mary Meeker. Her deck is nearly 200 slides, so we have selected the statistics which best summarise the importance of mobile devices today.
The latest data shows that we are now well past the tipping point mentioned at the top of this post. Mobile digital media time in the US is now significantly higher at 51% compared to desktop (42%).
The implications are clear - if you're not able to reach your audience through mobile search or display, or you're not providing a satisfactory mobile experience you will miss out compared to competitors who are. Mobile only
Mobile-only social Networks like Snapchat are also growing rapidly in popularity, and this is driving increases in time spent on mobile devices. For more information, see our article on Snapchat Marketing Statistics.
Q2. Percentage of consumers using mobile devices?
This end 2017 Ofcom international benchmark shows the global popularity of using different digital devices in representative countries.
This interesting visual from comScore also part of their digital future in focus shows the picture that marketers need to build up. This panel data shows that the majority of consumers are multiplatform and will often be multi-screening, accessing sites on mobile or desktop, so consistent experiences across device need to be deployed.
Here's another visualisation from a more recent 2017 comScore report on Mobile’s Hierarchy of Needs . Here you can see that in most countries multiplatform ownership dominates, so we switch between mobile and desktop, particularly when selecting products and services.
We recommend you understand this multichannel switching behaviour for your own brand. As Rob Thurner explained in his post on KPIs to review m-commerce effectiveness, it's important to keep track of the split between users of mobile and desktop devices visiting your site(s). Using segments in Google Analytics is the best way to do this.
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