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Posts Tagged ‘mobile web’

Why You May Not Need a Mobile App

Posted by TeamITI on August 2, 2010

Ever since Apple launched the iPhone app store, the company has been pushing its apps to get all of the attention. But when was the last time you read a review about a new mobile website? Thousands of apps and billions of downloads consistently steal the headlines, while the mobile web is largely ignored by everyone but the consumer. Yet, despite what the marketing would lead you to believe, consumers use the mobile web just as much as apps.

At my company, we raced down the same road, putting pedal to the metal on our apps while leaving our mobile website on cruise control. Our iPhone app has been a Top 10 iPhone reference application for almost two years with almost six million downloads, and even with all of the great chart positions and visibility – just as many iPhone consumers use our mobile website as the application. We are not alone; Comscore reported in April that 72 million mobile users accessed a website compared to 69 million users who used an application. Both are showing more than 25% year-to-year growth.

Mobile Web Gets Better

When the app store first launched, only apps could use and access the device’s location. Last July, Apple launched OS 3.0 which provided Safari with GPS/location functionality. Apple’s HTML5 agenda continues to advance the mobile web browsing experience with video, audio, and a limited amount of caching or offline storage of data. The lines between apps and mobile web are blurring and converging.

But Apps Make Money

Apps make more money because iTunes makes it easier for consumers to pay. Similar to Amazon’s one-click check-out, iTunes is a virtual wallet used by 125 million consumers. But a mobile website can’t integrate with iTunes billing — you need an app for that: We tested a premium offer via our iPhone app which achieved a 50% higher conversion rate than the same offer on the mobile web.

However, for advertising revenue, the rates we receive on the mobile web are similar to in-app advertising. In terms of performance, a study on the mobile web versus app for a major travel advertiser showed the mobile web out-performing advertising on the application. Apple does place restrictions on in-app advertising and has the right to block out ad networks they deem competitive. There are no such restrictions on the mobile web.

So which should you choose for your business: A mobile web site, or a mobile application?

Why the Mobile Web Makes Sense

Even if an app is still the right choice for you, consider building a mobile website first since it will allow you to build and refine a great consumer experience, optimizing touch screen navigation. Mobile search provider Taptuhas highlighted the importance of this through its listings of “touch-friendly” mobile sites.

Another benefit of the mobile web is that you can write once to be read everywhere. With the mobile web, you can reach more devices with a single development effort. Unfortunately, mobile app platforms are fragmented, meaning you have to build specific apps for iPhone, Android, RIM, and Palm Pre. A mobile website can be built to standards that works on all these devices. There are also some fairly easy implementations that allow you to manage device profiles and optimize for different screen sizes.

One of the most satisfying benefits of the mobile web is the freedom to rapidly innovate and refine without approval or requiring the user to update and download. When Google could not get its voice application approved, for example, it responded by building a web version that required no approval process and used HTML5 for audio playback and SMS/Email for alerting.

When To Create An App

Once you’ve optimized the experience, you can use your mobile website to graduate users to a more robust native app.

One of the most important differences between a popular app and the thousands you’ve never heard of is the merchandising from the iTunes App chart. Hitting the Top 4 on the Free App chart drove over 250,000 downloads for the WhitePages Mobile App. Download volume and positive ratings are important factors needed to get onto the chart. We achieved first week download velocity by promoting the app on our mobile website, which we had steadily built an audience for. Learning and optimizing our mobile website helped us create a better app that led to better reviews and ratings. It helps to think of the mobile web as a beta, and the app as gold.

On-device placement is also important, and a bookmarked site gets the same favicon placement on your iPhone as a downloaded app. Social media will continue to be an important distribution engine, and sharing the URL for a mobile website provides one-click gratification.

Whether you are just starting to put your mobile strategy together or have been at it for some time, don’t just chase the shiny lure of an app before catching the mobile users that are already surfing your site. Let me know about your experience and best practices for building a mobile website in the comment section below.

This article is published by Mashable, click here to read the original article.

Posted in Mobile Marketing, Tools & Tutorials | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Adults Accessing Mobile Web in Record Numbers

Posted by TeamITI on July 9, 2010

According to the findings of a new Pew Internet survey, adults are turning to the mobile web in numbers never before seen.

The results of the survey are based on data collected via telephone interviews by Princeton Survey Research Associates International last spring with a sample of 2,252 adults ages 18 and older.

Based on the survey’s findings, six in ten American adults are now deemed “wireless internet users,” with approximately 60% of all adult Americans going online wirelessly as of May 2010.

Accessing the mobile web, however, is not limited to those who do so via cell phone. The survey also takes into account those who go online with a laptop using a wi-fi connection or mobile broadbandcard.

And while cell phone ownership “has remained stable” during the previous twelve month period, Pew has learned that mobile phone users are steadily growing more comfortable with a “much wider range” of their phones’ bells and whistles compared to last year at this time.

Among all cell phone owners, for example, 54% have used their mobile device to send someone a photo or video, and another 23% have accessed a social networking site using their phone. And even though mobile videos are only just becoming ubiquitous now, 20% have already used their phone to watch a video.

Pew also noted that African-Americans and Latinos “continue to outpace whites” in their use of data applications on handheld devices.

This article is published by MobileMarketingWatch, click here to read the original article.

Posted in Mobile Marketing | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Obama White House goes mobile!

Posted by TeamITI on January 21, 2010

[tweetmeme source=”itimarketing”]

How best to celebrate the first anniversary of the Obama administration? Well, with an app, of course – and a mobile web site, to boot.

Released today, the “The White House” app is so far only available for the iPhone and iPod touch, but more versions are promised soon. The app is loaded with more information than even the hardest-core policy wonk may want to know: information from the White House blog, news releases, photos of what the Commander-in-Chief is doing, and archived video. If posts and other content invite comments, users are linked back to the WhiteHouse.gov website.

By far the coolest feature is live streaming video, kicking off today with Domestic Policy Advisor Melody Barnes, who hosted a live chat and answered questions submitted via Facebook on school reform. The daily press briefing with Press Secretary Robert Gibbs is next. The app contains a schedule of live broadcasts.

The White House also announced plans for a mobile.whitehouse.gov, a mobile version of their site, coming in the next few weeks.

In the announcement, the administration call this another step on the way to an open, transparent government. It’s also a positive step for digital marketing. When established, traditional instituions (and does it get more established and traditional than the US government?) leveraging technology and communications in new and innovative ways, an example is set for businesses that are dragging their feet when it comes to moving initiatives into the digital mainstream.

Read the original article here.

Posted in Facts, Figures & Trends | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »