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Why Mobile SEO Best Practices and Strategies Is the Future of Internet Marketing

As mobile search traffic continues to grow at an extraordinary pace, buoyed by the roaring success of the latest tech gadgets such as Apple’s Ipad and the latest Iphone 4s, along with the slew of competitor products hot on Apple’s heals, mobile SEO best practices and strategies is increasingly essential for businesses that are looking to grab a slice of the mobile action.

Historically, the challenge for many UK based internet marketing & mobile marketing companies has been that much of the anecdotal evidence of mobile search trends and mobile user behaviour came from the US. As a result many of the important marketing messages were diluted at best and in the worse case were simply ignored by many UK businesses as being irrelevant to the UK market.

So it’s particularly important to take notice when a significant report is released by Ofcom, which looked at amongst other things, the impact of smartphones in the UK.

Adult smartphone behaviour and the importance of utilizing mobile SEO best practices and strategies

And as mobile devices become ever more popular and addictive, we are now beginning to see more UK based anecdotal evidence of the impact of mobile phones and the importance of mobile SEO best practices and strategies in all online marketing.

Below are some of the key findings of Ofcom’s 341 page report.

Ofcom Report Reveals UK Addicted To Smartphones & Why Businesses Need to Adopt Mobile SEO Best Practices and Strategies

New Ofcom research reveals the extent to which the UK has become addicted to smartphones, with people confessing to using them everywhere from the dining table to the bathroom and bedroom.

Over a quarter of adults (27 per cent) and almost half of teenagers (47 per cent) now own a smartphone, according to Ofcom’s latest Communications Market Report. Most (59 per cent) have acquired their smartphone, which includes devices such as iPhones, Blackberrys and Android phones, over the past year.

Users make significantly more calls and send more texts than regular mobile users (81 per cent of smartphone users make calls every day compared with 53 per cent of ‘regular’ users). Teenagers especially are ditching more traditional activities in favour of their smartphone, with 23 per cent claiming to watch less TV and 15 per cent admitting they read fewer books.

A Nation Addicted To Smartphones

And when asked about the use of these devices, 37 per cent of adults and 60 per cent of teens admit they are ‘highly addicted’.

The vast majority of smartphone users (81 per cent) have their mobile switched on all of the time, even when they are in bed, with four in ten adults (38 per cent) and teens (40 per cent) admitting using their smartphone after it woke them.

Over half (51 per cent) of adults and two thirds (65 per cent) of teenagers say they have used their smartphone while socialising with others, nearly a quarter (23 per cent) of adults and a third (34 per cent) of teenagers have used them during mealtimes and over a fifth (22 per cent) of adult and nearly half (47 per cent) of teenage smartphone users admitted using or answering their handset in the bathroom or toilet.

Internet and web-based content

  • Over a quarter of people use their mobile phones for internet access. In the first three months of 2011, 28 per cent of UK adults said they accessed the internet on their mobile, up from 22 per cent in 2010.
  • Nearly six in ten (57 per cent) mobile phone internet users visit social networking sites on their mobiles, making it the most popular activity ahead of sending/receiving emails (53 per cent).
  • Nearly half of UK adults (48 per cent) said they used social networking sites in the first three months of 2011, up from 40 per cent in 2010. Total time spent on social networking sites was 1.3 per cent higher in April 2011 than in April 2010.
  • On average, internet users spent around 50 hours online on PCs in April 2011 (equivalent to 1 hour 40 minutes a day).
  • Over a quarter (26 per cent) of advertising spend is on the internet, marginally ahead of television. Internet advertising spend grew by 16 per cent in 2010 to over £4 billion. Mobile advertising increased by 121 per cent in 2010 to reach £83 million.

The Ofcom report on UK smartphone user behaviour comes as no surprise to many within the internet marketing space as it iterates what is happening globally and reported in other studies.

What is particularly telling however are the findings that smartphones are actually changing social behaviour. Both adults and teenagers alike, who were asked the question what activities they do less since getting a smartphone, confirmed that they spend less time using their computer,  reading the newspaper and watching TV – as can be seen in the graphs above and below.

Teenagers surveyed said that they would spend less time on computers, reading papers and watching TV. Accordingly Mobile SEO best practices and strategies are more important than ever.

The Ofcom report also revealed some further telling facts about social trends on how consumers are increasingly accessing web content:

Nine out of ten people own a mobile phone (36 per cent in 2000, 91 per cent in 2011) – and one in seven households are now mobile-only, as the penetration of landlines dropped from 93 per cent in 2000 to 81 per cent in 2011; read the full Ofcom report here.

This is trend is consistent with what is happening in other countries. It is widely believed that internet access via desktop or laptop computers has reached a peak and it’s unlikely to significantly grow from here. On the other hand mobile access to the internet is displaying extraordinary growth and as the Ofcom report reveals, is actually replacing desktop computers.

The writing is clearly on the wall on the importance of mobile marketing today and for the future. Businesses that still rely on old school marketing will be among those that are going to be worse hit as their return on investment deteriorates.

Businesses must therefore start to think about incorporating and integrating mobile SEO best practices and strategies into their marketing to avoid being left on the sidelines wondering what just happened.

For current mobile SEO best practices and strategies call us today to speak with one of our mobile marketing strategists.

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“Local Viral Buzz are niche marketing analysts specializing in providing highly effective mobile, social and local marketing solutions for local businesses in Milton Keynes and London”

The focus of this article is on why mobile SEO best practices and strategies is important to local brick and mortar businesses.