«The next phase in this evolution is how brands become more strategic with mobile and “chase the rabbit”, aligning advertising and messaging when users “hop” from device to device.» – Millenial Media, Cross-Screen Consumer Behavior Decoded
If you want to get found online tomorrow you must re-think your Mobile SEO today.
Your customers will look for you through a number of devices, and you must ensure your website is optimized for each of them.
Welcome to the first post of a series of 4 that will guide you through Mobile SEO:
- Why is Mobile SEO becoming crucial? Today we’ll discover the technology shift beneath mobile fast becoming a necessity for most people.
- Top 7 Advantages of a Mobile-Optimized Website. We’ll find out how your online business can take advantage from the mobile revolution.
- Why Mobile SEO affects your Google ranking? We’ll see how Google is pushing Mobile-friendly websites.
- What can you do right now? Eventually we’ll see which tool are already available to maximize your website Mobile SEO today.
First thing first: let’s start with numbers.
Millennial Media recorded this US trends from April 2013 to April 2014:
- PC-only users: -45% (40 millions).
- Mobile-only users: + 36% (19 millions).
- Mobile&PC-users: +16% (141 millions).
Also, time spent online through smartphones surpassed PCs in US in 2014 (tablets are well behind).
Six content categories already see 50% or more of their time from mobile devices: Games (85%), Streaming Radio (85%), Social Media (72%), Health (50%), and Retail (50%).
Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update, 2014–2019, a Cisco white paper, tells us why all this is happening, projecting 10 technology trends from 2014 to 2019.
More devices than people
By 2019 there will be 1.5 mobile device every 1 person on Earth.
Smartphones will go from 29% (in 2014) to 40% (in 2019) of the total, Tablets will raise from 1% to 3%, and M2M will go from 7% to 28%.
Tablets’ growth is restricted by the strong competition of smartphones with comparable screen size and power.
M2M (machine-to-machine) includes the Internet of Everything: GPS systems in cars, asset tracking systems, medical applications, utility meters, gas or water meters, street lights, pet or personal asset trackers, etc. M2M is the forefront of mobile devices.
Evolution of Mobile Networks
Mobile networks are evolving towards faster, higher bandwidth and more intelligent networks (2G to 3G to 4G).
4G is only 6% of mobile connections worldwide today but will grow up to 29% by 2019. Mobile networks providers are rolling out 4G to meet the growing demand for more bandwidth, higher security, and faster connectivity.
On average, 4G generates 10 times more traffic than a non-4G connection.
Wearable devices are the second fold of Internet of Everything along with M2M.
They can be worn on a person and can connect and communicate either directly or through another device. Examples are smart watches, smart glasses, heads-up displays, health and fitness trackers, health monitors, wearable scanners and navigation devices, smart clothing.
Despite technology limitations, regulatory constraint, health concerns and fashion waves, Cisco estimates a growth of wearable devices from 109 million in 2014 to 578 in 2019.
Wearable devices (especially those with their own connectivity) will boost mobile traffic making access to any content on any device from anywhere.
Video content has a much higher bit rates than other content types and therefore will use the vast majority of data consumption.
Out of 24.3 monthly exabytes (1 followed by 18 zeros) crossing the mobile network by 2019, 17.4 will be video.
Mobile capacity and power limits have been solved through video cloud applications (such as Netflix, YouTube, Pandora, and Spotify) granting users the availability of high-quality videos on the go.
A smartphone today generates the same traffic of 37 basic-feature phones, and a tablet as much as 94 basic-featured phones.
Average traffic per smartphone is expected to increase from 819 MB/Month (2014) to 3,981 MB/Month (2019). 4G-connected Smartphones will increase from 2,000 MB/Month to 5,458 MB/Month. Tablet from 2,076 MB/Month to 10,767 MB/Month. 4G Tablet from 2,913 MB/Month to 12,314 MB/Month.
The growth in usage per device outpaces the growth in the number of devices.
We are connected 24/7 through Mobile devices, which is likely to increase the overall minutes of use per user. Also, apart from the switch from fixed to mobile, new uniquely mobile applications continue to emerge, such as location-based services, mobile-only games, and m-commerce.
Impact of 4G
We’ve seen that a 4G connection generates nearly 10 times more traffic than a non-4G connection. Why?
2 reasons here.
On one side, many 4G connections today are for high-end devices, which have a higher average usage.
On the other side, higher speeds encourage the adoption and usage of high-bandwidth applications. So a 4G smartphone is likely to generate significantly more traffic than the same model on a slower connection as people “discover” applications that they couldn’t use.
As a side comment, can note that much mobile data activity takes place within users’ homes, which means a good size of mobile data traffic is actually routed through Wi-Fi.
VoWi-Fi is the wireless version of VoIP, designed to work on wireless devices. It is not a new technology, but the earlier solutions had several limitations that affected the user experience.
Since several enhancements have been made, the service can now be offered independent of the hardware capabilities of the device (i.e., even non-SIM tablets can have VoWi-Fi turned on).
Therefore a VoWi-Fi service has been just launched or announced by a number of mobile carriers, as a cost-effective alternative to traditional mobile communication.
Mobile Network Speed
The average mobile network connection speed in 2014 was 1,683 kbps, growing to about 4.0 Mbps by 2019. And experience suggests that usage increases when speed increases.
This tendency will touch all regions, with Middle East & Africa over performing most mature regions with a +29% year-over-year.
New (Old) Billing Solutions: Unlimited Data
Majority of current mobile data plans are tiered packages (i.e., your flat tariff include a pre-defined amount of MB/month; behind that you pay as you go). Tiered packages were introduced to constraint the heaviest mobile users few years ago.
Nevertheless, Cisco find out that unlimited data plans started coming back in 2014, and made an empirical study to explain this. Analyzing over 51,533 devices and 12 months, Cisco discovered 2 findings.
First, top users actually change every month on a rotation basis. Out of 1,000 users, 30 (3%) have the potential of being in the top 10 (1%) in any given month, and they substitute for each other in subsequent months. The trend is due to the nature of consumption of mobile data applications and implies that a single user won’t constantly overuse their monthly data cap.
Second finding, due to smartphone large screens and increasing power, the consumption of the average user is steadily increasing, but well below the cap of tiered packages.
In summary, there is no evidence of significant difference on usage from tiered or all-data plans, so mobile service carriers will come back to unlimited packages to exploit the commercial messaging of “unlimited plan” to the public.
IPv6 is the latest version of Internet Protocol (IP), that provides identification and location systems for devices and routes traffic across the internet. IPv6 allows 2128 addresses using 8 groups of 4 hexadecimal digits.
Newer smartphones and tablets are IPv6-ready, and according to Cisco 87% of these devices will be IPv6-ready by 2019 against 61% in 2014.
M2M devices will also be IPv6-ready, making the Internet of Everything happen.
That’s why your rabbit will hop from one device to another.
Follow us and you’ll be ready to chase him.