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A recent study has revealed that more mobile phone users are performing more searches on their smartphones. Not only that, but the nature of the search is geared towards local content, where people are actively looking for local businesses for products and/or services.
Personally, the advent of my smartphone has helped me find many more local businesses through search and the GPS enabled tracking device. But I’m not alone, millions of people are searching more on their phones especially for nearby services, and this latest research certainly confirms it.
According to eMarketer, research into the US mobile search market from comScore and the Local Search Association have revealed a 6% rise in the number of mobile phone users who performed a search. This is from 16% in January 2010 to 22% in January 2011.
Not only that, but the frequency of searches performed by users has shot up dramatically. The number of people searching just a few times a month dropped by 10% over the last year (to January 2011). Coupled with that is the increase in people searching almost every day, which has risen by 20% over the last year.
Another great finding from the research is the increased focus on local content. A 34% increase over the last year shows that more people are searching for local terms and local businesses offering products and services.
This places further emphasis for businesses to start targeting mobile search, if not for the fact that more people are searching more frequently, but also for the fact that user’s search habits are changing. More mobile users are searching for local content and with many smartphones enabling GPS, all businesses should really take advantage of location based targeting and the new local search opportunities that are being made available.
For the UK market, recent figures have revealed that 28% of all internet browsing is carried out on a smartphone [See: Time to Take Mobile Marketing Seriously]. This means that it isn’t just the US mobile search market that’s booming, the UK is flourishing too. Therefore these figures can very easily be interpreted for UK businesses.
Not only should they take note regarding the increase in searches performed by smartphone users, but also that their website is compatible for mobile phone users. There’s nothing worse than searching for a site only to find it isn’t support for smartphones. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you won’t be able to view the page, but that you’ll no doubt experience difficulties when interacting with a specific page on your phone.
Either way, businesses of all sizes need to stand up and take notice of these recent figures, if not there’s a huge chunk of traffic and potential customers they’ll be missing out on.
Set of touchscreen smartphones via BigStock