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Arrival of the Google Phone: $180 on Contract, $530 Unlocked

5 Jan

My brief assessment: Google’s not changing the game today. The Nexus One carried the same price like all the other smartphones: $180 with a T-Mobile contract, or $530 unlocked, both available through Google’s online store.  All in all the major blog have already reviewed and played extensively with the Nexus One, so the only mystery was the price unveiled today.  It’s not “free” as lots of people had hoped for given Google’s track record, but it’s still a great smartphone at a competitive price that will undoubtedly increase the unstoppable trend of more and more mobile web users in the future. According to one statistic, mobile web users will outnumber regular web users by 2015! We’ll talk again in 2015…

Posted via email from Connected Marketing

Shoppers use Smartphones to Study, Find, and Buy

1 Dec


By Colby E. Ware for USA TODAY

Mobile phones are now commonplace anywhere: the office, the home, in the car, and of course while shopping. With the increased capabilities that Smartphones offer it’s only natural that they are now doing the heavy-lifting for shoppers when it comes to doing their homework. Phones help shoppers find coupons, store locations and even discover nearby restaurants.

2009 will go down as the first holiday season that retailers are (finally) trying to capitalize on the still niche, but quickly expanding, market of mobile shoppers.

According to a Deloitte survey, about 20% of Americans will use their mobile devices for shopping during the 2009 holiday season. As is to be expected, the percentage is twice as high for young consumers (18-29). Young Shoppers say they’ll use their phones to find store locations, receive coupons and information for sales and to research products and prices.

Now for the most exciting statistic: One-quarter of all who plan to use their phones to shop say they will make purchases on the devices.

Given, the mobile shopping market is still relatively small, even if the sales numbers look impressive at $750 million. But looking at the bigger picture this represents about half of 1% of all online sales.

The trade publication Internet Retailer reported month that 112 retailers have “m-commerce” sites or apps.

Here are a few big boys joining the fun: Toys R Us, Walgreens, American Eagle, Best Buy and  Victoria’s Secret recently added mobile sites. Sears and Kmart were one of the first major U.S. retailers to offer a mobile site, last year.

THE ANTI-BLACK FRIDAY


Given the crazies out on Black Friday, the ability to use a mobile device from your couch, bed or kitchen to do price comparisons, check product availability and simply look for other bargains can be invaluable.

How Black Friday Works: Stores offer “door-buster” deals to entice people to come in, knowing they’ll buy more once inside the store. Many such discounts are advertised in advance, letting shoppers do price comparisons from home. But many deals aren’t promoted ahead of time, and other products that aren’t deals are strategically placed around stores.

Here’s where the Smartphone comes in: Consumers now browse the Web from the sales floor for product and price comparisons can save time and money. According to Nita Rollins, a futurist with the digital marketing agency Resource Interactive, “the majority of American consumers will be mobile device-centric in a few years. Now that it’s technologically feasible, possessing such power literally in the palm of our hands is quite irresistible.”

M-COMMERCE EXAMPLES


  • Best Buy has had a mobile site since June 2009, however it did not became fully functioning for purchases until the end of September. Michele Azar, Best Buy’s vice president of emerging channels, says even though the retailer thought it important for customers to be able to buy easily on their devices, she says that wasn’t the driving force behind the move to mobile.
  • Toys R Us added a mobile site right before the Black Friday craziness. Greg Ahearn, senior vice president of marketing and e-commerce, says it’s designed so consumers can quickly find stores, get “mom ratings” and product descriptions, and make purchases.

“Mobile technology use is growing among all age ranges,” says Ahearn. ” Some youngsters have their own phones and are looking things up, showing them to Mom and Dad and putting the items on their holiday wish lists.”

  • EBay’s mobile website attracts 1 million visitors a day. They  expects its mobile commerce – which includes a new iPhone deals app – to quadruple in 2010, and says it will have $500 million in revenue in 2009.

“It’s quite possible more people this year will use mobile commerce through eBay and avoid the stores altogether,” says Steve Yankovich, eBay’s vice president of business solutions and mobile.

USING MOBILE TO HELP TEENS AND MOMS SHOP

According to a Resource Interactive study mothers remain the “chief purchasing officers,” and children are the “chief influencing officers.” Teens are using the Internet and their mobile devices influence the brands and products their families bought.

A Mom’s perspective after conducting a purchase via a Smartphone: “I still have much greater comfort level with my PC, but if I came to find (buying) was quick and efficient on my phone, I most definitely would do that – I’m on the road a lot.”

To facilitate the way young shoppers use their phones as tools of influence, Resource Interactive developed a prototype app that would allow teens to e-mail their parents photos from retail websites and get theirs and others’ opinions. If the parents approved, at the click of a button they could authorize the teens to buy the product using an alternative payment site such as BillMyParents.com.

THE FUTURE OF MOBILE COMMERCE?


Is Mobile the future of eCommerce? No not yet but we should definitely start talking about mCommerce, as people never have their cell phone more than 1 foot away from them, so it’s only logical that the combination of more power, faster internet, and more tech-savyness are leading to the rise of “mCommerce.”

Posted via web from Eric’s online marketing blog

iPhone and Android now total 75% of U.S. smartphone web traffic

23 Nov

Filed under: Odds and ends, Surveys and Polls, iPhone

iPhone and Android now total 75% of U.S. smartphone web traffic

by Mel Martin (RSS feed) on Nov 23rd 2009 at 2:30PM

It’s a rather stunning number from AdMob in an October report. The firm reports on web requests from thousands of sites world wide. In the latest report, Apple has 55% of the domestic Smartphone traffic share, and Android has 20%. Interestingly, the Blackberry share dropped 2% to a 12 percent share, and Palm’s webOS dropped from a 10% share to 5%.Windows Mobile OS has 4% of the U.S. Smartphone web traffic.

The AdMob statistics do not show handset sales, but rather are calculated by measuring traffic on more than 15,000 web sites and applications.

The Motorola Droid, running only on Verizon, has captured 24% of all Android traffic, even thought it has been out only a few weeks.

The iPhone has been on the market for 28 months. That 55% share of traffic is a pretty robust number for such a relatively new product. The Android numbers, especially those of the Droid are also good news for Google, Motorola and Verizon.

The balance of Smartphone data may change dramatically as the holiday season unwinds, and it will be interesting to watch the ebb and flow of the competing brands.

AdMob was recently purchased by Google. Apple also had reportedly had some interest in the company.

Incredible statistics for both the iPhone and the Android (the Verizon Droid in particular).

Posted via web from Eric’s online marketing blog

Newest data breaks down US Mobile Internet Usage by Age

5 Oct

Mobile Internet users grew 34% to 57 million from 2008 to 2009, according to The Nielsen Company.

As is to be expected from previous research findings, Men browse for tech, sports and news. Women, on the other hand use the mobile web for celebrity news, shopping sites and social networks.

Most surprisingly to me, only12% of mobile web users are under age 18.

“Ballmer says they screwed up with Windows Mobile. Wishes they had already launched WM7.” – windows mobile 7

25 Sep

The interesting thing will be to see what Microsoft does moving forward: Windows Mobile has been a real FAIL for years and Microsoft better bring their A Game to get it right with WinMo 7. Especially with the pressure and lead growing from Apple and the iPhone Microsoft will need to throw more than money for marketing at this venure and we all know how Ballmer feels about Apple…

Everything’s Local in Mobile Search

18 Sep

Looking for local online advertising? Consider mobile advertising. In a short period of time mobile advertising has gone from an experimental media to a proven one. According to comScore, Inc. the number of local searches on a mobile device grew 51% from March 2008 to March 2009, and the preferred method of search is by using a mobile browser.

Due to the increase in browsing patterns, more and more online advertising is moving to wireless devices such as the Blackberry, the iPhone, or the Palm Pre. In 2006, U.S. advertisers spent $4.8 billion, or about 3 percent of total ad spending, on mobile ads. That’s expected to increase to 12 percent by 2011, according to eMarketer.

 Mobile local search is still in the development stages, but it is catching up quickly in many business categories and it will very soon be an essential channel for companies looking to get business from local searches.

According to CTIA, over 70 percent of the US population has a mobile phone. In general, there are two choices for local searches using a mobile device: SMS or browser based searches. Each is great at serving a different kind of search need.

SMS & Mobile Browsers: Tools Tailored to Search Requirements

SMS ads have hit the mainstream, with about 15 percent of mobile phones receiving at least one SMS ad according to M-Metrics.  SMS are great at fulfilling a quick information need, such as a sports scores, weather, or stock quotes.

On the other hand, consumers typically perform mobile browser searches when they want more subjective information. For example, a mobile browser based search can help find a restaurant with reviews at Yahoo or Google.

Local Marketing Choices

Where should you look to make take advantage of this rapidly growing trend of mobile local search? On the one hand, SMS has some advantages over Web-based browser searches.  But, users have to opt in to receive sponsored SMS messages. Mobile Search Browsing on the other hand is as simple as putting a PPC ad on a search engine.  However, instead of seeing them on a monitor, customers are seeing them on the screen of their mobile device.  This has many advantages including the possibility of prompting consumers to call a certain number or map a route to your location.

Pizza is already onboard – Others are catching on (quickly)

A large percentage of mobile searches are for local businesses. A majority of those are for restaurants and pizza places in particular. Next in popularity is a group that includes taxis, banks, and searches for specific brands, such as Starbucks, Wal-Mart, Target, Blockbuster, Costco, etc.

Online directories, with an increase of 73%, have seen the largest increase during the past year among the various local content categories, followed by restaurants (70%), maps (63%), and movies (60%).

Other categories are quickly becoming more widespread as two things start to occur: consumers become more aware of the capability and the companies that compile listings for local merchants expand their databases of dentists, doctors, florists, and other businesses.

Some businesses can generate a return more quickly from mobile local search. If your business is in a category that benefits heavily from impulse buying, you are trying to expand your company’s footprint, or you want to take your brand to where consumers are going, mobile is a great fit.

From a branding perspective mobile advertising can be invaluable. But it’s important to remember that people won’t make large purchases based on mobile searches, but it will help with your company’s branding and can help develop a sale down the road. Keep in mind that the majority uses their mobile devices to find the nearest oil-change center, gas station, florist, ATM, or particular restaurant.

What’s Next?

Before you can participate in this brave new world it’s important to ask yourself a few questions: Do you have a website that shows up correctly on mobile browsers? Are you tapping into the local searches coming from mobile devices? Is your Google Map Listing Correct? Let Bayshore help you assess our mobile strategy and develop mobile tactics with you.

 

What is up with Mobile Advertising?

16 Sep

I’ve been intrigued by the potential of Mobile Advertising since 1999. Back then grand articles were written on websites, in books, and magazines of how a grand revolution in advertising is upon us and that it will shake the very foundation that makes up marketing. Well, here we are 10 years later and not too much has changed. Do we receive coupons from Dunkin’ donuts as we walk by them on our phones? No. Do we get special offers from Target when we enter the store on our cell phones? No.

Then, where are we?

A story that I read today got me thinking. According to this story on AdvertisingAge.com from September 15th, the mobile apps which constitute the majority of the mobile marketing channel are “just an appetizer.” As the author puts is: “In grand historical terms, this whole mobile app thing is only now climbing out of the primordial ooze.” Well, Mr. Kevin Maney I hate to tell you but we’ve been in this state of climbing out of the ooze for at least a decade now. When will we finally move on to the next step?

I know some people will say that text message advertising is doing well, but I must point out that it is nowhere near its potential and I’m sure that it never will reach it as far as advertising goes.

While the iPhone, and in particular the app store, have moved us ahead by leaps and bounds in terms of branded communications and marketing on mobile devices, everything is still all over the place. Where would Video tapes be if both VHS and BETA survived until now? Or for that matter next gen DVD if the battle between BluRay and HD-DVD was still going on?

While competition does drive innovation, standardization can create a more focused effort with ultimately greater results. As much as people here in America lament the “big brother” approach of European or Asian economies, being light-years ahead in terms of cell phones, cell phone service, and technology in general does paint a picture.

Now back to the point by the AdAge article that we are clawing our way out of the “primordial ooze” in terms of mobile apps. Are these mobile apps he future of marketing communications to consumers on cell phones?  Apple showed a picture at its most recent iPod event that showed the superiority of its iPod touch – essentially a mobile phone without cell service – over current tablets or net books on the market.

So, does the future of mobile, mobile apps, and ergo mobile advertising in essence lie with smaller computer that happen to be phones as well (e.g. the iPhone)? That is something that only time will tell, because as Master Yoda says “The future, always in motion it is.” But, if I had to put my money on it right now, I’d say that smart phones will become more and more like small computers. And the billion dollar question will be to find out how to spam people with ads on there, just like advertisers have on any other channel known to man, is the future.

One final thought: Is the reason that mobile advertising is not catching on that a moblie phone is seen as the last “sacred” advertising-free sanctity by people?

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