Friday, 6 June 2008

Developments in the mobile web

A recent report by Business Week illustrates ways that the mobile web - Internet access through mobile phones - is starting the change the way that people go online and use websites.

Dubbed 'the weekend web', there is now a distinct trend (at least in the US) where people are spending more time online via wireless devices, as well as tending to use a different set of sites than during the week. Google reports that most mobile traffic to their search site comes at the weekend with mobile browsing increasing by 89% in the past year and mobile page views reported to have increased by 127%. The increase is attributed to a wider availability of one price-full access data plans plus the increasing sophistication of handheld devices such as the new Apple iPhone.

The article includes research from M:Metrics, who are tracking the use of mobile web access and the popularity of different types of website. The weekends see a lot of mobile web activity around classified advertising sites, like Craigslist and eBay, as well as travel/mapping sites, sport and weather sites.

As the use of mobiles to access the web increases, market research company Nielsen have launched a new online audience-profiling tool for this sector, called Mobile @Plan. A report by Multichannel News describes how this new service will provide marketers and publishers with lifestyle and demographic information on the leading mobile web sites, enabling advertisiers to efficiently target their intended audience through mobile phones.

The service gives marketers valuable audience data for more than 200 mobile websites by profiling their users according to more than a thousand points of lifestyle information, including demographics, leisure activities, life events, electronics ownership, media use and brand-level purchase activity on travel, auto, finance, food and beverage, real estate, pets and more.

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