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Understanding Mobile Behavior to Win Local

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By Seth Kaplan

mobile_behaviorBy now, I think we all can agree on the following: The sheer size of the mobile demographic makes it one that requires our attention as businesses; the mobile consumer is substantially different from the desktop consumer; and the better we understand the mobile consumer, the better we can convert them to sales. Here, we’ll take a look at both the size and behavior of mobile users to better understand who they are and what they’re doing.

The argument can be made that no technology since the advent of the automobile has had a larger impact on our society than the modern day mobile device. It is by far the most popular consumer product in our lifetime. Currently, there are more than 321 million mobile subscribers in the U.S. alone, which equates to a penetration rate of more than 101 percent (yes, there are more mobile subscribers than Americans). Those subscribers account for more than 2.27 trillion text messages per year as of 2012. The current-day mobile device, which is more like a computer than a phone, has had an impact on all of our daily lives to some degree.

So what does that impact look like? It looks like mobile users are actively looking for information at higher rates than desktop users. Browsing is now the number one smartphone activity. Smartphone users are searching on their mobile browsers 47.7 percent of the time they are using their device. In addition, mobile users—who currently only account for 10 percent of global Internet use—account for 25 percent of global searching. This means they are searching exponentially more from their mobile devices than they are from their desktops.

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