It's remarkable that so many people are going online using their mobile phones - over 74 million in the USA as of last May, in fact . That's a big increase from last December, when it was “only” 64 million .
In other words, the number of Americans looking at websites on mobile phones went up nearly 16% in five months! Extrapolate that to 12 months, and it means the mobile web using population is growing nearly 40% per year - at least 38%, in fact .
What does this mean for businesses and organizations that operate online?
Mobile To Exceed Desktop
Mobile web use is growing faster than almost anyone realizes. At the current rate, we expect 91 million US consumers to be browsing the mobile web by December 31st, 2010 .
This is consistent with other signs of phenomenal growth in mobile web use. The consensus is that by 2015, the number of mobile internet users will exceed the number of desktop users, according to this Morgan Stanley study for example. Ultimately, the mobile web will actually exceed the traditional, desktop-and-laptop internet in day to day consumer use.
Start Thinking About Mobile
What can businesses and organizations do? Start thinking about mobile now. We sometimes hear from people who are planning to wait until, say, 25% of their website traffic is on mobile devices before taking action. That's like waiting until one quarter of your backyard is on fire before grabbing the hose!
The current rapid growth of mobile presents excellent opportunities for smart enterprises. There are many ways to capitalize on this trend:
- A mobile website
- Text message marketing and other mobile marketing tools
- Location based services like Google Local and Foursquare