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The Rise of Smartphone Use in NZ - Is Your Business Ready?

29 May 2012
2 Comments

When the first commercially available mobile phone hit the markets in 1983 who would have imagined the technology they would be capable of less than three decades later. Many of us consider our mobile phone not only a handy gadget but also an extension of ourselves. Now with the advent of smartphones that turn our practical cellular phones into highly functional mini computers, we are able to spend more and more time accessing information online, whether it’s reading the news on the way to work, connecting with our social networks, looking up information on a website or using applications.

Latest statistics from Google‘s ‘Mobile Planet Report’ show that 44% of the New Zealand population have a smartphone, with 46% of them using it to access the Internet every day*. The rapid uptake of these devices clearly shows how important it is that your online marketing strategy and your website cater to smartphone users. For example, many smartphone users access the Internet to find information about local businesses, including their telephone numbers, opening hours, address, and other information - therefore it’s vital that your website presents this information in a user friendly manner for users accessing your site via a smartphone or other handheld mobile device. Failure to do so can result in frustration from the user’s point of view and potential loss of business for you.

There are a large number of options when it comes to delivering a mobile-friendly website experience, from mobile dedicated websites hosted on separate sub-domains to using 'responsive design techniques' to deliver content that's optimised for viewing on a range of smaller (or larger) screen sizes. The route you take will largely be determined by your end goal and what it is you want to achieve/offer mobile users, but the first step is to get an understanding of how smartphone users are using your existing website (Google Analytics works wonders here) and use that as a platform from which you can start to develop your mobile strategy.

As with many online marketing initiatives (e.g. promoting your business using social media) it’s the early adopters who often benefit most in the long-term and find it easier to adapt as the online world become ingrained in our daily lives.

If you would like to know more about having a mobile friendly website and how you can capitalise on this increasingly important source of visitors and customers, contact us today to discuss how we can help.

 

*Source: http://www.iab.org.nz/resources/item/report-our-mobile-planet-new-zealand

Written by
Mark is our Digital Marketing Manager and has worked in the online marketing space since 2005. Before joining us he plied his trade in various traditional marketing roles abroad and in New Zealand, yet nowadays much prefers the highly measurable and transparent nature of online marketing.

Add a comment2 Comments

Reply kate | July 25th, 2012 at 9:12am
Google commissioned IPSOS to do a study of smartphone use. The survey was conducted ONLINE and had 1000 participants so it wasn't a representative group of people. So let's rephrase it as "44% of Internet users who were motivated to answer a survey (probably because they were bored on the bus and had a smartphone on them) use smartphones."
Statistics 101.
Reply Mark Vassiliou (Author) | July 25th, 2012 at 12:17pm
Thanks for the comment. Agree that smartphone penetration statistics (and their accuracy) will vary depending on survey sample size, methodology etc, however the general premise remains that smartphone use in NZ is on the rise and NZ businesses / website owners need to consider the implications of that. Aside of Google's recent survey here are a few other links containing info that supports the growth trend.

http://www.aut.ac.nz/research/research-institutes/icdc/projects/world-internet-project#int
http://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=prNZ23481312
http://www.nbr.co.nz/opinion/telecom-exec-talks-4g

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