Guest Author - Kathryn K Free
All through 2011 I have been writing about the paradigm shift taking place in the computer and communication world. Few small businesses seem to be aware of what is happening around them and that concerns me. Small businesses are the backbone of American society and they are folding at record numbers. So if you own a small business or know someone that does please read this article and then pass it along.
After reading several articles I have listed 7 of the most important trends being reported. These trends are reported on multiple websites. The trends I have written about below are from the entire article written by Bo Fishback. He is the CEO and founder of Zaarly, a real-time mobile marketplace providing tools to help small businesses. You can visit his website by going to: http://www.zaarly.com/business. These trends were from the perceptive of small businesses.
1. Explosion in the Tablet Arena ~
The acceleration of tablets significantly increases small businesses profit line. It is predicted that table ownership will double in 2012. The question becomes how a small business owner will leverage this exploding opportunity.
2. Mobile Search Explosion ~
Tablets are exploding but the Smartphone has changed the way consumers connect. They help us navigate, surf the web, handle emails and chat. 55% of consumers have reported that they are using their mobile devices to buy products and services. Small businesses need to consider their bottom line and jump into the mobile world before they give all their business too their competition!
3. Mobile Marketing ~
Most were not sure about mobile marketing being a viable option but when reality set in mobile marketing isn’t an options...it is a MUST. Brick and mortar businesses need to take that leap of faith and get on board before it is too late for them.
4. ALL Businesses Need a Mobile APP ~ A survey was conducted by Comscore.com stated: “Since conducting our first analysis in June 2011, time spent in mobile applications has grown. Smartphone and tablet users now spend over an hour and half of their day using applications. Meanwhile, average time spent on the web has shrunk, from 74 minutes to 72 minutes. Users seem to be substituting websites for applications, which may be more convenient to access throughout the day.”
Having a mobile website is good but how does one find you? How do you create loyalty if the continually have to search for your site? APPs offer superior performance. Think about this: Usability Science puts the mobile user experience on par with web usability circa 1999. No wonder they want more mobile APPs.
Having a mobile APP is what having a website meant in 1999!
5. Mobile Payments ~
In 2011 alone PayPal facilitated $4 billion (Yes, that is BILLION!) in mobile payments. 2010 only had $750 million. This only represents a very small fraction of the entire PayPal volume. What this does tell us is theat we can expect mobile payment to increase. This needs to be on your radar.
6. Video Are Being Watched More....on Mobile ~
Videos are increasingly popular. Many successful small businesses are creating business trailers specifically for their mobile APPs while posting them on Youtube. You can expect consumers to watch even more videos ‘on the go’ in 2012. So as you are working on Facebook and Twitter you would be well advised to pay equal attention to Youtube.
7. Mobile Advertising ~
Facebook has an impending IPO and this will unlock their mobile platform for advertising. They have a captive 300-million-person audience, ready to receive targeted mobile ads. Is you company ready? Do you have your mobile APP in place with the ability to accept mobile payments while your consumer watches you new video?
The mobile world needs to be taken seriously by small businesses. They need to take the leap of faith and join the paradigm shift happening all around them.