FridayFive: What Happened To The Internet?
“In three years time, desktops [PCs] will be irrelevant” – Google, 2010
10 years ago, the Internet was already well established, and it’s format was clear. Email was fast becoming the norm for quick communication, and many website were well designed and great to use. Fast forward to 2011, and the Internet you now see is very different.
The shift in how we now use the Internet has a crucial impact on business, yet the majority of businesses are still in the ‘old school’ Web. Many know that Social Media exists, and may have tried services like Twitter and LinkedIn. Trying these services is a step in the right direction. But the shift in how we use the Internet is more fundamental than that. It’s a true change in technology and interaction. It’s time to shed the old Internet and think differently…
Here are 5 fundamental shifts that cannot be ignored:
- Facebook has 630 Million active users, and 50% log-in every day (38% from their mobile phones) – That is over 10 times the total population of the UK! More relevant to UK businesses, 46% of the UK population are active Facebook users. With Facebook business pages and their advertising service it is possible to reach 46% of the UK population, that’s quite something.
- 2 Billion Videos are watched on Youtube Daily – That fact alone is staggering. But there are also over 100 other popular video publishing websites. And this is not a teen thing, 72% of the people viewing videos online are between the ages of 25 and 64, with the vast majority on above average incomes. And don’t forget, our TV will soon be a portal for online video, as services such as Apple TV, Google TV, Sky Player and BBC iPlayer converge our TV and Internet use.
- Mobile Internet use is set to over-take normal PC use within 3 years – There are already 4 times more mobile phones than PCs in the UK, and it is predicted that the Mobile Internet will create a marketing channel 10 times larger than the Internet as we see it today. It’s difficult to comprehend just how much of an impact this will have. But we do know that businesses must be prepared. And given that 81% of websites display poorly on mobiles, that’s a critical place to start.
- 11 Billion Mobile ‘Apps’ were downloaded in 2010 – This will rise to 76 Billion a year by 2014. We are already seeing thousands of big brands creating Mobile Apps. With the use of them set to grow 7 fold in 3 years, it’s time for every business to assess how they can serve customers through this format.
- 26 million use Twitter regularly, and it’s use is predicted to double year on year – Ending on a low note, Twitter is currently less dominant than the 4 big trends above, but it’s popularity is curious. The media, particularly in the UK, have embraced it rapidly, and it has become a place where reputations are quickly built or destroyed. Many businesses are recognising that it is fast becoming an engine for customer service to be publicly conveyed – 1 unhappy customer can reach thousands of journalists and consumers within seconds.
Your business probably has a website, and you may have spent thousands on Search Engine Optimisation. You may even have links to all your ‘trendy’ social media accounts. But what we really need to be prepared for, is that our business website will become less and less relevant.
- Our customers will find us primarily through requests and recommendations on Facebook and LinkedIn.
- Our reputation will be boosted or destroyed through Twitter in an instant.
- Video will be the dominant content format, and consumers will expect a rich personal experience.
- Customers will re-order through mobile ‘apps’, and expect a value added service through mobile phones.
- And many sales will be gained, or lost, through the quality and usability of websites on our mobiles phones.
Most importantly, the over-riding trend here is that people want ‘engaging’. All 5 of these fundamental shifts, are a desire for more convenient, sociable and immersive experiences.
In light of such substantial evidence, and our own tests, Blymi Media have a strong focus on these ‘new media’ channels. We firmly believe that SMEs who adopt these areas of marketing, will take the business. While others will wonder what just happened.