03 Mar, 2015

Google Algorithm Update

Mobile-Friendly Factors & App Indexing to Influence Search Results

A few days ago Google announced that mobile-friendliness will be used as a ranking signal in their mobile search results, starting April 21, 2015.

This algorithm update will “have a significant impact” on Google’s search results. And it “will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide.”

Google on mobile phone

In November of 2014, Google officially introduced the addition of a mobile-friendly label to their mobile search results. At the time, Google confirmed they were “also experimenting with using the mobile-friendly criteria as a ranking signal.”

Their decision to expand their use of mobile-friendliness as an actual ranking signal is therefore not a huge surprise. But it is a clear signal of their commitment to help users discover the most relevant, timely and mobile-friendly content.

In their own words, “As more people use mobile devices to access the internet, our algorithms have to adapt to these usage patterns.”

Given the mobile milestones of 2014 and 2015 predictions, this was a wise move by Google. 2015 is expected to mark the tipping point in which mobile search traffic will surpass desktop. And mobile now accounts for 25% of global web usage.

But what does this update mean for company and how can you ensure the Googlebot views your site’s pages as mobile-friendly?

24 Feb, 2015

Lessons from the Field

A Sports Metaphor for Mobile

Sports metaphors are highly relevant to mobile. In fact we’ve been known to describe the progression of enterprises along the mobile maturity curve as getting in the game, getting good at the game and dominating the game.

Therefore when our very own VP of Engineering Vishy Karra was inspired by watching a football game, we wanted to share his insights and the lessons for mobile strategies.

Here are the “Lessons from the Field” by Vishy Karra:

Like millions of Packer fans throughout the US, I was thoroughly disappointed with the epic choke the Green Bay Packers pulled on January 18th at Seattle.

The scary part about it was that it happened in slow motion, not in one play.

There are a few lessons here that apply not just to football but to business in general and to mobile strategies in particular. Let’s look at the three lessons we can learn from this loss.

1) When you play to not lose, you will always lose

This snapshot was taken with 5:04 minutes left in the game. The Packers were leading 19-7 and Russell Wilson had just thrown his 4th interception of the game.

Packers leading

Burnett, the safety, had a ton of space to return the ball and may well have scored on the return if he had made a bold move for it. Instead, we saw a defensive leader (Peppers, #56) motioning to Burnett to slide.

At that moment, I knew that the Packers were no longer playing hard but just looking to somehow run the clock out.

The same philosophy applies to the mobile game. If you don’t play to win in mobile, you will lose.

The mobile world is moving fast and consumers are becoming increasingly sophisticated and demanding more of their mobile experiences. Companies that fail to continuously improve their mobile experiences today, to really commit to mobile and play to win, will find themselves left behind.

17 Feb, 2015

No API, No Problem

Delivering Data to Native Apps Without an API

Apps are an indispensable part of just about every market leader’s mobile strategy.

But it’s not enough to just have an app. Enterprises need to build their apps in such a way that their customers move through the customer journey seamlessly across both their app and mobile experiences.

The challenge is, architecturally the web and apps are fundamentally very different.

Delivering Data to Native Apps Without an API

Web architecture is very server-centric. The business logic and data layer reside on the server. On the client side, that is on the device, all you have is the browser reflecting the interface.

App architecture, by contrast, involves a very thick client. Similar to web architecture, on the server side, apps also have a data layer, and they have API logic.

But the client, in addition to the interface, also has its own business logic and even its own data. And it’s connected to the backend not through HTML but through a more complex and well-defined API.

This means developing native apps for multiple operating systems puts a strain on an enterprise’s existing backend infrastructure.

In fact, coding the app is not the hardest or most expensive aspect of building an app. It’s integrating that app into the existing backend infrastructure.

This is a dirty little secret of app development in that it’s not spoken of often enough. But the numbers speak for themselves.

11 Feb, 2015

Mobile Stats 2014

Milestones, Study Findings and 2015 Predictions

mobile stats 2014

2014 was an exciting year for mobile, with a number of fascinating stats published over the course of the year.

Let’s take a look at the mobile stats shared in 2014 that stood out most – a combination of mobile milestones reached, interesting study findings and even some predictions for 2015.

Mobile/Device Usage

Mobile now accounts for 25% of global web usage. (KPCB Internet Trends 2014)    [Tweet This]

In 2014, it was estimated the number of global mobile subscriptions was equivalent to about 95% of the world’s population. (ITU1)

In 2015, for the first time, more than ¼ of the global population will use smartphones. And over ⅓ of consumers worldwide will do so by 2018. (emarketer)    [Tweet This]

30% of all mobile phone users are smartphone users. (KPCB Internet Trends 2014)

58% of American adults have a smartphone and 42% of American adults own a tablet. (PewResearchCenter)   [Tweet This]

Mobile Traffic

For the first time, on Thanksgiving Day, traffic from mobile devices outpaced desktop traffic, with 52.1% of all online traffic coming from smartphones and tablets. (IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark)

03 Feb, 2015

What’s Next for Mobile?

Mobile Trends to Watch in 2015

mobile-trends-2015

2014 was a significant year for mobile, with mobile sessions surpassing desktop for the first time over the holiday season. And 2015 will no doubt be filled with even more mobile milestones.

In our recent Mobile Trends for 2015 webinar, Moovweb and 64labs outlined some of the key trends we will be seeing in mobile over the coming year.

Let’s look at a few of the top trends:

Deep Linking

Deep linking allows developers to link to specific pages or views within apps. These links can come from either the mobile web or from other apps.

This has a number of implications, one of the key ones being for mobile search. Since the mid-2014 launch of Google’s App Indexing feature, which allows for deep linking of content from search results, deep linking has allowed apps to play a greater role in search.

Previously, when one used Google’s mobile search, for say a home in San Francisco, an app like Trulia might appear in search results. But one would then have to search within the app for the San Francisco listings.

Now with App Indexing, the Google mobile search results lead directly to the San Francisco listings within the Trulia app.

This development alone makes deep linking a valuable tool for developers and has led to its increased popularity. But Google was not alone in its launch of a deep linking product in 2014.

In fact, the 2014 launch of deep linking products by Google, Twitter and Facebook (via their App Links platform – an open, cross-platform solution enabling deep linking), has put deep linking in the spotlight. And it will no doubt be a trend to follow in 2015.

Apple Watch, Wearables, and the IoT

Wearables and the Internet of Things made Moovweb’s mobile trends list in 2014 and are predicted to be a trend to watch in 2015. This year the big change is that Apple is finally entering the game in earnest with its own wearable, Apple Watch.

Whether or not it will suffer the fate of Google Glass remains to be seen. But what is particularly interesting about the Apple Watch is its integration with Apple Pay.

Recent Tweets

RT @JulieAsk: #mwc15 A lot of talk here about technology and what is possible. Less on what is useful. Quote shared by McCann. http://t.co/

RT @Thomas_Husson: Android Pay Is Real, And Will Give Developers The Reins As An API http://t.co/YxRnq1qhn4 via @techcrunch

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