We touch on the mobile market from time to time, largely because of the overt SEO and paid search potential that exists with the mobile internet and search. Mobile computing, encompassing that which is done on both smartphones and tablets is growing at a high rate across the world. In markets from the UK and Europe to Asia and the Middle East, smartphone adoption is high. Penetration of the devices is 33% in both the Netherlands and Spain, 30% for the UK, 31% for the US and Israel, 37% in Australia, and 35% for both Hong Kong. These figures on a whole represent the positive trend in the amount of people switching to smartphones opening up their mobile internet use and search for growth, thus making SEO and paid search that much more important.
Now, with new figures put out by Cisco, we may have our first look at the future landscape of mobile around the world. Cisco predicts 10 billion smartphones and tablets to be in use globally by 2016, which is 2.7 billion more than the earth's United Nations projected population of 7.3 billion for that year - which equates to 1.4 mobile devices per person. This is a staggering thought and a real eye-opener about where how people will be using the internet and search in a few short years.
Thus, it is expected that the percentage of overall searches and hours spent on the mobile internet will increase, significantly changing the way companies are going to have to deliver SEO and pay per click management to target audiences and drive traffic. That is to say they will have to gear much of their SEO and paid search practices to the growing segment of mobile web-users. An additional element here is that the experience of mobile search is inherently different as many of the searches have a local focus, thus geo-targeting will be a large part of the optimization that companies will look for. Further, many companies do not fully take advantage of optimizing for local as I discuss in this IB Times article, and thus it would need to become a priority.
This impacts markets around the world and thus an SEO company that offers international SEO services will need to adapt and evolve their practices to allow for more optimization geared towards mobile. In the end, businesses and the SEO company they partner with may not have a choice, optimizing for mobile will be a necessity.