Will 2014 be the Mobile Only Year?

Well as 2014 edges it’s way closer I thought it would be interesting to throw this question out and see what everyone thinks. I believe there will be a new wave of businesses that won’t bother with a desktop focused website but start from scratch thinking mobile only.

Are we going to see a new tidal wave of touch, shake, app, responsive and HTML5 enabled online presences?

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Catching waves in Long Bay

A post shared by Nick Allen (@nickwallen) on

Instagram have paved the path for mobile first products, with their stellar figures and acquisition price. In part for doing one thing exceptionally well: making the most of phone cameras and SHARING instant moments.

But when I say mobile only I wonder, how many businesses can put their desktop user experience to the wayside and focus on making the most of the new mobile world. Really using the impressive data connections we are getting.

Already on my blog and other New Zealand websites (if we place tablets and the iPad in the mobile bucket) there’s over 60% accessing posts via a mobile device.
Facebook and Twitter tout similar or even more progressive numbers for users who access over a phone or tablet primarily.

Going totally mobile for me means not only having all the functionality we have come to expect on our desktops but also taking advantage of the mobile device. Not only on your website but your entire online presence.

So let’s see about the off site presence

  1. Geotargeting of advertising is the first measure. Google can now let you run campaigns down to neighbourhood level in many large cities (even in little old New Zealand). This means targeted campaigns focused on activities and people in that area. Like burger discounts to people leaving stadiums, hotels nearby or pushing people to physical stores.
  2. Making mobile friendly Facebook apps, that load ultra fast and ask little that your phone already knows
  3. Using smart urls in your advertising that serve up the right experience for device location and even operating system.

And what about your website?

Once you have made the decision to go responsive or have a mobile version of your site ensuring the basics are there like a functioning enquiry form or even better a functional shop should come next.

What I’m hoping to see are greater use of sensors and the abilities of our phones. Things like:

  • Heightened contrast in your style sheet when the device points away from the sun on sunny days
  • Shake to purchase or double your order?
  • Get your mobile “Share” buttons working, including thumbnails and short descriptions that where possible include location references
  • Guide visitors to the nearest physical store
  • Find tops or accessories that match what you’ve currently got on (using the phone)
  • Listing books you’ve brought and are happy to loan to friends
  • Prompting users to pick up milk or takeaways if your partner is running late (combining data on a family’s location)
  • Oh and my latest one from today (after sitting at the beach) – scanning your photos for potential cancer/melanoma spots

Making the most of device functionality is one part. But true winners will be looking at the data, leveraging insights to hyper customise websites based on as many useful signals as they can from devices. Then, together with the user, sharing in the creation of joint experiences, content creation, products and services. The new economic age will be the connected sharing age.

Who will really take advantage though?

There’s so much potential I can’t wait to see what we’ll get in the coming months.

Thanks followers

Happy New Year to all and I wish you and your families a fantastic, productive, challenging and rewarding 2014.

Note: Post and all content, shot, edited, written, recorded and shared from my Xperia Z1. Not as easy as my iPad, but I wanted to prove it was possible. Even the typing bit to fix the dictation errors.

3 thoughts on “Will 2014 be the Mobile Only Year?

  1. We won’t be going anywhere near entirely mobile for a long long time, but we will sharply increase our use of mobile devices in 2014. Our need for a desktop has to do with some proprietary applications that we write ourselves. There simply is no benefit for us to move those to a mobile platform. However, some of our employees, the ones who don’t use those applications, are now traveling without laptops.

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I would love to hear your views!

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