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Study: Consumer Usage Of Search Different On A Mobile Device

mobile-search-continues-trending-toward-all-things-local-300×224.jpgIt is widely known that consumers use their mobile device in a different way to their PC’s, and according to Steve Jobs they don’t use search but go to apps. However, recent data published by Mobile Commerce has given us an interesting insight into what consumers search for on their mobile device.

They have published a list of the top 100 most searched terms of 2010 on their mobile search platform. Mobile Commerce handles around 40 million searches a month, so this gives us an interesting insight into what users are looking for on the mobile handset.

Unsurprisingly, the list is dominated by Social Networking sites, with Facebook the most searched item. In fact, Facebook had 3 of the top ten search terms: #1 Facebook, #5 www.facebook.com, #7 Facebook.com. Also in the top 10 were Youtube, Bebo, and Ebuddy. Overall 25 out of the top 100 terms referring to social network services.

The next major category, with 21 out of the top 100 search terms is Google, Yahoo and other e-mail service providers. This is followed by information services (such as news, lottery, weather) with around 20% of the list and dating and flirting searches accounting for 7%.

Steve Page, Mobile Commerce CEO, said: “Many analysts see mobile search as simply the same as PC but with a smaller screen, but that’s just not the case. Our detailed search analysis shows that users search differently on mobile, either using the search box as a shortcut to entering a URL, or for ‘I need/want it now’ searches the kind of things people want to know about when they’re on the move.

Another frequently searched category is celebrity with Justin Bieber coming in as the 38th most searched term ahead of Cheryl Cole, Lady Gaga, JLS and Katie Price.

Mobile finance and commerce was also an important category, with ‘Ebay’ the 6th most searched term. Other m-commerce sites ‘Argos’ and ‘Amazon’ also made it into the top 100. The only two banks that make the list are ‘Halifax’ and ‘Barclays’, with the latter just making it in at number 96.

“Analysing what people are searching is key to understanding both the need to and how best to optimize a website for mobile, and also when considering pay-per-click, especially given the huge growth we’ve been seeing in mobile search.”

Other facts:

  • The search term with the most words was: “Everything I do I do it for you”, and it was searched a lot!
  • The average number of characters was 9.5
  • The Search term with the most characters was: “Rugby League Challenge Cup Final”
  • The majority of Searches (94%) were made using the mobile network, only 6% were made using Wifi.
  • The top 10 mobile search terms represent 25% of all searches on mobile devices




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17.01.2011    Tags: ,
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