2013: The Year of Mobile Continues

For years, analysts and experts have been proclaiming that each year will be the year of mobile. According to these sources, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 were all the year of mobile. Some analysts are now predicting that 2013 will be the year of mobile, but what does that really mean? Does it mean that we’ll all give up our laptops in exchange for ever-changing mobile devices? Does it mean that we’ll start to initiate mobile transactions using near field communication in a world of augmented reality?

There’s some truth to each of the statements above, as each year mobile gets stronger and more refined in tactics, but there’s still a lot more that marketers need to learn about mobile before we can truly declare that this is in fact the year of mobile. Below are a few key trends to look out for on the path to richer and deeper mobile experiences in the year to come.

Mobile applications
It’s not enough to simply have an extension of your online experience available via mobile application anymore. As consumers become more sophisticated, it becomes more important to understand what contextual information is being used on the go to make the application relevant. Gartner analysts believe that location-based applications with features that enable search will be the future winners of the mobile space. Smart search, which takes into account the user’s location and allows the user to take real-time action like make a reservation, call for more information or rate products on demand, will propel future interface designs by integrating logical information flows to enhance the user experience.

Mobile web
Site-scraping functionality from your current online experience is no longer sufficient for the average consumer. With multiple devices, screen sizes that range from tablets to high-definition smartphones, the rules no longer apply. We live in a world where we need to rethink online and shift towards responsive design. No matter if you click, swipe or touch, the digital experience needs to deliver on your customer information needs in real time, so performance and accessibility are of key importance.

Mobile messaging
Your customers expect more via mobile, and messaging is no exception. SMS is no longer enough to engage your customer. We know that rich content, images and video resonate more with users on any media. The same is true of messaging. In 2012, we were introduced to rich media messaging. Rethink your consumer experience with this push mobile technology, which allows you to send robust image and video content at standard messaging rates.

2012 has been a revolutionary year in the way that brands use mobile in marketing campaigns. Brands are looking at more in-depth mobile strategies and trying to employ customer insights to truly build successful small-screen campaigns. Mobile is here to stay, and it’s positioned to grow as our devices and customers become more sophisticated.

Cezar Kolodziej, PhD, is the president, CEO and co-founder of Iris Mobile.

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