Study: When Should You Market to Mobile Users?

It’s pretty clear that businesses need to be accessible on the go. Mobile-friendly websites provide an improved user experience, better Google search rankings, broader accessibility and the branding value of being up-to-date. Google is now seeing more than 50% of searches come from mobile devices. It’s pretty important to cater to mobile browsing.

But when are people likely to have their eyes on their phone? If you want your customers to take a mobile-specific action, you need to know when they’ll be ready to act. In preparation for launching a new mobile app, we needed to know when most people will be prepared to download it, use it, and rate it. So we ran some tests, and the results are below.

These results are taken from a website that publishes daily content, aimed at the Australian consumer market. The site averages 110,000 sessions per month and publishes a newsletter each day at 10am. These findings use data taken from January 1 to June 30, 2015.

Mobile Behaviour 1: Mobile Browsing is Strongest in the Early Morning.

Mobile Behaviour 1

It’s the modern morning routine. You wake up in the morning, grab your phone, and check what you’ve missed while you were unconscious. From the above trend-line, you can see that this behaviour is common among Australians. There’s a major spike in mobile browsing between the hours of 6am and 9am, during wake-up, breakfast and the commute to work. Desktop browsing takes over at 10am, while many of us are sitting behind desks. Then at 5pm there’s a switch back to mobile dominance, on the train home and in front of the TV.

It’s often discussed anecdotally, but we have some compelling evidence here that people are indeed waking up and going to sleep with phones in their hands. This of course validates the common rule of thumb that you should either post to social media at 6am or 6pm. It also lends some credibility to the idea that mobile is the preferred format for recreational browsing.

Mobile Behaviour 2: Mobile Browsing is Strongest on the Weekend.

Mobile Behaviour 2
We’re also more likely to use our mobile phones over the weekend. Our data shows that desktop is king during working days, with roughly 20% more traffic than mobile Monday to Friday. However this statistic is then flipped, with nearly 20% more traffic on mobile during the weekend, though with less browsing overall. Nevertheless, we’re still accessing the web while we’re enjoying a family brunch.

Implications

While we can only speculate at the reasons behind these trends, there are some clear messages to take from the data.

1. If you want to reach mobile users, aim to be ready for them when they’re waking up. Otherwise, wait for the evening.
2. You’re much more likely to be reaching consumers through their phones on the weekend.