Mary Meeker of Kleiner Perkins recently gave a presentation at Stanford demonstrating the enormous recent growth in mobile traffic across the web and predicting future significant growth in the coming years. You can find the slides here if you're interested. Here at Energy Circle PRO we've been keeping an eye on the data across our network, tracking the mobile channel as it changes and grows, and trying to keep the home performance industry abreast of any big changes or trends. And while the mobile trend has been happening for some time in other industries and verticals, it is now catching up to us. The data now shows steady long term growth from the mobile channel - enough that we think it is important for you to consider your company's presence on mobile and how you can improve it.
One caveat: for the most part, we believe that the considered purchase involved in selecting someone to perform energy efficiency services on a home is a generally more research intensive, thoughful buying decision that is not likely to be done in one mobile browsing session. But for so many of us, our smart phone is an extension of our other devices, and research that may have started on a desktop may conclude on a mobile phone. That, combined with the data below, lead us to say: you should seriously consider your site's mobile presence.
Almost every slide in the presentation linked above points to recent and future explosive growth in mobile internet traffic. Any way you slice it the trend is clear, whether it is the 50% year over year growth in smartphone subscriptions in the US, the iPad tripling the iPhone's already incredible adoption rate (with Android outpacing even that), or that almost 30% of US adults now own some kind of tablet computer or web-enabled eReader. But it is easier to make these predictions and spot these trends when talking about the web in general. And just because a trend is true at the highest level doesn't mean it holds true within a specific industry - it could be that 80% of that explosive mobile growth consists of people looking at funny cat videos!
The good news is that when it comes to the home performance industry, Energy Circle is uniquely positioned to determine if these high level trends hold true for energy auditors and energy efficiency companies. We follow aggregate data from over 200 home performance company websites that run the gamut from independent solo professionals to large regional HVAC & insulation companies. We obviously don't divulge any proprietary data about individual sites, but across the entire dataset we can tell you this:
- mobile traffic is over 7% of all traffic to EC PRO sites since 2010
- mobile traffic grew almost 300% in May 2012 vs May 2011
- Apple devices are the dominant platform
- almost half of the traffic comes from some version of the iPad
- as of November 2012, mobile traffic was 12% of total vists
That 12% figure is almost identical to the proportion of global internet traffic coming from mobile devices in November 2012, which was 13%.
What Does it All Mean?
We can confidently conclude that mobile traffic to home performance related websites is closely mirroring the trend that is happening at the highest level of web traffic. And now that that number is up over 10% of all traffic, and has been nearly doubling and tripling year over year, we believe that the time has come to seriously consider if your website performs as well as it possibly can on mobile devices. If it isn't, if mobile visitors can't quickly and easily achieve whatever it is they came to your site to do, you should be making plans to address this issue in early 2013. We don't see this trend going anywhere but up - the only question is how quickly.
We've developed a solution for companies using the Energy Circle PRO platform and can selectively support companies on other platforms as well. If you're interested or would like to know more, contact Lisa Fahay at 207.847.3644 or firstname.lastname@example.org.