With the population of mobile web device users overtaking pc-web users, several of our publisher customers have asked us to help them deliver search and discovery services to their mobile customers. Specifically, publishers asked us to think about how to help them engage their web audience segments on tablets and smartphones. We have learned a great deal and validated some intuitions from recent months of experiments in this area. Here are some highlights that we wanted to share.
Limited Screen Real Estate Requires Intent-Driven Relevance
Mobile users won’t put up with trial-and-error search, loading page after page looking for what they need. And just like the pc-web, mobile web surfers have difficulty accurately expressing their explicit interest preferences when you ask them. The best way to help mobile users with smaller screens and limited bandwidth is to leverage implicit search and discovery behavior and apply the natural resulting content filters.
Less Typing is More for Mobile Users
Mobile users don’t like to type. Tablets and smartphones have the ability to zoom and drag screen items with touch gestures. We’ve found this capability enhances mobile users’ search and discovery experience. The more drag-and-drop features you include, eliminating the need to type, the more your service will be used.
Push vs Pull Mobile Discovery
Mobile users appreciate search and discovery services that proactively deliver information they care about. This can be accomplished if you allow them to define their favorite content sources and apply personalized relevance algorithms.
Location Awareness Built into the Service
Users increasingly expect “location relevancy” from the search results of their mobile devices. The Collarity relevance engine provides the flexibility and control to flip between location aware to global for mobile search and discovery.
We are very excited about helping our publishers and their web visitors with new mobile services. Publishers can leap into the mobile device universe (tablets and smartphones) enabling their users to connect to the relevant content on their website and on the general web with a new engaging experience. Watch this space for further updates.