Mobile vs desktop audience: which is more popular? And what does it mean for your website?

12.05.2019

According to research released last month by Search Marketing Land, it seems more people than ever are using mobile devices to browse the internet, compared to desktop. The split currently stands at 65% mobile and 35% desktop, which is significant when considering where you should be spending on online advertising and how people are viewing your website.

People searching on mobile see search results a little differently

Apart from the fact that it is now essential for your website to be responsive and mobile-friendly to rank on Google – and has been for the last couple of years –  with the latest display updates to Google’s search engine results pages (SERPS), making it more difficult than ever for consumers to distinguish between ads and organic (unpaid) search results.

Therefore, if you’re not currently running an optimised Google Ads search campaign, you’re at an automatic disadvantage to your competitors, even if you’re ranking in the number one position organically, with most searches for location specific products and services yielding up to 4 ads before you can even see the organic results.

Not surprisingly, Google says a lot of its growth (revenue) is coming from YouTube and its mobile search system, via ads.It seems mobile ad spending has certainly hit a growth period, with reports of a 40% rise compared to last year, whereas desktop ad spending remains stagnant.

Mobile search figures remain the same

However, Google has reported that the number of people using its mobile search function has remained the same since 2015, at about 50% in many countries across the world. Consumer insights company Hitwise believes this number to be greater, with estimates at about 58.5% of searches coming from mobile devices.

What are people searching for?

It seems users are the most interested in food when it comes to online mobile searches, at 68%, although this is down 4% compared to 2016.

Retail is only at 47% of mobile searches, interestingly, down 9% on rates from 2016.

Will search on mobile drop?

Although more users are turning to mobile devices, it seems the number of people using mobile as a search tool has practically remained the same over the past couple of years.

While this doesn’t necessarily mean the number of people using mobile as a search tool will drop, or slow, it could remain stagnant in the foreseeable future.

What does this mean for Google Ads?

Because more people are turning to mobile, it is more important now than ever that you have a responsive website for your business. If you want to capture the 65% of the mobile market, then you should consider running a Google Ads campaign. Mobile search is dominated by Google Ads and the days of simply having a mobile-friendly, search engine optimised website and expecting to dominate the competition are over .

If you need assistance with your ads, don’t hesitate to contact Goop Digital for more information about our PPC campaign creation and management service, we’ll make sure you turn click into sales with highly relevant, eye-catching ads.