How Much Web Traffic Is On Mobile Devices (Really)? [STUDY]

How much website traffic is really on mobile devices?

It’s a common question among business people who care about their online presence, especially those who advertise their enterprises on the internet. We all know intuitively that mobile is becoming a bigger and bigger player in Cyberspace, and it behooves savvy business folk to keep up with this trend. Sometimes, however, getting a straight answer to this question can be difficult.

We at Kerigan also wonder about the amount of web traffic that is conducted on mobile devices, because we design loads of websites and we are also a Google Partner, which means we do online marketing for multiple clients every day. Mobile traffic percentages affect how well we do our job.

That’s why the KPCB Internet Trends Report was so welcome. KPCB is a huge firm that has worked with companies like Google, Nest, and Twitter, so they are an authority in the field, and their 2014 “state of the internet” report sheds light on the question of mobile traffic. It’s a long study, but here are the key takeaways:

1. Smartphone sales (and therefore mobile web traffic) are only going to increase

Below is a graph showing quarterly smartphone shipments and their use as a percentage of total mobile phone users. You don’t have to be a statistician to see the trend. Not only are mobile phone shipments (sales) shooting up, but the percentage of smartphones is as well. And what is the signature function that makes a phone “smart”? A web browser, of course. More and more web traffic is mobile, and it’s only going to grow.

2. Tablet sales have surpassed desktop/laptop (big time)

Global tablet sales exceeded those of desktop computers in the last quarter of 2012 and blew past notebook devices in the first part of 2013. The graph below shows the spike. Again, using sales as an indicator of use, it is not a hard sell to say that mobile search is on the move in a huge way.

Also note that the sales of desktops and notebooks plateaued between the last quarter of 2007 and the first half of 2010, and have not recovered. And what happened in that period? The first iPhone was released on June 29, 2007 and the first iPad debuted on April 3, 2010. Sometimes correlation does mean causation.

3. Mobile web traffic is blowing up

This graph tells the tale. As of May 2014, 25% of global web traffic was mobile; 19% in North America. Mobile web traffic in North America grew by 72% between May 2013 and May 2014. Globally, it jumped by 78% over the same period. Bottom line: if you are not getting serious about your business’s mobile presence, you are potentially missing up to 25% of your potential audience. Get going.

How can my business take advantage of growing mobile web traffic?

Here are a few actions you can take to get on board with the mobile trend:

1. Make your website mobile responsive

We web developers have the ability now to build your website so that it automatically recognizes what type of device it is on and adjusts itself accordingly. This is called responsive design, and it is no longer an option for modern business websites. For more info, here is another post dedicated to responsive website design.

2. Hire a knowledgeable digital marketing firm

If you are not already advertising your business online, you should seriously consider it. If you are, you should make sure the agency handling your campaigns is well certified and up on the latest mobile advertising techniques.

Because consumer behavior is different for mobile users, so should your advertising be. I know this is self serving, but you should also know that we at Kerigan Marketing are Google AdWords Certified and an official Google Partner. That matters, because we have to stay up on the latest best practices to keep our status. Just sayin’.

3. Answer the phone!

Once you have a mobile friendly website and are running mobile optimized digital ad campaigns, make sure you are ready for phone calls. This may sound simple, but we have clients who receive calls from their website or Google AdWords campaigns and let it go to voicemail or do not return the calls in a timely manner. A mobile world is all about quick response. When a consumer hits the call button, be there to answer.

Conclusion: Mobile is on the rise and is not looking back. Get your business ready with these tips and reap the benefits.

Thanks for reading.


Kerigan Marketing is a full service web design and marketing services firm in Panama City, Florida. We are Google AdWords Certified and an official Google Partner, and we have delivered sustainable growth to hundreds of clients. To start growing your business online, or to receive your free marketing consultation, just click the button below.

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If you would like to read the entire KPCB study, it is below.