HubPages Mobile Usage and 2011 Prediction

We’ve been watching mobile usage very closely at HubPages and I think we have some interesting trends to report.  The first interesting thing about mobile usage on HubPages is there were 3.6 million visits from mobile devices in November.  The iPhone is the #1 device, with 1.4 million visits, but Android usage is growing more quickly, and even though the iPhone has a large lead, Android, with .8 million visits, will close the gap in 2011.

A point of note beyond the growth of mobile smartphone use in general, (which Nielsen predicts will be owned by one in two Americans by Christmas 2011), is

usage pattern.  Mobile usage peaks and declines nearly at the inverse of browsing the web on the computer.  Saturday and Sunday, two of the lowest traffic days on HubPages, are the highest traffic days for mobile devices.  Also, on weekday evenings when computer traffic declines, mobile traffic picks up.

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We have seen significant growth in mobile consumption.  HubPages continues to grow at a good clip, (we have seen over a 7.5% increase in unique visitors to the site month over month for November), however mobile usage is increasing at a greater rate with over 17% month-over-month growth.  I think there is a possibility that by the end of 2011, mobile can be responsible 25% of consumption on HubPages.  It’s aggressive growth, but possible.

We have a belief at HubPages that mobile consumption and tools for Hubbers will be a large part of our future.  We recently released an iPhone app for HubPages, and this is only the beginning.

7 thoughts on “HubPages Mobile Usage and 2011 Prediction

  1. Ive been following mobile browsing trends pretty closely over the past year. Even hinted to mobiles future in a hub called, well, is Mobile Marketing the future of advertising, So, to me, This is very interesting data.

    But developing for mobile is different than standard browsing. I enable mobile advertising on my properties when accessed by a mobile device.

    I didnt think HubPages was doing that yet,

    So Im reading this as 3,6 million lost impressions to hub authors in November? ..and a projected future of %25 of all impressions lost?

    Forgive me, if im wrong …but I have never seen any posted info stating how Hubpages handled mobile impressions, but I do know the sidebar disappears, effectively killing one ad slot.

    So, how about a follow-up? How HubPages is protecting its authors work from the future potential losses of impressions due to changes in visitor browsing behavior.

  2. I must say that HP looks fantastic on my NookColor. I hadn’t planned to use it as a mini-ipad, but it has performed very well. I can’t wait to see which apps Barnes & Noble allows to run on it. It’s wi-fi only, but I’ve traveled with it several times and could easily check in on my stats here and at ebay and Amazon when I got to the hotel. It’s an android operating system. Still no flash, so I do need my netbook for working while I travel. But it’s so much more than an e-reader.

  3. Out of curiosity – does mobile browsing affect advertising? Does the mobile version of the site contain the adsense ads, etc?

    If not, are there any plans to monetize the mobile traffic? If mobile browsing is going to be a large part of the future for Hubpages, I imagine income from it will need to be a large part of the future for Hubpages as well. How does this “shake down” for writers?

    I’m really glad to be a contributer to HP, and am excited about the progress and the future! Thanks for the updates!

  4. Hi all. To answer your questions:
    – Donald E and Ethan.: We have a mobile-optimized version of Hubs that are used when the detected client is a mobile OS. It formats the text and images to look more “clean” and readable in the smaller format of a phone. We also use AdSense for Mobile, which places just one ad at the bottom (we still do the same 60/40 impression split on that).
    – Sunforged: We have been running the mobile format for quite a while now. We want to keep the browsing experience as good as possible, so people don’t jump back to the search results when landing on a Hub. We do run AdSense for Mobile, which just uses one ad spot, but our testing on our own impressions suggested that performed better than a more conventional Web-browser layout. We continue to test on our share of impressions, though.
    – Maria: In terms of browsing Hubs, most popular mobile OSes are supported. In terms of authoring, though, we currently only have an app for iOS (iPhone) but are working on apps for other popular platforms, most notably Android, as well.

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