Websites are obsolete. I am not claiming they are not still essential but, for the most part, by definition and largely in practice, the website has been overtaken as a medium.
The “golden age” of radio lasted from the 1920s until the 1950s. Broadcast television dominated the media landscape from the 1950s through the 1970s, followed by cable for more than a decade after the 1984 Cable Act.
But the “revolution gap” in communications has been shortened significantly and the website's time is up – already.
Given that tens of billions of Web pages are viewed every day, you may be thinking my declaration of obsolescence is premature, but consider this: according to the Pew Research Center, 85% of Americans own cell phones, and that number climbs to 96% among 18 to 29 year olds. In the third quarter of 2010, comScore reported that smartphone ownership increased by more than 14%, a trend that shows no signs of slowing.
As it relates to online activity and the future of connectivity, technologically and functionally, mobile matters more and mobility matters most.
According to a Harris Interactive study conducted for EffectiveUI, 76% of people who use mobile applications say brand-name companies and organizations need mobile apps to improve the shopping experience and to foster interaction between customers and sellers.
This is an opportunity for brands, platforms, and providers to embrace and capitalize on the fast-approaching “mobile first” era and capture the fascination of consumers who live – and buy – on the go.
The long held tenet of real estate holds true for this increasingly mobile society – location, location, location. Brands must anticipate not only what people want, but where they will be when they want it, and then go there.
David All is president of the David All Group.