Live: Mobile Search Apps & Opportunities

Oct 5, 2009 - 10:40 am 0 by
Filed Under SMX East 2009

Below is live coverage of the Mobile Search Apps & Opportunities from the SMX East 2009 conference.

This coverage is provided by Barry Schwartz of RustyBrick & Justin Davy of

We are using a live blogging tool to provide the real time coverage, please excuse any typos. You can also interact with us and while we are live blogging, so feel free to ask us questions as we blog. We will publish the archive below after the session is completed.

Mobile Search Apps & Opportunities(10/05/2009) 
10:43 Barry Schwartz:  Getting started in a minute, just acting as tech support for iPhone users.
10:47 Barry Schwartz:  Rachel Pasqua from iCrossing is first up
10:47 Justin Davy:  For many brands, apps are becoming indispensible to their digity strategy
10:49 Justin Davy:  $400 million in sales generated since Ebay launched their iPhone app.
10:49 Barry Schwartz:  $400 million in sales raised by eBay, Zagat is the 77th most popular apps, 400,000 users downloaed a $9.99 for the MLB app
10:49 Justin Davy:  The average shelf life of a free iPhone app is 30 days and average cost to build is from $50k to $150k
10:51 Barry Schwartz:  She shows off the Target Gift Finder iPhone app
10:52 Barry Schwartz:  The thing is, it missed in the search area
10:52 Justin Davy:  Apps that get deleted have this in common many times:
Lacked essential functionality needed in the mobile context
(Target App)
10:53 Justin Davy:  The Taco Bell app for example was built to showoff iPhone functionality and not the brand. No option to place orders, no special offers
10:53 Justin Davy:  LL Bean app didn't offer actionable connection back to the brand. No strong connection to the LL Bean brand beyond logo. No links to or awareness of LL Bean merchandise whatsoever
10:53 Justin Davy:  The apps that were kept had these things in common...
Twitterrebeccakelley:  Mobile apps speaker says Taco Bell is her guilty pleasure fast food of choice. I hear ya, sista
10:54 Barry Schwartz:  She loves the Amazon app, she uses it several times per week. Justin explains
10:54 Justin Davy:  Easier access to useful content than even a mobile website (Amazon app)

intuitive design, easy access to search and wishlists, very easy to personalize, tied to online account, enables comparison shopping using phone camera)
10:55 Barry Schwartz:  She moved from Clariton to Zyrtec because of the iPhone app they provide
10:55 Justin Davy:  Zyrtec App - Provides useful and often location specific functionality

quick and easy access to important, geo-targeted info, high level of customization, subtly introduced special offers for their products
10:56 Justin Davy:  Whole Foods app does a good job of driving purchases or patronize their stores and services. This app has made her want to drive the extra distance to their store because of the functionality of the app.
10:56 Barry Schwartz:  She now shows a few ideas of app ideas you might want to use as a brandable app
10:57 Barry Schwartz:  iDomain, a perfect opportunity for an app for Godaddy, Netsol, etc
10:57 Justin Davy:  Colorado Parks - Geo-enabled app mapping hiking trails, walks and climbing routs. Users are able to record, save, replay and share apps. Great opportunity in the social space.
10:58 Justin Davy:  Car Care app - Allows drivers to track mileage and receive maintenance reminders for multiple vehicles. Missed opportunity for every major auto OEM.
11:00 Barry Schwartz:  Don't think about how I can build a good GPS app, think how you can build a good app and if you need those technologies, then use them.
11:00 Barry Schwartz:  LEarn from the apps you enjoy yourself.
11:00 Justin Davy:  3 tips to create successful apps:
1. Don't try to keep up with the Joneses!
- Don't think you need an app just because your competitors have one. Think about your demographic
2. If your thinking "how can I use the GPS and the accelerometer" - stop!
- Don't put technology before the user
3. Do learn from the apps you yourself enjoy
11:01 Barry Schwartz:  FYI, the power stripe no longer works for Justin and I. I tried kicking it to fix it, but it didnt work.
11:01 Barry Schwartz:  Michael Martin to talk about Android
11:03 Barry Schwartz:  Android is handled by the open handset alliance, which Google is very involved in.
11:04 Justin Davy:  Andriod is a software stack for mobile devices that includes an operating system, middleware and key applications

It is open and freely distributed - NO licensing fees

Can be programmed in Java AND C/C++ components

Can be coded on Windows, Mac, & Linux OS's

Can run multiple applications and have onscreen widgets

Can run Flash videos on updated versions

Had MMS & Digital compass about a year before the iPhone

Forthcoming Text to Speech recognition with translations

40+ Different Android phones in the next 6 months globally
11:05 Justin Davy:  Wow Michael is a really big Android fan!
11:06 Justin Davy:  New Android apps are accelerating by more than 50% Month over Month vs iPhone's 30%
11:07 Justin Davy:  Over 20 Android phone manufacturers and growing
11:08 Barry Schwartz:  This guy hates the iPhone and developers ;-)
11:09 Barry Schwartz:  He mocks the iPhone app approval process, which Android does not have. Plus Android has a 24 hour try and buy.
11:10 Justin Davy:  Some benefits of The Android Market

One time registration fee of $25 to submit unlimited apps
No submission process
24 Hour Buy & Try Return policy
Paid Apps put on the forefront & sectionalized
Soon to add PayPal, Credit Card & direct carrier with billing w/Checkout
Listed in order of User Ratings
Users regulate apps NOT Google
Google Voice
11:10 Barry Schwartz:  The issue is that currently, the only way to buy an app in Adroid is to use Google Checkout
11:11 Barry Schwartz:  Apps are ranked by user ranking, so far, it is working, not too spammed yet.
11:13 Barry Schwartz:  The future are location social integrated apps.
11:13 Justin Davy:  3 Tier Google Marketing Options for Android to Manufactuerers & Carriers

1. Obligation Free Option
2. Distribution Option
3. Google Experience Option

3rd is most common
11:13 Barry Schwartz:  Here are his favorite apps for Android:
11:15 Barry Schwartz:  He took the time out to thank us little live bloggers, thank you...
11:15 Justin Davy:  Minus me. Boohoo ;)
11:15 Barry Schwartz:  Scott Dunlap for NearbyNow is next up....
11:15 Barry Schwartz:  Justin gets no credit, but follow him at @jdavy
11:17 Barry Schwartz:  Developers prefer Android he said, but the market is tiny compared to iPhone
11:17 Barry Schwartz:  They focus on magazines, such as 17 magazine
11:18 Justin Davy:  Measuring the converion on the iPhone is what they focus on. 6 1/2% conversion to purchase on Seventeen Magazine
11:19 Justin Davy:  Their using options for clothing such as Find it Online and Using GEO for Fine it Near Me (converting about about 5 1/2%)
11:19 Justin Davy:  *at about
11:20 Justin Davy:  Runner's World shows how people really want video. With every video they put out, its watched by over 70% of the users.
11:20 Barry Schwartz:  People watch videos on their iPhones
11:21 Justin Davy:  Lucky Magazine does a Deal of the Day to bring people back. They also pull in their products from the magazine. The also incorporate a advertising via sponsored channels (in this case from Target) They are running around 25 different advertisers.
11:22 Justin Davy:  Print advertising dollars are looking for mobile alternatives
11:23 Barry Schwartz:  Every iPhone app they launched, found their way into monetization.
11:24 Justin Davy:  For some magazines the number of iPhone subscribers are larger than the subscribers to the actual magazine!
11:24 Justin Davy:  Key Takeaway - Be sure to focus on the conversion number
11:25 Justin Davy:  Last speaker is up (Matt Siltala) to discuss how local and mobile search is coming together via the Yelp app.
11:27 Justin Davy:  Yelp is great for traffic. Not just food related
11:27 Barry Schwartz:  Yelp is growing around 80% per year
11:27 Barry Schwartz:  25 million visitors in august
11:27 Justin Davy:  Anal
11:27 Justin Davy:  whoa! no I meant Analytics
11:29 Barry Schwartz:  The social network of Matt's choice is not Sphinn, it is Yelp
11:29 Justin Davy:  Yelp is for much more than Food Reviews
11:29 Justin Davy:  Great for people who are traveling
11:31 Barry Schwartz:  Here is Matt asking Yelp users what they use Yelp for:
11:31 Justin Davy:  You can search for whatever you want on Yelp! Sharing how he used on his trip to Ventura CA. Found a great BBQ restaurant. Listing includes images, reviews, contact information
11:31 Justin Davy:  Be sure to claim your business listing on Yelp. Don't rely on others to put your information in.
11:33 Justin Davy:  More people shoud take advantage of pictures. They help to sell the place. Business owners have the option to add business photos via YELP
11:33 Barry Schwartz:  He showed how he took pictures of the food he ate last night... Yummm.
11:33 Barry Schwartz:  Yelp is good for citations, and Google Maps has citations.
Twitterdannysullivan:  google announced cross domain canonical tag coming by end of year #smx
11:34 Justin Davy:  You can dominate local by using citations. A Google Local listing isn't enough.
Twittersi1very:  Matt @Matt_Siltala also says that @yelp is an important source for local citations, too. #SMX mobile apps session.
11:35 Justin Davy:  Many times he's seen the Search Engines rank the first review in the SERPs.
11:36 Justin Davy:  Important to monitor your brand. Remember its your reputation on the line!
11:36 Justin Davy:  Engage with your customers and let them know you are listening. This isn't going away so remember to Act, don't react.
11:37 Justin Davy:  I'm glad my battery was fully charged prior to this session. Still no power...
11:37 Barry Schwartz: is where u can access your business account
11:38 Justin Davy:  Be sure to "unlock your business page" This will ensure that it shows up in the results when people use their iPhone's browser.
11:39 Justin Davy:  Be sure to let your customers know that you are on Yelp. You will get reviews.
11:39 Barry Schwartz:  Add your business photos, add more business info, inclkude phone number and URL and use the analytics from Yelp.
11:40 Justin Davy:  That's the last of the presenters. Time for Q&A
11:40 Barry Schwartz:  Q&A Time...
11:41 Barry Schwartz:  Next sessions start at 1:45 (EST) and we have 3 sessions live at that time:

SMX Boot Camp: Copywriting For Search Success covered by Sheara Wilensky
Actionable SEO Insights From Analytics Data covered by Avi Wilensky
Amazing PPC Tactics covered by Marty Weintraub & Keri Morgret
11:47 Justin Davy:  Any app that is frequently accessing remote data will be more expensive to build and support.
11:47 Justin Davy:  Coupons are a hot area in mobile right now with younger users. Their also willing to accept SMS messages multiple times a day.
11:49 Justin Davy:  Great response rates
11:49 Barry Schwartz:  Apps is more about "repeat use"
11:50 Justin Davy:  Lot of people still not on smart phones even though that number is growing
11:52 Justin Davy:  Apps replaced ringtones and html 5 is expected to remove some of the need for applications
11:52 Justin Davy:  Someone in the audience disagrees :)
11:53 Barry Schwartz:  I agree, it depends on the platform and the app you want to release
11:53 Justin Davy:  Apps are expected to be more niche in their usage
11:56 Barry Schwartz:  Apps are averaging 20 - 24% click through in their apps, and their apps are shopping related.
11:56 Barry Schwartz:  Again, he said about 6% conversion in stores and .5% conversions online.
11:58 Barry Schwartz:  Next sessions start at 1:45 (EST) and we have 3 sessions live at that time:

SMX Boot Camp: Copywriting For Search Success covered by Sheara Wilensky
Actionable SEO Insights From Analytics Data covered by Avi Wilensky
Amazing PPC Tactics covered by Marty Weintraub & Keri Morgret



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