Whitepaper Mobile Ready Websites With Bemoko Live


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Whitepaper highlighting the problems associated with developing mobile websites and how bemokoLive can help overcome those difficulties

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  • Hi Matt, good stuff here. Could your firm utilize our SMS, WAP mobile software to add value to your clients mobile sites by enabling direct engagement to consumers devices via SMS and WAP interactions. jim.schwab@onepointsurveys.com
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Whitepaper Mobile Ready Websites With Bemoko Live

  1. 1. © bemoko consulting limited. All rights reserved. Mobile-ready Websites with bemokoLive Do I Need to Think About Mobile? .................................................................... 2 What's Going to Change in Mobile This Year?..................................................... 3 Device Convergence or Divergence ............................................................... 3 I Want to Save Money, Create Value and Generate More Revenue. Does Going Mobile Need to Cost Me More?......................................................................... 4 User Generated Content .............................................................................. 5 Premium Content........................................................................................ 5 Subscription Services .................................................................................. 5 Events, Conferences and Attractions ............................................................. 6 Marketing .................................................................................................. 6 SMS .......................................................................................................... 6 Why Does bemoko and the bemokoLive Platform Make It Easy for Me?................. 7 My developers can just write a site that will work on mobile - how does bemoko add value to that?................................................................................................ 8 Why not just transcode my website - I've done all the work once, I don't want to do it again ........................................................................................................ 9 Wouldn't an application look sexier? Everyone is doing iPhone Apps these days, that's the future ...........................................................................................10 I Use Technology X and You Use Technology Y. Can We Talk?..............................12 Summary ....................................................................................................12 Publication Details ........................................................................................13 References...................................................................................................13 Page 1 of 14 2009 www.bemoko.com
  2. 2. © bemoko consulting limited. All rights reserved. Do I Need to Think About Mobile? In 2008 users really took to using mobile to access and interact with information using the web. According to Nielsen, the mobile web in US added on average 13% more reach over home PC traffic for leading web sites.[1]. Even celebrities are taking to it, with Stephen Fry saying quot;the great thing about Twitter is you can use it on your mobile phone. You just send thingsquot;[2]. Now that it’s easy for content to be provided whenever and wherever, the boundaries between the content provider and the consumer are being blurred - the mobile phone is the crucial factor that is making this happen. People want to interact with these services and they are turning to services that provide a decent mobile experience. Even turning away from services that are not mobile-ready. The usage of Smartphones increased massively through 2008 with quot;38.8 million of the 47.5 million UK mobile users brandishing a feature phonequot;[3]. Now why do we see that as important? quot;Only 24% of feature phone users browsed or downloaded from the Internet in July 2008 compared to 56% of smartphone usersquot;.[3]. A Smartphone is a mobile phone with advanced capabilities beyond that of a typical mobile and it allows users to receive a rich experience from applications on their phone, whether that be mobile web applications or downloaded applications.[4][5] Turning this the other way around - it allows service providers to take control and deliver an experience to the user that compliments their digital and non-digital marketing campaign. No more need to compromise. The mobile market is fertile and users are hungry for good user experiences. We are transitioning from the point where mobile is used by 10-20% of the UK population, to a point where it is an integral part of your digital marketing campaign. With increasing demand for users to interact with the community and the brand and a wanting to interact through the channel of their choice, there will be a time in the near future that, without a mobile channel, you can easily get left behind. Page 2 of 14 2009 www.bemoko.com
  3. 3. © bemoko consulting limited. All rights reserved. What's Going to Change in Mobile This Year? The last couple of years have seen an increase in usage of the mobile web, driven by phones with good web browsers, quot;unlimitedquot; data tariffs and effective high presence marketing campaigns[6][7][8]. This exponential increase will most definitely continue. The usage numbers are now moving from the early adopters phase to the early majority[9] where the business case for mobile web is becoming much more obvious. From an industry point of view, we will provide better user experiences which will fuel usage, for example: Better user interfaces (UIs) - service providers will be delivering applications that leverage device capabilities, utilising device functions, improved look & feel. Web applications will dabble with client side scripting and AJAX where relevant and where it works. Device manufactures will try to catch up and beat the end-to-end UI experience of the iPhone. In all the focus will be on user experience to attract and maintain the user base. More features on the device - gestures and haptics[10] to make the UI feel more responsive. In the near future we will be seeing more of pico projectors[11] and integration with out-of-home touch points[12] More features and SDKs available to application developers - this will allow service providers to create more comprehensive applications and services[13] We can expect the usual technical evolutions. Better battery life, faster CPU, more memory will all help to make applications more usable. End-to-end thinking - we'll provide applications that really work, that make a real difference and that people will want to use. Device Convergence or Divergence Users want difference and this will always drive divergence - some want excitement and some want stability. Even as the browsers become more compliant (making dealing with bugs less of an issue) UI’s will always vary - pixel resolution of screen, physical screen size, touch screen, pointer vs keypad. With these variations sites can always be made more usable if you can adjust the UI to benefit the particular device capabilities. New browser functionality is coming that will allow you to access device features and new functionality - location, camera, off-line web access. The APIs (Application Programming Interface) that are the foundations for this functionality will take a while (think years) to standardise and in the mean time they'll be available for those who can handle the diversity . When those APIs standardise you can be sure there'll be new functionality demanded by the user driving more diversity. If you have the bemokoLive platform you can run towards and deal with this ever- present diversity. Page 3 of 14 2009 www.bemoko.com
  4. 4. © bemoko consulting limited. All rights reserved. I Want to Save Money, Create Value and Generate More Revenue. Does Going Mobile Need to Cost Me More? Delivering a mobile service takes a certain level of awareness of the needs and desires of the user. A lot of this comes down to usability and understanding how to overcome the constraints of the device, whilst at the same time exploiting the benefits you have from the mobile, personal and context aware channel. With the industry adamant that the mobile is blossoming, the question is more often when should I tackle mobile?, rather than just should I? If that is the case then it's natural to at least talk about it now and plan for the next steps. bemoko are happy to guide and advise you on the appropriate direction and answer the following questions: How can I get my site mobile with as little effort and cost as possible? • How can I deliver mobile to allow cross-channel consistency and brand • compliance without compromising usability? How can I dip my toe in the water and start testing the market now? • These initial steps needn't be expensive and the earlier you talk and start thinking about the way forward the more likely you'll prevent unnecessary spend on rework in the future. bemoko provides several entry points to delivering mobile. Our hosting service can get you up and running quickly without the need to understand any of the technology. In fact you can pick from one of a number of existing fully functional white label sites, apply your branding and tweaks and go-live. Creating PC web sites with bemokoLive is certainly no more resource intensive then any of the popular techniques for building web sites - in fact it’s built on some of the leading technologies that are enabling agile web development. However with bemokoLive making it mobile-ready is de facto as opposed to a leap of faith. You can build with bemokoLive today and have it mobile-ready tomorrow (quite literally). So you can save money with a bemokoLive deployment, but how can the mobile site generate return? Is it worth the effort? The market research indicates it's where the users are flocking to - but does revenue or other return naturally follow? Let's consider a few sample applications ... Page 4 of 14 2009 www.bemoko.com
  5. 5. © bemoko consulting limited. All rights reserved. User Generated Content User generated content (UGC) can apply to a variety of types of site, such as social networking[14], micro-blogging[15], dating or media sharing[16]. Juniper suggests that the global market for this category of sites will grow from $540 million in 2007 to $7.3 billion in 2013.[17] Currently the lion share of this (>50%) is to be found from dating services, but they expect this to shift to >50% for social networking by 2013. However where do we expect this revenue to come from? Most people expect UGC web sites to be free. There are some exceptions to this rule - but the content does need to be compelling to demand the premium. By opening up the network for all, you encourage usage and encourage users to generate to content and if you can attract users then you can generate revenue without subscriptions. For example, advertising revenue, premium services (e.g. charging users on a dating service for connecting with each other), up sell of add- ons. Japan's Mixi social network, with 15million users, generates an annual revenue of $5.46 per user.[18] Premium Content The download market has matured well in the past few years with users willing to pay for quality media. Some areas are in decline such as the ring tone market where consumers are less willing to pay a premium[19] but it is still healthy and growing in other areas such as gaming.[20] Going forward other types of download will emerge, such as UI customisations[21] which are helping to drive users desire for differentiation and uniqueness. Subscription Services People do pay for services which save them time, money or enable them to do their job. Consider financial services, CRMs (Customer Relationship Management) and consumer services all of which demonstrate incredible value from the delivery of timely information AND are already proven as services which people will pay for. Which magazine charges £7.75 per month for access to their trusted reviews[22]. With consumer comparison sites extensively used these days it seems natural that Which would extend their offering into mobile so you can get reputable reviews of that new HD Flat screen TV whilst on the shop floor. Page 5 of 14 2009 www.bemoko.com
  6. 6. © bemoko consulting limited. All rights reserved. Events, Conferences and Attractions An event, conference or attraction can benefit from a mobile site through some of the advantages described above but can also be thought of value-added service for attendees as well as a promotional vehicle to encourage people to attend your event. Furthermore if the users experience is enhanced by the information provided over the mobile then they are more likely to repeat visit or recommend to others. Marketing A mobile site can play one part in the full value chain and drive users towards other goals beyond that of the mobile site. For example estate agents are extensively using SMS call-to-actions to put potential buyers in touch with the estate agent when they go past the house they like[23]. Similar styles of campaigns could drive consumers to restaurants, bars or cinemas with the promotions enabled with the mobile.[24][25] Although, one always needs to pay appropriate attention to the point- of-sale and interactions with staff who need to have the awareness and appropriate resources to deal with the redemption of such a promotion. SMS SMS is a great mechanism to drive people to your service - e.g. txt sage to 81025 - since most mobile users are comfortable with SMS and entry into the phone is quicker than long URLs.* With SMS, you as the service provider have the choice whether to charge a premium to the subscriber for sending the SMS. This a typical way that revenue is generated, e.g. TV voting, game downloads or phone pre-pay top ups. * Note that usage of SMS call-to-action will evolve over time as phone browsers become more embedded in the experience, e.g. iPhone, and as technologies such as 2-D barcodes and NFC become more available but at this point SMS call-to- action is still big. Page 6 of 14 2009 www.bemoko.com
  7. 7. © bemoko consulting limited. All rights reserved. Why Does bemoko and the bemokoLive Platform Make It Easy for Me? The bemoko live platform provides several features out of the box that bring real agility to site development with a real mobile (multi-channel) focus. Key benefits of the platform are: 1. Multi Site inheritance and white labelling roll out repeatable sites with full control to tweak as little or as much for each brand / event 2. Multi UI inheritance a site developer has the control to adjust the parts of the UI that are specific to that UI and can leave the rest untouched. If you want the navigation to be enhanced for a particular category of devices you only need to change one small bit in one place. Devices can also be associated with multiple UI fallback hierarchies, e.g. a device might be a 320px width, with AJAX support, but does not support file uploads - the Multi UI template inheritance allows you to cope with these multiple dimensions of complexities 3. Tweakers sites can be automatically optimised (or tweaked) for selected devices, kind of like XSL, but more light weight and flexible. Tweakers are often used to deal with known device bugs and to keep the resolution of this independent of UI site development, so as not to be of concern to the site developer. 4. Easy APIs to aggregate web services (such as SOAP, REST, XML/HTTP) and local data sources (such as JDBC and JCR content repository) 5. CMS Take the default content or with agile content modelling customise to your hearts content. Next generation AJAX Content Manager makes managing the content easy 6. User authentication, identity and profile management Users can be recognised on subsequent visits and persist preferences and profiles. ... and also note it's not just about creating sites as a developer. We have out-of- the-box sector focused mobile sites that just plug and play - e.g. doing a festival, just extend the festival site template and tweak to apply the branding and whilst you're at it throw in the quiz module for fun with real-time reporting. Page 7 of 14 2009 www.bemoko.com
  8. 8. © bemoko consulting limited. All rights reserved. My developers can just write a site that will work on mobile - how does bemoko add value to that? It is pretty easy, these days, to put together a few pages or even an application that delivers some content to the mobile device, since most devices now have a good level of compliance with XHTML Mobile Profile.[26][27] However, it typically isn't enough to simply get the content onto the phone - it needs to be done in a way that encourages usability and accessibility as well as looking good. Get these right and you can drive user traction and effective use of your site. Furthermore, only delivering to the lowest common denominator (LCD) or perhaps delivering to a group of devices with average capabilities will sacrifice the usability on higher end devices, where typically the majority of the mobile web usage will be.[3] If you start creating specialised versions of the site for perhaps iPhone and Blackberry, then it's all to easy to start creating an unmanageable code base with lots of cut & paste and spaghetti code logic. This can mean that, if not thought through correctly, your site quickly becomes more and more expensive to maintain, more and more expensive to change and increasingly difficult to adjust to the latest waves of phones that we are likely to see for quite some time. bemokoLive's multi UI inheritance and tweakers are designed bottom up to minimise repetitive site coding and encourage well structured mobile sites. Using this model it is clear to see (and to easy to apply) the unique UI difference between different categories of devices. The multi UI inheritance allows you to independently develop for multiple dimensions of capabilities, such as screen size, JavaScript capability, touch screen vs keypad and manufacturer extensions (such as those available in the iPhone browser). The unique bemokoLive tweaker stack allows any bugs or deficiencies of devices to be addressed on the fly without having to code these hacks into the site. Page 8 of 14 2009 www.bemoko.com
  9. 9. © bemoko consulting limited. All rights reserved. Why not just transcode my website - I've done all the work once, I don't want to do it again If your primary aim is just to get the content available on the mobile then why not give a transcoder a go and see what it looks like for your site. For example you can try Google's mobile search @ http://www.google.com/m which transcodes sites in the search results and makes them ready for mobile. It makes a reasonable effort, but I'd be a little disappointed if our own bemoko mobile website looked like the result from the google transcoder. The content that I think is important is not at the top (see screen shots below) and some of the graphics that, on the PC site are really just secondary decoration, had far too much presence on the mobile version (I personally wouldn't have wanted those graphics present at all). Now transcoders have their place and they've done a great job in opening up content for access on the mobile, but it doesn't lead to compelling user experiences and doesn't lead to users coming back for more, again and again. PC site via bemokoLive mobile transcoding mobile site via of PC site bemokoLive Designed for PC .. notice how Google ...designed for mobile, has displayed the we have control over picture of the phone what we show and the taking up a lot of real interaction we deliver estate, not a great to the user experience Furthermore, bemoko thinks of the mobile web as more than the PC web. Location is highly relevant on the mobile and drives functionality on a web site that doesn't necessarily make sense on the PC version. It's only through good interaction design that you can determine the relevant functions that should have primary focus on mobile and the functions that are less relevant. Users are not likely to book their holiday on their mobile, but they are likely to look at booking status updates, or take a look at tourist attractions near their hotel. When you take control of your web site and make it truly mobile ready, you are then ready to take true advantage of the mobile and not act subservient to what a transcoder vendor thinks is right for you. Think design for mobile, but don't assume that doing so will cost an arm and a leg. Page 9 of 14 2009 www.bemoko.com
  10. 10. © bemoko consulting limited. All rights reserved. Wouldn't an application look sexier? Everyone is doing iPhone Apps these days, that's the future In some cases, yes, a downloaded application can look sexier, there are lots of features which are currently only available to application developers. We expect to see evolutions on this front throughout the year where some features become more readily available to mobile web sites. Just think about the desktop world; some applications you use are resident on the desktop and some you use through the browser. The real question is what is the appropriate approach for your needs, so let's look at some of the pros and cons between a mobile web application and a downloadable application For mobile web application: 1. Development effort for a mobile web application which is accessible across the majority of devices is typically much shorter than that for an equivalent downloadable application. When you develop downloadable applications you will need to think about the variety of SDKs and technologies, for example iPhone, Symbian, J2ME and Android. Coverage of most phones typically needs 70 different versions of the downloadable application. This all adds to the cost of QA, support and maintenance of downloadable apps. 2. Deployment of a mobile web application is much easier - give out a URL, an SMS call to action or a 2-D barcode and the user is straight into your web site. Compare this to a user having to download and install a downloadable application, with all the concerns a typical user has with downloads - is it secure, will it break my phone, will it fill up space on my phone? From the application development point of view the application needs to be vetted by download store administrators - don't expect this process to be trivial. The barriers to mobile web access are much lower and this encourages accessibility with more use by more people. 3. Upgrading (or bug-fixing) a web site is done in a single controlled location - any changes you make will be reflected immediately to the users. With a downloadable application you need to think how you are going to deliver upgrades to the user. Yes - many of the downloadable apps will stream content from a central server, so downloadable apps should be able to cope with content updates no problem but it won't be able to cope with new features that were not previously available without getting the user to upgrade their local application. Page 10 of 14 2009 www.bemoko.com
  11. 11. © bemoko consulting limited. All rights reserved. 4. Cross linking (hyperlinking) between sites is natural on the web. People can provide links to your web site from their web site and vice versa - it's one of the core principles of the web. This encourages an open network where users can discover you service easily and start using it immediately. Downloadable apps are often built as silos where if the user wants to use the app they start it up and when they are finished, in most cases, they close it. 5. Phone clutter - if people download many apps they can quickly get clutter on their phone. Often users only use a few of their favourite apps and the rest quickly become dormant. Don't think the ‘long tail’ immediately applies to downloadable applications - people download the most popular and top recommended ones and the rest can get left behind. Since a web site does not have this footprint, it's very easy for users to save their bookmarks (either locally or using services like delicious) allowing them to manage and share their there favourite sites. 6. In many cases applications have more demand on phone resources than a web site - for example it can drain the battery quicker or take up more processing power and memory. This is especially important since the majority of mobile phones are still quite limited in hardware capabilities. For downloadable applications: 1. In general you have much more access to the native functionality of the phone with a downloadable application, for example the camera. 2. Games, mapping[28] or other applications with high end media usage and extensive user interaction often lend themselves to downloadable applications. A developer will have access to, e.g. the raw graphic APIs, which make this kind of interaction feasible. Mobile web would not be able to deliver anything more than quite basic functionality gaming. 3. Alternative revenue possibilities are available to downloadable applications. There is both the mechanism to collect the revenue, e.g. apple store, and the mind set of the consumer that they are willing to pay for downloading something of value. So there are options here - and in some cases it might be appropriate to pick an element of both approaches. Some people prefer downloadable apps, some people prefer web apps. At bemoko we prefer what is right for you, your users and everyone's needs. We can help you pick the right path and get you there. Page 11 of 14 2009 www.bemoko.com
  12. 12. © bemoko consulting limited. All rights reserved. I Use Technology X and You Use Technology Y. Can We Talk? A common feature of open web sites is the provision of web services that communicate using standard simple techniques which, in turn, remove many of the barriers that cross-technology integrations used to suffer from. One of the founding principles of the bemokoLive platform was to make it simple to plug these web services together. Essentially sharing the joys of SOA (Service-oriented architecture)[29] and mashups[30] that we've all grown to love over the past few years. Using this technique we can plugin to a whole host of approaches including .NET[31], JavaEE[32] and PHP[33]. We do have native Java and PhP support. Even with that, it is not uncommon for us to use web services to integrate with other Java technology stacks, due to the value of distribution and reusability that good SOA design gives us. This flexibility and choice encourages the bemokoLive integration architecture to scale from 1-page sites to the multi-million subscriber based social networks. There is even the opportunity for mobilisation with no or little change from existing web sites if the site has been built following best practices - i.e. standards compliant (and preferable semantic) markup such as the approach provided by Microformats[34]. In this way we can treat the web site as a web service and plug straight into bemokoLive, with effort from all sides kept to a minimum. If you are interested further in this area, please do take up our offer of FREE advice on our website - http://bemoko.com/bemoko/i/page/sign-up. We'll be more than happy to talk through the technical integration options and put your mind at rest. Summary The mobile is becoming an important channel of communication that is probably on your mind. You should be able to see a path along which you can engage in a cost effective manner and see the benefits of doing so. We've presented some of the benefits of letting bemoko help you and look forward to assisting you with your next steps. We at bemoko love mobile. We breath it day in, day out. It excites and drives us forward because we see the opportunity it can bring to both the service provider and the consumer. If you want to chat more get in touch at http://bemoko.com or at info@bemoko.com Page 12 of 14 2009 www.bemoko.com
  13. 13. © bemoko consulting limited. All rights reserved. Publication Details Publication date : February 2009 For more information, please contact: Ian Homer, Director, info@bemoko.com bemoko is the leading innovator in flexible mobile web solutions, providing a comprehensive platform for compelling mobile web sites. For more information see http://bemoko.com References 1. Nielson critical mass - http://www.nielsenmobile.com/documents/CriticalMass.pdf 2. Why celebrities love Twittering - Stephen Fry on Friday Night With Jonathan Ross - http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/7851383.stm 3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 comScore whitepaper - Examining PC & mobile Internet Usage in the U.K - http://www.comscore.com/press/release.asp?press=2605 4. Smartphones drive mobile markets - http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/7797908.stm 5. What is the difference between a Feature Phone and a Smartphone? - http://www.techneos.com/content/pwhat-difference-between-feature- phone-and-smartphone-which-techneos-software-works-eachp 6. Vodafone to launch massive mobile internet campaign - http://www.mobilenewscwp.co.uk/News/66308/vodafone_to_launch_massiv e_mobile_internet_campaign.html 7. Saatchi & Saatchi launch campaign for T-Mobile's G1 handset with Google features, the first phone to run on Android - http://www.saatchi.co.uk/news/archive/saatchi__saatchi_launch_campaign_ for_t- mobiles_g1_handset_with_google_features_the_first_phone_to_run_on_and roid 8. Apple misled iPhone users over internet capability - http://www.independent.co.uk/news/media/advertising/apple-misled- iphone-users-over-internet-capability-909658.html 9. Everett Rogers Technology Adoption Lifecycle model - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:DiffusionOfInnovation.png 10. Touch Usability - haptics - http://www.touchusability.com/haptics/ 11. It's here! The Pico Projector mobile phone - http://www.gizmag.com/samsung-pico- projector-mobile-phone/10773/ 12. Out-of-Home Integration Will Drive Mobile Campaigns - http://www.nextgreatthing.com/wordpress/2008/09/04/out-of-home- integration-will-drive-mobile-campaigns/ Gears Future APIs: Location API - http://almaer.com/blog/gears-future-apis- 13. location-api Facebook mobile - http://m.facebook.com/ 14. Twitter mobile - http://m.twitter.com 15. Flickr mobile - http://m.flickr.com 16. 17. Social Networking Goes Mobile - http://www.juniperresearch.com/shop/viewwhitepaper.php?whitepaper=70 18. Japan’s Mixi: A Social Network As A Purely Local Phenomenon - http://www.techcrunch.com/2008/07/20/japans-mixi-a-social-network-as-a- purely-local-phenomenon/ 19. Global Ring Tones Market Waning - http://www.mobilewhack.com/global-ring- Page 13 of 14 2009 www.bemoko.com
  14. 14. © bemoko consulting limited. All rights reserved. tones-market-waning/ 20. ComScore study: Apple’s iPhone is the top choice for mobile gaming - http://topnews.us/content/23138-comscore-study-apple-s-iphone-top-choice-mobile-gaming 21. UI Personalities: a new premium content market on the radar - http://www.visionmobile.com/blog/2009/01/ui-personalities-a-new- premium-content-market-on-the-radar/ 22. Which magazine - https://www.which.co.uk 23. Estate Agents - The Next Big Mobile Advertisers? - http://www.mobiadnews.com/?p=1654 24. Mobile campaign increases tax & duty free spend by - 50% http://www.manticpoint.com/product/Bristol%20International%20Airport%2 0Case%20Study.html 25. Jameson whiskey runs mobile campaign for St. Patrick’s Day - http://www.mobilemarketer.com/cms/news/advertising/681.html 26. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/XHTML_Mobile_Profile - XHTML Mobile Profile 27. http://www.openmobilealliance.org/tech/affiliates/wap/wapindex.html http://www.google.com/latitude 28. Google latitude - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Service- 29. Service-oriented architecture - oriented_architecture 30. Mashups - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mashup_(web_application_hybrid) 31. NET - http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/netframework/ 32. JavaEE - http://java.sun.com/javaee/ 33. PHP - http://www.php.net/ 34. Microformats - http://microformats.org/ Page 14 of 14 2009 www.bemoko.com