Mobile search and Internet use in Japan

Should you go after Mobile Search users in Japan? Read the facts and tips about Mobile Search and Mobile Internet users in Japan.

One of Japan’s largest mobile portal sites, “mobile@nifty”, opened its shopping search services. The users can search products from 10,000 shops participating the service.

More and more people are accessing Internet from their cell phones. In June 2006, research by Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communication showed that there were more mobile Internet users (approx. 69.23mil) than PC Internet users (approx. 66.01mil) in Japan for the first time in history. It also showed 57% (approx. 48.62mil) of the Internet users (approx. 85.29mil) were using both PC and mobile devices to access Internet. But, does this mean that everyone should put the priority in mobile search and mobile SEM?

That depends on who is your target market, and the type of services and products that you offer. If your target market matches to the demographic of the users of “blog search”, “image/photo search” and “video/music search”, you may want to create a mobile site and start a paid campaign right away. Also, many research shows that books, CDs, tickets and other low cost items ($20 or less/item) are popular items purchased using cell phone. Mobile Internet is convenient especially when you know what you want, but it looks that people still go to PC for some researches and readings when they consider purchasing expensive items.

Keep in mind that average mobile Internet users in Japan are younger than that of PC Internet users. Many Internet users under 25 only access Internet from their cell phone. I think that some of the ways to do well in mobile Internet is to have a site that is more appealing to younger generation, has an easy purchasing process, and has steps to prevent from shopping frauds.