Quick Smartphone Statistics to Support Your Mobile Campaigns in 2013

Dec. 17, 2012 | by Piers.Butler

The arrival of the smartphone has re-written how we browse and interact with the internet. They have become so integrated with our day to day habits that many people feel lost without them. I’ve collated a few quick smart phone facts below that can be used to help inform your mobile campaign.

Smartphone penetration is now at 51% of the UK population:

Smartphone penetration

An Average of 76% (23,803,580 people) of UK smartphone users browse the internet with their devices:

Internet Browsers

The three leading operating systems are iOS, Android and Blackberry OS, making up 82% of the market (8% don’t know what system they are using).

Operating System

The frequency of daily search engine use on smartphones has shown a small increase in 2012, up from 2011 data.

2011-2012 daily search engine use

Most people (51%) searching on smartphones only go to the first page of the Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs) :

Number of results pages viewed

A clear distinction from desktop user behaviour where 71% of users will look further than the first page SERPs.

Results pages viewed on a desktop

The top smartphone activities are:

  •  Took a photo or video – 78%
  • Browsed the Internet – 76%
  • Sent or read email – 75%
  • General search – 73%
  • Used an application – 67%
  • Accessed a social network – 66%
  • Looked up directions/used a map – 62%
  • Played games – 62%
  • Product search – 60%
  • Listened to music – 58%

Smartphone activities

Smartphone users performing general searches and browsing the internet are also above 70%. Ensuring that you are providing good content that ranks on the first page of the SERPs could increase conversions during the users research phase at the start of the buying cycle.

Over half (57%) of UK smartphone users visit social media networks every day, slightly more than on desktops (50%).

Social visit frequency

Almost everyone (97%) uses their smartphone at home, closely followed by ‘on the go’. Something particularly interesting is that 64% of smartphone users use their smartphone in a shop or store. This suggests that they may be either looking at price comparisons of the items they are interested in, or researching the product.

Location of smartphone usage

Passing the time is high on smartphone user’s reasons for using the internet via their device (67%). Content is king. Providing as much information on products from reviews (both written and video), tutorials, price comparisons and answers to commonly asked questions will not only increase search visibility, but could prove to be very important access points to the brand.

Reasons for using internet on smartphone


Smartphones are already integrated into most users search habits and should be an essential integrated part of natural, paid and digital marketing campaigns. There is a clear opportunity to target smartphone users during their research phase by supplying relevant information and interesting content as they browse for fun or for answers.

If you want to play around (or download) with smartphone data from most countries, have a look at  http://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/mobileplanet/en/

Piers Butler SEO

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    Comment (1)

    • Jack Josephy

      Nice set of stats. It's worth noting that people are more frequently using their smart phones to research product/trips whilst more largely converting on a PC or Laptop.

      Also interesting to see that the source for this data http://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/mobileplanet/en/ is not properly mobile friendly!Dec 17, 2012 01:34 pm

    Please note: the opinions expressed in this post represent the views of the individual, not necessarily those of iCrossing.

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