The dominance of app stores will soon be superseded by mobile search linking consumers directly to content within apps, according to Jake Orrin, VP of business development for search provider Quixey.
“In other words, mobile will be more like the web – more open, intuitive, and useful, without a high barrier to entry. Deep linking and better mobile search help level the playing field and make mobile all about creating the best content, not controlling the means of access to content,” the executive told Mobile World Live.
According to Orrin, many media companies currently ignore the “location, context and the core functionality that’s currently locked inside apps”, and should better utilise the benefits of mobile if they want their content to be discovered by users.
Media companies able “to harness all of the information available from mobile devices and connect users with the right content, at the right time will be the ones who win”, he added.
Deep linking content within apps is a good way to help users find and access content via mobile search. This approach could enable users to be taken directly to a particular song in Spotify or specific point in a YouTube video, depending on what they search for.
“Facilitating the process of getting to the right menu item, recipe, song, or other piece of content will increase the likelihood that users come back to your app time and time again,” the Quixey executive noted.
Improving the visibility of content on mobile search will also make it easier for users to return to an app, without being forced to go through home screens and menus.
“Making it difficult to find content is a surefire way to frustrate users and keep them from coming back to your app,” Orrin suggested.
App discoverability is undoubtedly one of the biggest challenges facing developers due to the huge number of titles now available, particularly in Apple’s App Store and Google Play.
A Google executive said in July that the company planned to “aggressively” ensure apps are easy to find via the company’s search engine.
Responding to a question during Google’s second quarter results call about when app content will start to appear in core search results, Google CFO Patrick Pichette said the company will make sure app indexing, in which deep links to apps are included in search results, is “available and easily accessible across devices”.