The rise of mobile search users

China mobile search users reached 365 million in 2013, with a 25.3% growth from the previous year, according to CNNIC. Mobile Internet and search users will maintain their stable and strong growth along with accelerated building of network infrastructure, according to iResearch’s estimations. China mobile search users are expected to reach 618 million by 2017.


China Mobile Search Revenue

China Mobile Search Market generated 4.28 billion Yuan in 2013, around making up 11.0% of total search revenue in China. According to estimation, the growth of mobile search revenue will drop to 57.6% by 2017, due to a shorter business cycle of mobile Internet market than PC Internet market. The compound annual growth rate of mobile search revenue in China is expected to reach 80.5% from 2013 to 2017.



Future Trend of China mobile Search Engine Market

Trend 1

Mobile search traffic will continue its fast growth with intensified market concentration.

Mobile search traffic has huge room for growth, despite the currently small volume. User activities on mobile devices become more fragmented, thus user attention on mobile devices would become scarce resource. Users therefore place higher requirements on the convenience of obtaining search results on their mobile devices. As a result, premium mobile search products will attract more loyal users, making mobile search market more concentrated than PC search market.

Trend 2

Mobile Search and PC search will complement each other, mobile search mainly meet instant search needs of users.

Although the traffic and UV of PC search gradually reach saturation and mobile search occasionally replaces PC search for some search requests, mobile search complements rather than replace PC search. While mobile search mainly meets instant search needs of users, PC search responds to more static and stable search request of users.

Trend 3

Text search will remain as the mainstream type of mobile search.

The constraint of screen size and keyboard design has made input more difficult than output on mobile devices. Moreover, due to limited application scenarios of voice recognition and the lack of variety of multi-media search results, it would be rather difficult for new ways of search to overtake traditional text search. Therefore, text search will remain as the main type of mobile search.

Trend 4

Mobile search revenue will soar in the short term but may meet with challenges in the long run.

Given more than a decade of development and cultivation of online ads on PC, the market would see fast shift of advertisers from PC to mobile. However, in the long run, it would be difficult to sustain rapid growth by relying solely on the shift of advertisers. Therefore, mobile search revenue is only likely to maintain stable growth when numerous advertisers enter mobile advertising market following the boom of mobile Internet users and the improvement of business model.

Trend 5

The profit model of mobile search will go beyond advertising.

In spite of limited screen size, users have more focused attention on mobile devices and mobile ads are more precisely targeted. However, constrained by display space and user experience, there are limited options of profit model for mobile search advertising. Commissions may become a profit model for mobile search in the future. In addition, along with further exploration of the commercial value of vertical search segments including games, reading, entertainment, shopping and more which rely on mobile search as the entrance, traffic monetization + user monetization would be another possible profit model for mobile search.



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