Posts tagged rich

Why The Rich May Be Last To The Mobile Commerce Future

Mobile commerce is booming. Indeed, according to Forrester’s estimates, by 2018, mobile commerce (excluding travel/food services) will exceed 53% of US online sales. 

But in a striking reversal to the norm, wherein the rich get access to the future first, mobile commerce is thriving first with the comparatively poor. This suggests that to truly see the future of mobile, you might first want to take a look at India or other emerging economies.

The Money Is In Commerce

While the history of mobile has been consumed with peddling 9-cent apps, and now in-app purchases, the future looks like commerce. According to a VisionMobile Developer Economics report, mobile commerce is “expected to account for 2.5 times as much revenue as the rest of the app economy put together in 2015.”

Indeed, much of that commerce craze won’t happen in-app at all, but in-browser, as VisionMobile analyst Christina Voskoglou posits:

App developers prioritizing the Mobile Browser (16%) have significantly higher adoption of e-commerce than iOS (11%) and Android (11%). This is explained by the ease of porting an existing web e-commerce app to mobile and leveraging the popularity of existing e-commerce apps.

But it’s also because most people aren’t so dedicated to a particular brand that they want that brand to sell to them through a dedicated app. They browse, they buy, they move on.

This, however, may not tell the whole story.

Getting The Varian Rule Backwards

Google’s chief economist, Hal Varian, has a clever way of seeing the future. Now dubbed “the Varian Rule,” it goes like this: “A simple way to forecast the future is to look at what rich people have today.”

In other words, what the rich do and have today, the middle class will have in roughly five years and the poor in 10. 

Unfortunately, India has this “rule” backwards. 

While commerce may be the future of mobile, generally, it’s increasingly the present for India and other developing economies. As pointed out by Voskoglou, in India mobile commerce skyrocketed from 10% to 50% of online transactions during the last 12 months and should top 70% in 2015. 

That’s blisteringly fast growth.

But it’s also par for the mobile course in India, which has seen companies like retailer Flipkart—India’s—and Myntra (now owned by Flipkart) dump the Web entirely for mobile apps. Myntra currently sees 80% of its traffic (and 60% of sales) in its mobile app, which the company expects to propel to 90% of traffic and a greater chunk of sales by the end of 2015.

The reason for this torrid mobile commerce growth in India and throughout emerging economies everywhere is necessity. Most of the world can’t afford a laptop. Even if they can, their countries often lack the communications infrastructure to reliably access the Internet with it.

But by Ericsson estimates 90% of the world’s population over the age of 6 will own a phone by 2020. It therefore makes sense to construct commerce around mobile devices.

Seeing The Future

And much of that commerce will transition to apps, not just the Web. Flipkart has moved to app-only because its customers want a dedicated Flipkart experience to buy through them. 

On my own iPhone, I only have two commerce apps, excluding travel: Amazon and Nordstrom. They’re the only brands I’ve deemed worthy of dedicated attention (and let’s just say the Amazon app sees a lot more use than the Nordstrom app—I’m not a clothes shopper). 

In this app-centric world, Google is the clear winner, as appFigures shows:

Google’s apps and the developers writing for its platform now significantly exceed iOS or any other platform, and have grown much faster.

The answer, as before, is the emerging economies that are growing up on mobile even as the Western economies remain somewhat complacent with their pricey desktops and laptops. Eventually we’ll get around to mobile commerce in earnest, with more spending power to support it, but for now, if you want to see the future, look to India.

Lead image courtesy of Shutterstock

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SEO 101: Make Your Site Stand Out in SERPs With Rich Snippet Mark-Up – Search Engine Journal

Search Engine Journal
SEO 101: Make Your Site Stand Out in SERPs With Rich Snippet Mark-Up
Search Engine Journal
Google has remained consistent in its stance on structured data and although it is not used as a ranking signal, there are many important SEO gains that can improve your overall search performance. Therefore, structured data shouldn't be ignored.

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SEO 101: Make Your Site Stand Out in SERPs With Rich Snippet Mark-Up by @vertical_coop

Let’s talk abou structured mark-up and rich snippets, as well as its relevance among Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).

The post SEO 101: Make Your Site Stand Out in SERPs With Rich Snippet Mark-Up by @vertical_coop appeared first on Search Engine Journal.

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SEO: Using Rich Snippets to Increase Clicks – Practical Ecommerce

SEO: Using Rich Snippets to Increase Clicks
Practical Ecommerce
If you don't win the click, you can't make the sale. But if you don't get noticed, you can't win the click. Ecommerce sites need to take advantage of every option to entice searchers to click on their page instead of a competitor's. Rich snippets

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Study: Google Now Displays Rich Answers For 19.45% Of Queries

Rich answers are now displaying for targeted queries at a rate or 19.45% for targeted queries, according to a new study by Stone Temple Consulting.

The post Study: Google Now Displays Rich Answers For 19.45% Of Queries appeared first on Search Engine Land.

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Google Introduces Rich Medical Content Into Knowledge Graph

Users will soon see deeper health information for more than 400 conditions.

The post Google Introduces Rich Medical Content Into Knowledge Graph appeared first on Search Engine Land.

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Filthy Rich iOS Fanatics Can Pre-Order A $30,000 Apple Watch

If you thought $5,000 was too much for a luxury Apple Watch, then this show of excess really ought to smack your gob: Mervis Diamond Importers just opened pre-orders for its diamond-flanked Apple wrist gizmo for upwards of $30,000, CNET reports.

Mervis, which offered a $20,000 iPad in 2010, tricked out Apple’s wearable with 18-karat rose gold and eight rows of top-grade diamonds. The result looks something like several diamond tennis bracelets tied together to form a wristband, judging by the mock-up the business posted on its Facebook page last week

See also: The Apple Watch Will Cost How Much?!

Technologically, there’s no difference between the $349 base model Apple Watch and this opulent version. The value lies in the band’s hundreds of stones, which collectively total more than 15 carats and individually boast high grades of E/F in color and VS1/VS2 in clarity.

As for the metal, if rose-gold doesn’t match the other baubles on your bling-festooned self, take heart: Mervis can cast the watch in white gold or platinum as well. Hopefully it will do a better job crafting the product than it did with the mock-up above, which seems to smush the Apple Watch into a shorter casing.

Speaking of the setting, it’s not evident whether the device can pop out, so that an Apple Watch 2 can one day take its place. That seems rather important, considering the Mervis watch’s price tag exceeds mortgage down payments in many parts of the country.

But if you have the funds, then the only other thing you’ll need is patience: The Mervis custom luxury edition of the Apple Watch won’t ship until at least June 2015.

Photo courtesy of Mervis Diamond Importers

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Sweet Pumpkin and Rich Chocolate Beer at Brooklyn Pour – Huffington Post

Huffington Post
Sweet Pumpkin and Rich Chocolate Beer at Brooklyn Pour
Huffington Post
Sipping on a glass of chocolate-flavored beer that resembled the taste of a creamy chocolate shake, I felt like I was at a 1950s boxcar diner instead of at a beer festival. But at the annual Brooklyn Pour, all beverages–including this delicious Shake

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All The Rich Kids Are Into COBOL—But Why?

All the cool kids write Node.js. But the rich kids? They’re into COBOL. 

According to an ITWorld report, college students that take COBOL classes earn as much as $10,000 more in their first jobs than their Go-slumming hipster friends. Even though COBOL is a programming relic of enterprise systems gone by.

See also: Google’s Go Programming Language: Taking Cloud Development By Storm

True, that report is based on a personal anecdote from Leon Kappelman, a business information-systems professor at the University of North Texas, not a survey or anything else you might consider, well, actual data. Still, let’s assume for a moment that Prof. Kappelman is onto something.

What gives?

No COBOL Renaissance

First of all, let’s be clear: COBOL isn’t cool. By any metric, it’s just as “out-of-date, not attractive, complex, and expensive” as critics have opined

If you look at the total volume of jobs for COBOL, it has been steadily declining even as relative newcomers like Node.js and Objective-C blossom and boom, according to Indeed jobs data:

Even if we focus solely on programming languages focused on enterprise computing, and specifically on employer interest in hiring people with programming language expertise, COBOL is an also-ran, as IEEE’s language popularity index shows:

Source: IEEE Spectrum

COBOL’s ranking plummets if we add in things like relevance on Twitter, interest expressed through online forums like Stack Exchange, and other measures. COBOL is, as Coding Horror’s Jeff Atwood writes, “so very, very dead.” 

In sum, COBOL won’t get you a date. And it probably won’t get you a job, either.

COBOL Is Dead. Long Live COBOL

Except, of course, when it does. The easiest way to decipher the “COBOL grads make $10,000 more” is simply to look at supply and demand. While the demand for COBOL isn’t high, the supply of people who understand it is even lower. This makes COBOL code jockeys a valuable commodity … if they can find an employer that needs someone to update their green screen applications.

See also: Why You Should Learn COBOL

In other words, there’s really no need to learn COBOL, but there’s probably some company, somewhere that desperately needs younger programmers to learn it, as a Computerworld article from 2006 expresses well:

The persistence of Cobol—welcome or not—presents a dilemma for many companies. Their legacy code will require significant resources for years to come, yet younger software developers often don’t want to work with Cobol, and in most cases, they’re no longer learning it in school. And while there are thousands of Cobol coders still in the workplace, a large percentage of them are nearing retirement age.

Maybe this is one reason academics think COBOL should remain on their curricula, according to a survey conducted by Micro Focus, a COBOL vendor, and discovered by SD Times’ Alan Zeichick:

A poll of academic leaders from 119 universities across the world saw more than half (58%) say they believed COBOL programming should be on their curriculum, with 54% estimating the demand for COBOL programming skills would increase or stay the same over the next 10 years. That’s a far cry from today’s reality. Of the 27% confirming COBOL programming was part of their curriculum, only 18% had it as a core part of the course, while the remaining 9% made it an elective component.

Betting On COBOL?

All of this leads some to suggest that young developers should pick up COBOL as a core competence. I disagree. In some ways it’s like learning Latin or Greek: possibly useful—I mean, who doesn’t want to read Homer in the original Greek?—but unlikely to lead to employment.

Yes, there are COBOL jobs out there. And yes, learning COBOL might put young programmers in a position to upgrade outdated systems to more modern alternatives.

But is this really how you want to spend your time? It pays well, OK. But take a look at these two code snippets that Atwood highlights and decide which you’d rather code. C#?

Source: Jeff Atwood


Source: Jeff Atwood

There’s really no reason to make work any more unpleasant than it must be. Far better to build the future with Go or other young Web languages. 

Lead image courtesy of Shutterstock.

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The 2 Types Of Rich Media Your SEO Plan Can’t Ignore – Search Engine Land

Search Engine Land
The 2 Types Of Rich Media Your SEO Plan Can't Ignore
Search Engine Land
Google's Universal Search results represent additional ways for websites to be found – but often, rich media like those found in Universal results are an afterthought to text content in the Search Engine Optimization (SEO) strategy. It's true that when
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