Report Projects Mobile Local Search to Top Desktop Local Search By 2015

Mobile has a lock on the local search market. According to the latest projections from BIA/Kelsey, mobile local search volume will surpass desktop local search for the first time in 2015.

If that projection manifests in reality, BIA/Kelsey says that by 2016, mobile local search will exceed desktop local search by well over a whopping 27 billion annual queries.

“Among the drivers of mobile local search is the fact that it happens further down the purchase funnel, compared with desktop search,” says Michael Boland, senior analyst and program director at BIA/Kelsey. “We’re seeing that play out in the growth of local query volume, and in performance metrics like clickthrough rates.”

Not surprisingly, what’s good for mobile local searches will also be good for their associated revenue opportunities. But it will take some time to fully recognize this correlation.

As mobile local search queries rise, so will related advertising revenues. BIA/Kelsey forecasts mobile local search revenues to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 160.4 percent, from $400 million in 2011 to $3.2 billion in 2016.

“It’s important to note that while mobile local search volume will exceed its desktop equivalent, ad dollars will remain lower,” Boland adds. “This is because advertisers aren’t yet keeping pace with the growth of mobile local ad inventory, but we expect that to evolve.”