Today, Google announced a very intriguing addition to its mobile search offering; mobile app streaming. The concept is based on the idea that certain information you are searching for may be found within a particular app and therefore Google should show you that information within the app. In the past, if that data was even spidered (it now is) the information would have be buried in the app and knowing the actual experience of using the app would have been only been possible by installing it. Well today, Google has stated they will stream a virtual version of the application to your mobile phone without the need to install it! Then, if you find the experience was successful and enjoyable, you can choose to install the application on your phone. Here is a (large, 8mb!) animated image from Google that previews the new functionality.
What does this mean to you as a business owner? If you do not yet have an app for your business it could be yet another reason to get one if it makes sense to have one; why should become clearer in a moment.
If you have your own mobile application then this could radically increase installs or stall them completely depending on the quality and user experience of your mobile app. It is early days but I’d wager if you don’t optimize your app for user experience and quality, Google will see the resulting lack of installs after virtually streaming the app and chances are your app will receive less exposure on Google. Huh… that seems familiar.
Yup, it seems Google has found a way to enhance the signals it receives from apps to determine which ones deserve more visibility (just like search engine rankings) to increase the satisfaction of the everyday Google experience; one of their main objectives. Bravo Google, you have done it again… streaming an app virtually… I didn’t see that coming!
There will be more on this, I’m sure, on next week’s 243rd episode of SEO 101 on WebmasterRadio.FM.