The mobile web may be growing, but how “mobile” is it?

Tablet traffic is very different from mobile phone traffic.

I recently looked through the my Google Analytics account to understand how visitors access Domain Name Wire.

96% of visits come from a traditional computer such as a laptop or desktop. That leaves a relatively small number coming from mobile platforms.

But more shocking to me is how the mobile number breaks down. Almost all mobile visits come from the iPad.

To me, iPad traffic isn’t truly mobile. Sure, someone might visit the site while at a coffee shop. But you can do that on your laptop, too.

The iPad experience is more similar to desktop computing than mobile phone browsing.

Everyone talks about the explosion of mobile web use. It’s certainly growing; 8% of web traffic is a common number I hear. But I don’t think tablet traffic should be grouped into this number. And it makes up a big chunk of the 8%.

Whenever you hear a push to mobile based on these general numbers, I recommend digging deeper.


  1. FX says

    Mobile traffic is anywhere from 15-50%
    Type in traffic is around 15-20% on generics.
    Traffic on high trafficked websites is nearly 50%

    Domain Industry is once again behind the rest of the world. Very few parking companies have mobile friendly landers.

  2. says

    I think it varies depending on the type of website you have. For our site,, we do get a steady stream of mobile visitors, but most of our traffic is consistently desktop visitors.

    Other projects we have vary as well. Some projects that cater more towards a mobile device get higher numbers than our lead generation tool.

    Also how well your site converts to mobile would make a big difference on how often someone were to return to it.

    Personally I will read blogs from my iphone or ipad about domains, but wouldn’t do research on domains until I was at a computer.

  3. says

    Seems unclear how you define mobile here – do you mean portable devices, phones, or devices with a screen size below a certain maximum? Or do you mean traffic from IP addresses belonging to mobile carriers?

    One reason to see an Ipad as a mobile device is the touchscreen and changeable orientation.

  4. says

    As Harrison points out traffic varies dependant on the type of website. Google Analytics for my live train times website,;

    Windows: 52.27%
    iPhone: 16.28%
    Android: 10.94%
    iPad: 6.90%
    Macintosh: 6.17%
    BlackBerry: 4.03%
    SymbianOS: 0.92%
    iPod: 0.77%
    (not set): 0.66%
    Linux: 0.39%

  5. Josh says

    Mobile use has always made me scratch my head. I am a practical guy so if I am out of my house it is for a reason. Why or where I have the time to stop and surf the web is beyond me…while I am driving maybe?

    I suspect mobile use in the true sense like on phones etc is a passing fad or stuck in a younger generation. Which leads me to believe most comes from public transit riders who if I think about it should consider a better job or a car before a fancy phone and stuck riding a bus…OR a person in a coffee shop who again should consider a real job. Not to generalize but lets be honest who do we see surfing the web for real on a phone?

    I am generalizing II know but it’s true. And I agree Andrew an ipad is not a true mobile imo either. I hate carrying a wallet let alone a pad, maybe the mini ipad will get more 30-70+ yr old involved in surfing outside the home, riding public transit, acting hip, drinking coffee on a patio or not working as hard.

  6. TD says

    @ Josh, I read all news and check emails on my android cellphone early in the morning before getting up. Its more practical and then I know what the day has in store.

    I also use it a lot if I am out to dinner and the conversation goes on something that needs to be checked online. Many bets are decided this way.

    I think I have a good enough job 😉 but I am happy to be considered younger generation….lol….

  7. TD says

    Btw riding a bus has nothing to do with having a real job or not. Jeeee where did that come? Lots of people uses the bus for transportation across the world. In some places its the norm and even ceo’s of big corporations do.

  8. Bryan G. says

    Josh I agree with you; if I go out I don’t have time to stop and use my phone or ipad to browse the internet. It is more efficient on fiber optic or a dedicated line with a larger screen, mouse and keyboard so that is my preference. I will admit, I’m not good at multi-tasking. If I were maybe I’d do more while driving, eating, conversing, etc. For myself it’s a distraction I can use during downtime only. I would disagree with it being a fad though.

  9. Josh says

    @TD, I wasn;t totally serious about all bus users having poor jobs, more of a sarcastic moment 😉

    @Bryan, it’s still so early in this tech imo that it will be quite a while before we know for sure. I just have a hard time accepting it as completely practical. I mean who really watches tv or a movie on a pad on a bus or in a coffee shop or trip etc…13 year olds! As long as mommy and daddy hand over the cash the fad will continue lol

  10. domainguy says

    the size of the sreen has everthing to do with it! why strain on a small scrren? its hard to type on a small keyboard.Thats why the ipad is a big deal its the medium size screen. how did jobs state it? no one will ever use a 7 inch creen and every manfacuture left the small screen industry and the ipad moved in to conquer….
    talk about misleading a stupid industry.

  11. Magento mobile app says

    Mobile commerce is really booming. Our site gains much traffic from mobile (more than 60%), and we even decided to build a mobile app for our store.
    Anyone think mobile app is a great solution?

Leave a Reply