Deep Linking Inside Apps: The Next Big Thing in Mobile Ads

mobile adDeep linking inside mobile apps could mean big returns for mobile advertisers.

When Twitter introduced mobile app deep-linking last year, allowing users to view content directly in the Twitter app, users and mobile app marketers both cheered. And for good reason – links that go directly to a site’s interior pages satisfy users’ needs while keeping them in the mobile app, which is a big win for mobile marketers.

Now other companies are following suit, including Facebook, releasing technology that makes it easy to put links into a mobile app, Web page or email that with a single tap takes a user to a specific section of another app installed on the device, said Tim Simonite, MIT TechnologyReview’s IT editor for hardware and software.

This new kind of hyperlink could change how users view apps, making them seem more congruent across an Apple or Google device, though the support has been built into Apple and Google’s mobile operating systems for some time now, Simonite said.

Advertisers can turn this functionality into opportunities, for example, to send a user from a mobile banner ad to an exact landing page inside an app, or improve mobile search so a user can find a specific business nearby. But they must download your app – and use it – to see the ads, which may turn up the pressure on marketers.

Just like deep links on the Web enhanced usability, deep linking within mobile apps could do the same, smoothing the transition from app to app, banner ad to mobile website and search engine to business listing.

In 2017, an estimated 5.1 billion people around the world will use mobile phones, up nearly 1 billion from the mobile phone users today. With mobile advertising spend on the rise, particularly on advertisements that tap into a user’s search or location information, advertisers may be able to target customers through mobile devices like never before.

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