Mobile application portal GetJar has announced the launch of a Visual Bookmark service for WAP publishers. Visual Bookmarks are tiny applications that sit on the phones home screen and, when launched, open a specific mobile web page using the phones built-in browser. Through a free, self-service system available to any WAP-site owner, GetJar automatically creates Visual Bookmarks for all major platforms, including Java, Symbian Series 60, UIQ, Windows Mobile and BlackBerry.
GetJar says it has launched the solution because mobile Internet sites do not have the same sort of visibility on a phone as a downloaded application. Applications appear as icons on the phones home screen, prompting use. But mobile Internet sites, says GetJar, are left out in the cold because they do not involve an application download, so there is nothing on the phones home screen to prompt the user to revisit the site. GetJar says Visual Bookmarks will give mobile Internet sites the same visibility as phone apps, and at no cost. WAP publishers need only specify their sites URL and upload a graphic.
Consumers can download the Visual Bookmarks from GetJar, instantly adding a handy shortcut to a favourite mobile website. For mobile site publishers, a Visual Bookmark can ensure that their site reserves a prominent spot on a consumers handset in the form of a familiar icon, driving adoption and usage. Research conducted by GetJar shows that visitors who have discovered mobile sites through a Visual Bookmark are four to eight times more likely to return to these sites, compared to those who discovered sites via conventional online references such as search engines, SMS messages, ad banners, or WAP text links.
One mobile web portal currently using GetJars free Visual Bookmark service with great success is Vuclip, a mobile video search and delivery service.
We want to reduce barriers to entry for consumers using the mobile web, and bring video content to as many mobile devices as possible, says Vuclip VP of Business Development & Marketing, Ashwin Puri. The GetJar Visual Bookmark service enables us to drive distribution globally across the more than 2,500 devices we currently support. We have found that consumers using the GetJar Visual Bookmark come back to Vuclip almost eight times more frequently than an average mobile web user.
Ilja Laurs, Founder and CEO of GetJar, adds:
Our goal with our free Visual Bookmark service is to boost downloads and usage for mobile web publishers and application developers. A Visual Bookmark drives far more traffic to a mobile site than sending URLs in SMS or relying on the user to bookmark the URL. It bridges the technical gap between entering the URL and going to the site, something that's easy on a PC, but hard on a mobile phone. A Visual Bookmark makes mobile sites stickier, and Vuclips experience proves that it works.