Internet Trends You Need to Know

Mary Meeker

Mary Meeker, a partner at Kleiner Perkins Caulfield and Byers, has just published her latest internet trends report entitled, “2012 Internet Trends Year-End Update.”

Meeker, someone who is looked upon as one of the best analysts in the world about internet trends, delivered her report to a group of Students at Stanford University yesterday. To me, the biggest revelation within it is a huge section of her report that shows how device and connectivity trends are leading to the complete re-imagination of everything from encyclopedias to money. Think about how we are shifting from "stuff" to "online" and you'll begin to sense the trends leading away from accumulation of material things to engagement with all things digital.

Admittedly there are a lot of slides (88) and you might not be inclined to go through the entire deck, but if you look at nothing else please skip ahead to slide #59, the section about the "Asset-Light Generation," and think about how these trends -- which many say are massive, fundamental and systemic shifts in consumer behavior -- are already affecting your business or will very soon.

We studied this deck closely and point out a few obvious trends in that section:

  • People used to buy CDs and DVDs but now buy digitally and stream. Impact on home furnishings? No need for ways to store them.
  • Increasingly people are buying books, magazines and newspapers digitally. No need for bookcases? 
  • Employment is accelerating toward "free agency" and the explosion of the home office. It's easier than ever to be always on and always connected so why sit in a cubical all day? The blurring of lines between what is work and what is home is continuing unabated. Are you anticipating this trend's impact on your business?
  • Mobile payment, social commerce and other trends (e.g., Black Friday E-Commerce Hits Record $1 Billion)  means that your connected customer or prospect has higher expectations than ever for what you deliver online so they can make a decision on your product or service when they're standing at the point-of-sale ready to buy.

You will obviously view this report and pull from it your own insights and conclusions about your own business. It's well worth your investment of time.