iOS9 and ad blocking

iOS9 and ad blocking

Oct 20 2015 | by KIEL HANSON

As is becoming the norm every September, there are a lot of BIG announcements from Apple. We see every man and their dog tweeting about the various updates, and then after about a week or so, the dust settles and everyone goes about their business as usual.

This year, however, the release of iOS9 has caused a lot of people to continue talking about content blocking.

Mobile ad blocking

iOS9, the latest version of the mobile OS for iPhone and iPad, launched on 16th September and with it, the tools for developers to create content blocks for Safari. Using these, Safari users are able to block ads, tracking scripts, images and javascript, though ads in apps such as YouTube or Facebook will not be blocked.

Some question whether this is a Apple putting restrictions on ad rivals such as Google (who use mobile ads) as the update certainly doesn’t affect Apple’s iAds!

We know that ad blocking isn’t new, but with 700 million of iPhones sales across the globe this is a huge market. The means for iPhone users to use content blocking is far more accessible on mobile than on it is on desktop browsers that require extensions or plugins.

So why has Apple introduced this for iOS9?

To put it simply, most, if not all mobile users will at some point have experienced irritating ads that pop up out of nowhere and cover your entire screen. These ads are not only annoying, they slow browsing experience and prolong what may have just been a quick search for information.

Apple have provided a solution to this, and once users move to ad blocking, it’s unlikely that they’ll look back.

So, good news for mobile users...but where does that leave digital marketing?

It will definitely impact the digital marketing world, especially in terms of tracking users on mobile and targeted ads.

What can we do?

  • Analyse and adapt
  • Measure statistics
  • Move to new methods if and when necessary.
  • Focus on good SEO - depending on paid advertisements alone has never been good practice for digital marketers so this will once again reinforce the need to focus your efforts on optimising your site
  • Social media - utilise and don’t underestimate the power of ‘word of mouth’. It will become a lot more integrated with the introduction of ad blocking, so creating engaging and shareable content will be essential.

The internet changes and with it so must we. Though this may be a quick win for those who want a more streamlined mobile browsing experience, it brings with it new challenges for digital marketers and potentially (and hopefully) the end of ad infested sites for all of us!

If you’re looking for advice on how to alter your digital marketing strategies in light of mobile ad blocking, get in touch!