[Marketing-Public]Mozilla at Google

James Graham marketing-public at mozilla.org
Fri, 17 Oct 2003 18:20:46 +0100

Michael Gordon wrote:

> The point is neither where IE stands, nor the history of the IE 
> standings.  The point is where Mozilla stands today, at the very 
> bottom of the heap.  If we look very carefully at the graph we see 
> some minor upward movement for Mozilla, this needs to continue at a 
> more rapid pace.

Before people get too excited about the google stats, lets make it clear 
that, in the absence of further information about how they are compiled 
and, even then, they are not at all reliable as a measure of absolute 
useage. Some examples of variables that might affect the stats are:

Search efficiency. It is possible that, on average, IE users require 
more searches to find the same results than Mozilla users as Mozilla 
users tend to be more technically inclined on average and so may have 
better searching technique. Additionally, it is possible that less 
technically inclined users will not realise the utility of the bookmark 
and history functions and so will /always/ use google to find websites, 
even ones they have visited before.

Browser functionality. How does tabbed browsing affect google hits? Do 
people who use tabs require less navigating back and forth and so fewer 
google hits? Does google count searches performed from search bars, or 
only hits on the homepage?

And so on. The google stats may show a trend, but there is no good 
reason that the data itself (certianly the absolute values and maybe the 
gradient) should be considered in any way reliable.

> The suggestions I have read in this list over the last two weeks are 
> very good; they target the computer industry and professionals within 
> this industry.  What is needed for Mozilla to climb up in the "user 
> standings" is an aggressive marketing campaign targeting the average 
> Internet user.

That approach probably leads to a dead end. The 'average internet user' 
see the internet as a tool and Internet Explorer as the front end to the 
internet in the same way that Explorer is the front end to their files, 
and, more generally, Windows is the front end to computers. Most people 
have no conceptual distinction between Windows and the computer itself; 
there is no reason they should have a conceptual distinction between the 
Internet and Internet Explorer. Mozilla's best chance for marketshare 
outside the tech community is in situations where software is mandated - 
either where a tech-savvy user acts as sysadmin for his family / mother 
/ cousin /whatever's computer or in coporate situations.  People who are 
forced to use the browser at work may then consider installing it at 
home.  Therefore I would suggest that a focus on individual users is not 
the most productive way forward and, instead, people focus on making 
Mozilla sutiable and attractive for use at companies. We already have a 
lot of advantages in this area - for example the ability to create rich 
XUL based Intranet applications using existing XML/CSS/Javascript 
skills, the cross platform nature of the browser, frequent security 
updates, and so on.

> Element 1.
> The web site must describe how and why Mozilla is better than any 
> other web browser on the WWW; this must present examples of how 
> Mozilla performs user tasks in a very simple and straightforward 
> manner.  On each web page there must be at least two links for 
> delivery of Mozilla, one a free download for installing the suite, the 
> other a link for a free CD and user manual for the cost of shipping 
> and the CD disc. 

The new (beta) website covers most of this. It's considerably more user 
friendly than netscape.com.

> Element 2.
> There must be a compressive user manual written for the average 
> Internet user in plain easy to read and understand language.  This 
> manual must address each tool and preference accessible to the average 
> user.  A full description of what the tool or preference is used for, 
> and how to set the tools and preferences for the desired end result.  
> This manual should be available in two formats, the printed form that 
> accompanies the Free CD, and a PDF version for viewing and downloading.

There has been a lot of effort in this area, but little coordination 
between groups. I know Daniel Wang had something slightly comprehensive 
he was preparing. Maybe you would like to search for Mozilla end user 
documentation and work on combining it into a comprehensive guide.

> In light of the above I suggest adding a new newsgroup for New Mozilla 
> Users, and have the postings and replies archived and searchable.  
> This will enable the current newsgroups to address advanced topics and 
> technically difficult problem solving.

forums.mozillazine.org. Newsgroups are no good since the vast majority 
of people don't know they exist and/or don't know how to use them.