NOTE: This post originally appeared in Techcrunch
Here’s the gist:
- In the age of infinite online distractions, successful web businesses must generate new user habits to stay relevant.
- The strength of a web company’s user habits will increasingly equate to its economic value.
- Forming strong user habits is more important than viral growth.
- The Curated Web will run on habits.
Face it; you’re hooked. It’s your uncontrollable urge to check for email notifications on your phone. It’s your compulsion to visit Facebook or Twitter for just a few minutes, but somehow find yourself still scrolling after an hour. It’s the fact that if I recommended a book to purchase, your mind would flash “Amazon” like a gaudy neon sign. If habits are defined as repeated and automatic behaviors, then technology has wired your brain so you behave exactly the way it wants you to.
In an online world of ever-increasing distractions, user habits matter. In fact, the economic value of web businesses increasingly depends on the strength of the habitual behavior of their users. These user habits ultimately will be a deciding factor in what separates startup winners and losers.