Baidu’s Smart Mini Programs in Post-Covid World: More Than Information Navigation

Xiaoli Ping, Vice President of Baidu and General Manager of Baidu App, answered questions about the recent progress of Baidu App’s smart mini program in the afternoon group interview session of Baidu World 2020 on Sept. 15. 

The growth rate of Baidu’s smart mini program in the past year ranked first in the industry and a large cohort of content creators entered the app’s mobile ecosystem to look for ways to make a profit and survive as a creator, especially in the reviving post-Covid market. 

The commercialization of Baidu App’s smart mini program operates in two major routes. One way to profit is the combination of traffic generated by the content and advertisements brought by Baidu’s mini program ad component. 

The other is the original business model of Baidu App, which offers users online information and offline services, whose value has huge potential to be further developed, according to Xiaoli Ping.

In May, at the 2020 Wanxiang Conference, Baidu announced that it intends to enhance the service capabilities of its 420,000 smart mini programs, which currently provide a wide range of services including government services, shopping and tourism. 

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Service capability is Baidu’s key strategic component and the company seeks to connect users to not only the information they search for, but also the services they hope to find. Baidu’s smart mini programs, together with the tens of thousands of service providers behind the scene, are able to open possibilities and expand the mobile ecology. 

Another important feature is video content. Under the impact of the pandemic, Baidu this year plans to provide subsidies as well as direct more user traffic to high-quality content creators and developers, in part to incentivize more livestreaming and short-video content.