The good news is that the mobile app is no longer the province of large corporations and companies with sizeable marketing budgets.
Greater competition between online providers and sleeker technology have democratised app development for the masses and enabled businesses to develop the kind of personal customer engagement that matters so much in today’s competitive world.
Whether you are a small start-up with an e-commerce store, a business providing a useful service or an organisation that just wants to get noticed, there are some great reasons for developing your own personal app.
The Rise of the Mobile Phone
The first is undoubtedly the development of the smartphone. Since it first burst onto the market with the Apple iPhone ten years ago, the rise of the pocket personal computer has revolutionised the way we communicate and connect.
The mobile app industry is now one of the biggest business ecosystems on the planet. Last year, there were nearly 200 billion downloaded across Apple and Android and that’s expected to increase to 280 billion by 2020.
The average smartphone user has nine apps they use on a daily basis but that’s not even the most important factor. We are using our phones more and more for everything that we used to do on desktop pcs. We watch videos, do the shopping and engage on social media.
We have these devices with us practically all the time – we text on the move, buy products or learn a language while we’re sat on the bus going to work. If your business wants to access more customers, you need to be focused on a mobile first approach and you certainly need to have an app.
Standing Out from the Crowd
Which would you prefer? Your potential customer has to open an internet browser and search for your site before they engage. Or do you prefer that this same customer has your company app on their mobile phone and simply taps it to access your products or services immediately. Having a dedicated app not only helps you stand out from the competition it also creates the base for which to further develop your brand and its visibility. Offer services through your mobile app that no one else does and you quickly put yourself ahead of the competition.
Let’s say you provide a service like landscape gardening. You have plenty of competitors in your local area but your app allows clients to book an appointment in just a few seconds. Or you have an online store and you don’t ask your customers to put in their card details every time they want to buy something, you simply include an Amazon style click to buy button.
Ease and Affordability
It’s difficult to get an app developed, isn’t it?
You have to spend a lot of money, you have to come up with the right design, and you’ve got all those updates and making sure bugs and glitches are sorted out. That takes a lot of work, doesn’t it?
The truth is that app development has become easier and certainly more affordable in the last couple of years. You can now get a tailored app for your business that doesn’t cost the earth. That’s the major reason why many small businesses are investing in this area of marketing as a way of building a loyal customer base, providing easy access to the products and services they are looking for.
There’s no doubt that developing an app for your business provides a direct marketing route to potential customers and helps improve engagement, strengthens brand identity and visibility and improves loyalty. It can also be a lot cheaper than you think, if you adopt an MVP approach (Minimum Viable Product), with a plan to grow.