Mar 21 2023
Is Your Business Ready for a Mobile App? 5 Strategies for Mobile Apps
In the earlier days of digital marketing, businesses were flocking to create their own mobile apps. Since then, a few realities have slowed the business interest in them. So, is your business ready for a mobile app? Here are the 5 strategies for a mobile app I have created for business to check their investment.
Mobile Apps Realities
- Getting people to download your app is a challenge.
- Driving usage of an app is difficult.
- Creating multiple devices is expensive.
- Maintaining apps is an ongoing investment over time.
- Customer support and servicing are often underestimated.
- The marketplace has become very competitive with many apps in most categories.
As a result of the above, many businesses had invested in apps and found that they weren’t generating enough usage to justify a positive ROI.
Strategy for Mobile
In a recent Meta-commissioned study, 57% of participants found that they were more likely to invest in a product from a website or app. Here are five main strategies used by businesses to optimize your customer mobile experience: Focus on Mobile Website, Create Your App, Build or Customize on an App Platform, Partner with Existing Apps, and Create Content on Existing Apps.
Focus on Mobile Website
When apps initially became popular, websites were designed for desktops and optimized for mobile. Plus, mobile web functionality wasn’t as developed as it is now.
Every business should have a website that works well on mobile, but more and more your mobile site can do everything that an app would do.
As mobile internet speeds are faster, and people are more used to using mobile browsers, attention has shifted from customized applications to mobile websites.
Create Your App
Some businesses still create their apps. For example, most banks, retailers, large loyalty programs, and software services have mobile applications.
Creating an app is still a viable strategy if you can provide a meaningful or necessary service to your customers through an application. Many applications are designed to be easier and better at performing routine functions vs. a website and provide a better user experience.
If you are thinking about creating your application, start with the customer – what is the customer benefit? Is it something customers ask for?
Build or Customize on an App Platform
Rather than creating your application, you can consider if an existing platform can create the functionality that you need. There are often existing platforms or technologies for most basic applications that businesses may want to run through mobile apps.
There are app platforms that exist where businesses can just add their content to quickly create their own application. For example, if you are a fitness instructor and want your own app, there are fitness instructor apps where you can pay a monthly fee to create one.
If your app doesn’t have too much customization required, you can probably find an app platform that allows you to quickly create one from a template.
The advantage of these app platforms is that you can get started quickly with minimal investment. The downside is that you have to work within their templates and functionality.
Partner with Existing Apps
Businesses that don’t have the capacity or interest in creating their own app can partner with or sponsor existing applications.
Years ago, Charmin Toilet Paper found an existing application called “Sit or Squat” that helped people to find public restrooms and also included ratings and even photos. Rather than building their own app, Charmin sponsored the existing app and integrated their brand throughout it.
If you think you may want to create an app, check first that you have a unique idea. Don’t build what you can borrow.
Create Content on Existing Apps
In many industries and categories, there are already plenty of applications that exist that consumers use to find aggregated information.
For example, in looking for restaurants, people often use Open Table, Yelp, or Trip Advisor to make their decision. If you own a restaurant, part of your strategy should be to manage and optimize your presence on these applications.
Check for the apps already used in your industry, and see if there is a way for your business to be integrated or present.
This is based on content from Krista Neher’s best-selling book, “Digital Marketing That Actually Works”. You can find this and more books at Boot Camp Digital
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