Not too long ago, phone applications were the new kid on the block for banking, mobile games, and productivity suites. These days, mobile app development is a multi-billion dollar industry. Worldwide, approximately 9 million apps exist across all major phone operating systems.
However, many companies still do not have a mobile app for business. Believe it or not, there are good reasons not to spend the money on building an app and maintaining it. That said, the vast majority of organizations could benefit a lot from a business app.
Read on as we discuss various factors on whether you should provide mobile apps for your company.
Consider the Audience That Would Use Your Mobile App for Business
Naturally, if your audience never uses the app, then phone app development is a waste of money. For example, say you are an event organizer for seniors. It's probably a better idea to give them traditional methods of finding out about upcoming activities.
In some situations, you simply may not need an app. The web browser version may be sufficient. Depending on how your customers use your service, there may be no real incentive to download something from the App Store.
However, some companies absolutely need one. Banks, email providers, music streaming services, and so forth all require mobile apps. Examine your business's service to determine if it would improve with a mobile app.
Account for Your Traffic and Device Statistics
Sometimes, consumer usage will tell you whether you need a mobile app. A large quantity of global Internet activity originates almost exclusively from mobile devices. If you observe that your users are visiting your website on their phones, it may be time to build an app.
Further, you may discover that they are using other devices, such as tablets or Chromebooks. In these cases, it might be worth considering whether you should branch out to other mobile devices as well.
It can be informative to see how other developers make these decisions. The app market is a fluid one, so be sure to learn from the businesses that have come before you.
Make Sure You Have a Budget for Mobile App Development
Unfortunately, keeping a business app up-to-date is a much taller order than it seems. It requires a full team of mobile app developers working around the clock to maintain the application.
To remain competitive, many apps regularly update their interfaces and features. This can happen on a weekly or monthly basis. If users see that there have been no updates for several months, that reduces confidence in the app's security and reliability.
You will have to comply with the regulations for app stores, too. And since there is a large share of Apple users, you will have to develop applications for multiple platforms. All of these platforms have entirely different codebases, which jack up the price of app development.
Last but not least, take into account security. Since phones are where people use the majority of their Internet traffic, they are also the biggest target. Hackers purposefully seek out mobile phones and try to exploit their vulnerabilities.
In short, a large portion of your app development budget will be for security purposes. If you suffer a security breach, this could cripple your reputation and ROI. You may become the victim of lawsuits and legal penalties for poor privacy practices.
Be Willing to Sacrifice for Convenience
People hate being made to run around to do simple things, especially when patronizing a new business. Unfortunately, many businesses do not make it easy for their customers. They have frustrating UI, unintuitive methods for dealing with account issues, and much more.
Remember: convenience is key. The easier it is to download and use your applications, the better. People will pay an arm and a leg to have things easy.
Think of the last time you had to use an application that was infuriating. Chances are, you deleted the app as soon as you no longer needed it. Now imagine how your customers feel if they use an application that toys with their patience.
Make a Push Towards Better Mobile Marketing
The old days of coupon codes and email offers are on the way out the door. These things do still exist, but much less sparingly than before. These days, people do it all through their applications.
For example, it's very common for someone to receive a notification about an upcoming sale. When they tap that notification and it takes them directly to an online store where they can take advantage of the deal.
If you want more sales, and more marketing engagement, then meet customers where they are. That means having a mobile app to access your services--and marketing--directly. If you force them to do everything through a desktop computer, which is less convenient, they may not give you the time of day.
If you do decide to go with a mobile app for business, then make full use of your analytics. These are the little nuggets of meta-data that describe how a consumer uses your application. This is how long they spend on each page, which items they add to their cart, and so on.
Use AI to maximize this data. You can learn a ton of valuable information just by examining past customer behavior through an AI lens.
Build Your Mobile Business App Today
Many companies question whether they need a mobile app for business. The thing is, the writing is already on the wall. Except in a few small, unique circumstances, just about every business should have mobile apps.
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