Having a web presence is essential as a business, but it’s not sufficient in today’s time and age.
Mobile apps are the new claim to fame since online activity has primarily shifted to palm-sized screens and people prefer using mobile apps more than mobile websites.
According to a Gallup survey, about three-quarter of Americans views their phones at least once every hour, and almost 90% of that time is spent using apps.
Studies reveal that the average U.S. consumer spends 198 minutes per day using apps and only 168 minutes watching TV.
This research confirms that apps have become the unique selling point for businesses nowadays. It is estimated that the mobile app industry is likely to reach over $100 billion in the span of a few years. Today, almost every kind of business needs an app.
If you feel that your business is dropping in sales and market value, try to ascertain the underlying cause.
Is the market right for your product? Is the product of the right quality? Are you targeting the right kind of customer?
Taking feedback from customers on what they expect from the company is always the best route. And what better way to do that than develop an app that highlights your products and services to your customers while also taking feedback from them on a regular basis.
Benefits of Having a Mobile App
One tap access
The user-friendliness of mobile apps, when they’re well-designed, makes life easy for consumers. Once the app icon becomes part of the home screen of a device, the consumer glances at it regularly.
Most importantly, if your user enjoys the experience, he might just as well use the app more frequently.
According to this article, users use only five apps heavily out of all the apps that are downloaded on their smartphones.
But having a business app means allowing customers to have a hands-on experience and engaging them with your content on a regular basis.
Also, it helps in making a brand’s presence felt. An app also increases the brand’s recall in the mind of the consumer.
Creating an app allows customers easy access to make online bookings, shop the looks they adore, share complaints and feedback, and engage with your brand in a hundred different ways.
It allows consumers to save time and effort. The convenience factor is something that all customers look for and if your brand is providing that, it’s winning.
With the advent of apps to aid the visually impaired and differently-abled people, smartphone apps have also excelled in the CSR criteria. These apps help people connect.
An example of this would be apps such as the Wheely App and Chi Safe Path. The main features of these apps include helping the visually impaired navigate on their own and find pit stops like bus stations and seating areas.
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Almost 57 million people in the US are living with disabilities. Thus, a sizeable population requires the need for accessibility within the app features.
Major businesses are incorporating user-friendly interfaces within their apps to cater to this sector.
After a Massachusetts Attorney General passed a ruling, Apple products were made accessible to the visually impaired in 2008. This new order had a major impact on iTunes, but changes to other apps were also made.
Offline is the new online
The availability of content even with little or no connectivity is a salient feature of business apps. The fact that images and articles can be downloaded from an app to be viewed at a later time gives way to the accessibility factor.
As mentioned before, consumers prefer convenience, and any brand that offers it improves user experience, and therefore customers’ liking for it.
Several traveling apps work even when offline. When on vacation, cellular data is often expensive, slow, and limited. However, travel apps such as TripIt and Here Maps offer hassle-free solutions to people so they can manage their itineraries easily.
These apps guide users through a GPS and list down must-visit locations, while also giving insights on the striking aspects of a new city.
Hook the customer
Apps are always updating content and upgrading features. It adds a ton of functionality to app design. Not to mention, it keeps customers hooked. The fact that users have new features to explore adds versatility to the app.
Research reveals that 40% of consumers switch to a competitor if an app’s user experience is not up to the mark. Introducing new features that impress consumers also means that the app gets more downloads and user attention.
According to the Apple Guy Podcast (a website that shares the stories of successful entrepreneurs who work with apps): “Design is really important, especially when you try to reach out to the press for attention.
The benchmark is an app that is really sleek with a great user interface, it’s what people expect.”
With the help of push notifications, a business can now alert customers about sales, promotions, discounts, or any special events.
It also allows businesses to engage with the consumer through content that may not be able to reach as many people if it were only posted on the website.
It also helps create customer loyalty because push notifications appear in a mobile user’s notification panel every day. And if these notifications are personalized, then boom!
It can make a customer feel like they are being addressed directly by the business.
Giving an app a personalized touch makes users feel like the company is going the extra mile to build a healthy relationship with them. An example of this is a live video shopping app called Our Place.
It is just like any other e-commerce app, but with a video call option between the customer and salesperson. It has helped consumers engage in an interactive shopping experience from within the comforts of their homes.
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Customers remember you more clearly
Smartphone icons help build a brand’s identity and increase recall in the viewer’s mind. When they see an icon every day on their home screens and receive personalized push notifications regularly, it naturally forms an impression in the minds of the consumer.
However, the purpose is not to just make an app. Focusing on the features, user experience, functionality, and more are essential to ensure that customers keep using it.
Open Table, an app for global restaurant bookings in just five clicks, became the talk of the town after its release.
According to Forbes, apps “offering activities beyond transportation and lodging” have become the new trend.
Due to Open Table’s immediate popularity, Priceline group (a travel reservation company) has announced the acquirement of the app for $2.6 billion which concludes a threefold increase in the revenue for Open Table.
Engaging a generation of millennials means understanding what they prefer and enjoy. The days of spam content are long gone.
In fact, app usage will increase three-fold in the next few years, and with rapid improvements in technology, innovative apps will change the game. Here’s a detailed guide to mobile marketing strategy.
Hence, this should be taken as a pre-requisite when considering what should be done to make a business successful. Making an app is not a difficult task, but putting oneself in the consumers’ shoes is.
Apps magnify user experience and help businesses get in touch with their customers through a one-time investment in an app.
The kind of business-customer connection achieved through apps cannot be achieved with any other medium.
Ashley Rosa is a freelance writer and blogger. As writing is her passion that why she loves to write articles related to the latest trends in technology. She is currently associated with AirG Team. Their main focus is to remove spam content.