Mobile apps provide a stellar experience and any business without one falls behind their competition in a big way. Apps are a customer’s go-to throughout the day, when they want to find out information, buy new products, communicate with co-workers or issue work orders seamlessly.
If you’re looking to engage your customers or want to streamline processes for your employees, an app is the answer to many pain points.
Companies without dedicated apps are simply being frozen out of the market, unable to keep up with industry and technological changes. Far more than a website, mobile apps are fast becoming indispensable parts of a business’s process, structures and marketing mixes.
With an app, your business is in complete control. The native experience offered by a dedicated application means that you can control exactly what the user sees and how they engage with your brand.
When you design a website, you’re limited to the browser’s capabilities.
A mobile app allows you to harness all the phone’s features to create something truly spectacular. By combining all sorts of technological features (geo-location, push notifications, fingerprint sign-on and the smartphone camera) you’ll be able to create a tool that the user turn to on a daily basis to fulfil their needs.
If done right, your business app will become a favourite on their home screen; a part of their everyday tasks in a way a website is not.
Your app is where the user is
Apps are portable. You may already have a mobile website or staff intranet, but if this is not optimised for mobile, you risk alienating employees who are on the move. After all, the nature of work these days means employees need to access information even when they’re not at their desk.
Reduce the steps to payment
Take ASOS, whose mobile app created a seamless sales process for customers worldwide. The online retail fashion powerhouse created a dedicated mobile shopfront that put their products directly into people’s pockets and making it easier for people to fulfil their shopping cravings.
How did they do it? By taking control over the user’s experience. ASOS were able to create a native app solution that drove sales and increased engagement.
Command their attention
There’s no question that website users are fickle. Even on a smartphone they jump between tabs and click on links at random – to say there’s no order to their browsing habits is an understatement. Even the most loyal of ASOS’s customer base might have soon found themselves on another site if they were browsing on a desktop computer. An app, on the other hand, is a stand-alone product that commands their devoted attention. Without any distractions, a user is focussed in their search for the perfect product and completes checkout even sooner. Even more important is your app’s ability to improve brand recognition. Your user will feel a sense of ownership of the app and connection to your brand. Rather than a website, from which they can flick and flit away as they please, an app provides an absorbing experience that could keep them entertained for hours. Your brand will remain front-and-centre in their day – and every time they open it up, they’ll be reminded of your company.
It’s not as hard as you think
Some businesses see apps as the preserve of large corporations. They are daunted by the apps produced by the major banks and telcos and don’t think they could come close to the quality. However, the days of expensive, labored app development are in the past.
The key to building a successful app for your company is to work with reputable developers who understand your vision and how to best connect with your customers. Developing an app is not an expense free exercise, but if done correctly the long term benefits to your business will invaluable.
About the author
Alex Louey is the co-founder and Managing Director of Appscore, an Australian based mobile-first digital agency. He was featured in a recent article on Dynamic Business.