“But we have a mobile-enabled website, isn’t that enough?”
Mobile-enabled websites have their benefits - they certainly make content more accessible.
Many companies feel that as long as they have a mobile-enabled website, they have mobile users covered. But in today’s digital-savvy world this isn’t good enough. Customers expect an optimum user experience every time and on every device - or they might move to your competitors’ app.
The big advantage of an app is the ‘accessibility factor’. Mobile-enabled websites are OK, but they require additional customer effort to search and access your website.
An app has the advantage of being ever accessible from the customer’s menu screen. You can send out unlimited, free alerts – not possible on a mobile website. Your brand is in customers’ hands 24/7. You can be top-of-mind in your category, and your product always available.
Mobile handsets & push alerts
It is important to note two facts in the mobile handset world i.e.
1. usage is continuing to accelerate with ‘over half a billion (526 million) mobile devices and connections’ added in 2013 (Cisco Visual Networking Index: Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update, 2013-2018, Feb 2014) and,
2. the speed of mobile handset release times are ever increasing.
These insights indicate that the push alerts tool is increasingly becoming more effective due to the rise in mobile devices resting in users' palms across borders and time-zones.
Push alerts are excellent as a communication and re-engagement tool. However, they are only effective when the app user is prompted ‘at the right place, at the right time, and regarding the right piece of information’.
A successful example is one from the financial industry by Bank of America where they inform customers’ of their weekly balances and any banking transactions via the push function.
At AppsWiz, our clients can login to their online dashboards at any time of the day to send real-time alerts to their app fans free of charge. Whether it be an upcoming VIP shopping event reminder, a limited-time offer or a special edition merchandise you are promoting, be sure to utilise this notification feature to always be in touch with your audience.
We are currently upgrading our entire AppsWiz operating system, including all of our apps.
- An easier to use, faster AppDesigner for creating and/or editing your app online.
- Access to a range of sophisticated tools to brand your app and a new main menu that will be the first screen that users see when opening the app.
- More integration with partner services including appointment booking providers and product listing services.
- Improved social media integration with sharing features so that users will promote your business for you.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Should I Use an App Development Company or a Contractor for my Business App?
Unless you have an in-house app developer, there are three main options for having a mobile app developed for your business:
- Use a development company
- Hire a local contractor to work in your office
- Outsource the work online
Today it is easier than ever to outsource work to an overseas contractor. However, more often than not the work is of poor quality or not what you were expecting despite clear instructions and you conclude that outsourcing was more trouble than it was worth.
Alternatively, you might decide to employ a local contractor to spend some time with your business and create an app. While the contractor might produce an impressive mobile app, there are some things you will miss out on by choosing this one-off transactional method. This post explains how AppsWiz, as a development company, differs from any individual developer.
What You Need to Know About Getting an App for Your Business
One of the newest and most effective ways to reach out to your consumers is through mobile applications, more commonly referred to as “apps”. This post takes the reader through the ins-and-outs of getting an app for your business so that you can make a sound decision on which development company you choose to use. Below is an explanation of the benefits of apps, what you should be paying, where you should be paying it and how to find the best developer for your business.
The Benefit of Apps
There are a number of reasons why every company with an online presence should consider having an app built for their company, including:
- Convenience: Having a mobile app that integrates directly with your website makes it easier for you and your customers to communicate information. This is particularly important if you haven’t fully optimised your website for smartphone users.
- Exposure: Those who download your app will have your logo permanently placed on their device, which is invaluable brand awareness. Regardless of downloads, just having an app in the Android and Apple marketplace will broaden your online footprint – more than you probably ever thought possible.
- A Boost in Revenue: Canalys reported as far back as June 2011 that apps will be bringing in $36.7 billion worldwide by 2015, and indications are that this was a conservative estimate. The possibility of securing a slice of those earnings is difficult to ignore. For the amount invested in developing a high quality app, most businesses will see a full ROI within 12-24 months from the day that the application hits the Android and/or Apple marketplace, especially when it is supported by a marketing plan for promoting the app.
- Better Customer Service: Apps make it easy for companies to keep their customer service lines open 24/7. Sending an “IM” (instant message) through an app is far more convenient and customer-friendly than asking a customer to leave a phone message or send an email.
Why Every Business Needs to Create Mobile Apps
The mobile marketing revolution has become a global sensation, though for whatever reason Australia has lagged behind in utitlising mobile technology – until now. Australia is finally catching up and starting to take full advantage of everything that mobile marketing has to offer. In 2011, Google reported that Australia went from being miles behind in the “smartphone revolution” to now leading it.
What does this mean for your business? That the time to get in on the “smartphone revolution” is now.
Why You Need a Mobile Marketing Campaign
Did you know that Australia has the second highest smartphone penetration in the world, just falling a short distance behind Singapore? Almost everyone has a mobile device, and almost everyone is using it to shop. 95% of Australian smartphone users have said that they have used their phones to find information about local businesses in the area, and 88% have said that they used the information they found to take action (like make a purchase) within 24 hours (Google/Ipsos, 2011).
Mobile transactions are only continuing to increase, too. PayPal Australia reported in 2010 that mobile transactions had increased by 25% per month, meaning that more people are making purchases with their phones and mobile devices than ever before (PayPal Australia, 2011). Google reported in 2011 that 74% of mobile phone users are making purchases online (Google/Ipsos, 2011). When you consider how many people in Australia have a mobile phone, this number is huge.
Here are some other interesting stats from that same Google and Ipsos 2011 study that backs up the need for companies to leverage mobile marketing:
- 27% of smartphone users who find a business of interest with their phones will call the business.
- 35% will click on or visit a mobile advertiser’s site.
- 42% of smartphone users who see a mobile ad will click on it.
Are Native Mobile Apps Better than Mobile Web Apps?
The word “app” is a buzzword these days but most people don’t discuss the differences between the two types of apps: native mobile apps and mobile web apps. Whether you are developing apps for your own personal use or for your business, it’s important to recognize the different merits of the two so you can make the best decision about which one – if not both – is right for you.
What are Native Mobile Apps and Mobile Web Apps?
A native-version app is an application program that has been developed for use on a particular platform or device, such as iPhones or iPads. Once installed onto the users device, it runs as a program rather than as an internet browser.
Mobile web apps, on the other hand, are essentially mobile-friendly versions of a website that can also be downloaded to users' devices and appear to be the same as native apps. They are accessed through the mobile device's web browser.
How Mobile Apps Can Help Your Business
The rise of the mobile devices – such as iPad, iPhone and Android phones – has significantly altered how people all over the world communicate and gather information.
Not so long ago, we relied on computers to access the Internet and land line telephones to do long distance calls. Not any more.
Now, billions of people worldwide are using smart phones and tablets to browse the Internet.
And it’s not just while they are on the go. It is also when they are sitting at home watching TV.
The main reason why mobile devices are being used so much more today is mobile apps.
Anyone who has ever used a smartphone or tablet knows what they are: those nifty applications you install on your device that allow you to do things like:
- Play games
- Check out the weather
- Add notes
- Access your email, and
- Book appointments online.
How to Shop For a Great Mobile Application Developer
With the high growth of mobile, many businesses are looking to get a mobile app developed for their business.
This can be a potential minefield and there are some traps for the uninitiated.
So how do you know which app developer can do the best job for you?
Here are some important questions to ask mobile apps developers to help you distinguish the experts from the amateurs.
How long have you been developing mobile apps?
Experience is always important. The area of mobile app development is fairly new so having a background in telecommunications, software development and graphic design is a definite plus.
Growing Mobile Apps Functions For Tablets
Technology analyst firm Telyste conducted a study on mobile devices and found that more than 1.4 million mobile tablets were sold in Australia last year, representing an annual growth of more than 330%. This year, the same firm expects that more than 2 million tablets will be sold nationally.