What Would a Mobile App Look Like for Your Business?
You hear a lot about mobile apps but if you had one what would it do? A mobile app is rapidly becoming an essential business tool as the huge growth in mobile usage means that the majority of your clients, your customers and your potential customers are using devices like smart phones and tablets in their day to day lives, both in business and even more so in the consumer environment.
What Can A Mobile App Do?
There are many ways in which you can take advantage of the growth in mobile technology as a business. Think about your website, most small to medium sized businesses websites are a good few years old, so they weren’t designed to work on smart phones or tablets. A lot of businesses are now making their website mobile friendly to take advantage, but why stop there?
A mobile app is a tool that can be downloaded to any smart phone or tablet. There are two main platforms that mobile apps can be used on, Apple and Android. As the market is becoming very evenly split since Apple’s initial dominance, a mobile app should be developed on both platforms.
The app will then be downloaded by your customers on any of these devices, and the benefit of this over a website is that it then stays with the user. Business cards have been distributed for years as a quick way of giving out your details, but these are becoming more and more obsolete, as they can be easily lost, become tatty and worn out. If you compare this to an app, which is considerably more slick, in digital format, and can be passed on multiple times, at no extra cost.
You can then stay in contact with everybody that has your app using a tool unique to mobile apps, known as “push notifications”. With a mobile app, you now have the ability to send a message to anybody that has your app, for free, whenever you want. You may compare this to emails, which has the same benefit, but when you opened up your emails this morning, how many did you delete without opening them first?
Push notifications come in the form of text messages, and 95% of text messages are opened, usually within the first 20 minutes as well. If you are looking for a quick way to get in touch with your client base, to tell them about a special offer you may be running, or to notify them of an appointment they may have scheduled with you, a mobile app is the ideal way of doing it.
Unlike websites, mobile apps can also be accessed offline, as once they are downloaded to the device they can be used over and over again. Many areas in the UK still suffer from poor 3G signal, even 4G hasn’t taken off as lots of experts predicted, with signal strength being a pressing issue, especially in rural areas of the UK.
It will also become the hub to your entire business online, as it can integrate with your social media, your blog, and any other online platform you may be part of like forums and such like. How handy would it be if you could have all of the strings to your online business model in just one place?
Why Is It A Good Investment?
There are three ways in which to grow a business, to generate more customers, to make your customers buy more frequently and for your customers to come back more. Most marketing methods focus on one of these elements, maybe two. Apps do all three.
In generating new customers, your app can be shared by the touch of button, increasing your word of mouth marketing, an essential part of growing a business. It can also be used to backup your offline marketing, namely: Magazines, flyers, brochures etc. By driving people to download your app, they can have a digital copy that is readily available, rather than getting lost in mounds of emails or papers your clients or customers may receive.
It also adds credibility to your business and keeps you modern and up to date. For example, do you have brochures that you show to prospective clients about past projects, examples etc? The same one is used over and over again, and can start to look tired, which means they have to be replaced quickly. If you could show examples or demonstrate a process with a potential client just using a tablet, it makes it so much easier for your customers to get the message and looks incredibly professional.
It can also help to increase your conversion rate. What information do your customers need before they make a buying decision from you? Do they need to see examples, testimonials, costs? Mobile apps can include all of these and many more, all in one place as well. You can keep in touch with them throughout the process by push notifications, helping them make that buying decision.
Not only will it help in these areas, but long term, it can save you an awful amount of money on printing. Think about over the years in your business how much money you have spent on printed literature, like letters, flyers, brochures, business cards. A mobile app can replace all of these if you want to streamline your business in such a way.
Getting customers to use you more often can be done with the use of mobile apps. It is a tactic used very successfully by major brands like Starbucks and Subway, who have evolved their loyalty cards to loyalty apps. Let your customers know of your latest offers by push notifications, maybe they can benefit from how to videos, apps can also integrate with GPS so people can find you easily. A Click to call facility allows people to contact you quickly as well.
How Can I Get One?
There are many more features to mobile apps and the benefits are endless. As this market is ever evolving, expect plenty more in the years to come. Mobile is not a fad, it is only getting stronger, so if you would like to find out more about how an app could work for your business specifically, click here to request a free demo app, and start taking advantage of the modern way in which people buy.
Article by Andy Gibbins