As we enter 2019 it’s somewhat expected that big businesses have their own mobile app. But what about the smaller companies, entrepreneurs, coaches, and other industrious souls making their mark in the tumultuous world of business?
It wasn’t so long ago that mobile apps were the exclusive purview of big businesses and mega corporations. Yet in the last few years that situation has rapidly changed, with even the smallest of businesses taking advantage of the huge benefits that come with having your own app.
It would be rather shocking to go looking on the App store for your favourite online store, social network, or streaming site, and not find them. But companies like Amazon, Instagram, and Netflix have the funds and resources for all the app development and maintenance they could possibly need.
They know they’re going to see a return on that investment, and that not having an app will cost them money.
But is developing an app always worth it?
What benefits do a small or medium sized business (or even a solopreneur) receive from having a mobile app?
The short answer is simple: if you want to attract new clients, grow your sales, boost your brand, and improve your customer experience, you need a mobile app.
And since every business out there shares these core goals, every business needs a mobile app…
Why Every Business Needs A Mobile App…
Humans are (and always have been) hardwired to be social creatures. We hate to be secluded or to feel left out. The invention of mobile technology has arguably been the single greatest advancement for humanity’s socialite nature, simply because it gives us an unprecedented level of access to people.
It also gives us an unprecedented level of access (and equal if not greater expectation of access) to businesses.
There are so many advancements to come to the business world through mobile phones, from video calling, to SMS updates, and beyond. But perhaps the greatest business asset to come from mobile tech is the ability to drive sales through mobile devices.
All mobile devices – not just phones, but tablets, Kindles, and even IoT.
Let’s face it, when it comes to making your business social, limiting yourself to getting on Twitter and Facebook isn’t going cut it anymore.
Nowadays, you need your own app.
The good news is, having an app comes with a bucket load of amazing benefits for your business…
The Benefits Of Building A Business App…
The creation of a new app can seem like a huge commitment for little tangible reward, so let’s start with one of the most tangible benefits: data. A mobile app is crammed with information about your customers, including geographic locations, demographics, preferences, and so much more.
But the flow of information goes both ways. Not only will your app collect a phenomenal amount of info about your clients, it can send information directly to them.
That’s a direct line of marketing for new features, products, promos, prices, product specifications, special rates, and news.
Create A Personalised Brand Experience…
Since you have all that lovely data to work with, you will know the preferences of your customers and be able to tailor your marketing to their specific needs and interests.
An app makes sure that the interactions your customers have with your brand are personalised, and the personalisation of content has been one of the hottest trends in content marketing for a couple of years now.
As an example, let’s say you run a gym, and you have an app for your customers.
The app will tell you exactly which classes and activities they prefer, as well as the times they’re most likely to want to do them, and even the instructors they favour. This allows you to send them reminders about upcoming events, classes, and offers that you know they’ll be interested in, while eliminating the clutter by not sending them a lot of information about events they will have no interest in.
Building Your Brand Recognition…
Whether your starting a shiny new business, or working on building awareness of your existing brand, mobile apps are the holy grail when it comes to boosting recognition. Having a user-friendly app that’s bang on brand and provides excellent value will both attract and mesmerise your ideal clients.
The more they like your app, the more they’ll use it, the more they’re talk about it, and the more people will hear about your business.
An app will do more to grow awareness of your brand than any number of flyers, billboards, and free pens.
When you carefully design your app to ensure it encourages regular interaction, it becomes even more powerful. The more contact prospects have with your app, the more likely they are to invest in your products and services, and the more they will share it.
In marketing, we know that it takes between eight and twenty ‘touches’ to convert a lead. That means it’s very unlikely a person will stumble across your blog, read one post, and instantly decide to buy from you. They will need to read multiple blogs and see many of your posts on social media before they’re ready to convert to a subscriber to your email list. Once on your list, they’ll need to read a multiple emails and further content from you before they will convert into a paying client.
An app is one of the easiest ways to maximise the points of contact between you and your prospects. It’s not difficult to convince people to download a free app, or a trial version of a paid app.
The mobile age ensures that people will happily download pretty much anything.
Where the magic happens isn’t in that initial download. And once it’s on their phone or tablet, they’re going to try it out. If it’s good enough, they will come back to it, and suddenly you have an easy way of ensuring regular points of contact with your prospects.
An app provides a one-stop solution to multiple marketing requirements that many businesses struggle to achieve.
Distinguish Yourself From The Competition…
If you’re looking for a way to really stand out in your industry, a mobile app is currently one (if not the) most effective way of doing it. Your app will allow you to take full advantage of all the most innovative marketing and communication tools, while providing a level of value to your audience that simply can’t be achieved through any other means.
If your competitors currently have apps of their own, a brilliant design will not only demonstrate that you’re on a par with them, it will clearly show your superiority. If they haven’t cracked onto the power of an app yet, you have the chance to get well ahead of the game and demonstrate how forward thinking you are as a company.
Whatever you do, and whatever you’re selling, have an app that gives your audience access at the tap of a button will position you as a leader in your industry.
Increase Your Visibility At Any Time…
More than a billion smartphones in circulation globally, the average person spending around two hours on their mobiles each day, Believe it or not this is actually a huge advantage for businesses. We know the digital tide has changed the way people interact with brands, and we can take advantage of that.
Your marketing needs to shift to meet the modern needs and preferences of your audience.
That means getting visible on their mobile devices.
This starts by ensuring your website has been well designed and developed to be fully responsible of mobile devices. But it doesn’t end there. Apps have made people complacent and easily frustrated by websites in a lot of ways. Your audience is more likely to keep coming back to a user-friendly app, than they are to endless scroll through your website.
Not only that, an app (once downloaded) doesn’t go away. Your audience can close a web browser on your post and never think of you again, but once the app is on their phone or device, they will always be reminded you exist.
They will always be enticed to come back for more.
An app also removes the time limitations presented by a PC. People check their phones all day, every day, while they may only spend a fraction of their time at their computer.
This means you have access to them any time, any where, no matter what else they may be doing at the time.
Delivering Great Value To Your Customers…
Customers choose the business that offers them the most value. This means that, in order to be successful, you need to effectively demonstrate that you offer more value than your competition.
This means creating products and services with tangible value and benefits. It means showcasing all the value your clients will get when they choose to invest in those products and services. And in order to nudge them to make that decision, it means providing additional value, over and above what comes when they pay, before they have to hand over a penny.
An app allows you to deliver real, tangible, extra value to your audience. This will help convince them you’re the right choice to buy from, and once they have, ensure they continue to see you as the best value out there.
While the digital age has completely revolutionised marketing, it’s also saturated the market. There are so many people offer what you offer, and fully understanding the need for value, you need a great edge to create the level of value needed to win that business.
From additional content, free tools and applications, helpful notifications and reminders, directly delivered and personalised offers, and the convenience of a system that makes something as simple and easy as possible for clients to use, an app is a one-stop-show to delivering massive value.
Increasing Your Client Engagement…
There’s nothing worse than an unreachable business. Your clients and prospects need to be able to contact you in the easiest, most effective manner possible. They may have questions or concerns, suggestions, or simply want to test how available you will be as a business should they choose to take the plunge.
When you’re unreachable, or getting in touch is difficult, you’re going to lose business.
Existing clients will drop away, while leads that would otherwise have converted will go elsewhere.
A mobile app is a simple solution to this, giving you a handy platform through which customers and leads can place orders, post questions, send feedback, and register complaints in a forum that allows you to quickly and effectively rectify any issues.
Design A Mobile App That Complements Your Website…
For a lot of businesses, the thought of creating an app when they’ve already gone to the expense of developing a website, seems redundant. If you have limited budget for platform development, it often seems logical to focus on a single platform and do it extremely well, than to split your resources trying to do too many things.
After all, if you have a website, do you even need an app?
Surely the website will be able to deliver the functionality and value of an app?
Well, not exactly. While a modern website can achieve a lot of the functionality of an app, when it comes to users on mobile devices, even the most responsive website is limited.
With touch screens on every mobile device, navigating through your products and services and choosing to buy is incredibly simple on an app.
Rather than viewing your website and app as separate entities, consider one an extension of the other. Your app can be developed alongside your website to complement it, and ensure that both achieve maximum functionality while delivering exceptional value, and promoting an abundance of customer loyalty.
How To Develop A Business App…
If you’re sold on the great benefits of developing an app and you’re eager to get started, you’re in the right place. Acrylic specialise in the development of apps that complement your marketing efforts, promote your goals, and help your business thrive and grow. Get in touch today to arrange a free consultation, and start the ball rolling on a game-changing app for your business…
Co-founder and director at Acrylic Digital, Simon is a technical wizard and man of many hats. If he’s not busy building websites, coding, or creating apps Simon is very hands-on in all our projects and business development.
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