10 Reasons Why Your Business Needs Its Own Mobile AppLast Updated:
Everyone these days is on the Internet, and most are using their smartphones. As a small business owner, having an online presence is a requirement; Facebook pages, as well as company Twitter and Instagram accounts, are commonplace and expected. And while your own mobile-responsive website is typically the next step after that, it may be worth it to create an app, too.
Businesses that survive are always ahead of the curve: it’s a fact of life. You need to adapt and get with the times if you don’t want to be left behind, and you need to do it fast. A website is great, but think about it: How many hours does your typical customer spend online–and how many of those hours are spent using a smartphone or tablet? Mobile apps are much easier to use on a handheld device; instead on opening a web browser and then looking for your site, a customer can access your app with just one tap. Plus: Creating your own mobile app isn’t hard to do at all; check out our list of the best app makers for an overview of some great services out there that can help.
Need more convincing? Check out ten more reasons below.
1. Stand out from the Competition
Many businesses that are just starting out will make conservative decisions. Diving head first into creating and launching a mobile app requires a forward-thinking approach! It is a risk, but it’s one that can pay off–especially if most of the competition is still relying on old playbooks. How many small businesses like yours have their own apps? Be the first one to offer it, and your customers will remember that.
2. Reach More Customers
This is particularly important to businesses wanting to cater to a more youthful demographic. You might have noticed that while everyone’s parents and grandparents seem to be on Facebook now, younger people are not as active on it as they are on other sites and apps–which is why simply having a Facebook page is no longer effective. A mobile app with social media integrations, on the other hand, will allow you to reach a wider audience base.
3. Always Be Visible
Remember earlier when we talked about mobile-responsive websites versus mobile apps? This is precisely why apps win every time. Even when your customers are on the go and can’t be bothered to bring their laptops, their smartphones are in their pockets. Even when they aren’t using your app, its icon is still displayed. And even when they check their phones and use different apps, they will still have to unlock their devices and scroll through display screens to get to what they want–and potentially see your brand’s logo in the process. Every little bit of visibility counts.
4. Build Your Brand
Hand in hand with visibility is brand building; which comes from being able to communicate what your business is all about to your customers constantly. With a mobile app comes the ability to permanently curate and fully design an online storefront or display window; an undiluted message devoid of outside distractions. It’s like going on a date with someone you want to impress and taking them out on a fancy, quiet dinner; in comparison, talking to customers on social media would be like taking someone to a loud, crowded mall.
5. Market to Your Customers Directly
Once you have your customers’ attention, on top of building your brand, you’ll want to take advantage of the connection you’ve built by marketing to them. One of the best things about having a mobile app is being able to send push notifications, which are more direct and harder to ignore than emails or traditional ads. If you want to tell your customers about special promotions or sales, this is the way to do it without having the information be buried deep in their social media timelines.
6. Boost Your Profits
Better communication with customers translates to better marketing–which, in turn, translates to better profits. You can see proof of this even when you look at big businesses. For example, global fast food chains adapted to increased demand by offering delivery services; and then, to the Internet age, by offering ways to order food through their websites. These days, most have mobile apps, too! More orders mean more sales, which mean more profits.
7. Provide Value to Your Customers
Why should customers choose your business over your competitors? If your mobile app makes it easier for them to get what they need, it makes all the difference. People naturally gravitate to what’s more useful and less time-consuming; and if you can add something extra to that, your customers will thank you for it. It could be as simple as a small added discount to orders placed through your mobile app, or even just a one-time coupon for downloading it. It’s like killing two birds with one stone: you provide more value, and your good reputation gets you more business.
8. Cultivate Customer Loyalty
A paint-by-numbers mobile app will not save a dying business; but, if done correctly, it can keep a business afloat by fostering a sense of loyalty in your customers. Once you have your customers attached to your mobile app–if they look for updates, buy products, avail of promos and do pretty much everything connected to your business on it–what you need to do is to continue to provide this great, all-in-one experience. With a loyal customer base, you can worry about expanding with minimal risk.
9. Improve Customer Support
A mobile app gives you a direct communication line to your customers, but that’s also true the other way around. While you can offer customer support elsewhere, providing it through something that they carry with them wherever they go is great for business. Something as simple as a button they can tap to instantly call your help line can be a godsend for a frantic customer. Plus, having your app on their phone can add a sense of comfort to your customers; almost like having you on speed dial.
10. Use Analytics to Grow Your Business
A mobile app can generate tons of information that you can use to fine tune how you do your business. For example: How much time does the average customer spend looking at your products using your app? Where is your average customer from? How much money do they typically spend on your business each month? All of these can be answered by mobile app analytics, if you do it right. Analytics can also help you find the best use for your mobile app; you may begin by offering it as just an app version of your website, but customer interactions may point you in a new direction–which may help your business grow beyond its current state.