The average person spends approximately 90 minutes a day using their smartphone device—that’s 23 days a year and nearly 4 years over the span of an average lifetime. This data was uncovered in a 2015 study, so it’s fair to surmise that 2018’s figures are even higher. But you probably don’t need a study to understand the importance of a great mobile strategy. With most people spending so much time staring at mobile device screens, you’ll want to ensure your brand or company is front and center.
A mobile app is usually a central part of your company’s digital transformation strategy, whether you’re looking to build a public-facing app or an ERP app for internal usage. In fact, in today’s marketing world, there are few things more important than a strong mobile strategy because it’s clear that smartphones and tablets are the preferred devices for communication and internet usage alike. So, when it comes to your digital strategy, what role will your new mobile app play?
Using Mobile Apps as Engagement Tools
Mobile apps are extremely effective at increasing engagement, particularly when you consider that the typical person is within arm’s reach of a smartphone or tablet approximately 99 percent of the time. This means your company can find success using a mobile app to engage your target audience, customers or clients. You can also embed appealing functionalities within the app interface, such as tutorials and instructions.
One wonderful example of engagement can be found in the Poshmark app, which provides users with an opportunity to buy and sell apparel, makeup, shoes and accessories. Due to app store restrictions, developers cannot configure an app to generate push notifications for coupons, sales and promotions. But Poshmark has found a clever workaround: inspirational sayings and encouraging quotes. Each alert reminds the user about the app and the Poshmark brand as a whole.
Shopping apps such as eBay and Etsy allow users to sign up for mobile alerts when a favorite seller lists new items or when a certain item is listed for sale. This type of alert is useful for engagement purposes, as a user who consciously signs up for alerts is far more likely to make a purchase.
Apps can also use GPS technology to target users in particular geographical regions. For instance, if a user comes within 100 yards of a brick and mortar store location, the app may be configured to generate a push notification of some kind, thereby increasing the chances of the user visiting the store.
With so many opportunities for engagement, you’ll want to give some thought to how you can use a mobile app to attract and engage new users and existing customers, clients, or supporters.
Using Mobile Apps to Offer Products, Services and Improve User Experience
Your mobile app can be effective at driving sales and increasing profits, all while delivering an improved user experience (UX). Some companies are hesitant to develop a mobile app that replicates the features and functionalities found on the company’s website. But this redundancy can pay off, as the average person is more likely to launch an app versus visiting a website on a mobile device.
Let’s take eBay as an example. eBay’s website is mobile responsive and easy to use. But eBay also has a popular ecommerce mobile app, which actually has fewer features than what you’ll find on the website. As such, you might expect the slimmed-down eBay app to be less popular than the website. However, mobile users are actually more inclined to launch the app. Turns out, the app receives a lion’s share of mobile traffic because it delivers a better UX. The app’s layout and design are both highly optimized for use on a small mobile screen. Users can also sign up to receive push notifications for auctions, new listings, new messages and other in-app happenings.
Plus, the ability to access your favorite shopping platform with a single icon tap maximizes the number of impulse purchases. You don’t have to find a laptop, launch a browser and enter a URL. Customers can act upon that impulse and complete a purchase in a matter of seconds. That’s good news for your company’s bottom line.
Using Mobile Apps to Drive Brand Recognition and Loyalty
As a nation, Americans collectively check their phones billions of times per day—precisely 8 billion times daily as of 2015, according to Time. This figure has most likely increased in recent years. That same study found that the 18-24 crowd glances at their phones an average of 74 times per day, while individuals in the 25-34 age group check their phones an average of 50 times per day. Even the older demographic of 35-44 was found to peek at their mobile devices approximately 35 times each day. Regardless of age group, one thing is clear: the mobile realm represents the perfect platform for promoting brand recognition and brand loyalty.
Many brands will create a mobile app with the sole intention of gaining more attention and boosting customer loyalty. For example, the McDonald’s mobile app is primarily used for mobile ordering. The food isn’t prepared until the user arrives at the restaurant and pays for the order, so users don’t enjoy a shorter wait time. The only real difference is that users can opt to park in a designated mobile ordering space and the food will be delivered to your vehicle (although users can also opt to collect their order in-restaurant or at the drive-thru). But the app’s element of novelty—and perceived convenience—drives customer loyalty, as do the in-app incentives (i.e. buy 5 frappes, get your next frappe for free when you order via the mobile app). This is a great example of how you can use a mobile app to promote loyalty and brand recognition.
In today’s world, your company’s digital transformation strategy really needs a mobile app. A well-developed app will help you achieve your goals and objectives on many fronts. But you’ll need a talented development team with a broad range of expertise to bring your app idea to fruition.
The 7T development team has extensive experience working with a variety of emerging technologies, such as augmented reality, artificial intelligence, natural language processing, machine learning, predictive analytics and blockchain. Based in Dallas, 7T works with clients throughout Texas—including Austin and Houston—and across the United States. If you’re ready to discuss your project, contact our team today.