With over 5 billion mobile users worldwide, it could be a good time for your business to consider developing your own mobile app to extend your services and digital presence.
Are you considering developing an app for your brand but want to understand the benefits of building an app and whether it’s right for your business? In this article we’ll discuss how a mobile app can help you reach your business’s goals as well as considerations you should make to help determine whether a mobile app is the next best move for your company.
What is a mobile app?
A mobile app (or mobile application) is a type of application software designed for mobile devices such as smartphones or tablets. Popularised by Apple’s App store, app softwares continue to be developed to offer mobile device users entertainment, messaging services, productivity, another platform to shop on and more. With 93% of smartphone owners using apps, businesses can really use this to their advantage by expanding their digital presence.
Industries that benefits from mobile apps include:
Travel and tourism industry
The travel and tourism sector is a very competitive industry and apps can really help to set travel brands apart. From apps designed to find the best hotels and flights to apps which help customers manage their holiday or find nearby attractions to explore, there’s a lot of ways you can utilise an app to deliver the best customer experience. Not only could you use an app to build your brand image, you could offer sneak peeks of destinations and information to entice your audience to make a purchase or to make better arrangements to get the most out of their travels.
Health and fitness apps are extremely popular as they offer people a way to better manage their health and improve their wellness. From online GPs to workout and yoga apps that give gyms a run for their money, health and fitness apps are a convenient way to keep track of weight loss, access healthcare, expand medical knowledge and be part of a community with shared goals.
Mobile apps can really help e-commerce businesses to build their relationships with customers and make online shopping more convenient. Not only will the ecommerce sector benefit from offering a more personalised user experience, they can capture more user data to better inform their digital marketing strategy.
With mobile apps, learning can be more affordable, interactive, fun and convenient. From learning a new language to aiding classroom learning, educational apps can be personalised to suit the user’s interests and tear down location barriers so more people can access educational tools.
With users spending an average of 69 minutes on entertainment apps each day (Think with Google), there’s certainly a market for entertainment apps. From gaming and sports to music streaming services, you can customise the content for users and keep them engaged.
The finance industry is able to access sensitive information and data at any time. Back in 2019, consumers accessed finance apps over 1 trillion times (LinkedIn) so it’s certainly proving to be a convenient and safe way to manage finances, no matter where you are. From paying bills and transferring money to taking out loans, mobile apps can offer a smooth service to complete these finance-related tasks.
There are of course other industries that can benefit from mobile apps depending on what their goals are. Why not take a look at how we helped our client Dine to build an online discount card app for restaurants and takeaways?
Why mobile apps are worth the investment
Not every business will require a mobile app, but, as highlighted above, there are many different sectors that can benefit from having an app. Here are some reasons why mobile apps can be a great investment for a business:
- You can have more of a digital presence and increase brand awareness - a mobile app will be an extension of your brand on a different platform. Not only will you have the opportunity to engage with branding and advertising in a new and more innovative way, you will also increase your exposure and attract new customers as well as meet the specific needs of existing customers.
- You can improve audience engagement - from creating a loyalty programme and providing new services, a mobile app presents new ways to engage with and retain existing customers. You can also create an app which personalises the user experience and makes your customers feel like a part of your brand, not just a consumer.
- You can improve customer communication and be more direct - from sending your audience alerts and notifications (if they consent) about any deals, offers, events or important information to making yourself more easily contactable, if you can improve your customer’s experience, you can increase the likelihood of them purchasing your products and services in future.
- You can get ahead of your competitors - whether your direct competitors have an app of their own or not, it’s a great way to set yourself apart from the crowd.
- You can capture more customer data - you can collect personal details from your customers directly and use this valuable information to understand your audience, better inform your business strategy, spot any trends and make strategic decisions to help your brand to grow.
- They can be more convenient - a mobile app might make shopping and accessing your services easier for some customers which keeps them coming back. This is especially the case with personalised apps where users can access items they’ve saved or select categories which are relevant to them.
Considerations for app development
If you’re wondering whether app development is worth it, there are a few things for you to consider to determine whether your business needs an app and the work involved, they include:
- Costs - is your company able to afford the costs of developing an app? Not only will you need to think about your budget for building the app, but the costs that are involved later down the line (i.e. maintenance).
- Security - it’s important to create a secure app for your audience, particularly because they’ll have personal information stored there. Therefore, you’ll need to ensure that your app is developed to a high standard and will be safe for your audience to use so that you can maintain trust and avoid any data leaks which could tarnish your brand reputation.
- Maintenance - developing an app is one thing, maintaining it to ensure it continues to meet customers needs is another. You’ll need to think about post deployment maintenance and who will be responsible for any app updates to ensure your users continue to have a positive experience whilst using your platform.
- Who is the audience? - ask yourself whether an app would be an appropriate platform for your audience. You might have a shiny new app that functions beautifully but if your target market is unlikely to use the app to access your services, you might see a poor return on investment.
- What will you offer through your app and how will it help with conversions? - you should consider your business goals and whether your app will be likely to help you meet these. For example, if your priority is to increase conversions, ask yourself how an app could help you to achieve this. Will your shopping experience look different through the app compared to your website?
- Finding the right app development company - finally, it’s likely that your business will require the help of external developers due to the workload involved and need for expertise. You should aim to speak to a number of app development agencies to find the best fit for your needs. You’ll also have to factor in your budget for your app - remember, the cheapest app developers won’t necessarily be the right choice!
How much does it cost to build a mobile app?
How much it costs to build a mobile app will really depend on a number of factors, such as the scale of your project and the app development agency you choose to work with. That said, to give you a rough idea, a single platform app could cost around £38,000 to build. If you have an app project you’d like to discuss to get a better idea of the costs involved, please do get in touch - we’d love to hear from you!
What does a mobile app developer do?
A mobile app developer will create and update mobile apps. Here are some of their key responsibilities:
- Developing service APIs to support mobile functionality - this ensures the app runs smoothly on mobile devices.
- Working alongside UX, UI and app designers - an app developer will work closely with app designers to advise whether the design is realistically achievable. They’ll bring the concept to life focusing on the functional and technical side of the app build to ensure the app is easy to use, visually attractive and meets the needs of the user.
- Keeping up to date with new app trends and best practices - this ensures that your app continues to meet user expectations and outshines your competitors.
- Continuous app development and monitoring app performance - it’s important that a mobile app continues to be monitored for its performance. An app developer will spend time fixing bugs and updating the app to make sure everything is working as it should.
So, whether ‘app development is worth it’ for your business will really depend on a number of factors, such as the type of services you offer and what your business goals are. Mobile apps can present so many exciting new opportunities for your business, helping to attract new customers as well as retaining existing ones.
Looking for an app development agency?
We are Adido, app developers in Bournemouth offering app development services in Dorset and beyond. We pride ourselves on being candid with our clients, so, if you have an idea for an app but you aren’t sure whether it’s right for your business, we’d be happy to offer our advice! Take a look at our app development services or contact us today to find out how we can help.