Small businesses have been using Social media ever since the age of social websites erupted into existence. Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc offer good visibility to companies that are just starting off.
Utilizing social media to engage with an audience is still a prominent marketing strategy, however, mobile apps have been associated with increased sales, brand loyalty, and growth.
Small businesses can take advantage of applications to reach their target audience and create a more customizable strategy of sales and marketing. Integrating technology into the business early on has an added advantage of scalability and data-driven solutions.
Let’s explore the Top 10 Reasons why mobile apps are amazing for small businesses to get a holistic idea about benefits and returns.
1) Apps can translate into profit
Small companies have limited finances and big expectations. The financial constraint can make expansion and maintaining operational functions a bit challenging in the long run. While executing the company’s long term goals, Mobile apps can also help raise money.
A consistent stream of downloads and application traffic can help small companies monetize their product/service, source income through in-app ads and even get investors involved. Getting an investor to pour in some capital is all about showing business success in getting an audience and progressive growth.
2) Customer reach becomes easy
People are more and more “plugged in” to gadgets than ever before. Finding & reaching a specific user base has become very easy for organizations.
New companies often find it challenging to reach out to their potential customer base. Mobile apps can be easily listed on Google & apple store, thus creating a direct line to customers. A great prospect to capture the interest of a significant audience.
3) A platform to display products & services
Conventionally products & services used to be listed on websites with an excess of information, hoping to draw the interest of consumers.
Listing products/services on a mobile application make for a more personalized experience. Apps don’t display large sets of information on the same screen due to the shorter screen size, this has motivated app developers to display customized & selective content based on customer preferences or “in-demand” items.
4) Quality apps make a mark
Small businesses can bank on their mobile application to gain legitimacy in the market. A unique idea, an easy to use interface and overall usefulness of an application make a big impact.
Experts in mobile marketing have noted that positive reviews & customer feedback have a large effect on increasing sales.
More than 80% of shoppers use their mobile phones even inside a physical store to check product reviews of a product they wish to buy. Positive reviews are a defining factor for increased conversions.
5) Full control over user experience & retention
User experience is defined by a customer’s interaction within the application. A good experience means the user is very likely to return to the application.
The best part about developing an app is the freedom to control fundamental aspects of the app structure, user convenience, attractive visuals, a design system and a sound app logic.
An easy to use application with only 1 feature is a lot better than a complicated app offering many features!
Small companies want to make an impression on their users, a fresh look and a user-friendly interface is an amazing way to create a lasting image.
6) Very insightful data and analytics
Everything from the optimal time of engagement, click-through ratio, screen time, demographic and referral traffic. These analytics also extend to a more insightful user persona.
Small organizations have an amazing chance to draw parallels between purchase and user persona ( age group, gender, type of mobile phone, OS, location, etc).
Individual purchase preferences also help in customizing marketing and suggesting related products. Creating a more exclusive user experience.
7) Customized Mobile app marketing
Data-driven marketing techniques imply understanding user trends and customizing marketing practices selectively.
This kind of smart marketing is very powerful for small companies. Targeting existing users and suggesting products and services based on historical purchase decisions directly increases sales and helps create a lasting relationship.
8) Simple & quick purchase
Mobile apps are undisputed winners when it comes to simple and fast purchases. A smooth user interface guides customers to the payment page, equipped with multiple payment options, the transaction is complete with limited effort.
Fast checkout and purchase is directly linked to increased sales by an individual. Mobile apps also have an option to save payment mode so any repeat customer doesn’t have to re-enter each detail.
9) Within reach and insight 24*7
Mobile apps substantially increase visibility. Once downloaded, the user will be able to access the app in seconds.
This convenience and comfort increase brand loyalty and customer retention. It is a marketers dream to be in sight of their customer whenever he/she thinks of buying something. With mobile applications, this visibility is very sustainable.
10) App notifications
Push notifications and in-app notifications are the easiest methods of reaching the customer. This line of communication supersedes emails, sms and calls.
Customers can be constantly updated about new offers, discounts and fresh products with the app notifications.
How to develop a mobile app?
Developing a mobile app requires careful consideration. It is important to have clarity about the end result from the application
What do you hope to achieve? Increased sales? Better customer communication?
Then comes the task of hiring a mobile app developer. A very basic market research can help identify which operating system, majority of the customers are using and help in the initial decision of choosing an OS for the app.
Common mistakes while hiring a mobile developer can translate into a financial loss. The market for project-based and freelance developers is huge, separate merit from experience and base the hiring decision on industry experience.
Developers who have knowledge of the domain will also have some understanding of successful features and popular designs.
Mcommerce – A crispier chunk of profit
Ever since 2015, mobile phone traffic has become as significant as desktop traffic. This flipped the table on the existing digital commerce trend at the time and mobile phone traffic has been taking out bigger and bigger chunks of the entire user base ever since.
In 2020, more than half of all internet shopping is done through mobile phones.
Depending on the industry, mobile app users are equal to or more than desktop users but this is just half the story. Mobile app users with the intent to purchase are a lot more than desktop users.
This intent is what points to the growing trend of shopping through mobile applications. The simplicity of transaction and easy access has groomed this trend and converted it into the most important channel of conversions.
Stats favor a mobile phone-centric approach
More than 4 billion people around the world use the internet regularly. As per Statista, a staggering 4.78 Billion people use mobile phones throughout the world, out of which there are 3.50 billion smartphone users.
The constant increase in smartphone users also implies that more and more non-smartphone users turn to smartphones with the decreasing cost of smartphones across the globe. The above image displays the rapid growth of smartphones in the past 4 years. This 40% increase in usage depicts a global trend of a more mobile-centric world.
Future of mobile phones
A study about historical data points towards a mobile dominated market. According to Statista, mobile device usage will increase from the current 3.5 billion users to 7.3 billion users by 2023.
Companies planning a 5 year or a 10-year strategy for growth should take these figures into serious consideration. A focus on mobile technologies and mobile app integration could capitalize on this wave.
The World Advertising Research Center has predicted that about 72% of all internet users will be smartphone users by 2025.
The country-wise market penetration of mobile phones varies exponentially but this just means there is still so much scope of new users.
IoT & Smartphones
IoT or Internet of things is a network of physical devices connected digitally with sensors and software. It is one of the most promising technologies taking over the world right now. IoT applications include – smart homes capable of understanding and responding to individual needs, smart cities, connected cars and many more.
Using smartphones to access IoT solutions makes a lot of sense, considering most people own a smartphone and it comes with the added convenience of managing all physical objects around you with just an app on the phone.
As per a Garner report, over 26 billion things will be connected to the internet by the end of 2020.
Mobile apps are leveraging this rise of IoT. Creating a mobile app is economical and can be set up in a very short time. Both these things are extremely viable for small companies that have a limited budget and wish to reach their customers as fast as possible.
Companies that are producing smart technologies look to integrate it with mobile phone applications, so the new concept is packaged for a more comfortable and familiar medium of smartphone apps. The yearly growth of smartphone users and the use of mobile apps to welcome smarter technologies is a perfect indicator of the growth of mobile apps. Developing an app is a smart strategy for small companies, it is economical and has unparalleled advantages to reach new customers, retain existing ones, increase revenues, and expand products/services.