The mobile phone industry in the US ushered in a couple of major changes over the last year, those that were highly impressive and necessary. While the average size of smartphone screens enlarged considerably, cellular network speeds increased, much to the delight of millions of users. The results of these welcome shifts have been manifold, and the high-point was the resultant doubling of mobile data consumption during this period.
In this backdrop, most if not all startups and small businesses are blissfully unaware of the perils of not going mobile. If companies fail to adopt and adapt to online realities, particularly in the use of mobile technology, they will soon discover that their obsolete marketing methodologies are a recipe for certain disaster.
With everyone jumping onto the mobile bandwagon and clamoring for a slice of the revenue pie, traditional marketing methods are in steady decline. The time is therefore ripe for startups to leverage a wealth of mobile strategies and explore the many ways in which mobile apps can provide greater visibility in the market, help gain customers, nurture the existing base, and increase revenue in the process. It’s a clear win-win situation, any which way one chooses to look at it.
In fact, recent research undertaken by Cisco Systems, the American multinational technology company, reveals that mobile traffic will far exceed fixed traffic by 2016. This means that the target audience in various domains is already mobile-friendly, which enables startups to announce their ventures more effectively to a market that is eager to lap up various offerings.
But bear in mind though that there is more to making the mobile app work for your startup , than meets the eye. A survey by 3×4 Consulting observed that 66 percent of users never return to a website if it gives them trouble on their mobile device. So, this is concrete proof that hosting a mobile-optimized website cannot be overlooked. Run-of-the-mill websites that do not function or display well on a mobile devices are a big turn off among the audience. The direct result is the decline in large volumes of traffic, which will ultimately translate into a loss of revenue.
Moreover, merely creating a great mobile app and doing little else will not drive business to your startup. There must be a consistent and coordinated effort across multiple channels to advertise overall online presence—this includes on websites, existing apps if any and by way of uniformity (messaging, look and feel) across platforms. The key to success lies in enabling customers to experience the startup brand as a unified entity, regardless of the device used to log in from. Branding and design are doubtless an integral part of defining who you are and what makes your service or offering unique. It is therefore imperative to optimize your website, so it performs flawlessly on a range of devices such as desktop computers, tablets and smartphones.
Mobile Apps Strategy: Key factors
- Create an overall mobile strategy that will showcase your portfolio of offerings.
- Pick the platform that is popular with your users—iOS or Android.
- Devise a strategy that will help to shape your product, execute design and maximize the efficiency and highlights of the app.
- Inform customers of the many benefits of using your app; and how it is different from similar apps in the market.
- Offer discounts, subscription and loyalty programs. This will ensure your app is downloaded―which of course is the main objective of going mobile.
- Tap into the immense potential and value of mobile to encourage broader customer engagement. For example, your app can replace physical plastic loyalty cards.
- Track and analyze customer behavior and buying trends effortlessly.
- Developing an app-based product catalog is another quick and efficient way in which mobile technology can help drive traffic and boost revenue.
- More importantly, when your business has its own app, the branding and the stored data belong to you. This opens up a slew of m-commerce development opportunities.
One of the advantages of being a startup is that you can innovate, experiment and thereby enjoy the fruits of the latest mobile strategies to get ahead of the competition. Smartphone users are always on the lookout for companies that offer them a robust mobile experience. If you succeed in satiating these online needs, you’ve won by a mile.
A mobile app also provides dozens of ways to increase income―from offering mobile ordering to your clients, to push notifications that drive activity for special offers, to giving customers a way to send out social referrals to your business, and beyond. Wireless handheld devices are all the rage throughout the world, so if you plan your course of action well and position your app prominently, the consequent success is all yours for the taking.
Tips to emerge a winner
- Change, upgrade, or rebuild your app to create the best mobile experience to invite and excite potential customers.
- Estimates state that building the app yourself will take 4x the time, so don’t hesitate to hire the services of a competent external firm.
- You should work closely with the mobile app development firms you’ve contracted. This will ensure your vision translates into the best possible online results.
- Invest in mobile application maintenance, because by utilizing the latest features you can promote your products by identifying trends to attract business in larger volumes.
- A common misconception is that building apps natively per platform is a drain on your resources. This is not true. Native apps are the way to go.
The best part about going mobile is the cost factor which is unbelievably low. In addition, the reach it generates is tremendous. So why wait any further, when you can rake in the monies and laugh all the way to the bank?