These days we would be lost without our mobile phones. It is the number one device we rely on for hundreds of daily activities, so it’s no surprise that many of us wouldn’t dream of leaving the house without our modern-day digital Swiss army knives. According to Google, 62% of smartphone users are more likely to take action right away toward solving an unexpected problem or new task because they have a smartphone.
With a mobile enabling such a personalised portal to communicate and research with, and as more and more people expect everything to be offered through their phone, the mobile revolution is well and truly here. The power has shifted radically to the consumer, who now has nearly infinite access to information and product choice anytime, anywhere.
An increasing number of companies are creating apps for their services in order to reach a wider audience and increase sales. The big question is, should you use a mobile app or mobile website? What’s the difference? There are a number of reasons why creating an app is the better solution. Let’s go through the benefits of each:
Benefits of a Mobile App
Downloading a specific app on your phone through Apple’s App Store or Android’s Google Play is a satisfyingly straightforward and intuitive method to using a service over searching for the specific site on a mobile website.
Further benefits to using a mobile app are:
Save time – It is easier and faster to click on an app that is task-driven, rather than searching for the site that you need through a mobile website.
Use offline – Apps are accessible without an Internet connection. Using a mobile web browser such as Google Chrome allows you to search for any website URL, however this requires you to be online.
Personal – If you know you’ll regularly use a service that you have an account with such as a bank or hotel provider, downloading the specific app can make life a whole lot easier. Especially when you can remain logged in with all of your details at your fingertips. It gives you a tailored, more personalised gateway to a business.
Push notifications -You can receive instant alerts from individual apps. For example, a to-do message from a Reminders app can be set to alert you as soon as you’ve entered a specific location. (There’s really no excuse to forget anything ever again!)
Use of mobile features – Apps are functional, allowing you to make full use of technological capabilities such as in-built GPS and cameras.
Reach a greater audience –Apps can drive sales and visibility for an organisation, since it’s an additional platform to reach out and improve customer engagement. People searching specifically for the service through the App or Google Play store can easily discover them.
Single platform – With a single tap, you can access all of your information, make and track payments on one single platform. This allows an increase in productivity and efficiency.
Social sharing – You can easily share information through integrated social media apps.
Benefits of a Mobile Website
Although apps are increasingly becoming the standard form of digital communication, there are times when using a mobile website will suffice.
Benefits of using a mobile website are:
Reliable – If you have a one-off task you’d like to do online, sometimes browsing a mobile website is a reliable and sufficient method compared to searching for an app to do it.
Publicity – Often for a new company or brand, initially developing a website is a faster method of getting your name out to the public. The next stage would be to develop an app in order to further engage a number of users.
Compatible – Creating a responsive mobile website can be easier since it will be compatible across a wide range of devices including the iPhone and Android.
It is clear that mobile has radically changed the way brands communicate with their customers. A mobile app and website can compliment each other in providing an optimum, efficient mobile strategy for businesses.
However according to statistics and the significant growth in apps, we conclude that an app can drive further engagement and enhance brand loyalty, while saving a customer valuable time. Apps are immediate, efficient and relevant, as well as allowing a valuable, engaging user experience for the customer.
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