Save your money – You don’t need a branded smartphone app

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I’ve been getting a lot of questions related to backflow business presence online & what backflow companies can do to increase their online presence – This week & the next few will be centered on getting the most bang for your dollar with the internet.


 

Reaching your customers & potential customers is always on your mind – if it isn’t it should be. Your customers are what keeps you around – retaining the ones you’ve made happy and finding new ones to wow is an ongoing journey.

Having a website is a must these days. Social media & local advertising are great methods to reach customers.

Many businesses turn to the experts to create their online presence for them. This can be a great way to get setup with minimal subject matter knowledge.

There is one portion of ‘online branding’ packages that I continue seeing pushed that I want to encourage business owners to skip: Branded smartphone apps.

Let’s look at them a bit with an eye towards the backflow industry and see why you shouldn’t spend money on a branded app as part of your web presence to reach your customer base.

Smartphones are everywhere

Pew Research has some exhaustive statistics for smartphone use this year. The basics:

Most people have smartphones – a full 64% of Americans now. 45% of you are reading this on a smartphone.

10% of the US uses their smartphone as their exclusive means of accessing the internet – that number is expected to grow as smartphones become more powerful.

7% of Americans Rely Heavily on a Smartphone for Online Access

People need their phones at an every increasing rate

 

Despite Clear Benefits, 54% of Smartphone Owners Say Their Phone is “Not Always Needed”—but 46% Say it is Something They “Couldn’t Live Without”

The global market behind smartphones is growing – active software ecosystems from Apple (App Store) & Google (Play Store for Android) bring consumers an endless parade of new app options. From mindless games to productive software.

Between the two popular app stores there are 3 million apps available today.

So I need an app?

Everyone else has one – My business must need one too!

Fortune says that despite all of these new apps that most people use three apps – that’s it! 80% of their phone time is consumed in those three apps. One of those apps is probably Facebook, A browser, either Safari or Chrome is probably one of the other two.

You don’t want to be relegated to a sub folder on the 6th home screen of your customers iPhone – they just forgot the password – now what?

Mobile apps aren’t a one time thing – they need maintenance & upkeep – even if you don’t want to change anything about your app, smartphones are always progressing and they will often have breaking changes in new versions of iPhone & Android that will require changes to your app. Expect app maintenance to be an ongoing cost.

Most branded apps for companies are fairly basic, they have contact information, maybe they let you pay your bill or do messaging with the company.

You can do all of those things without needing an app and the ongoing maintenance an app requires.

Save the headache of an app for your business and get a responsive design on your website – and then invest in your website alone – you’ll satisfy the needs of your desktop & mobile users together in one place.

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