When I started with e-business in the mid-nineties, the business world wondered: Should my company have a website? Only time responded this question. The web is already consolidated and today a business, organization or government that does not have a web space is not even conceived.
I must confess that it wasn't the first time I had that experience, not long before, the question was: my company need an email? The answer is already known.
But now is not enough being there; to compete you need to define a digital strategy as a digital identity that involves multiple channels, web, social networks, search engine strategy, network links, and more recently, mobile strategy.
Smartphones have become an appendage over our body, we live "stuck" to them and probably, they are the first and last thing that we see every day; alarms, emails, reminders, notes, chats, social networks, photos, music, games, web browsing and Apps.
They are close and intimate devices; for many people their Smartphones are far away no more than a meter and a half away 24 hours 7 days a week. Do you think it is a good place where your brand can be in?
The cell phone has become the main point of access to Internet, overtaking personal computers and 80% of the time is dedicated to use the applications.
What is an App?
A mobile application or App is a program that is installed on the Smartphone or Tablet of the client. Thereby, App becomes part of the cellphone, a privileged place where every mark would like to belong. The icon that identifies it, with the image of your company, will be visible at all times, reminding the user our existence, both when you got to use it or when it is performing another task.
Remember that when the users are working, they watch the cell phone, when they are bored, they watch the cell phone, when they are traveling,they watch the cell phone, when they are communicating, they watch the cell phone, when they are having fun, they watch the cell phone, when they are reading their mail, when they checked the calendar, etc., they watch the cell phone.
Unlike the web, Apps are available for instant execution, the user simply touch its icon to start it, without opening a browser, typing Web addresses or using search engines. In a world where immediacy is the paradigm and ease is everything, the app is there to be used without further delay.
The interface perfectly adapted to mobile devices allows our customers to browse from their mobile or tablet with the simplicity and optimal usability. If they are properly designed, the utility of a mobile App is much higher than a responsive conventional web, since not only their interface but the information and all content are organized for a mobile device and is much more accessible and manageable in App.
Finally, the presence in major stores -App Store, Google Play and Windows Phone Store- can generate an increase in the number of organic searches originating from mobile devices, improving the SEO positioning.
Advantages of having a mobile app:
1. Always present (mindshare):
Probably the first major highlight profit is for companies
Our App will be very present and continued in our customers Smartphone. Each time the users look at their phones, our brand will be there, contributing with being on our customer minds.
Think how much money is spent on TV, street posters, brochures, etc., to achieve this goal, an opportunity that the App will give us to occupy a privileged place in the mobile of our customers and potential customers.
2. Always available:
The App is installed on the Smartphone or tablet, available to be used immediately, unlike a web which impose opening a web browser and search the site without mentioning that typing on a screen that is often moving becomes more difficult-
Smartphones are ubiquitous. Users pass their time watching their mobiles. They are close and intimate devices that are at no more than a meter and a half away 24 hours 7 days a week, a special place for your brand.
Thanks to the interface perfectly adapted to mobile devices we allow our customers and users to browse from your mobile phone or tablet with the simplicity and optimal usability. A user experience that mobile web sites or players are not able to provide.
It also allows you to use cell phone capabilities like the positioning, the camera, compass, vibrating the device, etc., and store data locally and function as disconnected, all concepts that create a more exciting and interactive experience.
5. Optimized Content
The content that people can access through the App does not have to be the same as the one of the web page. Typically it is not. This is a key element because is considered as a major challenge for the app being practical and useful, in the way to keep installed on your Smartphone, so the content has to be optimized for the size and usage scenarios of a Smartphone , avoiding too many other things that the user is not interested.
6. Prestige and innovative image
Apps are novelty. They speak a young and innovative language that companies can benefit by having one, showing a modern and innovative image.
7. Presence in Stores - helps to know our business
Our App will be seen by people in the different app stores like iTunes, Google Play, etc. Only Apple and Google have millions of searches per day. This will make our company appear in organic searches from mobile devices and like the previous point, it will also contribute to the brand image.
Today there still aren't many businesses that have decided to create their own application. Why not anticipate them and differentiate ourselves from the competition?
9. New channel of atention to our customers
An App expands the commercial scope of your brand, products and services, making synergy with other existing channels, sharing centralized information stored on servers, providing users a consistent and perfected experience.
10. Push Notifications
The Notifications "push" are spoiled messages sent from a server to the user Smartphone, with arrival point to the App, but without the necessity that it's running, like the style of an SMS, but without the costs of these because they are sent from the Internet.
This provides a very effective communication channel with the user, a centralized proactive action that enables "wake up" the App in remotely way to keep active and interested user.
11. And most importantly, it generates "Engagement"
The best thing about mobile channel is that companies are given the opportunity to participate with their customers in real time, depending on their location, the schedule and their tastes, offering the opportunity to create a profile and answer thereunder.