The word “app” can be taken as one of those which have brought a major trend shift, one which was not expected. From the cradle of the iPhones and the App store came the apps. Such was their appeal that Microsoft windows stopped calling its feature “programs” and re-labeled them as “apps” in the new version of Windows. This is very major new in the world of marketing because we had been using the word programs since the first modern consumer computers were made.
An app and its importance is something that cannot be ignored by a business. There are now more people online from smartphones than there are from traditional devices, such as laptops or desktop computers. An app gives the business access to a whole new market for selling its wares and advertising itself. And no longer is this market an option. The world right now is very competitive and whoever hogs the limelight succeeds. Businesses need to compete with competitors and if competitors have apps, that means that they have one strategy in their arsenal to capture customer base, meaning that they will be targeting your existing customer base.
Till now getting an app developed is sounding like a lucrative idea (hopefully) but a good functioning app can cost anywhere from USD 3,000 and above. So what are some hard hitting reasons for a small business with limited funds to invest this much in getting an app built for them?
We will share some of the main reasons which will convince your business acumen of why an app is not an expense but a long-term investment.
- Apps give customers value addition
Achieving value addition is no easy task for a business that has been operating for many years. After a time you reach the peak. An app helps you go past the peaking point, for a well-designed app can give an additional level of convenience to the customer with very little effort on the businesses’ behalf. For example, most of us would prefer to book an appointment with our local mechanic through an app which requires a few clicks then calling the mechanic, waiting for the operator, or worse, going there in person. Or for example, you are a real estate agency operating in the traditional 9am to 5pm time slot. Now there are some customers which cannot take out time in this time slot. But what many real estate agents are doing is that they have an app which lists all available properties along with the necessary photos. That allows a customer to short-list what they like whenever they are free and then contact the real-estate agent, saving quite a lot of valuable time. Such value addition comes very cheaply via an app but customers value such conveniences greatly. If you are the first one among your competition then this could be a trump card. However, if your competition has already developed an app that increases convenience then you need to get on the same playing field or the non-availability of an app could spell financial doom for your business.
- 24/7 Marketing
We all use our smartphones constantly. Be it for emails, news or games. They are one of the greatest inventions by mankind. We are literally holding a portal to the online world in our pockets. And an app gives you a rent-free billboard on that portal.
The customer may not click on your app every day, but as they unlock their phone they will see your app and that is a small reminder of your existence. So when the need for mechanic arises, yours will be the first name that pops up as they see the app every day.
An app opens new doors for businesses, small businesses in particular who have restricted marketing funds. But it is important to remember that these advantages only accrue when you get developed a good app which according to sources, can cost on average USD 6,453. But think of it this way, you get what you pay for. And you want a worthwhile investment.