Every business in this day and age needs to have a strong online presence, exceptional online marketing prowess, and convenient customer service. Creating and maintaining an informative, up-to-date web site is a great place to start—but it’s not enough anymore. Twenty years ago, web sites were all the rage and businesses that didn’t have one were passé. While that’s still the case, the standards have changed quite a bit. Nowadays, having a mobile-friendly web site, as well as a unique business app is becoming a must. But which one should you focus on more? Is one better than the other? The truth is that not all businesses are created alike and not all businesses have the same online goal. What works for one business, might not work for yours.
Mobile web sites and apps are both important in their own unique ways, but they also work cohesively together when it comes to online business promotion. Keep reading to see whether focusing on building a mobile web site vs. a business app is the right move for your business.
Factor to Consider when Choosing to Develop a Mobile Web Site vs. a Business App
When deciding whether to focus your time and money on updating your business web site or developing an app, there are a few things you should be thinking about:
Your Business Size and Popularity
Are you a startup or small business that is looking to increase your customer base? Do you want to expand your business to new markets within a set timeframe? Keep in mind that effective SEO strategies like writing blog posts, posting images, and writing social media posts can all help you get the visibility you need to make your web site a success. So, if you’re a small business or startup, it’s a good idea to build a strong online presence through your web site first. Oftentimes, when people are searching for a product or service, their first instinct is to perform a search inquiry on their phone. Then their preferred search engine of choice will present them with a list of the top businesses within close proximity relating to their search query. This is why it’s so important to have a mobile-friendly web site. While apps are also capable of doing this, in order for a potential customer to use your business app, they first need to know your business exists. Once you drum up enough customers and interest, you can then put your energy into building an accompanying app.
The Scope of Your Online Marketing
What platforms are you using to promote your brand and make it more competitive? Nowadays, both mobile web sites and business apps need to be compatible with all mobile devices, operating systems, and even other apps like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Snapchat. The more time, resources, and money you invest in online marketing, the more exposure your brand will get. The more exposure your brand gets, the more you can increase your customer base. And the more you increase your customer base, the more you can expand your business and take it to different levels including new and untapped markets you might not have imagined possible.
Customizing the User Experience
When customers download your official mobile app, you can use whatever information they input into the app (i.e. when placing orders) to create a more customized user experience for each customer. Not only does this allow you to predict the types of purchases they might make in the future, but you can also make product or service suggestions based on those past purchases. While this is also possible to do via a mobile-friendly web site, having the app icon appear on their phone is a constant reminder to your customers that your business exists. They might not use your app every single day, but they’ll remember your company name and logo whenever they do need your products or services.
How Much Can You Afford to Spend on Design and Maintenance?
Budgeting for web site and app design and maintenance is important because you’re going to need to keep both mediums updated on a regular basis. As mentioned, small business and startup owners should focus on building a strong brand web site first that users can refer to when they need information about your business as well as the types of products and services you offer. Once you start building a strong online brand and gain a substantial number of followers by creating excellent content, you can then start focusing on app development. Your business app should ultimately complement your web site while also serving as a more convenient point of access for your customers.
We’ve talked about this in past posts: if your web site or app takes longer than 2-3 seconds to load, then you’re already far behind your competitors. Most users will get frustrated and leave. When developing a mobile-friendly web site, you can use Google’s Page Speed Insights tool to test the load time. When it comes to customer convenience, there’s no denying that mobile apps are often more convenient than browsing a web site—even if the site is mobile-friendly. When customers download an app directly to their mobile devices, it makes it a lot easier for customers to access your brand whenever they need it. And we all know that convenience is key when it comes to serving and retaining customers.
Mobile Web Site or App: Which One is Better for Your Business?
Ultimately, your primary focus as an online business should be to spread awareness about your brand and create an impenetrable online presence that keeps getting stronger by the day. Both SEO and a mobile app can help you accomplish this—it just depends on what your business goals are.
At Numero Uno Business Growth Specialists can help you create a professional online marketing plan to raise brand awareness, increase your ROI, and create quality content for your followers. Contact us today to learn more!