Do you have an effective mobile-optimized website?Don’t run before you’ve learned to walk. Mobile websites, when properly built and maintained, can be very effective tools for for engaging mobile users. A strong responsive website has its advantages: 67% of mobile users are more likely to make a purchase via website (compared to app).
The data gleaned from a good responsive mobile website can be invaluable. The way your users interact with your website should inform the next steps of your mobile strategy. Which leads us to our next question:
Are you focused on building a wider user base, or retaining existing users?
As a general rule, mobile websites aid users in discovery and exploration. An engaging and easy-to-navigate mobile website can act as a powerful hook for new customers, as it will most often be the first interaction a user has with your brand. Although it’s always important to retain customers, your business may be more focused on building up a wider customer base.
Apps are a powerful tool for retaining existing customers, enabling repeat customers and building customer loyalty through rewards programs. A smooth and rewarding in-app experience is paramount for returning customers. Users have longer sessions in apps, but 44% of customer don’t make a purchase until they’ve visited the app at least 10 times. But those users that interact with an app multiple times make 25% more in-app purchases over their customer lifetime. These are high-quality customers, and fostering their loyalty should be a priority when designing an app.
Are you prepared to commit a significant budget to a mobile app?
An app will have to keep up with updates across various mobile operating systems, and refreshed on a regular basis with app-specific content. It will also take a dedicated team to evolve its strategy over time, separate from web and mobile web. These will all take resources, and a lengthy commitment.
The road to relevancy is littered with 1-star apps that never quite made it. You don’t want your app to end up as one of these, so it’s important to be realistic about app requirements early on.
What other questions should I be asking?
Find out in our Guide to Mobile Apps which includes a decision tool that will walk you through all of the considerations above.