In the 90’s, businesses having their own website were rare. Having a good website often represented the competitive advantage all companies were on the look for and the rapid development of e-commerce made it possible for online-only giants (Amazon, Ebay) to be founded.
Twenty years later, having a website is a prerequisite for going into business, yet consumers are looking for something different.
According to ComScore, American adults aged over 18 spend on average 3 hours per day on their mobile phones, while 63% millennials maintain that they shop on their smartphones everyday.
Here is an overview of how consumers use their mobile phones and the services they access through them:
Mobile devices have clearly turned into the preferred shopping platform and mobile shopping now represents a cake all companies want to take a slice of.
The competition is fierce and winning that slice will not be easy, unless you deploy your best resources and reduce the purchase funnel, i.e. the time customers spend between researching your products and actually purchasing them.
Developing your own branded app will help you tackle this issue, while reducing your marketing efforts and building brand awareness at the same time.
Here are 4 reasons why a branded app can actually make the difference between making it or breaking it!
IT IMPROVES BRAND RECALL
Unless they happen to bump into the products they are looking for, most customers will carry out some preliminary research on the products they plan to buy. It does not have to be an actual online research, yet we all create a list of potential suppliers of the goods we are seeking. If you are after a mobile phone, some brands (Samsung, Huauei, LG etc.) will come to your mind instantaneously.
To win a slice of that cake, your brand must be in that list.
Providing your customers with a branded app acts as a constant reminder. Seeing your logo whenever users check their smartphone will lead to an increase in brand recall and will boost your chances to enter the list the next time they look for a product you sell.
IT BOOSTS BRAND LOYALTY
Acquiring new customers is important, but retaining old ones is 3 times more profitable.
Loyal customers may turn into advocates and promote your brand among their peers, thus it is fundamental to create a base of loyal customers who are willing to promote your brand.
There are two ways you app can become a source of brand loyalty:
a. The first way is linked to point 1. When users are constantly exposed to your brand, they will be more likely to think of you when they need the products you sell. In turn, if they buy your products via the app, they will grow accustomed to using it and will probably repeat this behaviour in the future.
b. the second way you can use a branded app to improve brand loyalty is to actually reward app users. You may give discounts to customers who install your app or you can reward them for using it by providing exclusive offers, free delivery and vouchers.
Also, you could encourage customers to invite their friends to try the app by inserting a ‘share’ button inside the app or by giving their friends a discount too.
IT SHORTENS THE PURCHASE FUNNEL
When there was no internet, the time lapse between research, purchase decision and purchase could take up to a few days. Online shopping has made shopping easier and faster, but mobile shopping has been a revolution.
Although e-commerce websites allow users to buy products in a few clicks, shopping time is limited by the number of hours they spend in front of their laptop. You would not bring your laptop when you are having dinner with friends, would you? Yet, you’ll probably bring your smartphone.
Mobile apps allow users to buy products right away, whenever they want and wherever they are, thus reducing the time lapse between purchase decision and actual purchase and preventing second thoughts from hindering the purchase.
IT REDUCES THE MARKETING EFFORT
One of the drawbacks of traditional media is that you are often shooting in the dark: you reach a huge audience, of which a low percentage is usually interested in what you sell.
A branded mobile app allows you to reach a highly profiled target with little effort. How do you know it is a highly profiled target? Well, if they downloaded your app, you know for sure that they are interested in your brand!
Having your own branded mobile app allows you to send targeted information to your customers via push notifications; it allows you to notify customers about new promotions or changes in the company policies and it even enables you to do some proximity marketing.
Want to know more about the advantages of a branded mobile app for your business?
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