Here’s How to Worry Less
I was recently chatting with a group of parents during my child’s soccer practice and the fact that I work in website and mobile app development came up. The conversation quickly turned to the hesitations and misconceptions many of them had about having a mobile app developed.
I realized these hesitations were common ones that come up frequently during our sales process or when we meet potential clients at conferences or events.
So, I thought it might be helpful to share how I responded.
If you’re about to embark on building your company’s first mobile app and have some concerns, don’t worry–it’s totally normal.
Here are some of the most common hesitations people have about mobile app development, plus some helpful information that should help ease your mind.
Hesitation #1: “I Don’t Like To Install Apps On My Phone”
There are a couple of ways I respond when I hear this concern. Many business owners are hesitant about having a mobile app developed but have read or been told that they need one, so they reluctantly start looking into it.
The first thing I do in these cases is to find out if, in fact, this person’s business could even benefit from having a mobile app. Just because mobile apps exist, doesn’t mean they’re the right solution for every business problem.
When trying to assess if building a mobile app is a good investment for your company, ask yourself and your team, “How often would somebody use our mobile app if we had one?”
If you can only see a customer or potential customer using your app once a month or once or twice a year, perhaps just making sure your website is mobile responsive is a better solution than building a mobile app.
If your mobile app would be used by people on a weekly or daily basis or multiple times daily, then a mobile app could really improve the user experience and ultimately help your business excel.
The other important question you can ask yourself when determining if a mobile app is right for your business is, “What tasks would our customers use a mobile app to complete and how long do those tasks take?”
Mobile apps are best for helping users complete tasks that take a few minutes to complete–like ordering flowers for your neighbour’s birthday, signing your child up for soccer, receiving a notification from your cleaner that they’ll be late, transferring money from one account to another, checking your yoga studio’s schedule for the upcoming week, or other similar easy-to-complete tasks.
A task that takes extensive time and attention to complete is not something you should expect your customers to use a mobile app for. Building a mobile app with this expectation would be a waste of time and money; however, if your target customers are mobile (like plumbers and contractors) a mobile app can be a life saver for them.
The final question I encourage people who are hesitant about mobile apps in general to ask themselves is, “Where are my customers and potential customers?”
While you personally may not be a big mobile app user, if your target audience is using mobile apps for many of their daily activities, having a mobile app might be something they expect. A practical mobile app that your customers and potential customers enjoy using can be a fantastic way to engage with your audience and help them develop a stronger relationship with your brand.
Hesitation #2: “Who Needs a Mobile App? People Can Find the Information on Google”
Sure. This is true–somebody could find the information you provide on a mobile app by using Google.
But is the information correct? Is the message a customer or potential customer can find on Google the one you want to convey? Google is an extremely helpful tool, but since you don’t own it, you can’t control your narrative in the same way you can with your own mobile app. Changes that might take a while to show up on Google, you can make immediately. You can guide users towards actions you want them to take like upgrading a membership, alerting them of a new feature or product, sharing new business hours, and on and on (the opportunities are truly endless).
You’ll still want to ask yourself the questions I outlined above to truly determine if a mobile app is right for your business. But, assuming that Google can do the same thing that a mobile app can do for your business isn’t exactly valid, so don’t let this hesitation stop you if you’re thinking about building a mobile app.
Hesitation #3: “But We’re On Social Media”
Social media can be a fantastic tool for connecting with your customers and potential customers. But there is a lot of noise on all of the many platforms and since people don’t pay to use the platforms, they are becoming the product themselves and are constantly being advertised and sold to as they scroll.
Additionally, it can be hard to be everywhere your audience is. Some people use Facebook and not Instagram. Some people only use Instagram. Unless you can be consistently active across all platforms, you may not be able to connect with all of your customers to share updates and important information.
Finding the Right Mobile App Development Partner
If you’re about to have a mobile app built, having some worries is totally normal. Developing a mobile app is an investment of your time and money–I would actually worry that you weren’t taking the process seriously enough if you didn’t have at least some concerns.
The team at 14 Oranges is happy to walk you through our processes and answer any questions you have so you feel confident before jumping into a mobile app development project. Reach out to see how we can help.