Do You Need An App To Boost customer experience?

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Charting your customers’ experiences on mobile needs to be an essential part of your CX strategy. Mobile platforms are extremely pervasive today. To understand just how important it is, consider these mobile marketing statistics:

  • 51% of shoppers have completed an online purchase with a mobile
  • There are 5.11 billion unique mobile users around the world
  • Mobile commerce sales will account for more than half of all eCommerce sales by 2021
  • Conversion rates from mobile apps are 3x higher than on mobile sites
  • 53% of mobile and tablet owners will shop on company-specific apps
  • Sales from mobile commerce on both Black Friday and Cyber Monday were more than $2 billion in 2018, breaking previous records

People use mobiles for convenience and speed and will expect positive experiences on your mobile platforms – either through a mobile site or an app.

It’s evident that you need to create a mobile-responsive website for your brand, but do you need an app?

It’s not always guaranteed that a company-app will definitely boost customer experience. You need to ask the right questions to understand whether building an app is the best choice for your brand.

Questions to Help You Decide if Your Brand Needs an App

Before building an app, you need to understand whether it actually serves your customers. Let’s look at some helpful questions that will allow you to explore whether an app will improve customer experience or detract from it.

How Often Do Customers Interact With Your Brand on Mobile?

If customers visit your site frequently on mobile and carry out several activities, then it makes sense to develop an app. Mobile apps are built to make actions easier to carry out on a smartphone.

However, a customer merely visiting your brand’s webpages does not necessarily warrant a mobile app. The kind of content users consume and the activities they carry should be considered.

For example, if your business is an online course that teaches users how to use a specific software, then their best experience will be on a desktop site. Creating an app, in this case, does not contribute in a helpful way and may even be harmful.

You need to consider the nature of your product and whether a mobile app is something that users will interact with often and in great depth.

h3>Do Customers Make Repeat Purchases?
ECommerce businesses unquestionably benefit from creating an app. For your business, consider whether you have a large number of products and whether people make frequent purchases.

If yes, then building an app offers convenience and greater customization which will boost your customer’s experience.

However, if customers only make a one-time purchase or an infrequent purchase, then an app can actually annoy users. People dislike having to download an app and have it occupy space on their phones. It’s better to create a fully-functional mobile-responsive site that users can buy from. You can add payment gateways and wallets on a mobile site instead of compelling users to download an app for a single or rare purchase.

Do You Have a Loyalty Program?

A mobile app makes sense if you offer a loyalty program, discounts, and other offers that customers can use when they buy your product. In this case, an app will create greater convenience.

It will also boost loyalty as your customers will have tangible evidence that they are getting benefits on the app. For example, Starbucks’s mobile app can be used to order food, make payments, and redeem benefits. Users see clear advantages to using the app and will use it often.

If you don’t offer a loyalty program or if a user’s interactions on an app are limited, then building an app is superfluous.

Will an App Offer More Value than a Mobile Site?

The purpose of your mobile app should be to offer more value and convenience to your customers. Ask yourself if an app will enable you to offer greater functionalities than a mobile site will. If yes, and if an app will boost your customers’ experience then it’s a great idea to build an app.

However, many businesses build apps that are simply mobile sites converted into an app. Such apps have the same layout and offer the same features as a mobile site and don’t offer any additional value. Users may be disappointed and this can lead to negative reviews and a poorer impression of your brand.

Is Your Largest Customer Demographics Group Familiar With Apps?

It’s helpful to consider your user base when building an app. If you have a largely older demographic forming your customers, then a fully-featured app may be intimidating rather than helpful.

On the other hand, a younger demographic will likely expect your brand to have an app. In this case, building an app makes sense and boosts customer experience.

Do your competitors have apps?

It’s useful to check whether your competitors use apps to deliver their products and services. If they do, then your customers may expect your business to have an online app. It becomes necessary to create an app if it’s part of the industry benchmark and offers your customers more benefits.

Building an app will help you meet your audience’s expectations and capture more of the market.

Let Customer Experience Drive App Development

Building an app without a specific purpose in mind will not drive up customer experience. Unless your app offers greater convenience or some other kind of tangible benefit, it may only serve to annoy customers.

For many businesses, optimizing their mobile site for smartphones and tablets can create the best experience for their customers. Here are a few things you can do to boost your mobile site.

  • Use payment integrations including wallets to make purchases easier on your mobile site
  • Use mobile-responsive forms to allow users to contact you
  • Add live-chat for better customer support on mobile
  • Structure your content to be mobile-friendly by creating short paragraphs, adding headlines, bullets, and other elements to make content readable
  • Add video content as it is easier to consume on smaller screens

Building a helpful mobile site may be all that’s needed to boost customer experience. However, if needed, go the extra mile and offer your customers an app that helps them achieve their goals on the go.

Use the questions here as guidelines to help you determine whether you need to create an app. Focus on creating the best experience for your customer and you’ll always make the right business decision.

Syed Balkhi
Syed Balkhi is the founder of WPBeginner, the largest free WordPress resource site. With over 10 years of experience, he’s the leading WordPress expert in the industry. You can learn more about Syed and his portfolio of companies by following him on his social media networks.

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