Are mobile apps worth the hype? The short answer – it’s complicated. A recent blog post we read on Fast Company.com is drawing a bit of controversy by knocking the effectiveness of mobile apps, but the blog’s author, Aaron Shapiro does make some great points.
Apps can be both useful & fun to use on mobile devices! There are currently over a quarter million apps available to download for the iPhone, and users are quick on the download. But because most apps aren’t terribly useful, most are downloaded & discarded as quickly as a fleeting thought. According to facts in a study Shapiro quotes, users only use 20% of those they have taken the time to download anyways.
Depending on how cool and original you want to be, the development of a mobile app will cost you somewhere between $5000 and $50,000. If you’d like the app to be available on more than one phone model – be prepared to pay again. When updates happen on that platform, be prepared for additional costs to upgrade the app again. In this case, your ROI is accessibility, a cutting-edge image and the value of the incentives offered to your shoppers.
Finally, a comparable alternative to building an app is building a mobile website. According to Shapiro, a mobile website, which can be viewed on all smart phones, has 50 times the reach of an app, and costs a tenth of the price to develop. The other advantage is that the user doesn’t have to go out of their way to download an entire program to begin interacting with your brand.
The choice of course is yours, and there is no shortage of opinions or information on the subject. Whatever the case, we’re curious to hear from you, and to help your business reach its mobile market.
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