We have had many people asking us if they need a mobile app for their business. It appears to be a growing trend to have one these days, and the stats prove it.
With over 1.6 million Android apps available on Google Apps store and an estimated 5.07 billion mobile users by 2019, it would seem like a smart move to get a mobile app and tap into the consumer base here.
Mobile apps or applications are software programmes developed specifically for mobile devices, creating a new platform for engagement with online consumers. Tablet and smartphone usage is outstripping that of desktop computers and laptops with a forecast of 197 billion apps to be downloaded in 2017.
So does this mean you should go ahead and get a mobile app for your business? Well, the jury is out on this case but if you are thinking about it, here are some important factors to consider first.
Cost to develop
With a starting price of RM10,000 you better make sure you have a budget for it to begin with. Why is it so expensive?
For starters there’s the programmers’ fee depending on how many software engineers will be working on your app. On the technical side there is the operating system in which it will run to also take into account.
Mobile apps for the iPad are supported by Apple’s iOS, but not Google’s Android. An Apple app can’t run on an Android phone, and vice versa so developers will have to create a version for each.
Then factor in the complexity of the details and features plus the timeline and you are looking at a reasonably costly project. Not to mention the scarcity of app developers in Malaysia so you may need to outsource at a higher currency rate.
Who will be using your app? What will they need it for? How will it help them? Identifying your target audience and their needs will help you meet expectations and gain popularity.
Your mobile app should be compatible with your existing ecommerce platform. That means you should already have the services (catalogue, shopping carts, reviews etc) on your website in order for it to be properly exposed via the mobile app.
Apps which require too much data space or take too long to load will give a negative impression before the user can even utilise it. Also make sure your app is serving the customers’ need in a new and interesting way to keep them engaged.
How much are you willing to pay for a mobile app?
Before you launch your app, you may need to recruit the services of beta testers to ensure the app is running smoothly and effectively.
Beta testers are the second phase of testing with ‘real customers’ to receive feedback that on every aspect and feature of the app. Some choose to use simulators for the purpose of saving time and cost, but this method does not always guarantee exact results.
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