4 Crucial Elements of a Successful Mobile App

Friday - May 31st, 2013

Written by: Tristan Pelligrino

4 Crucial Elements of a Successful Mobile App

With over 2 billion mobile app downloads occurring each month, it’s crucial for brands to take advantage of this tool. However, companies should also remember that apps are an extension of their online presence, and that branding should remain consistent across all networks.

The reason apps are so important is because they’re a measure of customer engagement. Users aren’t going to download your app unless they’re genuinely invested or interested in your brand. Since app downloads already have targeted traffic, you want to ensure that these customers have a good user experience. You don’t want to disappoint your most enthusiastic customers!

Aside from branding, mobile apps also become a revenue stream through advertisements, eCommerce platforms, and overall consumer engagement. To ensure that your company’s app reaches it’s full potential, it’s vital to ensure that it includes:

  1. Push notifications. Use these alerts wisely to enhance the user experience without annoying them. For instance, a pharmacy would want to use a push alert to notify the customer that their prescription is ready for pick-up. Or if you track user behavior and interaction, you can send a push notification the next time something they’re interested in goes on sale. Basically, this tool allows your brand to stay connected in real-time with consumers. Remember to use this sparingly, as abuse not only devalues each subsequent push, but also could lead to the user deactiving push notification for your brand’s app.
  2. Geographical context. Apps that take advantage of the phone’s GPS system to track local stores are more successful than their counterparts. Allowing users to easily find the nearest location creates satisfied customers and drives people into your stores. This is an amazing feature because no matter where a user is, they will be able to find where your business regardless of geographical location.
  3. Social integration. Let’s be honest: this one’s a given, yet there are still many brands (especially small businesses) who don’t link their apps to their social media presence, if they even have one at all. Even if your brand doesn’t have any social media pages, at least make it possible for users to share their actions on social networks. This grows your reach and expands the reach of your brand – and who knows, you might even get a referral!
  4. Shopping platform. Be sure to increase convenience by allowing customers to purchase items through your app! One of the great ways to maximize this feature is to offer exclusive deals for your app. If none of these deals can be purchased in-store or even online, then it adds value to your app and users have a reason to not only download it, but also repeatedly check it for updates. Also, consider offering real-world rewards. For instance, earning points through rewards programs could lead customers to visit your physical location.

Ultimately, for your app to be considered successful, it all comes down to how often consumers use your app and whether or not the ROI is proportionate to your investment. The biggest mistake that brands make is to judge the success of the app based on the amount of times it was downloaded – but that isn’t the complete picture. It’s better to have 1,000 monthly downloads and 500 regular users than 1,000,000 monthly downloads and only 10 regular users. While those figures are just an example, it’s a reminder that numbers aren’t everything.

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