Before we go into detail I am going to define the difference between a web based application and a native based application.
Web Based Apps
A web based app is browser based and generally run off a URL, but can be added to a home screen of a tablet or smartphone. Written in text rather than binary code. Therefore a little less secure than a native apps. Web based apps are progressing rapidly but have yet to achieve the processing power of native based apps.
Native Based Apps
Native apps are your typical App Store and Google Market apps that can be downloaded, unlike web based apps that run in the browser. Native apps are great for enterprise because they can be loaded on devices and are very user friendly. Also they have offline capabilities. Think of a native app as software rather than a webpage.
Do you need Offline Capabilities?
Generally, if your organization needs offline capabilities and your team if constantly working in the field, than a native based app will best suit your organization needs. Native apps are especially beneficial to industrial, oil and gas, manufacturing organizations that may not have connectivity 100% of the time. Native apps are able to store information gathered during “offline mode” and upload the data to a server once connectivity is restored.
Generally, web apps need connectivity, there are methods that allow browser based apps to store information but they have yet to prove useful for enterprise organizations. Basically, if you need offline capabilities native based is your best bet.
Have you thought about Mobile Commerce?
So…this is a tricky one, because web-apps can be responsive (responsive = automatically adapts to the type of device the web-app is being viewed on i.e. a desktop web-app may look different than the mobile and tablet web app). The intelligence of a web app is able to recognize the device and display a mobile, tablet or desktop optimized web based application. Generally, the user experience is pretty good with web based apps. Cost is generally lower and many major brands are using web based mobile commerce platforms
A native based app offers an immersive experience that is catered to each operating system and downloaded to the device. Therefore the user experience is smoother, much faster and offers the opportunity to reach customers through push notifications. Since the user downloads a native app to their device, mobile commerce providers can market flash sales, new products, and other marketing initiatives through a push notification that offers an immediate call to action.
Are you Considering Leveraging the Capability of the Device…Camera, Calendar, Near Field Communications, GPS, Location Aware Offerings?
If an app is meant to leverage the potential of the device, than a native based mobile strategy would best suit your needs and objectives. Although certain web based techniques are being used to integrate the camera features, GPS and Location aware offerings they are unproven and lack user experience.Read More
Marketers are constantly trying to determine how to retain customers; therefore mobile marketers must think traditionally and determine how to sustain a steady user base.
- Push messaging with a unique call to action
- Incentive for using the app
- Cross promotional opportunities I.e. Pro sports league, ticket giveaways
Listen to Your Customer’s/Users
Qualitative and quantitative data is extremely valuable to marketers. Provide a section within you app that allows users to give feed. You can use push messaging to provide notifications and a call to action to feedback widgets/pages.
- Provide an opportunity for users to answer open ended questions
- Provides surveys for feedback with close ended questions
Reward your Best Users
Loyalty is something that has been used in marketing for ages. Therefore offering your app user rewards is a great way to retain your customers and keep them happy.
- Offer your users coupon codes for your other services
- Run a loyalty contest with incentive
- Add incentive for increased usage
Christmas is coming fast, and more and more people are opting to use mobile technology to shop for their loved ones.Read More
Push messaging is a feature that is available through a native mobile application (NATIVE = an app that is downloaded rather than viewed through a browser) that offers marketers an incredible amount of functionality. Since native apps require users to download an app, the user has invited marketers into their pocket, living room, office and basically wherever the user brings their smartphone. Therefore marketers can capitalize on contextual messaging to deliver sales promotions, product awareness messaging and other direct marketing tactics.
Geo-fencing or GPS Alerts
Due to the mass adoption of mobile and smartphone technology, users have begun to demand tailored messaging that meets their needs and objectives. GPS has become an incredible feature for marketers, because it allows them to deliver contextual messaging to their customers and prospective customers.
Interested in mobile statistics and mobile marketing? You may also like: Charts: Worldwide Smartphone Market Share and Trends, What is Push Messaging and why is it so Powerful?, 6 Things to Consider when Building a Mobile App
I am going to use a big box store as an example. A user watching television notices a big box store, they frequently shop at, has a mobile application. They download the application because they were made aware that the app offers deals, sales and other benefits such as a store locator and hours of operation.
Upon download the user is asked a brief set of questions to determine their preferences.
- What are the departments you shop in most (secondary and tertiary as well)
- What are your favorite brands?
- What type of products would you like to receive alerts about
- Where are your favorite stores (GPS based through a store locator)
Upon completion of an initial customer assessment, the user is telling the mobile application their preferences. Therefore since they have set their favorite departments, brands, products and stores, marketers are able to deliver relevant messages.
Let’s go through the purchase decisions, involvement steps and channel relationships
1. The user/customer wakes ups in the morning and decides they would like to go to a big box store
2. They get in their car and drive to the store, not expecting to buy more than one new product
3. Since they have preset their preferences (favorite stores, products, brands, departments) and they have downloaded the app, as soon as they walk into the store push messaging, is sent to their smartphone with contextual content
4. The user opens and views the contextual content and puts their phone back in their pocket
5. Since preferences have been set, geo-fencing can provide messaging when a customer walks by one of their favorite brands, departments, products etc.
6. The user puts items in their cart that they may not have noticed and checks out
7. The application stimulates buying and improves sales and ultimately channel relationships because the big box store is making more purchase orders through their suppliers
8. Not only, does the app provide increased sales and channel relationships, but it also provides data about consumers who own smartphones and what they are looking for while at the point of purchase. Therefore retailers are able to improve their supply chain through demand metrics.Read More
The emergence of tablet computing has created a tremendous opportunity for sales managers. They now have the ability to arm their sales force with powerful, media rich devices that are less obtrusive than laptops. Tablets act as a presentation tool that enables front line sales people to educate clients , and prospective clients on complex products through data visualizations and other forms of media.
Sales people can share information with clients via tablet
Product catalogs can be large, heavy and hard to navigate. Tablets allow sales people to share information within catalogs quickly, while incorporating hi res images and interactive content.
Pull up information quickly
Unlike catalogs, which involve flipping through pages, tablet applications can incorporate a search function and allow quick navigation between multiple products.
Use graphics to help tell a story in a way that is very memorable
Printing high resolution photos can be extremely costly. Tablets applications allow sales people to tell a story and engage customers.
A visual conversation allows sales people to explain their product, while using visual representations. Therefore visuals of products may spark a conversation and lead to more billings.
To talk to a mobile expert call Drew @ 905-526-0386 ext 550
Understanding in-store shopping behavior is not an easy task. Retailers spend large dollar volumes on getting to know consumers. Mobile has created an opportunity for marketers to effectively and successfully interact with shoppers. The opportunities are endless; I have highlighted 3 tactics that have the most potential.
Enabling Location Based Technology through a Branded App
Native based mobile apps offer an opportunity for brands to develop deeper relationships with their customers by engaging them in a personal and relevant way. Location-aware mobile technology allows retailers and brands to create an immersive experience at the point of purchase by offering mobile applications with geo-intelligence. The consumer is provided with an experience that is catered to their needs, while in-store, and the marketer is provided with intelligence about their customers.
A Location based native mobile application provides the following in store metrics:
• When consumers were in-store
• How long consumers were in-store
• What consumers are doing while they are in-store
• Where consumers are in relation to physical locations
A branded, geo-location mobile app provides marketers an understanding of in-store shopping behavior. Marketers are able to effectively interact with customers, increase sales, establish customer loyalty and analyze metrics provided by the business intelligence of a location based application.
A geo-fence is a virtual boundary that can be placed around specific locations, which allows marketers to communicate with customers once the geo-fence boundary is breached. For example, if you were grocery shopping, as soon as you walk into the store, a push message would appear on your smartphone asking if you would like to receive the weekly flyer or “show this confirmation code to the cashier to receive a 10% discount on Coca-Cola products”. Geo-fencing has a tremendous amount of opportunity because of the cross-promotional and sales promotion opportunities. The cross-promotional strength of geo-fencing has the potential to increase channel relationships between manufacturers, wholesalers, intermediaries, and retailers.
Note: Geo-fencing also has an opportunity to engage the consumer upon exit of the geo-fenced area. For example, “thank you for using the mobile coupon, provided. Please fill out your thoughts on the mobile couponing experience”
Encourage Users to Check- In and Share Using a Branded Mobile App
Incentive is imperative when encouraging users to check in. Therefore marketers must offer deals and promotions to users who are willing to check in and share. For example, “Check in and Share to facebook or twitter for a chance to win a $1000 gift card”. Although the initial investment of a branded location enabled application may be fairly significant, the return on investment will come quickly. If you think about it in regards to media expenditure; an ad in a magazine that has a circulation of 20-30k will probably cost between $10-30k just for the media. A check-in with a “$1000 incentive to share” creates an opportunity to reach 10,000 people if 20 people with 500 followers on twitter or 500 friends on Facebook share that they have checked in at a store.
To talk to a mobile expert call Drew @ 905-526-0386 ext 550