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Do I Really Need an App?

We are receiving inquiries from companies interested in developing an app solely to attract new customers. This idea used to be justified with two arguments:

  • When companies check their web traffic, they see that an important, growing percentage comes from mobile devices. Therefore, they assume that they will have greater success if customers download the app.
  • An app helps to differentiate from competitors, especially in saturated sectors with homogeneous products.

Save a few cases, this consideration is wrong. An app doesn’t help to get new digital business, but to retain customers and boost recurring sales.

Attract new business from the browser

The pattern of digital users looking for a provider has changed very little over the years. They know companies and brands from web searches, references in social media, or third-party digital platforms.

This first contact is made through the browser, whether desktop or mobile device. It is rare that the user first downloads the app or finds the provider in the markets.

The best way to attract a new business’s attention is constant improvement in the corporate web’s responsive design, as well as successful marketing campaigns.

There is always room for improvement when analyzing traffic data and user experience on a mobile device. Investing in A/B testing  is the best way to increase digital sales, not wasting money on apps.

An app does not help to get new digital business, but to retain customers and boost recurring sales.

Sell more to customers using apps

Apps are the best digital way to retain the customer and boost recurring sales. They are the ideal tool for selling more to and communicating with customers.

In general, it is beneficial to create an app under one or more of the following circumstances:

  • The communication exchange volume between a company and their customers is high.
  • The customer usually interacts with the information and data that the company provides.
  • There are recurring sales to customers.
Investing in A/B testing  is the best way to increase digital sales, not wasting money on apps.

Under these circumstances, an app provides new and powerful digital communications with the customer. With a good approach, the customer will feel the closer to the brand, and sales will multiply.

Investing in A/B testing  is the best way to increase digital sales, not wasting money on apps.
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Strategy and sector examples

There are examples of combining these strategies on different sectors:

  • Banks. Banks don’t catch new customers using apps. People download a bank’s app to learn about their services. It is a marginal interaction. Nevertheless, all banks have an app for their customers, because apps are the best platform to communicate operative information, news, and offers.
  • Real estate developers. As we said, investing in an app to promote products is erroneous. However, communicating the progress of the works or promoting sales is beneficial. Through reporting home improvement and upgrade options, real estate apps can help quality and sales.
  • Hotels. Like the previous sectors, an app to advertise hotels would be commercially detrimental. An app to sell more to the customers that are already in the hotel would increase sales and help a chain’s image.
An app provides new and powerful digital communications with the customer.

The exceptions: apps that catch new business

As with all rules, there are exceptions. An app can attract new customers in some circumstances, especially when it creates a significant gap from their competition.

A good example is the Spanish financial sector. Banks that lead the digital transformation are including differential and innovate utilities on their apps, while competitors keep primitive apps with poor user experiences. Those utilities are an attraction for new customers.

Ultimately, increasing digital supports does not guarantee to increase new business. Depending on the case, sector, and operator type, solutions can be very different.