22 Reasons Why Your Business or Blog Needs An iPhone App

I have noticed a lot more traffic coming from mobile platforms lately and it seems that the smartphone (or Internet in your hand) is something that can’t be ignored. iPhone and SmartPhone Mobile AppsThe growth in the market share of the iPhone as well as the continual replacement of the traditional mobile phones with Internet enabled phones like the Android and the Blackberry are driving traffic to sites at an increasing rate.

Here are some numbers

  • Comscore announced that 45.4 million people in the U.S. owned smartphones in an average month during the December to February period, 2010
  • This is up 21 percent from the three months ending November 2009.
  • Android phone app downloads to hit 800 Million in 2010
  • The iPhone will continue to be the leading app platform, with a database of over 200,000 applications offering niche and localized content
  • Apple iPhone downloads have exceeded 3 Billion at the start of 2010
  • ABI Research reported that just under six billion mobile applications will be downloaded in 2010
  • Smartphone OS-based phones will grow at more than a 30% compound annual growth rate for the next five years globally

I was attending CeBit this week and  there was a presentation by a “Mobile App” specialist Jeremy Samuel from AppsWiz.com and he opened my eyes to the increasingly omnipresent mobile market and how bloggers and corporate website owners cannot continue to ignore the smartphone app markets compelling growth.

One of the case studies mentioned was about the pizza  chain “Dominos” which after lanching its mobile app (read review here) drove over $2 million in sales to its stores in just 3 months.With the Domino’s Mobile App you can:

  • View the full Domino’s menu
  • See your current order
  • Track your order
  • View other information such as surcharges and the company’s privacy policy

Dominos Pizza Smart Phone and iPhone Mobile App

So what is a “Mobile App”?

A mobile app is a small program that sits on your mobile phone and does something for you. With the power of today’s phones, apps can do some really great things – from letting you know what’s going on in your area, to calculating exchange rates, movie times, social media interactions, alerting you to traffic information, providing entertainment and letting you know about special offers. There are over 200,000 mobile applications out there today performing a huge range of tasks.

So what should you should keep in mind before ignoring the constant knocking on your door of an opportunity whose time has come.

  1. If you do develop an App for mobile let everyone know about it through email, website, SMS  and Twitter
  2. Add mobile value by including content and functionality that are location based or time sensitive
  3. Just like social media don’t sell but provide content that adds value to people’s lives such as weather reports for bike riders that are location driven
  4. Develop a Mobile App that becomes a part of a persons daily lives and hopefully becomes indispensable
  5. Remember that with iPhone or mobile app your webiste or blog presence is just one or two slides or touches away on that persons phone anywhere anytime,
  6. It’s about convenience
  7. Mobile apps have broad reach  so develop apps that can viewed on as many mobile platforms as possible including, iPhone, Blackberry, Nokia and Android
  8. You can use the App to drive traffic to your bricks and mortar store
  9. Announce “Specials” to your readers (online shoppers love a bargain)
  10. You can announce an “Event”
  11. The mobile internet market is growing at a much faster rate than fixed internet
  12. The developing world’s connection to the internet is much more mobile centric than the Western world’s fixed line communications infrastructure
  13. 75% of our planet is still not connected to the Internet so the potential over the coming decades is substantial
  14. It will differentiate you from your competition
  15. You create deeper engagement
  16. Drive more loyalty
  17. You get to put your branding on your customers phones
  18. Your business is provided with great feedback
  19. It is going to drive more revenue and ultimately more profits
  20. It enables easy sharing of your content between mobile users
  21. Reduce costs to your business through automation
  22. It could even stop you getting a speeding fine and keep your licence… Trapster.com app tells you when there is a speed camera nearby.

So what sort of “Mobile App” could you develop for your website or blog  that adds value to your readers, customers  or prospects?

Comments

  • Tim

    Instead of creating Apps, apparently at the cost of around $40,000 for each different kinds of phones, a Business or Blog should create a mobile version of their website viewable on mobile browsers.

  • http://www.jasonclegg.com Jason Clegg

    Looks great Jeff! I like #3 most. Only the best iPhone apps do that — provide MORE value without just pushing another venue for buying stuff.

    How about this article — “22 Reasons Why Your Business Does NOT Need an iPhone App.”

    This could be a great write-up for those folks who really don’t need an iPhone app and should put their marketing dollars elsewhere.

    -Jason Clegg

  • http://www.Seven87.com CharlieNB

    Nice post Jeff, thanks!

    Tim, While I agree that a mobile-friendly version of a website is always a good idea, spending $40k for an app is likely a rare occurrence, unless you 1. need lots of custom functionality or 2. pay an overpriced app shop or big agency to make it for you. 😎

    Starting with a mobile site and working on integration between the main site, email and physical locations is a great way to start mobile efforts, then moving to apps after that learning. That’s usually my recommendation to my customers (disclosure: I’m a mobile strategy consultant).

    Charlie
    http://twitter.com/CharlieNB

  • http://www.goodbusinesslink.com Business Sales

    The above thought is smart and doesn’t require any further addition. It’s perfect
    thought from my side.

  • http://www.PhotoHand.com PhotoHand

    We at http://www.PhotoHand.com are still debating to create either iPhone and/or Android app with functionality to work with our customers closer and more efficiently..etc., while speaking to many of our current customers we found that we still have some time to figure out what this app should do for us and for the customer… sure you can predict the numbers of growth of the markets, but it’s a bit harder to predict future abilities of the smart phones and being “first to market” may not always be the best bet by either offering a limited service first (disappointing the client) or investing into a full blown app at still high rates…..suggestions are welcome…!

    Thanks,
    Roman & PH Team

  • http://www.PhotoHand.com PhotoHand

    Thanks for the list!

    We at http://www.PhotoHand.com are still debating to create either iPhone and/or Android app with functionality to work with our customers closer and more efficiently..etc., while speaking to many of our current customers we found that we still have some time to figure out what this app should do for us and for the customer… sure you can predict the numbers of growth of the markets, but it’s a bit harder to predict future abilities of the smart phones and being “first to market” may not always be the best bet by either offering a limited service first (disappointing the client) or investing into a full blown app at still high rates…..suggestions are welcome…!

    Thanks,
    Roman & PH Team

  • http://www.mobiinteractive.com Sam Kim

    Hello Roman & PH Team (http://www.PhotoHand.com),

    An app should engage your customers to drive more traffic (online, mobile, etc) to your door. If you have an app that has photo examples, videos, app specials, and upcoming events that are related to people needing glamour shots (your clientele), then it can drive presence into a market that you didn’t have before (the mobile industry). Your business does get listed on Apple’s iTunes and through the nature of creating an app for your business, your SEO (search engine optimization) gets ranked higher. Of course, that depends on making sure that the App development company does its job correctly and efficiently. It doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg to get your very own App, which is beneficial to your customers, which in turn increases sales. Especially in this day and age, and during times of recession, businesses need to do all that they can to get the face of their company one step closer in the faces of its customers. And what better way, then being on their phone!

    Email me if you have any other questions, comments, or discussions about this topic!

    Sam Kim
    sam.kim@mobiinteractive.com

  • http://www.gadgetfrik.com Gadgetfrik

    Hi,

    I am an iPhone apps developer + tech blogger. When I first started out blogging my traffic was growing albeit slowly. But then I decided to write a very simple app – a free RSS reader just for my blog and put it on the appstore. Quite a number of people downloaded it and of course my traffic increased. This was the good news. But then, when I started getting busy with my day job I posted less frequently and the iphone users were quick to give a bad rating for my app which in turn reduced the traffic to my blog. So in my opinion, an iphone app for your blog is a good tool but it can really be a double edged sword. Just my 2 cents!

  • http://steves6figureincome.com Steve Duval

    I would be lost without my iphone for my business.

    How times have changed, look back 10 years and think how we use to work then.

    Good Post

  • http://www.theorganicview.com June Stoyer

    I think a .mobi site is a waste of money. The apps for iphone are not hard to make. It really depends upon how dynamic your site is and what you use it for.

    • http://www.klikaj.me Novice Vremenska Napoved

      June, you don’t need an .mobi site, you just need a subdomain like m.yoursite.com and an expert (or a software) to convert your actual site to a mobile-friendly one (you can even do a real time conversion). You don’t have to do nothing, like to tell your users to go to mobile version of your site, it’s all automated. When a mobile browser is detected then the site automatically redirects to the subdomain.

  • http://www.klikaj.me Novice Vremenska Napoved

    Interesting reading, I have a thought abut this: You know that iPhone is widely used in USA and Asia only? If you have visitors from Europe you should also think about Symbian, Android and the newly released Windows Phone 7 which will be considered by many users from USA too…
    Now what is cheaper:
    a.) make apps for all platforms
    b.) make a mobile version of your site
    When deciding on a or b I think you also should keep in mind that an app must be installed, when the mobile version of your website is accessed instantly, no instalations required.
    And if your site is on WordPress there are some very good plugins so actually all you have to do is enable the plugin.

  • http://steamcatapult.com/ Dave Pinsen

    Domino’s is sort of a different animal, in that it’s an established bricks & mortar brand that launched a complementary iPhone app. It’s more of a challenge getting the word out about your app otherwise. It’s harder still to get folks to pay for an iPhone app (though this has been a record sales month so for my Portfolio Armor, albeit building off a low base).

  • http://twitter.com/mylivingpower Laurie Wallin

    So…. is the next post going to be about how to do that? :)

  • Synctium Labs

    Interested in Developing an App for your business?  Visit http://www.synctium.com 

  • Cpollock

    We will build your Insurance Agency a customized Iphone app that will help your agency communicate effectively with their employees. 
    http://www.ThreadwireSolutions.com
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gRO__sbNhwM

  • Kim

    A mobile application will allow your company to be part of a technological revolution!

    Kim Devitt
    kdevitt@solodev.com

  • Aadam Gibson

    Thanks for sharing interesting and very important Reason of business apps with how make cost effective mobile app for get better business.

  • Lisa Darklin

    I have a friend who is a gym owner. He has his own mobile app and tells me that it’s been great for getting new customers and staying in touch with existing members by sending out promos and timetable changes. I’m thinking of getting one for my new salon biz and heard that it doesn’t have to cost tens of thousands. My friend paid $2000 for his to be set up and then I think $150 per month to keep it updated for new phones