Friday, 30 November 2012

How having an App can help your business

First of all, what is an App? An App (short for Application) is a program that runs on a smartphone in the same way as installed software runs on your computer. It allows the user to carry out tasks they want or need to do whilst on the move using their smartphone.

We’ve all heard the huge success stories of Apps like Angry Birds and used common Apps such as Ebay or Twitter but how can an App help your business, no matter what size it is? There are three main ways a smartphone App can be used to help:

1. Marketing
As part of your marketing effort Apps can be very powerful. As Apps are only just becoming mainstream then the first companies to have an App in their sector can generate a lot of PR around this. A client of ours (www.wetherbyortho.co.uk) has done exactly that by being the first orthodontist in the UK to have an App. Also, in the same way as your website gets found by Google, then with the right setup, people will find your App (and of course your business) through the various App stores.

2. Customer Service
We all want to serve our customers better in whichever field we work. Have you thought how you could help yours without them needing to be in the office sat in front of a computer? Mobile Apps allow you to do this! We practice what we preach at Appware so as well as using web based project management software in the office we also use the associated iPhone App for this. This means that if I’m sat with a client I can give an update of exactly where we are with their project in real time. I can also make notes or add new tasks as they are requested so my team can get to work on them before I’m even back in the office!

3. Direct Revenue Generation
The types of Apps above are usually given away for free. There is of course the option to actually generate direct revenue from an App. This can be done in a few ways; you could simply charge a flat fee for an App, give a limited version of an App for free but allow customers to pay to upgrade and unlock any limitations, or support the App through sponsorship or adverts. The cost of Apps to the end user is relatively small (starting at just 69 pence) but the worldwide market is huge. With a great idea and good marketing then the potential is massive. For example, the original version of Angry Birds has sold over 12 million copies!

I hope this gives you an insight into the world of Apps. Feel free to ask any questions by getting in touch at www.appware.co.uk

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