By Daniel Emery

A survey last year revealed that nearly half of small businesses plan to have a mobile app up and running by the end of 2017.

As smartphone and tablet use reaches critical mass, my question would be: “Why only half?”

In the last three years, small businesses which had previously seen about 10% of their traffic come through mobile have watched that figure rocket to around 70%.

Any company wondering how to boost sales should consider that a good mobile app will enable customers to make a quick checkout for a purchase, anytime and anywhere. Apps also alert the market to new deals, products and events.

So in order to maintain a competitive edge, building an app would be one of the first of my recommendations.

Unlike websites, they are not about helping new customers find a business, but about rewarding customer loyalty and encouraging consumers to stick with the brand.

So while some companies may think they are satisfied with their online presence, without customer loyalty apps they are at risk of missing out to the competition.

An app should be a part of any smart company’s marketing campaign.

As marketing tools go, the advantages of mobile apps cannot be underestimated.

So you may now be thinking: “What features do I need as part of this app for my business?”

The main areas to focus on include:

Social networking

Your digital marketing strategy will no doubt include interaction through a variety of social platforms, and your app should redirect customers to your Facebook/Twitter/Instagram                                     

Loyalty marketing

 A rewards scheme to keep customers coming back for more

Push notifications

News, updates and deal alerts


 Mobile advertising relevant to the customer’s previous purchases, as well as using location alerts to show them deals in their area, or alert them to your special offers as they walk past your store

The final questions a business may be asking is “Why create an app now?”

Many will figure they can jump onto the bandwagon when apps are a must-have for their business.

But consider this. What is easier – building a basic app now and simply updating it as the marketplace becomes more competitive?

Or starting from scratch when sales are in rapid decline because customers prefer a competitor’s app over your tired website?

Don’t play catch up. If you want to get ahead, get an app.


For advice on tech marketing, call 0800 612 9890.