Still not sure about mobile apps
? Here's a statistic that might interest you. In July 2012, the IBM Retail Online index reported that retailers experienced a 15% growth in sales due solely to mobiles. By focusing their efforts on mobile shoppers, whose numbers are increasing by leaps and bounds, offline businesses are raising their bottom line. And this number is only expected to keep rising.
- Customizing the shopping experience and making it easier to buy from you
- Branding your business and getting it exposure by offering useful apps that make life easier for your customers
- Giving customers access to the information they need quickly
- Saving your human resources by automating the shopping process
All of this is done through mobile apps, which are software programs designed to work on mobiles.
Helping People Shop Smarter
Your head is now probably swimming with ideas for creating your own app. The cool thing about apps is that you're only limited by your imagination. There's practically nothing a skilled developer can't create as long as you've got it planned well. When designing your app, focus on improving your customers' experience with your business.
Mobiles have built-in GPS
capabilities and creating an app that uses them is a sure winner. A store locator app uses the customer's phone GPS to find stores that are nearest to them. All they need to do is press a button and it shows them a map. You can also include driving directions and store information like open hours.
Product Info at Your Fingertips
Lots of people are using their mobiles when they shop offline to compare prices and get product information. Your store can put QR codes
on your products so that mobile users can quickly scan them and get information. This saves them the trouble of searching for the items online themselves.
Order Before You Arrive
Many businesses use apps that speed up the ordering process. They can order through their mobile and it's ready for them when they get there. This is great for pizza shops, restaurants, cake shops and anything else where customers build their own product.
Checking in and Saying 'Hi'
are extremely popular nowadays. These are apps where your customers can 'check in' at your offline location, telling all their friends where they are. They can then leave a review or comment through the app that others can read. Word of mouth is really powerful. They could be raving about your appetizer and spreading the word before the main course even arrives.
Creating Your Own App
It's easy to make your own app and business of all shapes and sizes do it. Come up with a plan for how you want it to work from your user's point of view. Take some process related to your business and make it quicker, easier or more fun. Hire a developer and explain how it should work for the customer.
Mobile is becoming increasingly important for offline shopping, so it's time for your business to cash in. Create an app that helps your customers and you'll see your sales skyrocket.