Do you need a mobile app or a new website?
Lately there’s been a lot of discussion around the Red Sage Global Headquarters (ok, it’s just 2nd Avenue in Decatur – but when Hoops & Yoyo include you in their video tribute to coffee – you’re global!) about the best way to make the sites we build mobile friendly. Currently we have a couple of options, building the customer’s website and including an application that makes it mobile friendly or having an actual mobile app built for the customer.
There are pros and cons to both options, and it’s good to have an idea of what those are as well as what you feel your customers are looking for when they access your website using their mobile device. What the customer wants from a mobile site can be very different from what they want on the full website.
Mobile apps are available to download in Apple’s App Store and Droid’s Google Play, and if you want your app to be available in both stores you’ll need two separate apps. Each app can easily cost $10,000 or more to develop. Once you’re developed the app, you’ll need to have it approved to go into the appropriate stores for the different operating systems. Using apps also means you’ll have multiple places to make edits when you update your website. And finally, you have to ask yourself if your customers really want to have to download and add another app to their mobile device to access the information they want about your business.
Making your website mobile-friendly may be a more cost effective option and some mobile devices offer the ability to bookmark the website by adding a clickable icon to the device so it’s easily accessible much like an app. A mobile-friendly website can detect when it’s being accessed by a mobile device and switch the user to a view that is easier to navigate. By making your standard website mobile-friendly you’ll only need to make your edits and updates to the main website. Your mobile website will be available immediately and you won’t need to wait for approval from an app store.
As technology changes there will be more and more ways to make your business mobile friendly. Features like click to call or click to navigate buttons are becoming more common and make your mobile site visitors more likely to interact with you. As you think about the future of your business, keep in mind there are more people accessing the web using mobile devices than desktops and laptops combined and ask yourself what are those users looking for and how do I to make it easy to find.