Are you ignoring your mobile customers?

Aug 5, 2014

There is plenty of research out there that proves mobile is here to stay. Users are taking advantage of the ability to stay connected to their favorite brands wherever they may be. It is important that you position your company to maintain that connection. If your website is not easily accessible from mobile devices (IOS, Android and Windows), you are shooting yourself in the foot.

Say you send out an email marketing campaign that links to a page on your website. If users click on your link but your website does not fit on their device they have to scroll to the side or zoom in/out just to read your content. The results are a frustrated user and a hit to your brand experience. What is the most efficient way to cater to a whole new segment of existing and potential customers? Build a responsive website.

Creativo Inc. builds all our clients’ websites to respond by modifying its layout depending on the device that is being used to access it. It provides a clean and simple user experience while still maintaining low overhead costs. Mobile apps are great solutions, but only in special circumstances. Your organization’s choice to develop a mobile app should never be permission to ignore the mobile users who want to visit your corporate website. A mobile app is in addition to your corporate website not a replacement.
So, what’s the ROI? At a conservative estimate of 234 million U.S. adults with mobile phones, here’s the breakdown:

ChannelCostReach# of people pre $
Responsive Website$30,00036.40%2839.2
Mobile app (iOS only)$30,0006.75%526.67
Mobile app (iPhone, Android, Windows)$90,00023.04%599.00

In other words, you can reach nearly five times as many people per dollar invested with a responsive website rather than a native mobile app. And that’s conservative, assuming it costs just the same to create the Windows app as it does to create the iPhone app (it doesn’t), or that a mobile website will cost the same as an equivalent iPhone app (generally, not even close).

Before making a decision several criteria should be considered. Below I summarized some of the main points to help you make the right decision for your business. Feel free to comment or add to my list.

InstallationMobile App
Application designed to run on a specific mobile device
Responsive Website
Website developed to respond based on the device accessing it.
InstallationRequiredNone required
PortabilityNeeds to be developed for each platform (iPhone, Android, Windows and the list goes on…)95%+ portability
Hyper LinksFor the best experience many things will need to be self-contained within your mobileBecause the website does not reside on the device hyperlinks work just like they do on a regular website with full flexibility
Distribution & Market SizeAt the mercy of the App Store police in regards to availability of your app and approvals to get it in.Limited to the number of users on the released platformAnyone on the web has access to your site
Supportability & UpgradeabilityDifficult to support and maintain after app is downloaded. Every new release with bug fixes requires you to go through the entire approval process of the app store. After new version of application is placed in the store, it requires all existing users to upgrade in order to get it- big barrierEasier to support and maintain as developer has complete access to the site. No need to upgrade, all users see the latest version
Entry CostsSome app stores charge extra fees for publishing or certifying your appNone
Revenue ShareNeed to share sales revenue with the app stores (Apple takes 30%, RIM takes 20%)It’s all yours
User ExperienceFull control of User InterfaceLimited to the capabilities of HTML/CSS. User experience will largely depend on how the responsive website is developed.
PerformanceAble to achieve high performance through app code that runs locally on the devicePerformance will largely depend on how the responsive website is designed and Internet speeds.