Revamp Your Mobile Development Strategy for 2019
What is a Mobile Strategy?
One only needs to take a look around any public gathering to observe an undeniable truth: Mobile devices dominate – and will continue to command -- the top spot for our attention in 2019. It stands to reason that the majority of time spent on mobile devices is spent using apps – as much as 80 percent, according to some data.
However, mobile strategy is already moving on from “mobile first” focus and into a “user-first” focus -- one that is intent on evolving and improving the experience for the end consumer. The shift in focus to digital transformation for most organizations goes far beyond just “copying and pasting” your web or desktop interface into an app.
Your mobile strategy should be an organic experience that considers physical, digital, and emotional interactions between the app and the mobile app consumer. A mobile strategy must include a thorough plan for development, marketing, and monetization. We will discuss all three parts of the plan below:
Revamping Your Mobile App Development Strategy
Previously, a company’s mobile strategy focused only on ensuring communication with users was easy and efficient. In today’s rapidly advancing technological world, mobile apps represent an unbreakable bond with between consumer and corporate interests, serving as the primary vehicles for eCommerce, research, banking, gaming, and much more. Revolutionary innovations in virtual and augmented reality, new programming languages such as Swift, and AI and machine learning will all become more and more integrated into our mobile devices and play a big part in the future of mobile strategies. With this rapidly changing landscape comes increasing expectations from users -- and increasing reliance on a strong development team to help enterprises stay ahead of the curve, and on top of the trends.
Before a mobile app strategy can be developed and implemented, your team must undertake a thorough planning process to understand what your app is intended to accomplish, who your target users are, which platform is best suited for them, and how your app will compare to that of your competition.
With a solid foundational concept in mind, the next phase of your mobile app strategy is coming up with a development strategy, including mobile app developers, or how you will accomplish your goals set out in the first phase:
- Scalability: Once your team has developed the key components, features, and structure of your app, it is important to build it in a way that is easy to scale in the future. In order to scale the advanced functionality of the app, there must be a plan in place that can open up the doors to improved growth and adoption capabilities.
- Security: An obvious but critical factor in your mobile strategy is how protected your users’ information and data are within your infrastructure. Trust and loyalty are tremendously important traits to be considered when acquiring and maintaining users, so ensuring your users are safe is a major focus during the development phase.
- Integration: Your mobile app strategy also should be focused on ensuring your users can access the important features and functions on the app as they can on your website. The app should feel connected and complementary to your website. For example, it should be just as easy and obvious for a user to complete a purchase through your website as it is through your app.
- The Cloud: Much of the heavy workload in mobile app development, such as testing, advancement stages, and application coordination, can be simplified through cloud-based technology. Ensure that you are utilizing the cloud to its full potential, both programmatically and in the development of your app. This can lead to a fluid experience for your users, back-end efficiencies, and a decided edge over your competitors.
- The Experience: Making sure your app serves a purpose, appeals to your target audience, and looks good, is only part of the battle in developing an effective mobile app strategy. The entire experience from accessibility and back-end frameworks to security and speed must all be aligned and functional in order to achieve successful adoption among users.
- Continuous Improvement: It can’t be mentioned enough: In such a rapidly changing digital landscape, it is vital that constant testing, researching, and improving your features and functionality be part of your process.
Updating Your Branding and Marketing Strategy
A mobile development strategy goes hand-in-hand with a mobile marketing strategy. Without one or the other, your app is bound to be ignored, or considered unsuitable for your target audience. Your mobile marketing strategy should be aligned with the overall brand strategy of your organization. Fighting for attention in the crowded digital marketplace is increasingly challenging, so having a cohesive offering between brand, app, and marketing is important. Below are some important tips for building your mobile app marketing strategy:
- Know your Demographics: Ensure that a thorough analysis of your target audience is done – complete with buyer personas and customer data. Information such as age, location, industry, lifestyle, and income are only a few of the characteristics that you must consider.
- Focus your Strategy: Once you understand your target audience and have strategized the best way to reach them, focus your attention on one or two main methods for marketing to those audiences. You can always readjust and try other strategies in the future, but trying to implement multiple strategies at once is ineffective and inefficient.
- SEO and SEM Optimization: Understanding the implications and methodologies for appearing in the right searches, in front of the right people, is critical. If you aren’t well versed in this, hire an expert. It’s important. The four pillars of focus include establishing authority and trust through quality links, posting relevant content with natural language, ensuring the user experience is fluid and responsive, and making sure all metadata and links are up-to-date.
- App Store Optimization (ASO): Similar to SEO, increasing visibility of your product within app stores will help achieve your adoption initiatives and bring awareness to your offering. According to Forrester, 63 percent of apps are discovered through app store searches.
- Automation: A simple but important tip is to create automation systems wherever possible in your strategy. This will free up time to focus on growth, improvements, and other initiatives. It can also be used to personalize the user experience, while building brand loyalty with them.
- Social Media Ads: Based on usage volume alone, social media is a great place to introduce and explain your product. Paying to put your app in front of the people for whom its intended is easier and more effective than ever before with the help of social media. Beyond the individual apps, influencer marketing campaigns and content marketing are also effective tools.
Building a Monetization Strategy for 2019
Once you have the right mobile development and marketing strategy in place, understanding how to monetize it is the final piece of the puzzle. With more than 75 percent of digital content being consumed on mobile devices and three hours per day spent on them, the success of your offering is largely dependent on how you can monetize your users during this time. Here are some tips for monetizing your mobile app:
- Advertising: Spread your brand message through the use of video ads (ex. Offering a reward for watching), special promotional offers (ex. Offer to get a discount), banner and notification ads (for example, an ad is placed in your app to generate revenue) and playable in-app ads (for example, paying to unlock specific features of your app) are all popular types to consider.
- In-App Purchases: Offering upgrades, customizations, power-ups, new weapons, etc. are all ways you can upsell the user once they are in your app. This makes up a large portion of in-app monetization strategies for most companies.
- Partnerships: Teaming up with another brand or advertiser is a good way to increase exposure and introduce your product to your partners audience. Cross-promotion between the partners can help them go viral.
As explained in this blog, mobile strategy isn’t as simple as it once was and involves multiple moving parts and constant attention. However if you are able to effectively plan, execute, and manage a successful strategy in 2019 it can pay dividends for your company and prepare you for growth. If you need some help with your mobile strategy, iTexico, Nearshore Software Development offers a full solution.