Let's play out a quick scenario to begin this post. Let's say it's 2015 and mobile app marketing is starting to peak. Competitors are swarming to get into mobile marketing, developing apps and setting up campaigns. You start to panic because you haven't even thought about building an app yet and really don't even know where to start. You can't fall behind your competition...you need to be a first mover in the market and beat them!
You do a quick google search and find a few app builders for the DIY person inside of you and you also run across some custom developers. So what is the best route for starting your mobile app marketing campaign?
What are your needs?
Well firstly, you should have some basic strategy in place that will give you guidance for what to do next. What features do you need? What do you need your app to do? Let's say you operate a restaurant and need food ordering or own a fitness gym that needs scheduling. The mobile app should be a tool between your business and your customers to make their lives easier. This ease of use will help increase business.
Just think about it...users can place an order in seconds bypassing wasting time chatting on the phone. Users can book a gym session and don't have to play phone tag with trainers. This efficiency will directly impact your bottom line.
DIY - App Builder
So you start thinking that maybe an app builder can fit your needs. You only need a few basic features to start, so this DIY platform would be a perfect solution. The app builders are pretty low in price compared to custom developers. They range between $3,000 - $10,000 for both iPhone & Android apps.
We have researched a few app builders and found they have some great features that work for some businesses. But just realize that some of them are limited in capabilities. If you want custom API integration from your new POS system, you might not be able to add this to your app if you use a DIY builder.
The benefit of an app builder is that it is a great start for your mobile marketing campaign and they have many features that could work for your plan.
If the DIY app builder is not the way you want to go or it doesn't fit your needs, you might need to go the custom route. Building a custom app from the ground up is a great approach because it gives you full control of your app. You can build any features in it you like and control the user interface and layout.
Just note, the custom app will be a little more expensive. The average industry rate for a custom app for both iPhone & Android is about $30,000 +. So you better have built this into your budget before venturing down that path.
The bottom line is this, you need some kind of mobile strategy in 2015. There are tons of great tools and options out there for you to get started. You can start with a simple DIY at a lower cost & if your app does well, take it to the next level with a custom app.
If you have any questions about what an app can do for your business, just contact us to find out. We will be more than happy to give you a quick consult for no charge about mobile.