It’s definitely an odd feeling turning down a large sum of money to build an app for a company. Sometimes an app is just not the right solution. Let me give you an example. Not too long ago we were contacted by a fundraising company looking to build an app. Actually, they wanted a new mobile friendly site and an app to go along with it. The website needed to be done, it was old and not responsive but the app was not going to add value. In fact, if anything, it made the product confusing. A really solid responsive site was all they needed and we didn’t feel comfortable building something they weren’t going to get value out of. Here are some reasons a mobile app might not be the right addition to your business:
- Your site removes the need for an app
If all an app is going to do is serve as a website in app form, don’t do it. It’s not worth the money for you to go out and market your brand new app when all you have to offer is what people have been getting from your site all along. Now, if your site sucks and you’re in need of a more effective way to acquire new users, consider an app, but be sure that you don’t just need a mobile friendly website.
- You don’t have the money and you’re “hoping” an app will save you
Whoa, stop right there. If you’re not financially ready to take on the app development process, you shouldn’t. There are going to be twists and turns along the way that may push back release dates, increase cost, or worst of all, completely negate the need for your app altogether. Focus on things you can control like your site. Make sure your site is the absolute best it can be and try to move up the results pages. Use Social Media to find new customers and engage with current customers to build your user base for that time when you are ready to launch an app.
- There isn’t enough value for the customer.
There has to be a perceived amount of value for a customer to interact with an app. If the app fails to make a process or task easier for a user, it isn’t going to get downloaded and you are going to lose money. All apps must be marketed and this costs money, sometimes lots of it. You better be certain users are going to use your app if you’re ready to heavily invest in having one built. For example, let’s say you have an idea for a weather app. First of all, weather is a widget or notification on pretty much any smartphone on the market today. This might be a huge waste of money if customers don’t see the value of downloading a separate app that shows them the same information they get from swiping down from the top of their iPhone, just sayin’.
- The type of business you do isn’t open to using apps
This lends more to my opening statement. Business to business is usually not the fast adopting crowd that are eager to install your latest app. Although that paradigm is shifting, the vast majority of businesses are going to interact with a website rather than doing business through an app. Maybe the company doesn’t think it feasible for their employees to use an app versus hitting a web site. Maybe the company simply doesn’t allow business to be done on apps. Do your due diligence and make sure your industry really needs your app before biting off more than you can chew.
- Competition is going to stifle you
Lets be honest, no one likes to admit defeat. I certainly don’t, but I wouldn’t consider making an informed decision a bad thing either. I would highly recommend you do not invest in an app that plays music. Unless you have an undeniable unique way of presenting information or services to users, your app will get swallowed up in the app stores never to be seen or heard of again. Can you imagine trying to take on Apple, Pandora, Spotify, and many many others? Know your competition before jumping into the app market.
So there you have it. My 5 reasons your business DOES NOT need an app. Think I’m wrong? Leave your comments below. And if your business can over come this, check out 5 reasons your company DOES need a mobile app.