Mobility is a hot word today when it comes to businesses. If you’re not mobile-accessible, you’re missing your target audience. However, mobility comes in many different flavors – mobile apps and mobile sites. They’re not the same thing (far from it), so you need to know which one is right for you. How do you tell if you need an app or a mobile site? The information below will help.
When it comes to pure numbers, you’ll find that mobile sites reign supreme. There are far more visits to mobile sites than there are mobile app users. However, that doesn’t tell you the whole story. Interestingly, you’ll find that mobile app users actually interact more with your business than mobile site visitors – 2.4 times more impressions are served to mobile app users than site users. What does that mean? Simply put, many mobile site visitors are “bounces” or people who visit once and don’t return. Mobile app users repeat their experience repeatedly.
What’s Your Purpose?
The most important question to answer when deciding between a mobile app and a mobile site is your purpose. Are you selling products? Are you offering search tools? Are you offering information? Are you offering entertainment? Are you giving your customers a way to connect with you? Your specific purpose should determine what’s right for you.
For instance, if you’re running an online store, a mobile app isn’t going to be the most effective option. 73% of consumers prefer to buy products through a site (mobile or otherwise) than through an app. Are you connecting with your audience? If so, a mobile app is the way to go – almost 70% of consumers prefer to connect via mobile apps rather than websites. Are you giving your customers or audience tools to manage their experience? If so, then a mobile app will be the better choice, narrowly edging out mobile sites by about 8% (46% vs. 54%).
Making Your Decision
Making the choice between a mobile app and a mobile site is a difficult one. There is no single answer that applies to every single business. For some, a mobile app will be the best answer, while other companies will benefit more with a mobile site. Perhaps the best option would be to have both (and it can be simple, especially if you operate a WordPress-based site, thanks to handy, free plugins that transform static websites into mobile-accessible ones).
However, one thing that should be remembered is that mobile devices are becoming more and more sophisticated, and some users are opting to visit standard websites rather than mobile ones. This means that mobile sites might begin to lose their power, and mobile apps will be the best solution in a few years’ time.