A recent customer co-design session got me thinking about when it’s valuable for customers to have a mobile app versus when it’s fine to let them use their mobile phones to access your website. There is so much money being poured into the development of mobile apps, I think it’s time to become a bit more judicious about taking the plunge into mobile app development.
Do Your Customers REALLY Need an App for That?
There’s no doubt in my mind that we have now reached the cross-over point: more customers access the Internet via their mobile phones than ever before. In fact, in many countries, more than 50% of ALL Internet access is via mobile devices.
“The combination of novelty, a (usually) low price and an industry that has no shortage of innovation means that we have opportunities to get new apps almost daily.
But the end result is app overload. Too much clutter. Memory wasted on apps that were cool on Christmas morning, but now lie at the back of the closet, unused and unloved.”
~ Sam Grobart, New York Times
He proceeds to outline a six-step process that he uses to keep the number of apps on his phone down to a mere 104.
1. “Use folders
2. Respect the folder cap/limit
3. Stay on one screen
4. Use it or lose it
5. Don’t worry about app loss
6. Keep some apps separate”
I’ve been planning to implement Sam’s useful suggestions, but, in the meantime, I’ve been thinking about what makes an app valuable to customers who routinely do business with you and/or who value your help in getting things done.