65% of Singaporean customers are looking at you on their mobiles

Last year, for the first time in the history of the Internet, the number of mobile devices connected to it overtook the number of standard desktop connections. In passing this mobile tipping point the rise of mobile marketing and commerce has cemented itself front and centre in how we do business.

In Singapore alone, 65% of the population is connecting to the Internet via their mobile, which makes it the second highest country recorded after the Maldives in the ‘We are Social — Digital and Mobile in APAC 2015 survey.’

Singapore SMEs should be asking themselves how their customers behave when using mobile devices. How can they bring value through mobile platform usage and does their business need its own app?

With the rise of 4G networks most small businesses should at the very least have mobile-friendly content given that the majority of first views are likely to be from mobile devices. This combination of fast connection speeds and mobile content can be enough for many businesses to operate with minimum investment.

With the future being mobile, more and more SMEs are going further than just mobile-friendly content. Mobile apps present a range of benefits to SMEs.

Deciding if your business should invest in a mobile app means working out where you can gain value. Here are a few ways your business can benefit from its own mobile app:

Creating Customer Value

Creating and receiving customer value should be your first requirement when considering a mobile app. Providing new information, curating loyalty programs that reward customers through the app, and building brand awareness are all areas of value that apps can bring.

Also, by being on their screens and at their fingertips, you offer a shortcut to valuable direct marketing channels and provide latest information on promotions and specials.

24/7 Visibility

Look around. People are addicted to their smartphones. You could build a 6-lane superhighway to Saturn on the amount of man hours the human race has wasted doodling on the their smartphones.

Having your brand’s app on peoples’ screens, even if it’s just scrolling past, or using push messaging or in-app messaging smartly, can be an advantage. Customer access to your product or service around the clock is good for business.

Data

Having the ability to capture data in order to better know and ultimately create more value for your customer is possible when you have your app installed.

Loyalty

In a world full of information overload, a mobile app offers a relatively personal access point for repeat customers. The combination of ready access, ease of use, and a streamline user interface both reinforces the customer’s connection with your product or service and creates the right environment for providing customer satisfaction and repeat business.

The combination of the above factors and the knowledge that the world is only getting more mobile in its computing habits means that at some point the vast majority of all business will be done from mobile platforms. How and to what degree you choose to get on the mobile bandwagon will depend on your product or service and your goals.

Be mindful when making your decision to develop a mobile app that you have a strong case for creating real value for your users. 80–90% of mobile apps are used once and deleted.

Kat Van Zutphen, General Manager of Singapore-based Mobext, has shared some useful advice on creating apps with what she calls ‘creating shareworthy experiences.’ “If you can truly leverage the native functionality that makes mobile unique, which is location intelligence, sensors and proximity to user, you can offer timely and personal services that people want to talk about and share with friends,” explains Kat.

For my money, first adopters stand a much greater chance of getting a headstart on competitors. App developers are proliferating and the initial investment of having an app built is coming down all the time.

With a wealth of information on how to monetise apps out there, the field is wide open for SMEs to get their brand onto peoples’ smartphones.

This article originally appeared at: http://sbr.com.sg/

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