Understanding and Optimizing Your Small Business for Mobile
Mobile software platforms and applications continue to change the way we live and conduct business every single day. We see the influences everywhere in our lives, from the way we consume news and social media to how we order food and essential household products. As our world becomes more mobile, we’ll see more businesses optimize their operations to cater to the ever-growing needs of a mobile audience. Now more than ever, we need to understand the market for mobile and what that means for the modern business.
The Market for Mobile
The growth in smartphones users continues to rise every year, and the penetration of smartphones in the U.S. alone is staggering. Research conducted by Pew Research Center indicates that in 2017, around 77% of adults in the U.S. own a smartphone, compared to only 35% in 2011. Deloitte found similar results at approximately 82%, attributing most of the penetration to younger age groups (approximately 90% of those under the age of 45 own smartphones). We’re also seeing age groups over 45 adopting smartphones at an 8% annualized growth rate from 2015 to 2017. In addition to favorable smartphone penetration rates across all age demographics in the U.S., advances in technology have also made what was once an almost inaccessible product into a now commodity-like item generally affordable to most income demographics. As older generations continue to adopt and as technology advances continue to make smartphones more accessible, we can expect to see the penetration rate for smartphones in the U.S. push into the 90% range.
As incredible as the smartphone market size and growth has been over the last several years, what’s more impressive is how often smartphones are being used and to what extent. A separate report conducted by Deloitte indicated that in 2017, smartphone users interacted with their devices approximately 46 times per day, and they expect this number to increase to approximately 65 times per day in 2023. Even at 46 times per day, users are incredibly active on their phones throughout the day, and not only are they using their smartphones to text, call, email, and check their social networks, but users continue to find ways to convenience their lives through readily available mobile applications and extensions. Whether users are scheduling appointments, reading the news, buying clothes, or ordering food, technology continues to shape the way we live, and as consumers rely more on their smartphones for their everyday needs, we’ll also see an increase in the number of opportunities for businesses to capitalize on what is now the new norm.
What Mobile Means for Your Business
We’ve discussed the market for mobile — it’s massive and active. However, what does mobile mean for your business, and how can you best capitalize on it? The simple answer is to optimize your business for mobile usage. By optimizing your business for mobile, you open the doors into a market teeming with opportunities to bring new and recurring business through your doors, provide a better, smarter offering, and truly understand and elicit feedback from your customer base.
With the amount of people who own and actively use their mobile devices, we have the ability to seamlessly integrate our businesses into everyday life. Features such as mobile ordering allow people to maximize their schedules, while simultaneously enhancing a company’s sales through attractive offers that can double or triple their orders. Loyalty programs facilitated through mobile apps can create a recurring customer base and offer certain businesses the potential to increase sales with impulse purchases at the register. Social referrals are an excellent way for customers to share product or service offerings on social media, providing a company with virtually free marketing and generating new sales opportunities. Push notifications provide a simple, cost effective way of sending promotions and special offers to an exact target audience. New iOS features work seamlessly with apps and allow suggestive notifications and voice commands that can help simplify everyday tasks, including and certainly not limited to:
- Ordering coffee on the way to work from a local favorite coffeeshop
- Scheduling a weekly or monthly appointment, such as a workout class at a nearby gym or studio
- Reminding car owners of a much-needed oil change
- Proposing tee times with friends or business clients at a local golf course
Not only are you able to better service your customers by seamlessly integrating into their lives, but you gain the ability to better understand your customer base through precisely aggregated data that facilitates immediate feedback on the strategies that work and don’t work for your business. For example, you send out a push notification for a special offer you’re running for a limited time in your store. You can now measure a more precise conversion rate on how effective your offer was to your target audience and can either continue running that promotion in the future or shift to another strategy. In the modern business, data is key, and through a well-designed mobile application, you gain better insights for your business and create a better, smarter offering for your customers.
How Red Shepard Can Help
At Red Shepard, we focus purely on mobile software and in particular, mobile software for small businesses. Why do we focus on this subset in the market? Through our collective experiences, we found that small businesses tend to be underserved and overcharged by software development firms that typically focus on larger contracts from organizations with larger budgets. At Red Shepard, we found a way to make mobile software affordable to any small business, while still creating a premium, customized product designed with every modern specification currently available to the market. Whereas other development firms may focus purely on development, we also focus on data, helping our clients better understand and serve their customer base. If you’re ready to make the leap to mobile, we’re ready to help. Connect with our team, and let’s start building something together.
Red Shepard is a mobile software development firm focused on building beautifully designed and affordable mobile applications for small businesses and entrepreneurs. We design our mobile software to incorporate custom data analytics in order to help each unique small business operator and entrepreneur better understand their customer base and mobile marketing strategies. To learn more about Red Shepard, visit our website or contact us with any questions.