The mobile revolution has created new business opportunities. Mobile application development was shaping up to be a gold mine. The developers of these features could not cope with the high market demand. Everything suggested that the mobile app business would be more than profitable. However, the Cambodia Mobile Database economic estimates are not so positive. According to the Gartner report, less than 0.01% of these mobile applications will actually be a profitable business for their developers in 2018.
Despite having a large number of users, the Mobility Predictions Special Report states that most of the apps are not generating profits. A situation that still worsens as competition increases, given that the increase in the volume of free high-quality applications is also notable, which in turn have also influenced consumer expectations regarding paid applications.
It is also worth noting that users enjoy mobile applications, which has caused their use to grow at a frantic rate. Flurry shows that in 2013 the number of mobile applications, in all categories, increased 115% more than the previous year. An increase that was especially evident in the case of messaging and image applications; coming to advance 203% year after year.
In the words of Ken Dulaney, vice president and analyst at Gartner, the proliferation of free high-quality mobile applications has caused users to become much more demanding about paid apps, making it more difficult to find a truly competitive product that meet the expectations of an increasingly experienced and critical audience.
Apart from this situation, companies do not expect to profit from brand applications, but to use them as a marketing tool, in order to get closer to their customers and provide a service. Thus, the report signed by Forbes Insights and Adobe indicates that 83% of companies use apps as a way to improve communication with their customers, also acting as a channel of customer service itself (79%).
Data from Forbes and Adobe are optimistic about the future of mobile applications as a marketing tool and meeting point between the company and its customers.
Baynote indicated this week that online shopping thanks to the use of apps has increased by 48% this Christmas, compared to the previous year. Retailers are turning to mobile applications in order to retain their customers and encourage repeat purchases.
For this, Marti Tedesco, senior director of corporate marketing at Baynote, considers that these companies have invested in the improvement and optimization of these apps, in order to guide them to the sale and improve the customer’s shopping experience in this environment. A statement in which the Forbes and Adobe report agrees. According to their figures, apps influence the entire purchase process, but they also help to promote customer loyalty. 31% of marketers consider that these applications play an important role during the purchase that allows to retain the customer; 22% highlight its usefulness during the purchase consideration stage; while 18% maintain that they contributed to streamline decision-making.
What is a reality is that users prefer the comfort and usability provided by mobile applications over web browsing. The Brother Cell Phone List Global Report on Mobile User Experience, published in November by Compuware, showed that when choosing between using a mobile application, or browsing a website adapted for mobile, users do not hesitate, 85% are left with the apps. With the addition that these users spend more time on apps than on the web. Users use the brand’s applications twice as much as their website (9.8 vs 4.4 times).
Therefore, it would probably be appropriate to modify the business model of mobile applications, not to market them as a product, but to exploit their value as a service.