Businesses are unlikely to develop their own mobile app

Anne Freier

In app-analytics

June 2, 2015

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A new survey from mobile app developer review site Clutch has found that businesses may not as keen to their develop their own smartphone applications as previously assumed. Based on a collection of 350 survey responses from small business owners across the US, the report finds that 15% of small businesses have a mobile app, with 18% intending to create one. However, 40% said they were unlikely to create a dedicated app for their business.

Only 15% of SMBs have a mobile app

Infographic: Small Business Mobile Apps (PRNewsFoto/Clutch)

Source: clutch.co

Krista McLandress, marketing manager, AppsBuilder, an app development software company, says:

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“Consumers are using mobile apps to research locations to shop, eat, play and relax – and it’s up to businesses to be where their audience is. Most businesses understand that a mobile-friendly or responsive website is imperative to their business, but many still lag behind adopting a mobile app strategy.”

One of the key reasons for businesses to consider building a mobile app is customer survey, according to 76% of respondents. 37% wish to increase sales, whilst 35% aim to remain competitive in their market.

SMBs wish to improve customer service and increase sales through mobile apps

Infographic: Small Business Mobile Apps (PRNewsFoto/Clutch)

Source: clutch.co

Shira Anderson, marketing manager of Como, the DIY app solution, adds:

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“The most successful small businesses know that the single deciding factor for them as a competitor is making sure that their loyal customers are treated well and want to keep coming back. That is what mobile apps do best. Mobile apps allow you to really reward your loyal customers with a certain exclusivity and intimacy that isn’t available on any other channel.”

Indeed, a recent study by AppInstitute among 200 takeaway owners highlights the positive link a dedicated app can have between customer engagement and revenue. The research found that average customer spend increased by 51% over 12 months when using a business app. Of those SMBs which have already created an app, 27% intend to increase spending on the app, whilst over half (59%) are not aiming to invest more money and 6% said they would decrease spending.

59% of SMBs are unlikely to spend more on apps

Infographic: Small Business Mobile Apps (PRNewsFoto/Clutch)

Infographic: Small Business Mobile Apps (PRNewsFoto/Clutch)

Source: clutch.co

The creation of a wearable app for business is an even more unlikely proposition, with 76% of businesses uninterested in developing an app for wearables in the near future.

Infographic: Small Business Mobile Apps (PRNewsFoto/Clutch)

Source: clutch.co

Whilst SMBs are slow to jump onto the app trend, it seems that apps do offer an advantage in gaining and interacting with loyal customers. Perhaps one of the core factors holding businesses back is the high cost associated with the hire of developers. However, over the past few years many new self-service platforms, such as Kony and Appcelerator have been built to offer businesses low-cost and self-managed enterprise app development solutions.