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Designing an app for your business that will add value

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It is no secret that in the smartphone age, taking a mobile-friendly approach to your digital marketing and customer communication is absolutely vital for any business. Many assume that this involves having a mobile-friendly site, perhaps using technology
such as AMP, and making sure they are on Google’s mobile index.


These are, without doubt, important considerations. However, they miss the elephant in the room. Smartphone users do not spend hour after hour surfing the internet using web browsers. In fact, 87 percent of their time is spent using apps. Whether you are operating an online shop, a service business or even a gaming site like https://www.winningroom.com/en, you will almost certainly have contemplated developing a mobile app to better engage with customers. But where do you start?


Don’t try to do it alone


Even if you have an in-house team of IT professionals, it is highly unlikely that they will have sufficient expertise to deal with every stage of app development. Appointing an outside professional is a must, and it doesn’t have to be as expensive as you might think. There are plenty of freelance developers who work on a fixed “per project” rate. Just be sure to take a good look at their portfolio, and satisfy yourself that they have the necessary experience in your market niche.


Solve a problem


Some businesses go into app development with an almost obsessive single-mindedness. They feel they must have an app, without really thinking about what it is going to achieve from the customer’s perspective. All this results in is a whole heap of costs to develop an app that is nothing more than a vanity project and will be downloaded by few and then actually used by even fewer. Identify the key properties and attributes of your app right at the outset, and communicate to the developers how it will make the customer experience better, quicker or cheaper. That way, everyone is on the same page from the start.


A team effort


Team input is valuable in any project, but it is absolutely essential for app development. Blending your business knowledge with the developer’s technical expertise is a great start, but don’t stop at that. Involve other members of your team, and in particular, those who are in customer-facing roles. They will have a far better handle on the types of functionality that will really add value.


Don’t get carried away


The only risk of getting input from too many people is that you can end up creating a monster. Sense test each idea, and only include those features that you are absolutely certain customers will really want. The aim at this stage should be to create something that is sleek, simple and uncluttered for beta testing. By all means keep those other suggestions in your back pocket, as you might well decide to add some of them in a later update once the app is up and running and customers have had a chance to try it out.

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