Today there is no doubt how important and ubiquitous mobile devices are. In fact, mobile devices now out sell PCs. Companies are shifting from the traditional PC for everyday usage into the more portable, less complicates to use Mobile devices. usually by having an app that would achieve the main function of the job.
Microsoft as mentioned in a previous article, was praised and grew in value just by announcing their embracement of the mobile era. Google, now gives higher priority for sites on their search page to appear higher just by them having mobile support on the website. Facebook has its major users as mobile users and new features are appearing on their mobile platform before any other, their mobile platform alone contributes 59% of the revenue. 80% of Twitter’s sales, comes from mobile. Yahoo, though late to the race is going mobile, has most of their users using their mobile platform where they had 37.5% of their users using mobile 300M compared to a total of 800Min 2012, that number grow up by 30% in 2013 to 430M out of 800M total users, and that trend continued throughout the years, where in 2015 yahoo had 1Billion total users with more than 600M users on mobile. Another interesting thing that the global internet usage by mobile device have overtook PC usage by the end of 2014. Source: Yahoo! Annual Financial Reports
You probably right now, today have used your mobile phone to do something that a few years ago you weren’t doing as often or maybe not as fast using your mobile device. The average usage of smart phone is 3 hours a day, 90% of that is in app time, and 10% browser usage, that is not counting music player and off screen time.
Having a mobile supported website or an app is one essential requirements to any successful business nowadays. Sure you can probably check any website through your smart phone, regardless of it having a responsive design (We use this term to refer to websites that are designed to adapt to both desktop and mobile devices) or not, but it being responsive, ergo more user friendly to use on the go, is the key to success. So if you’re planning a future proof business you have to think about mobile, your website should be mobile optimized (responsive), if you have a service, or a business you should streamlines it to be run on a mobile friendly interface, whether it being a native app (iOS, Android downloadable applications) or an easy to access mobile webpage/webapp.
One big dilemma that faces a lot of companies is whether to go web or native. The answer to that question depends on what you would want to do with the app/website. If it was your marketing front, then a webapp/website would fare better, in one sense, nobody wants to add additional apps that they would download for one use and then keep on their devices forever. If you have an online service, that is a little more complicated that just viewing some trivial info then a native app would be the choice for you. That being said, you should always make your website mobile friendly, even if you have a native app.
A critical and usually neglected thing to keep in mind is that Customer Services and marketing are not the only Services that could go mobile. In the work place, PCs are usually thought of as the working devices, where mobile devices are not used that often, though mobile devices can save a lot of time and money, if utilized right, in the work space. Specialized apps can be made to stream line, one function or several for your employee to use, replacing the old PC, paper approach, especially if the work done requires your personal to move. One example out of many, is using mobile apps to track shipments by scanning the bar code, or like what Square (a point of sale company) did, where they have changed the industry by introducing a way to use mobile devices to accept payments from credit cards. Insurances leverage their mobile apps, to make people take picture of the cars and incidents using their phones, eliminating the hustle of needing to go and email or print these pictures.
Of course the main key to success in the mobile platform is the quality and user experience provided by your platform. The less features provided compared to what you have to offer out of the platform will certainly hinder your platforms success, though not always true. In so the more intuitive and fast the process is to use your platform the more likely it will succeed.
The point is, the mobile platform is becoming the main platform for everyday usage, though most see it as a consumer market, it is really a market for all. When leveraged right, your platform outcome will be reflected with an increase in productivity and efficiency of your work.