September 20, 2016 ByCheryl Dykstra
You might have heard the phrase “mobile first” recently in
regards to optimizing your business’ online presence. The idea behind this is
that with people using their smartphones more and more, and sitting down at
their computers less often, it is important that you think about how your
business is seen on those mobile devices.
Essentially, your mobile experience is one of the most important aspects of
your digital marketing.
However, even if you know that your business needs to adapt
to mobile, you might not know the best way to make this happen.
Responsive Web Design
We’ve talked about Responsive Web Design in the past and how
it can seamlessly resize and/or restructure your website design to any device
it’s viewed on. This automatically gives you two advantages over mobile apps:
time and money.
Your website, the core marketing tool of your business, is a
necessity. Without a quality website for customers to visit, your business will
have no platform to sell from. By utilizing responsive design, you don’t need
any additional work to be done in order to have a mobile-friendly site.
However, there is some functionality that mobile apps offer
that a responsive website can’t. These include:
- Access to phone functions outside of the browser
(such as access to the camera or calendar)
- Other technologies such as QR codes, voice
recognition and augmented reality
Depending on your business and your products or services,
these additional functionalities may be beneficial or they could only result in
Native Mobile Apps
If you look at the statistics, native mobile apps dominate
browsers in mobile usage. In fact, 90% of the time people are on their phones,
they’re using an app. However, you have to take this statistic with a grain of
salt, because most of that app usage is from Facebook, messaging, games, and
utility apps – not necessarily apps developed for businesses.
If your business will greatly benefit from the additional
functionality that a mobile app can offer, then it might be worth exploring how much time and
money it would take to build and maintain a native mobile app. Also, if your business has low
price point products or services to offer within the app, like buying virtual
goods, membership to the premium version of the app or access to additional
content, then an app might be a good addition to your digital marketing
Which is Better?
The key take-away when talking about responsive web design
and native mobile apps is that there’s no one universal answer to which is
better. Your business and your products and/or services will dictate whether or
not an app is worth the extra time and expense.
The differences between responsive web design and mobile apps are like
differences between a car and a motorcycle. One isn’t better than the other; it
is just a matter of taste and needs.
If you have additional questions about
responsive design or if you need help deciding if a mobile app is right for you, call Sales & Marketing Technologies today
at 407-682-2222 or use the contact form below to get in touch with one of our
talented team members.