With approximately 624 million active users, India has the second-largest internet market in the world. Moreover, people depend on online services to meet a significant part of their daily needs in this digital age, primarily through their smartphones. So, your business should have a prominent online presence as a market player. Mobile App Vs Website, still remains a bigger question.
A mobile app is a service that runs on smartphones, tablets, and wearables on installation into the devices. A website or a web app is a client-server application that runs in a browser on both mobiles and desktops. Think of your website or mobile app as your digital enterprise, a place where your customers review your products and services and decide whether to buy them.
Against that backdrop, you should analyze whether a mobile app or a website would complement your business needs.
To select Mobile App Vs Website You Should Ask Two Major Questions:
- Will a mobile app or a website better deliver the results to my target audience?
- According to my business plan, which platform should, I focus on at the moment? Your business plan includes all the strategies you have planned for the future of your business.
Essential Factors to Consider Mobile App Vs Website
Market Preferences For Your Product Or Services
Analyzing the market is the first thing you must do when deciding which platform you should use to launch your products. Do thorough research on your target market to know how they respond to your product or service.
Interact with your audience: This could be through social media or by creating a ‘beta’ version of your platform. Find out from your audience where they prefer to avail of your service or product.
Conduct online interviews or surveys, look at industry reports, or you can hire a marketing professional to understand the needs of your market.
Learn from your competition: Look at the platforms your competitors are using to launch products/services similar to yours. What has worked the best for them? If you are a business owner or if you have a business idea that you can improve your sales by going against the grain, that is also a great thing to try.
The Budget: How Much Money Can You Spend On Building The Platform?
The budget for building a website, a mobile app, or a web app varies drastically. Creating a full-featured web app will cost you around Rs. 70,000 to Rs. 1,20,000. A mobile app building can come close to $100k or more. A mobile app’s user interface should be adjusted to the mobile OS it is working on, be it Android, iOS, or Windows.
An essential website may cost much less, but its productivity will be severely restricted for a company. So, it makes better financial sense to launch a web app in the initial stages of your startup before moving on to a mobile app. Having said that, if your business has unique requirements that compel you to start out with a mobile app, you should make that investment. Given your budget, a proper market analysis is necessary to make the right choice.
It is an excellent resource if you already know coding, UI/UX, or web designing. This will cut down the cost considerably in return for the time and energy you will create the platform. If not, you’ll have to outsource it.
Increased Brand Visibility: The Nature Of Your Products Or Services
The type of products or services plays a significant role in deciding which platform you should use to launch them.
Where And When Do Your Customers Use Your Product Or Service?
- Outdoors: If your service is applicable outdoors and with GPS, then mobile apps are preferable. This is also the case for apps used for traveling or transportation services.
- Planes: You can develop both mobile and web apps that have an offline mode.
- Offices: Web Pages and apps work best here.
- Home: Both mobile apps and web apps are accessed by people in the comfort of their homes.
You may think of expanding your online presence in due time. But, then, consider the added value multiple interfaces provide to your customers before going forward.
Does Your Product Or Service Have Real-Time Information Delivery?
Recent research has shown that 90% of the time people spend on mobile phones is on apps, and only 10% browse the rest of the internet. Moreover, in the e-commerce space, mobile app users spend an average of 201.8 minutes per month shopping, compared to 10.9 minutes per month for website users.
So, if you are a business owner and your idea is about giving people real-time information about something, then building an app is the best option. Mobile apps provide a more interactive interface with a real-time experience. And it offers on-the-go services to the customers. If your idea caters to these needs, your web app can wait until you get more returns or want to expand your market.
Examples of some real-time information delivery are:
- Giving information about events or places according to the user’s location.
- Promo offers discounts or instant sales.
- Getting notifications about upcoming events and so on.
Frequency Of Usage
Say that your customer uses your service a few times a day. Then, it’s easier for them to download the app and use it directly from their mobile phones.
So, in cases like this, you should definitely build an app before investing in a web app.
Some examples of apps people use daily are:
- To-do lists
- Navigation apps
- Transportation and Taxi
- Sometimes, food ordering.
An important thing to consider here is, will your service work with just one app? Take an emailing app, for example. You may access it on your phone but would still need a web app for more complex functions. There are some features shared across platforms, and in that case, just making a mobile app will become counterintuitive. Optimize according to the needs of your target audience and your product goals.
Specific Requirements Of Your Product Or Service
Your service or product may require other tools to function. What are they? And where are they located? You should factor these variables in to decide if you should launch a mobile app or web app.
Does It Require The Native Features Of Mobile Phones?
These native features can include GPS to know the user’s current location, cameras, contact lists, sensors, gyroscope, etc. If so, then a mobile app is suitable for your product. An issue that can pop up here is the policies and permissions of different mobile Operating Systems. If one OS can’t perform some features in your app, it is better to launch the app on just one platform (either iOS or Android) and create another for the second platform in time.
Does It Need Complex Tools Or Do Complex Computations?
If your product deals with a lot of data, calculations, and reporting, it’s better to focus on a web app because they can’t be captured well on a small screen. Canva is a perfect example of that.
They have an app, but only a minimal amount of design is possible. A significant chunk of actual work gets done in the web app, and the app is mainly used for sharing.
Offline Use Of Your Product
Accessibility is a significant issue in some parts of the world regarding online content. Therefore, your decision should factor in how you will reach our service or product in places with slow or minimal internet access.
It doesn’t matter if your customer is traveling or if they are at a place with no internet access. If they use your service in those circumstances, it still needs to be there at their fingertips.
So if you cater to the needs of your customers in offline mode, a mobile app is the ideal choice for you. For offline accessibility, location-dependent apps are required.
Many apps use the smartphone’s GPS system instead of internet data to function. You can also give your customers the option to download data for later use. In countries like India, where internet access is not universal, these features are very beneficial to your customers.
Mobile App Vs Website: The Final Decision
The decision you take should not have to be between a mobile app and a website. You can build both for your business. But which one to make first to attract the much-needed sales to your company is the question you need to focus on.
Many significant businesses have prioritized their mobile apps like Instagram, Uber, TikTok, etc. Then some businesses started as websites like Amazon and Facebook, which eventually directed their online traffic towards their apps. But if you take companies like AirBnB, Invision, Etsy, and so on, they still rely on their websites to drive business.
So, it is alright which platform you choose to do business online as long as they provide a user-friendly interface for your customers and ease of access that will ultimately convert into profit.
Whether developing an app or setting up a website, it’s hard to find the right talent for your needs. We at Voila Experts can help you with this. We connect startup experts to the apt initiatives they can excel in. Check out our website for more.