With the soaring popularity of smartphones and tablets, creating a mobile presence is an essential aspect to a business’ marketing campaign. An increasing number of people are looking for business information through either a mobile app or mobile website, and you don’t want your brand to fall behind.
But how do you know which is best for your business? The first step in choosing either a mobile application or mobile website is understanding what both options offer and how each fits into your particular goals, budget, etc.
A Mobile App vs. Mobile Website
Mobile websites function just like any other browser-based site, designed to fit within the parameters of a smartphone or tablet. The HTML pages are accessed over the Internet and can mirror the look and function of a business’ regular website, displaying text, video, images, and more.
A mobile website is a highly plausible option for your business, reaching across multiple platforms and offering mobile-friendly content that can be accessed quickly. A mobile website also allows users to easily call your business’ number and utilize map features as well.
Mobile apps are accessed without the use of a browser by being downloaded and installed straight to the mobile device. Apps are fast and powerful, but are often tied to a specific platform, meaning you are not reaching the full market without putting more money into an app’s development.
The cost factor is a big aspect in deciding to create a mobile app, but you must also consider the need for a mobile app. If you are creating a game or a campaign that requires a lot of interaction, a mobile app would certainly be worth considering.
Which Do You Choose?
Both mobile apps and mobile websites are similar in style, which means your goals will be the determining factor in what you choose to use. Ideally, your company will be developing a mobile website presence regardless, as you don’t want to lose visitors because users were unable to access any mobile content. Creating a mobile website brings a number of advantages to your business, including:
- Accessibility – Developing a mobile presence means users will be able to find you no matter the device they are using. Staying visible is a key component of competing in this multi-channel world, where the means of getting information are vast and varied.
- Sharing – Mobile websites are easily shared through e-mail and social networks, giving your brand an additional opportunity to reach a wider audience.
- Affordability – Creating a mobile website is cost-effective and doesn’t require a substantial amount of time to implement, especially compared to mobile apps.
No matter what, it is important to maintain a mobile presence. Creating a mobile website that is accessible across all platforms is the first step, but many businesses will have an additional need to develop a mobile app to complement their services. It all depends on the goals (and budget) of your company.