Choosing a Mobile Site or Mobile App

Mobile Friendly Site, Mobile App or BothKnow you need to embrace mobile but not sure where to start? A newly released study of the Interbrand’s top 50 retail brands of 2012 shows that 82% of these retailers have a mobile-optimized site, 72% have an app, and 66% have both.

The first takeaway of the study is how much mobile has become a critical part of an online marketing strategy. But a subtle second takeaway is this — some retailers chose a mobile site, some chose an app, other chose both… How do you choose what works for your business?

Why a Mobile Site?

A mobile optimized site has the advantage of being cross-platform. While an app is built for iPhones, or iPad, or Android, and require multiple versions to reach all potential customers, a mobile site is automatically recognized by your smartphone or tablet regardless of platform. This means one development process and you’re done.

Why an App?

The advantage of a mobile app is the ability to deliver a completely unique, more robust experience on mobile. If what you want is a website that mobile users can navigate, a mobile site can do the trick. But an app allows a whole new creative approach — use of audio and video, new ways of navigating through swipe motions and advanced interactions, access to native phone functionality like the camera or geolocation, and more.

Why Both?

So each has it’s advantages. How do you choose? Or should you?

The right choice for your business depends on the goals you have for your website. A retailer, for instance, may want to start with a mobile friendly website that allows mobile users to place orders easily. Or, they may want to create an app that allows someone to shop in a virtual dressing room, dragging outfits from the store onto a photo of themselves or mixing and matching accessories.

These two approaches have different benefits and may appeal to different customers. For ideas on how your business can leverage mobile, contact us today.

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