Do we NEED an App? – The road not taken

Mindless Tower @mindlesstower

With the proliferation of mobile applications and the popularity of browsing on a mobile rather than a laptop/desktop, many organizations (such as yours) are facing a dilemma… “Do we create a mobile application, or do we further optimize our website’s mobile experience?”

What may seem at the moment as a toss of a coin decision, is quite an interesting topic to look into. There are strengths and weaknesses for both options. We’ve compiled the following tips to help you make the correct choice for your organization:


A few relevant statistics

What phone are you reading this post on? Right, it’s probably your iPhone. Well, if we guessed wrong, then your mobile device still can browse the web through a web browser. It’s common knowledge that all devices have a web browser. However, contrary to popular belief, web browsers do not account for the majority of a user’s “screen time.” It’s apps that rule this domain. Did you know that mobile apps account for 85 percent of a mobile phone’s usage? In the past few years, we’ve seen that mobile app usage has steadily increased, while web browser usage hasn’t budged. It’s worthy to note that the time being spent on apps is divvied up amongst a select few apps (97% of time spent is on the user’s ten favourite apps).


What does it cost, and how much effort does it take?

If you haven’t already heard, responsive development is the new kid in town. Responsive development is a huge buzzword that everyone loves to throw around. However, in reality, it is quite beneficial to you and your customers. Because of this innovation, the barriers to entry to mobile-ready experiences has been wiped clean. Developing a site which is optimized for mobile usage has become a straightforward and incredibly cost-effective task for organizations. On the flipside, developing mobile applications has remained to be an expensive and very involved process. Phone applications take an average of 18 weeks to design and develop. However, more complex apps can far exceed an 18-week timeline. Everything is contingent on the complexities of the application being produced. Mobile applications are expensive.


It may seem that web developments are the better choice, but this may not be true. Keep on reading to see which option is better for you and your organization.


So, which one do you need? An app or a website?

A responsive website built with a “mobile first” philosophy may be good enough for your organization’s needs. We’ve seen many businesses start their digital transformation with a fully optimized mobile site. Then, they evaluate user statistics, their business plans, and their vision, to understand whether or not it is a feasible idea to bring their experience to a mobile application. You may want to leverage the hardware built into mobile devices such as GPS, cameras, or NFC chips, to achieve particular goals. Honestly, there is no cookie cutter answer. Every project is circumstantial, and you must work with your web development / mobile development agency to determine what the best solution is for your organization.

If you’re looking for a mobile app development team or responsive web design and development team, then don’t hesitate to give us a call, send us a message on our site, or use our contact form to submit your details.