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How To Thrive In The Application Economy

New apps are always appearing and disappearing, how do you make yours stick?

12Nov

Speed of access is key to many organisations today. Not only should you have a website, but many companies are looking to apps to shorten the link from customer thought to company action.

However, it is not just a case of creating an app for whatever you do.

Adaptation and market research are key to success in this area, many apps will fail simply because people do not need or want them. Equally, if people are forced to use them rather than simply going through a website, then they will be unsuccessful.

A classic example is a popular holiday booking website that I previously used. Some people like to browse throughout the year, but others prefer to visit the website, see whats available and book something within the space of a day.

I stopped using this website because I can no longer easily use it on my iPhone as it stipulates that I need to download their app. For those using the site frequently to browse through various offers, then this works well. For anybody else it is off-putting and frustrating.

Having the app itself may be a better experience that accessing the content through a browser, but if you are only using it for a few hours per year, nobody wants to be forced to download it.

Equally, not every site that works better through an app does it properly.

Speaking to somebody who has recently released a health app that I particularly liked, he told me that what made it different was that it didn’t have everything. The aspects that were in the app were the things that the users wanted to know and everything else had been stripped out.

This is not just true for the more complicated health apps, but for every single application on a phone/tablet’s screen.

The idea behind an app is to make it easier to access the content or services provided by that company and therefore, the app itself needs to be simple. A ‘features rich’ app is one that will not be popular, complication in an app is code for an app that will not be successful.

Take one of the most popular gaming apps of the past few years, flappy bird, it is the most basic it could possibly be and it was for this reason that it became so popular.

So what is the key to thriving in the application economy? Simplicity. Make it simple to use the app if you want to and make it simple to use once you have opened it.

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