App usage is up, but only for the chosen few
Android and IoS owners spend 80% of the time on their device using an app and only 20% web browsing. With a stat like that, it sounds like you should abandon your mobile website and get someone to work on a branded app. But don’t place the ad for a developer just yet.
Forrester just published a new report called “2015 Mobile App Marketing Trends” and we’ve got some data from that report to share with you.
The biggest issue with creating your own app is that you’re going to have a hard time breaking into the market. Forrester says the average US consumer uses 24 apps per month but 80% of their time is spent on the same five apps.
That’s certainly true for me, but my apps aren’t the average apps. Here’s the breakdown.
Facebook and YouTube are the most popular. YouTube is probably my number one but Facebook – rarely touch the stuff on mobile. Maps, Pandora and Gmail fill out the top five and again I’m not “normal”. You have to drop a little lower on the chart to find my most accessed apps including Netflix and Candy Crush. One of my big favorites didn’t even make the list — eBay!
Given the tight race, Forrester recommends you think more about app advertising than creating an app of your own. Eventually, all of the big players will give in and turn to advertising or partnerships in order to pay the bills.
But before you turn to paid advertising, you should be trying out content on apps such as Instagram or Snapchat. Users of these apps are highly engaged, so if you can catch their eye, it’ll be worth the effort and it won’t cost you anything but time and the salary of the person who updates your feeds.
If you’re already in the app biz, Forrester says you should think long and hard about a couple of things;
First, the number of apps. Stop trying to be everything to everybody. Pick your top apps and dedicate your time and money to making it the best it can be rather than spreading yourself too thin over two dozen apps.
Second, pay attention to retargeting and deep linking. Don’t pay to show your install ads to people who have your app. Not when it’s as easy as checking or unchecking a box on your ad dashboard. Deep linking is a very effective way of getting users from your app to your site — when it works. Double check all of your links and make sure users are getting the experience they expect.
Bottom line here is that apps are a very effective way to reach new and current customers but at this stage, you’re better off teaming up with an app developer who’s made the charts than trying to create your own experience from scratch.